Parakeets are friendly pets, and their popularity as bird pets is rising these days. You may have heard another name for this bird called budgies. Budgies and parakeets are technically the same. People in the United States call these birds parakeets, but in other countries, people call them budgies or budgerigars.
If you have a parakeet, you might be curious whether it’s male or female. And if you want to breed a budgie, you must be able to tell its gender. Yes, it can be difficult to confirm the gender of parakeets. Budgies’ reproductive organs are very small and aren’t visible as massive numbers of feathers cover them. But the cere of matured birds can tell the gender.
However, let’s discuss the ways to tell the difference between male vs female parakeets.
Male and Female Budgie’s Cere Chart: At What Age Does the Color Change?
First thing first. Let me clarify what a cere is.
You will see a piece of flesh above a parakeet’s beak which is known as cere (pronounced see-ree). The cere consists of blood vessels and keratin. It tells you about the sex, maturity, and health of a budgie.
It is very crucial for parakeets. And you should pay enough attention to the condition of your budgie’s cere if you want it to stay hydrated.
|Age||Color of Male’s Cere||Color of Female’s Cere|
|2 or 3 weeks old budgie||Rose, blue, or purple||White to brown|
|1-year-old ( Final Change)||Light Blue||White or tan|
Your baby budgie’s ( both male and female) cere is pink when it is born. By the time they are 2 or 3 weeks old, their cere color changes based on their gender.
Male baby budgies cere usually change to rose, blue, or purple from pink. Female baby budgies cere can change into white to brown colors. With time, the color of their cere keeps changing.
When the budgie is one year old, the color changes one last time, and that’s when the budgie matures. For females, it turns white or tan, and for males, it becomes light blue. When they are finally matured, you can easily tell apart their gender by seeing the color of the cere.
However, though this is the most common case, there are instances where budgies may adopt other colors. Although this is very rare, it is normal.
Male vs Female Parakeet: How to Tell the Gender
There are some signs that can help you to determine the gender of your budgies. Keep scrolling to know the signs.
Testing DNA will yield a 100 percent accurate result in determining the gender of your budgie.
Though it will cost you, if you want to be sure about the gender of your bird, make an appointment with an avian vet to start the DNA testing procedure.
|🧬For the test, the vet may collect a blood sample or use freshly plucked feathers to avoid traumatizing little budgies. 🧬To collect DNA, only fresh budgie feathers can be used, not the fallen feather. 🧬The cracked eggshells from newly hatched birds can be tested within a few hours of hatching.|
One of the best ways to determine a budgie’s gender is by its color. But these birds must reach a maturity level for you to judge them based on their color. For the gender colors to appear, you would have to wait at least 8 to 12 months.
You can closely look at the color of the cere to guess the gender at an early age. Male parakeets typically have purple or light blue cere, and females has shades of brown. There are times when a female budgie’s cere would turn blue. But there’s no need to worry. Despite its pale color, you can still distinguish between the male and female.
You can also determine the gender based on the color indication of the budgie’s legs. The color of their legs is different too. Female species have brown with a slight shade of pink legs while the males have blue legs.
Related Article: Sexing Parakeets
Though it may not be a 100 percent accurate determining factor, you can know the gender of parakeets by judging their behavior. According to avian experts, budgies’ behavior is a substantial determining factor of their gender.
|Male Parakeet||Female Parakeet|
|Male parakeets are socially more active.||Female birds are bossy and quite scary.|
|These males can easily get along well with other birds and people.||They aren’t very friendly with others.|
|They are playful and often sing and bob their heads.||You may sometimes hear their loud vocalization, however, be sure they aren’t singing.|
4. Biting Tendency
Yes, if you look at their biting tendency carefully, you can pin-point males from females. Even though it may not be a 100 percent right method, it’s highly plausible.
|Male Parakeet||Female Parakeet|
|A baby boy budgie settles for a subtle nibbling. Even at an early age, they display their social behavior.||If you are playing with a baby bird, it is likely to be a female if it bites you hard, refusing to let go. Female budgies start exhibiting their bossy attitude at an early age.|
5. Baby Clues
Though the color of cere is a more reliable indicator later in life, by closely looking at the ring just around the nostril of a parakeet, you can determine its gender even at an early age.
|Male Parakeet||Female Parakeet|
|Male parakeets tend to have a pink or purple tint to their ring around their nostrils.||Females typically have a white ring around the nostril.|
Sadly, when a bird is young—less than a month old—these hues are quite hard to tell apart.
6. Cheek Spots
It is not the most reliable way to identify the gender of your bird. Sometimes there are instances where you don’t have any visible spots to check. However, if they have, it is evident immediately. On a male budgie, you can see dark purple spots, whereas, on a female, you might find light purple freckles.
7. Egg Laying
Yes, eggs are an obvious indicator of gender. If you see eggs in the cage, it means your parakeet is undoubtedly a female. However, don’t jump to conclusions and assume that it’s a male budgie if you don’t see eggs in the cage. Female parakeets don’t lay eggs often.
The only issue with this determining factor is that you have to wait until you see eggs to determine the gender.
16 Fun Facts About Parakeets
- Parakeets have more than 120 species and subspecies. The type of parakeet most frequently kept as a pet in the United States is just one of those.
- “Parakeet” means “long tail.”
- You may learn a lot about a parakeet’s health from looking at its feet; scaly feet may indicate parasites or a nutritional shortage.
- Parakeets are very intelligent. You can teach them a large vocabulary which is a fun factor of having them.
- Because of their intelligence, they are relatively easy to tame and train.
- Parakeets are incredibly curious birds. For entertainment, parakeets adore puzzles and foraging games.
- Parakeets are agile and enjoy climbing and holding things.
- A well-kept parakeet can survive for 10 to 20 years, but they do need a lot of care and attention to be happy.
- Water sports are fun for parakeets. Additionally, it’s a terrific way to keep them clean.
- A parakeet’s beak keeps growing continuously.
- Budgies have exceptional eyesight. They can register 150 images per minute, whereas humans can do up to 16 images.
- If a parakeet loses about 10 to 12 drops of blood, it should be taken to a vet immediately. Even just a small amount of blood loss can be lethal to your feathery pals.
- You can easily put 2 male budgies together in a cage. They are more social, and you will enjoy it when they sing to one another.
- Never, ever, put two female budgies in the same cage. Both will exhibit a bossy attitude and fight for their territory. So putting them together means waiting for a war.
- Your parakeet’s diet should consist of 10 to 15 percent fruits and vegetables.
- Since parakeets take great care to maintain their appearance, a change in your bird’s grooming routine could be a sign of stress or ill health.
Now that you have learned many differences between male vs. female parakeets, I hope it will be easier for you to tell apart males from females. All you need to do is be observant. Their contrasting color and personality will do the job for you.
Whichever gender it is, remember to love your budgie and give it proper care if you have one.
As an animal lover since childhood, Paul has an excessive amount of kindness for animals and really feels about them. Feeding stray dogs and passing time with them is one of the things Paul loves to do in his free time.
Paul studied Veterinary Medicine at Murdoch University. He is a Speaker who talks about animal welfare at various events. You will find him sharing here his valuable knowledge as well as experience.
Currently, Paul is working on his first book to publish where you will see the reflection of his 10 years of experience with animals and pet psychology.