Can Cockatiels See In The Dark? Is It Harmful To Them?

Most of us prefer a dark room for better sleep. While you go to your comfortable bed for some good sleep, are your cockatiels having the same? Light undoubtedly plays a huge role in cockatiel, but their vision is limited when it comes to dark.

So can cockatiels see in the dark? Cockatiels aren’t the best when it comes to darkness. Their night vision is so limited that they can see less than human level. Darkness triggers the cockatiel’s survival instincts. So it may hamper their sleep and cause night frights.

However, there are many things to know about the cockatiel’s night fright as you would be shocked what it can lead to. Thus, without any further ado, let’s get started!

Can Cockatiels See In The Dark?

Can Cockatiels See In The Dark?

If you live in a room with your cockatiel, you might wonder if they can see or not when you turn the lights off. Well, the problem begins when there is very little amount of light sources in the room.

So can cockatiels see at night? Cockatiels are not capable of seeing anything in the dark and will only lead to self-harm of themselves. Unlike night vision birds like owls, the cockatiels are not meant to be awake at night but rather sleep in peace.

Nevertheless, it would be wrong to state that they cannot see anything at all. They do have a small radius of vision which can be considered nothing.

Cockatiels are joyful birds and require light to stay active and do their fun activities. However, in the daytime, if you leave your pet in a shady dark room, then it will suffer from nothing but depression. The cockatiels wouldn’t be able to see their surroundings properly and might end up hurting themselves.

However, at nighttime, a small source of light is recommended. You cannot blame your pet bird for this habit. Their ancestors have lived in the wild and have become a part of their survival trigger. If they aren’t able to see what’s going on nearby, then they will suffer from night frights.

Can Cockatiels Sleep In The Dark?

Can Cockatiels Sleep In The Dark?

Cockatiels are very sensitive when it comes to sleeping in the dark. A small keyboard pressing sound or a mouse clicking noise can open up their eyes in a matter of seconds as a response to their instincts. In short, they get the feeling that someone is coming for them to hunt.

Thus, it can be said that darkness is not a friend of their sleep. As mentioned before, night frights can take place when they are sleeping. Even if it’s just a small sound or a blow from the wind. While it wakes up from that, getting no vision of its surroundings leads to night frights.

As soon as they feel threatened, night frights take place, which makes them bounce here and there in the aviary. Additionally, constantly flap their wings and tries finding ways to escape.

As a result, a dingy light around their aviary is always preferred. At least they would be able to see what’s near them and their vision certainly gives them comfort.

Things To Maintain

If you want to make sure that your pet bird has as good a sleep as yours, then you can always try maintaining the environment for them. The environment plays a huge role in whether they will get night fright or not. Thus, maintaining it subtly will keep them relieved.

Firstly, what you can do is install a small source of light in the space they are living. As per research, almost every bird, including cockatiels, prefers sleeping in the light if it’s dim enough. As soon as they get under a luminosity, they feel safe and can relax their muscles to sleep.

On the other hand, using a shade is the best thing you can gift your pet. By shade, we mean something to cover the aviary. While doing it, you will be providing cover for all the distractions that could take place.

Starting from the sound of the wind to the gust, everything will be stopped by the simple shade.

What Happens If The Above Protocols Are  Not Maintained?

What Happens If The Above Protocols Are  Not Maintained?

You might wonder what could happen to your pet cockatiel if the night fright-stopping protocols are not followed. Well, the last thing that you would want your bird to do is panic. That’s what will happen if you don’t maintain it.

As mentioned earlier, the cockatiels will start to panic and leap around, searching for a hole to escape. There is a high chance they will end up hurting themselves due to the constant leaps without vision. It’s like a nightmare to the cockatiels when they come across sudden brightness.

Similarly, if the aviary has more than one cockatiel in it, then the mess will be a lot bigger than you can expect. The night fright trigger of one cockatiel will trigger the other sleeping cockatiels too. As a consequence, there will be a massacre.

How To Calm Down A Night Frightened Cockatiel?

How To Calm Down A Night Frightened Cockatiel?

Calming doing a night frightened cockatiel isn’t any rocket science. Just like how quickly they can get frightened, they can be calmed down at the same speed.

Just turn on the lights and give them 10 to 15 seconds to understand what is going on. Additionally, you can always approach your bird friend slowly when frightened. Start by talking slowly to them or singing some lullabies in a calming tone.


We have collected some common questions that people are concerned about their cockatiels. There’s no better time than to answer them now. Let’s check them out.

Do cockatiels like to be covered at night?

As you already know that it’s better to cover their home at night to avoid night fright. However, whether they like it or not is entirely up to them. Some do, and others don’t. It’s certainly good for them, without a doubt.

How far can cockatiels see in the dark?

There is no measured distance on what they can see in the dark. However, it’s sure that it’s quite less and certainly way less than humans.


To conclude, that was all you needed to know about whether can cockatiels see in the dark. You now know that complete darkness isn’t good for cockatiels but rather harmful for them. The dark triggers their getting hunted instincts and makes the birds panic and get night frights.

Similarly, they don’t prefer getting their sleep in a dark shady home. You can always install a small dingy light on their aviary and cover it with a cloth. This will let them see their surroundings and make them feel safe.

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