ACS Standard Of Judging Cockatiels In Cage Bird Shows

For those of you who think your cockatiel is pretty and clever enough to be entered in cage bird shows, here is what the judges are looking for at these types of competitions.

The ACS Standard for Judging Cockatiels in cage bird shows was founded in 1976.   This standard calls for a long graceful and full bodied bird.   The length of the cockatiel should be about 17 inches, and the crest should measure about 3 inches and should be long, dense and full.
cage bird shows

The ideal cockatiels head should be large and well rounded with no flat or bald spots if entering the bird at cage bird shows. The cockatiel’s eyes should be bright, large and be placed halfway between the front and the back of the skull. The bird’s brow should protrude slightly.

The beak should be clean and slightly tucked in so that only part of the lower mandible is visible.   The cheek patches should be well defined, brightly colored and round.   The adult male should have bright yellow heads with a sharp contrast where the yellow feathers meet the grey.  Feathers must all be in good condition with no pin feathers visible.

The bird should have a long graceful neck and a full-bodied chest, a slender abdomen and a wide straight back.   The wings need to be large, wide and long and should not cross or droop.  The wings must be held close to the body.   The wing patches need to be well defined and clear of any dark feathers.

The legs and feet should be able to hold the bird’s weight with ease, and the feet should have a strong grip.   The bird should not be missing any feet or claws, and of course, the feet must be clean.

The tail should be carried neither too high or too low, and all the tail feathers must be in good condition.

The ACS supplements the above visual standard with a point standard that awards 60 points to conformation.  The point system is broken down as follows:  Size – 20, Crest – 10, Body Substance – 10, Proportions – 5, Wing Carriage – 5, Tail – 5, Head – 5.

The point system also awards 15 points for the condition, 10 points for deportment, 5 points for caging and 10 points for colors and markings.

All cockatiels competing for ACS points will need to be shown in a standard show cage which measures 17 inches high by 18 inches wide by 10 inches deep.   The inside of the cage is painted light blue semi-gloss, while the outside is high gloss black.

While your cockatiel is being shown it can have an inch of seed mixture on the cage floor and a detachable watering tube.

So you thought it would be easy to enter your cockatiel in cage bird shows – think again.

To find out more about the National Cockatiel Society, click here.

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