Cacatuidae (Cockatoos)

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Scientific classification
Kingdom: Animalia
Phylum: Chordata
Class: Aves
Order: Psittaciformes
Family: Cacatuidae
GR Gray, 1840


The Cacatuidae (Cockatoo family) is one of the two families in the order Psittaciformes and consists of 21 species, mainly found in Australia, Indonesia, New Guinea and other nearby islands. Cockatoos share characteristics such as the curved beak and the zygodactyl foot, with two forward toes and two backwards toes. The absence of the Dyck texture feather composition results in that the basic color of most cockatoos is white, gray or black. Many species have spots of red or yellow in their plumage, but blue and green are strikingly absent. A direct obvious characteristic that differentiate them from the parrots is the movable headcrest, which can be very large and colorful. Other differentiating traits include several anatomical traits, including the the presence of a gall blather.



  1. Brown, D.M. & Toft, C.A. (1999): Molecular systematics and biogeography of the cockatoos (Psittaciformes: Cacatuidae). Auk 116(1): 141-157.