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Lovebirds VS Cockatiel – Difference – Which should you prefer?

Mackenzie Gary

Lovebirds, Cockatiel


It is common to have small birds in the house but it is quite difficult to distinguish them. So, what about parrots that look alike? Certainly, there are many distinctions in color and size. It matters which one is better suited for companionship, calmer for the home and less aggressive.

In this article, we will cover all aspects of lovebirds vs cockatiel. No doubt, both are beautiful, attractive, friendly and friendly. Still, are these qualities enough to choose them? They should have extensive knowledge of intelligence, sizes, prices and proper temperatures.

If you decide to take one of these, all the factors below are relevant to your knowledge. Since cute birds are always ready to be trained, this quality is not enough to ignore the cockatiel. Also, from the variety of their requirement in food, you cannot even imagine it. By reading you will also get to know the clear difference between peers.

Detail about Lovebirds vs Cockatiel

  • Lovebirds are attentive and well known as Pocket Parrots. There are almost 9 species, and the biggest one is black-winged lovebirds. They make bonds with humans and their mates to get rid of boredom. However black masked lovebirds and peach-faced lovebirds are commonly referred to as pets. Lovebirds as pets pros and cons, you can read here.
  • Lovebirds are different from cockatiel with their physical appearance, nature, personality, intelligence, lifespans, and even prices. Let’s begin with the factors.  
  • Cockatiels are famous due to their head crest and are easy to handle. Like lovebirds, a cockatiel is beautiful, attractive, and friendly but different in colors. There are eighteen types of cockatiel and the larger one is the Giant cockatiel. Hence,  Nymphicus hollandicus is the best species well known as a household pet. Cockatiels as pets pros and cons you can read here. 

1- Physical appearance

Physical appearance includes overall body features. The physical appearance of a cockatiel is different from lovebirds. Let’s begin to read the clear difference between tails, heads, beaks, and color. 


Lovebirds Tail: The tail of lovebirds is short and blunt according to their body

Cockatiel Tail: The tail of the cockatiel is larger than lovebirds. Females have various colors of bands on the tail, and males are without bars.

Lovebirds Head: Head of the male and female lovebirds are different. Male lovebirds have chunky but less rounded heads. Besides, female lovebirds’ heads are commensurable and rounded. 

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Cockatiel Head:  Male and female have a specialty of the head crest. However, you can determine both mates with head color either. Females have a gray face with a lighter orange mark, while males have a brighter orange mark with yellow faces.


Lovebirds beak: As the beak plays a role in eating various foods including seeds. Thus, the strong keratin beaks of cute birds help them chew, eat and tear. However, because of the keratin, the beak will grow throughout the life of the lovebird. They can also break toys with their strong nibs.

Cockatiel Beak: The beak is different from other birds mainly due to its color and shape. Still, the curved ends distinguish them from other birds. But too tall and short is not good for a cocktail.


Lovebird’s colors: The color of lovebirds is very unique and attracts humans to reach out to them. However, peach, green, and yellow are commonly present in lovebirds. Black and orange shades around the beak are also a specialty of lovebirds’ beauty. 

Cockatiel colors: In color variety, they are more unique than lovebirds. Gray, pearl, lutino, yellow, and pied are common in the overall appearance of the cockatiel.


Lovebird’s size: It depends on whether your lovebirds are baby, mature, or older, the size of every bird is different. However, the length of mature lovebirds is between 11-17 cm. Talking about wingspan, mature lovebirds are 24cm in length.

Cockatiel size: Cockatiels are larger and their sizes are about 20-32cm in length. This bird weighs 120g. 

2- Nature: Lovebirds vs cockatiel

Lovebirds Nature

As lovebirds are social and loving with their close friend. It means they are bold and show their feelings with cuddling, and happiness with body signs. Some of you thought that lovebirds only show their affections with their mates or they become happy in pairs. But the truth is that they can live alone with perfect human friends and with access to toys. 

Otherwise, aggressiveness is also part of lovebirds’ nature, but in a lonely mood. Curiosity and interest play the main role in lovebirds’ behavior. They show every kind of behavior with their body sign. 

Cockatiel Nature

A cockatiel is intelligent and affectionate like lovebirds. They are curious and friendly also. Unlike lovebirds, the cockatiel does not show their affections by cuddling. Anyhow, their piercing voices show their behavior. Also, they make a strong bond with humans but scare with louder voices. Nipping is their habit if they don’t find suitable requirements or owners’ time. 

3- Intelligence

Lovebirds Intelligence:

The Parrot family is very smart, that’s why lovebirds are also. But if you want to get a talkative bird, it is not for you. You can select a green wild parrot for talking. Anyways, lovebirds are very efficient to recognize, even their partner and their owner. Moreover, you can train your lovebirds quickly with your love and admiration. 

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Cockatiel intelligence: 

If we are talking about the intelligence of cockatiel, they are smarter and have more specialty than lovebirds. They notice their owner’s voice, and after the interaction, they respond with their body signs. They are quick learners and according to the training, they shake hands with their friends. A cockatiel can walk on a rope with practice also. One thing is that cockatiel can talk with humans after learning.

