First, you need some high-quality bird baby food. (I have had excellent results with LaFeber's Nutri-Start.) Do not waste your money on low-cost baby food unless there's nothing else available. Then, follow the instructions on the package carefully. Food should be very watery for young chicks. Food temperature should be about 104 degrees Fahrenheit (cockatiel body temperature). You can use a syringe or eye-dropper to feed the baby, or use a 1/4 teaspoon steel measuring spoon bent in at the ends (so that it resembles a parent cockatiel's bill--I've had great success with this, but it's messy, and you'll need to clean the baby with a tissue after each feeding). The baby should not be over-fed. The baby's crop should be tense but have a little bit of give (almost exactly like the feel of a tennis ball) after feeding.
How to hand feed baby Cockatiels - YouTube
Newborns and tiny cockatiel babies require feeds at least every hour, then every two hours around the clock, with an eventual four-hour break at night near one week of age. Some cockatiel providers are able to arrange for more than one hand-feeder to take over at least part of the time, which greatly reduces the stress on the human caregiver. Most aviculturists will not “pull” baby birds for hand-feeding under 2 1/2 weeks of age, because baby birds require too many feeds each day. Waiting beyond 18 days can be tricky, because cockatiel babies are afraid of humans at that age and will often refuse food and be impossible to feed. Timing is everything!
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Fortunately, a variety of hand-feeding formulas are available today at local pet retailers that are ideal for hand-feeding baby cockatiels. Follow manufacturer’s instructions to the letter; each brand is different and prepared in a slightly different manner. Whichever brand you choose, always prepare fresh formula for each meal, discarding whatever is left over. Feeding leftover formula or formula that is not warm enough will impact a baby’s crop. Feeding formula that is too hot will scald the crop and cause serious, painful crop burn, requiring immediate veterinary emergency care for the baby bird to survive. Always test formula on the inside of your wrist — if it burns you, it will certainly burn the baby bird’s crop.
Cockatiel Bird Care Sheet | How to Care for a Cockatiel | Petco