The Cheapest Pet Birds – The 10 Most Affordable Options

Parakeet in cage
© Vyaseleva Elena/Shutterstock.com

Written by Kirstin Harrington

Published: November 26, 2023

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Are you a bird enthusiast? Perhaps you’re entertaining the idea of bringing a pet bird into your home. If so, it’s essential to know that some of these beautiful avian creatures, such as the Hyacinth Macaw, can cost thousands of dollars.

Thankfully, there are plenty of affordable and cheap pet birds on the market that won’t put a dent in your wallet. We’ve scoured the web to find the most inexpensive birds that make great pets.

There are factors such as availability and location that play a role in the cost of a bird. Let’s take a look at which fluttering friends you can bring home.

1. Parakeet

Green-cheeked Parakeet (Suncheek Conure) on its perch. Pigeon Forge, Tennessee November 8th, 2021

There are over 110 species of parakeet!

©Archaeopteryx Tours/Shutterstock.com

The cheapest pet bird you can have is a parakeet. Also known as budgerigars, these little birds are quite friendly and sweet toward their favorite humans. Of course, they have a beautiful array of feathers that make them mesmerizing to look at. 

Parakeets can be chatty and adore interacting with their owners. Because they’re so small, they don’t need a huge cage and won’t eat a lot of food. This definitely saves you money in the long run. 

If you have a smaller home or live in an apartment that allows birds, these little guys are perfect additions. They are not only affordable, but they are also low-maintenance and less messy than larger birds. 

Parakeets are famously gentle. They don’t bite often and when they do, it isn’t too hard. This allows them to interact with small children without too much concern. 

2. Finch

Zebra Finch, Close-up, Multi Colored, Songbird, Animal

Zebra finches live between five and 12 years old.

©iStock.com/Tom Meaker

Finches are a wildly popular pet bird and it’s likely because of their cheap price tag! The most popular species of finches people have in their homes are owl finches and zebra finches. These are small, yet strong birds that are quite active.

If you’re a first-time bird owner, consider bringing home a finch! They’re low-maintenance and relatively talkative. Because these birds are quite social, it may be a good idea to get your feathered friend a buddy. 

Finches don’t love to be touched. They just like to hang out with another bird in their cage as they chirp the day away.

3. Dove

Common Ground Dove

Male doves tend to be much louder than females.

©Golubev Dmitrii/Shutterstock.com

If you’re looking for a cheap pet bird that won’t talk at all, consider getting a dove! These beautiful birds live between seven and 15 years. You can find doves just about anywhere in the world other than Antarctica and the Saharan desert. Their availability makes them quite affordable for the average person. 

Doves are famously gentle, and quiet, and have a relaxing cooing vocalization. Something important to note about these birds is that they need a lot of attention and human interaction. Although you could have a dove in an apartment because they are so quiet, make sure you’re able to give them all of the attention they require. 

In order for a dove to live their best life, they will need access to a UV light, plenty of flight time outside of their cage, and of course a healthy diet. These birds are easy to train and do well with companion birds.

4. Canary

Close-up of Canary, Serinus canaria domestica, 2 years old, in front of white background

Canaries are technically part of the finch family.

©Eric Isselee/Shutterstock.com

It’s hard to beat the national beauty that a canary bird brings to the table. These are incredibly popular and cheap pet birds that are great for people who are looking for a hands-off experience. 

Canaries have a joyous personality and will sing upbeat songs all day. don’t let their size fool you; these birds have quite the personality! While they can coexist with other types of birds, canaries are solitary and prefer to be alone. 

Whatever you do, never put two male canaries in a cage together.

5. Lovebird

Fischer's lovebird in front of the cage

Lovebirds have a lifespan of up to 20 years in captivity.

©Eva Syarkawie/Shutterstock.com

Coming in at the fifth spot on our list for cheap pet birds is the lovebird. As their name suggests, these animals are quite affectionate and love to bond with their human family. They can be quite feisty and have bold personalities that will make you fall in love with them even more. 

