The Fallow Cockatiel

The fallow cockatiel is also known as the red-eyed silver cockatiel. This is the latest of the cockatiel mutations to have been reported and some see it as being as attractive as the lutino Cockatiel.

The Fallow mutation originated in1971 in the aviary of Mrs. Irma Vowels, so it is a relative new cockatiel mutation.

The fallow cockatiel is light silver. If the feathers of the cinnamon cockatiel and the fallow cockatiel are examined in the hand, little difference, if any, can be made out between them, and yet the difference between these two types of cockatiel is very distinctive.

The cinnamon lutino cockatiel is often confused for the fallow cockatiel. The recessive silver mutation is also often confused for the fallow.

The male fallow is always darker than the female cockatiel, thus making the hen more attractive.

The reduction in Melanin is sufficient to make the eyes appear to be pink like they are in the lutino cockatiel. The fallow cockatiels eyes are slightly lighter in color than the lutino, but they do darken with age. Because in the budgerigar, such pink-eyed cinnamons are called fallows, this might be a better term for them.

fallow cockatielThe fallow cockatiel, unfortunately, has gone through a lot of inbreeding, and maybe it is this factor that has caused a lot of these birds to be blind or have very defective vision.

Their fertility is also very low, which is why these cockatiels are rare.

In my opinion, I am not sure it is not bordering on cruelty to continue breeding these types of birds for financial gain.


  1. Hi there,

    I have had cockatiels as pets before and they make great pets and are a very intriguing bird. We had them trained and we used to let them hang inside the house sometimes. They are very clever birds which makes them easy to train, although a bit messy. They are very prominent in different parts of Australia and are a common pet here. The cross breeding is a concern and yes does border on cruelty but hard to police and the birds will do what they do. I miss my cockatiels after reading this I might have to look at getting a couple more.


  2. I just found your site on cockatiels.   I love it.   As a kid growing up, we had a lot of pets.   Yet, our cockatiel, Wilber, was probably my favorite.   He was such a character.   He had quiet a vocabulary.   So, recently I have been thinking about getting a new cockatiel.   Granted, I am not sure if it will ever be able to live up to Wilber’s memory.   

    Thank you for sharing the information on the fallow variety.  After reading about their vision problems, I do not want that type.  Nor do I want to be encouraging people to breed them by making a purchase.     

    1. Good luck with your new cockatiel. No two cockatiels are the same, but your new cockatiel will have other traits you will learn to love.

  3. My son had a Cockatiel as a pet and he was gorgeous. He used to mimic the ring ring of the telephone. It did get a little frustrating at times, but he was loveable so was forgiven.I agree that it is sad that so many of the Fallow Cockatiels are blind or have poor eyesight. I agree that it is cruel to purposely create breeds that have a distinct weakness.

    Are there no regulations regarding acceptable breeding practices?

    1. It depends, but they can screech pretty loudly, although not as bad as a parrot. If you are worried try a budgie first or a canary as these make prettier noises. I find in general my cockatiels are pretty quiet most of the day, but in the morning and early evening they get quite chirpy.

  4. Bro I just wanted two ask that what two kinds of cockatiels would I need to cross breed to get fallow offspring.

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