The Tanimbar Corella, Cacatua goffiniana, often known as Goffin's Cockatoo in aviculture, is a species of cockatoo endemic to forests of Yamdena, Larat and Selaru, all islands in the Tanimbar Islands archipelago in Indonesia. The species has been introduced at the Kai Islands, Indonesia, Puerto Rico and Singapore. This species was only formally described in 2004, after it was discovered that the previous formal descriptions pertained to individuals of a different cockatoo species, the Ducorps' Cockatoo (Cacatua ducorpsii). Tanimbar Corellas are the smallest of the white cockatoos. This species is Near Threatened due to deforestation and bird trade. The species breeds well in captivity and there is a large avicultural population.
Tanimbar Corellas weigh, on average, about 250 g for females and 300 g for males. They are about 31 cm (12 inches) from head to tail.
Like all members of the Cacatuidae, the Tanimbar Corella is crested, meaning it has a collection of feathers on its head that it can raise or lower. Its body is mainly covered with white feathers, with salmon or pink colored feathers between the beak and eyes. The deeper (proximal) parts of the crest feathers and neck feathers are also a salmon color, but the coloration here is hidden by the white color of the more superficial (distal) areas of these feathers. The underside of its wing and tail feathers exhibit a yellowish tinge. The beak is pale grey and eye colour ranges from brown to black. Both sexes are similar. They are often confused with the Little Corella (Bare-eyed Cockatoo) due to their similar appearance.
The maximum recorded lifespan for a (captive) Tanimbar Corella is 18.3 years - though this figure may be a significant under-representation, considering the long-lived nature of many other cockatoo species.
Due to ongoing habitat loss on Tanimbar, limited range and illegal hunting, the Tanimbar Corella is evaluated as Near Threatened on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. The species is listed on Appendix I of CITES. In the 1970s, Japanese loggers ravaged the islands. Many of the dazed, disoriented birds were captured for the pet trade. Although many died from stress during shipment, there may be a small silver lining behind this ecological disaster, because many Tanimbar Corellas have reproduced in captive breeding programs. As such, there are now more Tanimbar Corellas in captivity than in the wild.
In 2000, it became clear that the formal description of this species as Lophochroa goffini by Otto Finch in 1863 was based on two specimens that actually belonged to a different cockatoo species, the Ducorps' Cockatoo (Cacatua ducorpsii). Therefore, Cacatua goffini became a synonym for Cacatua ducorpsii. This left the species without a proper scientific name and description. In 2004, the species was formally described as Cacatua goffiniana, now based on an individual collected from the Tanimbar Islands.
Pet flying in a harness
In aviculture the parrot is widely known as the Goffins Cockatoo. Pet birds handreared from hatching can imitate human speech, but generally they are not good talkers. They are generally quiet, but they can make a loud screeching noise. They can make good pets, as they are friendly and sociable. They enjoy being stroked. They are intelligent and they can be trained and can learn tricks.
Tanimbar Corellas learn by watching and copying. Just by opening the cage doors, a Tanimbar Corella's attention can be drawn to the latches on their cages and they can learn by trial and error how to open the latch with their beaks and escape the cage in seconds. Tanimbar Corellas can destroy furniture with their beaks and can chew through wires and cause potentially dangerous electrical incidents.
Handreared Tanimbar Corellas tend to demand a lot of attention. Occasionally, captive birds of this species (like many cockatoos) develop self-destructive behaviours such as feather-plucking, or stereotypy if they do not have an interesting and enriching environment. Caged Tanimbar Corellas require a frequent change of toys to play with so they do not become bored. They need time out of their cage for one-on-one social contact of at least one hour daily and also to exercise their wings and fly. Even very tame birds can bite humans when irritated or even when being excessively playful. Their droppings are semi-solid and can be messy. Many new bird owners are not aware of the time and money a cockatoo demands and pet birds are often passed from one owner to the next or relinquished to animal shelters.
Tanimbar Corella chicks make an repetitive soft howling/screeching noise (producer calls) when they are hungry.
In the UK their sale is controlled as they are classified as a rare species. Each bird must have an official certificate to prove that it was captive bread an not imported.