Meet George, Alexandra Park Zoo's resident male sulphur crested cockatoo.
George is quite a unique character and has been at the zoo since 1999 after he was donated by a member of the public.
Zoo curator David Flack said the quirky bird loved nothing more than having a chat and interacting with his housemates- which was a personality trait that could last over 100 years!
“We aren’t sure how old George is, from what I’ve been told he came to the zoo as an adult which would make him at least 25 years old, but he could be much older,” he said.
“Sulphur-crested cockatoos have been known to reach 100 years of age in captivity.”
While COVID-19 restrictions are in place, George has been receiving regular attention and interactions with the zoo keepers as part of his normal positive welfare program.
He especially loves to socialise with some of the other animals at the facility and has a great time taking part in zoo activities.
“George regularly engages with the red-tailed black cockatoos (Calyptorhynchus banksii) in the enclosure beside him, providing other avenues for socialisation,” David said.
“Typical enrichment for George includes things such as cardboard boxes, papier mache, and eucalyptus browse.
“He enjoys things that he can rip apart with his strong beak, generally making a big mess as he shreds whatever he can into tiny pieces.”
David said sulphur crested cockatoos were intelligent birds.
“Unfortunately, a loss of nesting hollows through the clearing of old trees may be an issue for this species in the future,” he said.
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