The Citron crested cockatoo has an orange crest instead of the typical yellow of the other sulphur-crested cockatoo species. They have pale orange ear patches. The underside of the larger wing and tail feathers have a pale yellow color. The beak is dark grey. They have strong feet and claws. The eye color ranges from brown through very dark brown to black.
The citron-crested cockatoo (Cacatua sulphurea citrinocristata) is the same species as the Lesser Sulphur-Crested cockatoo (Cacatua sulphurea sulphurea). The citron-crested cockatoo is classified as a subspecies of the Lesser Sulphur-Crested cockatoo. In appearance both species look alike, except for some striking differences. The crest of the citron-crested cockatoo is orange instead of yellow and it also has an yellow cheek mark that the Lesser Sulphur-Crested cockatoo lacks. In captivity both species are interbred often, producing hybrid individuals with traits of both subspecies, making it harder to see which species you are dealing with. Pure bred citron-crested cockatoos have become rare in captivity.
CITRON-CRESTED COCKATOOS AS PETS
Hand-reared citron-crested cockatoos can make good pets, as they are generally friendly and sociable, and of a curious nature. They do like to chew , but are not as noisy as most cockatoos. In fact, generally they are quiet, but they can make a moderately loud honking/screeching sound. They can also make a repetitive quieter whistling/squeaking noise. They are not good at imitating human speech as some members of the parrot family, having a vocabulary of up to only 15 words or phrases. They readily learn tricks and they can be trained. They often raise the crest feathers in display or when surprised. Their droppings are semi-solid and can be messy.
As with many cockatoo species, Citron-crested Cockatoos taken as pets need much greater care and attention than other companion parrots.
They are not common in pet stores, but are becoming more popular with breeders. Each bird must be sold with an official CITES certificate to prove that it was bred in captivity.
Speech and Sounds
There is an important subject that comes up when cockatoos are talked about – their noisiness. They are known to be very vocal and talkative, and as loud as a parrot can be. Luckily, the Citron Crested Cockatoo is well known as the quieter of the bunch. This comes as a relief for those who would prefer their pet bird to be less loud. But still, you can expect an occasional high pitched screech or a similar vocal expression that can surprise you. Keep this in mind if you live in an apartment. They are also great mimics and can learn to repeat words to some extent, but the result is often a flood of silly words.
The first thing you realize about most Cockatoo breeds is their lack of exotic colors. For the most part, they are simple, single color birds, but with a big dose of elegance and a peculiar charm. Citron Crested Cockatoo is entirely white, with pale yellow tones on the underside of the large wing and tail feathers. These are only seen in flight. They have small round yellow patches on the cheeks, giving them somewhat of a blushing look. The crowning feature of these parrots is their graceful, pale orange crest which gives them their name. It is a prominent, curved crest of feathers that is the distinguishing feature of these parrots. It often expands to show the mood of your pet.