My Cockatiel Bites Everything

All birds use their beaks – it is one of their main tools to explore the world and to communicate.

If you find that your cockatiel is biting everything from shoes to its cage, there are a few reasons why.

One of the main explanations is that your cockatiel may be nesting.

As biting is natural and instinctual behavior, it shouldn’t be discouraged.

But you can always redirect its biting to something more suitable such as a toy.

Here’s what you’re going to discover in this article

  • Why does your bird bite everything?
  • How to stop your cockatiel from biting
  • Why your cockatiel is biting you all of a sudden

So if you’re interested in understanding why your bird is biting everything and how you can stop this behavior then you’re going to love this article!

Sound good?

Let’s get started

Why Does My Bird Bite Everything?

Birds like to use their beaks as it is one of their main modes of communication.

If you find that your bird is biting everything in its path, there are a few reasons why it is behaving in this manner.

Before diving into these reasons, it is important to note that chewing and biting is natural behavior for cockatiels, and examples of this can be commonly found in the wild.

Your cockatiel may be biting everything as it is sexually mature and ready to nest.

When cockatiels reach sexual maturity, they bite, shred, and chew through various materials in order to build their nests.

Despite the fact that it is in captivity, your own domesticated cockatiel will exhibit this behavior as well.

Just like human babies, they will put everything in their mouths, similarly baby birds will do the same.

Baby cockatiels use their beaks to get to know their environment.

The beak is an important tool in exploring, so if you own a young cockatiel, this is a very probable reason for its incessant biting.

If you have only recently adopted your cockatiel, once it starts to get comfortable with you, it may creep up to you and start to chew and bite on something close to you.

This is a good step forward for your relationship with your cockatiel as it is showing that your bird is slowly starting to trust you by stepping out of its cage (the safe zone) to look for something to bite.

So it’s not all bad behavior

As a matter of fact, it’s actually a good thing

But here’s the problem

Your cockatiel is chewing things that’s not meant to be chewed and is costing you money!

So how do you stop your cockatiel from biting?

Let’s find out..

How Do I Stop My Cockatiel From Biting?

Although biting is absolutely normal behavior and to be expected from a cockatiel, sometimes it is better to dissuade your cockatiel from biting.


This may be because your cockatiel is biting something dangerous like wires or something that is valuable to you like your jewelry.

Or they could be biting your curtains, couch, your furniture!

Whatever the reason, it’s good to have some tricks up your sleeves to convince your cockatiel that biting certain things is not encouraged.

You cannot dissuade your cockatiel from biting itself as it is completely natural for it to do so, but what you can do is, redirect its biting to something suitable.

For example, try the foraging toys which you can find in any pet store.

Something like this

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You can put treats in them as well which may make it more enticing for your bird to give them a go instead of biting your socks.

When you let your cockatiel out of its cage, you should make sure it is always supervised and you should put away anything that your bird may get a hold of.

Instead, put foraging toys scattered around for your cockatiel to play with along with things like wood or paper that most cockatiels love to shred.

Why Is My Cockatiel Biting Me All Of a Sudden?

It’s quite alarming if your normally affectionate cockatiel does a 180 and bites you.

Cockatiels won’t bite without reason, so what are some of the main reasons your bird might be reacting in this way?

Has your cockatiel had enough sleep recently?

Birds are sleepy animals that need 10 to 12 hours of uninterrupted sleep each night in addition to naps throughout the day.

Much like tired humans who can get grumpy, your sleep-deprived cockatiel may become irritated and go for a bite when you try to pet it or hold it.

It’s best to allow your bird to get all of the sleep it needs and wants in order to keep a happy bird in your hands.

Does your cockatiel have a balanced diet?

An unhealthy and unbalanced diet can lead to a bird that has no energy and is downright unhappy.

A lacking diet will obviously lead to health issues, but this will also affect your cockatiel’s mood.

So make sure you feed your cockatiel a healthy, nourishing, and varied diet 

Is your cockatiel sick?

If your cockatiel isn’t feeling very well, the last thing it will want is to be handled.

Although you may want to cuddle your sick bird, it’s best to leave your bird alone as forced interaction may lead to a nasty bite.

Instead, take your cockatiel to the vet to make sure nothing is seriously wrong.

Final Words

Cockatiels love to bite, but sometimes they may bite something dangerous like a wire.

In this case, place a foraging toy in front of your cockatiel as it goes for the wire.

Your cockatiel will redirect its attention to the toy and chew on the toy instead.

And although biting is completely natural, your pet cockatiel might lash out and bite you.

A bird will never do this without reason, so if this ever happens, take a moment to pay close attention to your bird and read its body language to find why it might want to bite you.

You might find that the reasoning is a lot simpler than you think!

Here’s some related articles you may be interested in

Why is my cockatiel hissing and biting?

Why does my cockatiel stare at the wall?

Why does my cockatiel nibble me?

We at write about bird health and diet however it should not be taken as medical advice. For advice on your bird you need to seek out an avian vet. The information you find on is for educational purposes only. At we are not liable for any information that you may find on here. Birdcageshere is NOT a substitute for professional medical advice about your bird.