4- Requirements


Like all birds, lovebirds want a safe cage, healthy food, multiple toys, and owner care. No doubt, it depends on the species for the quality and quantity of their required things. 


Cockatiel requires large space in a cage and excessive food according to weight and size. 

5- Lifespan

Lifespan of lovebirds:

The lifespan of lovebirds is less than a cockatiel. Yet, with proper nutritional food, they can live 15-20 years. But if you don’t care about your lovebirds and provide them limited food, they hardly live 10-15 years.

Lifespan of Cockatiel:

The lifespan of a cockatiel is about 16-25 years. With playing with toys, a happy environment, and nutritious food, their health will be maintained. So, they can extend their life by getting proper requirements.

6- Prices

Lovebirds Cost:

According to lovebirds’ age, their prices vary. Also, species of lovebirds count to deal with buyers. Furthermore, $25-200 is an estimated analysis. 

  • Peach lovebirds are about 25-40$
  • Abyssinian lovebirds are about 100-200$
  • Fisher’s lovebirds are about 40-80$

Cockatiel Cost:

Unlike lovebirds, these species have different ranges in cost according to species. 

  • A pied cockatiel is about 100-180$
  • Cinnamon cockatiel cost is about 120-150$
  • Pearl cockatiel cost is 130-200$
  • Lutino cockatiel cost is more than 250$

7- Expenses

Lovebirds Expenses:

Undoubtedly, lovebirds want everything including water, better food, cage, toys, mates, and much more. Estimated ideas of expenses are below:

  • Monthly water and food expenses for many lovebirds are about $100-200. And yearly expenses are assuredly more than weekly.
  • For a single lovebird, you need one small toy which will be available in the market within $40-$50. Besides, many species need quality friendly numbers of toys that can be available within 200$. But it will be a one-time investment. 
  • For fewer lovebirds, small cage costs are about $30-$50 and larger cages for multiple birds are around $100-$200. 
  • Treatment costs depend upon disease, about $100+.

Cockatiel Expenses:

According to the cockatiel’s weight and size, these birds need extra food. However, more expenses are invested in food materials. Let’s see about cockatiel expenses: 

  • Monthly food expenses are 120-200$
  • Medical treatment expenses are about 200$ yearly
  • Insurance expenditures are more than 200$ yearly
  • For toys, it requires 100$

8- Temperature

Suitable temperature for lovebirds:

Lovebirds cannot live in very hot and very cold temperatures. However, the 60-80F degree temperature is accurate for them. 

Temperature for Cockatiel:

House temperature is exact for lovebirds. The 65-85F degree will be suitable.

Do cockatiels like lovebirds?

Cockatiels are not as aggressive as lovebirds. Still, they are friendly with parrot species. That is why they do not dislike other birds as love birds. Therefore, cute birds are disturbed and aggressive by cockatiel interference. Lovebirds’ sizes can’t beat their fighting prowess.

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In their fury, they attack the cockatiel with bite force. Of course, lovebirds are difficult to bite because of their sharp beaks. Additionally, they do not want to interact with any other birds during the breeding season. These are the factors of jealousy in them. Although, you can’t keep them both in the same cage because of the notorious behavior of lovebirds.

Do lovebirds fight with a cockatiel?

Birds who don’t like other species, fight with them. To prevent any interference of the cockatiel, they show their anger by fighting. So, it is not desirable that lovebirds fight with a cockatiel due to their possessiveness with their mate and eggs. They both cannot be suitable in one cage, even in the same place.

Lovebirds vs conures , you can read here

Are lovebirds or Cockatiel louder?

Both are quite noisy, but lovebirds are louder than cockatiels. In aggressive behavior, they are not kind. Also, a cockatiel makes noise in arousing situations but is not as muffled as lovebirds. However, the cockatiel displays its blisters according to light and dark conditions. Light affects cockatiel hormones, and during breeding season they make noise.

In short, lovebirds are louder than cockatiels during times of stress, conflict, and uncomfortable situations. 

Which is better as a beginner pet?

It is very important for every parrot fancier to know which species will be beneficial in the beginning. As you know, lovebirds take time to chat but show their double affection after the bond. But cockatiels are highly recommended as a beginner pet because of their calm demeanor.

Cockatiels communicate quickly with humans and never hurt them by biting them. In addition, they are talkative, more friendly, and easy to handle. Perhaps, baby and adult cockatiels have similar habits as lovebirds, but an older cockatiel will be your best friend.

Lovebirds vs budgies you can read here.

Summing up

Finally, lovebirds vs cockatiel concept is important to know their habitat, physical appearance, expenses as well as behavior. Finally, we have covered all about lovebirds and cockatiels. However, in our view, the cockatiel is the best choice for the beginner, talkative, and beauty conscious pet.

Perhaps, if one is on a tight budget and wants to get noisy birds, lovebirds are preferable for them. Cockatiels live longer than lovebirds and are also beautiful because of their colors and head crest. After all, keeping them both in cages is not a wise decision for their health. Because cute birds don’t want to see another pet around them.