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The cockatiel is a species of parrot-like bird in the cockatoo family (Cacatuidae). Though many cockatoo species are difficult to keep in captivity, the cockatiel is much easier than most and has become a pet across the globe. Cockatiels can be identified by their prominent head crest ? a group of feathers the cockatiel can control to communicate various emotions.

The cockatiel is native to Australia and is closely related to many of the parrot species found on the continent. However, recent genetic evidence has placed the cockatiel in a genus of its own, much more closely related to cockatoos and other broad-tailed parrots. In the wild, cockatiels live in large, highly-social flocks that migrate together to find food.