The budgerigar is often called a parakeet or a budgie and the budgie is one of the most popular birds to keep as pets, both in outside aviaries and in cages in homes. Budgerigars are thought to be popular pets due to their small size and brightly coloured feathers.
The budgerigar is a very sociable bird and budgies can been seen gathering in large flocks in trees and scrub land in the Australian wilderness. Pet budgerigars should always be kept at least with one other budgerigar to prevent them from getting lonely. The wild budgerigar tends to feed on grass seeds and occasional insects.
Budgies are known to be very easy animals to sex. Male budgies and female budgies can be identified by the colour of their nose. The male budgerigar has a blue nose while the female budgie's nose is brown in colour.
Budgerigars are known to be very hardy little creatures and if a budgie becomes ill in the wild, the budgie will try to conceal it as long as possible so as not to appear weak and vulnerable to potential predators. The main predators of the wild budgerigar are snakes and birds of prey such as hawks. Wild budgerigars have also been known to be hunted by local natives mainly for their brightly coloured feathers which are then used in tribal costumes.
The average lifespan of a wild budgerigar is thought to be around 5 years but budgerigars have been known to live much longer in captivity, some get to nearly 20 years old! The average lifespan of a pet budgie is between 8 and 10 years.
Budgerigars are one of the few bird species that do not build nests and female budgerigars will therefore find a hole in a tree in which to lay their eggs. The female budgerigar lays around 5 or 6 eggs, that hatch in around 3 weeks. The budgie chicks are looked after by their mother and reach full adulthood when they are roughly 9 months old.
The budgerigar is a very vocal animal and the song of the budgie is also quite loud. Budgerigars use their voices to communicate with one another as they are very sociable animals.