It is essential to train and tame lovebirds when they are young. If training is not done early enough, female lovebirds can become really territorial. These animals are not ideal for those who live in an apartment, with roommates, or in any multi-family housing situation.

This is due to the high-pitched and noisy screech lovebirds make when they want your attention.

6. Cockatiel

Lutino cockatiel having orange round cheek, beauty feather on the head and creamy beak with copy space on the left

There are over 12 color mutations for cockatiels.

©Chutima Chavanisakun/iStock via Getty Images

With their iconic orange cheeks, cockatiels are another one of the cheap pet birds you may be interested in. These beautiful yellow animals can live up to 20 years and have the ability to learn a few words. 

These little parrots have a friendly whistle and female cockatiels will impress you with their mimicry. They may not be the best species for someone looking for a cuddly bird. With that being said, many cockatiels love to sit on the shoulder of their favorite person. 

They also do an adorable dance and will greet you when you come home. This species doesn’t require a lot of time out of its cage, which is perfect for someone with a small space!

7. Parrotlets

mother and baby parrotlet

Parrotlets weigh roughly one ounce.

©John99/Shutterstock.com

A beautiful and affordable pet bird that comes in a wide range of colors is the parrotlet. These animals can develop a wide vocabulary and can get quite chatty. They live between 15 and 20 years. 

Because larger species of parrots can be so expensive, parrotlets are cheap pet birds that are just smaller versions of a pirate’s favorite pet. This bird is known to be incredibly affectionate with their favorite person. 

They are very picky with who they spend time with and if you live in a household with multiple people, the parrotlet will pick a favorite. These small birds can be quite territorial and even aggressive if they ever feel threatened.

If you do decide to give these birds another winged friend, make sure it’s one of their own.

8. Conure

Beautiful parrot, Sun Conure on tree branch.

You can hear a conure mating call from miles away!

©Yatra4289/Shutterstock.com

Taking the eighth place for most affordable pet birds is the conure. It is hard to beat the breathtaking colors of this species. Conures live for up to 30 years, which is quite a commitment for most pet owners. 

These colorful parrots can get expensive, depending on the breeder you’re buying from. Conures can talk a bit and will be able to learn a few words, including their own name. They are a youthful animal that just loves to play and can even impress their humans with tricks. 

Something to note about conure birds is that they can be quite loud. They make a variety of noises, particularly when they haven’t gotten enough human interaction. They can mimic a variety of sounds including a meowing cat or a barking dog.

9. Lineolated Parakeet

Lineolated parakeet whole

Lineolated parakeets love to eat fresh fruits and vegetables.

©SylvieBouchard/iStock via Getty Images

As our quest for cheap pet birds continues, let us introduce you to the lineolated parakeet. These precious animals can live for 10 to 15 years on average. They get their name from their unique markings and the fine lines on their body. 

A unique thing about this species of parakeet is that they walk with their bodies nearly horizontal to the ground. They love to eat food right out of their owner’s hand. With being such a friendly animal, this is a great bird for those looking for a cuddly species that will sit on your shoulder all day long. 

Lineolated parakeets are wholly entertaining for a variety of reasons, including their vocalizations. Overall, they are smart, friendly, and gentle birds that are relatively affordable.

10. Pionus Parrot

Blue-headed Parrot (Pionus menstruus). Beautiful parrot perched on a tree trunk with an out of focus background

Pionus parrots can hiss like a cat!

©J Esteban Berrio/iStock via Getty Images

Last but certainly not least is the pionus parrot. This bird usually costs around $500. When it comes to affordable pets, we prefer to top this list out at that price tag. It’s hard to call anything over $500 cheap! 

Pinous parrots are eye-catching birds that love their independence. That being said, they can be friendly with multiple people in a household. They’ll enjoy interacting and playing with their human family. 

Something important to keep in mind is that this species doesn’t like a lot of noise. If you have young children, barking dogs, or live a rowdy lifestyle, this may not be the ideal species for you.

Summary of the Cheapest Pet Birds 

RankBirdAverage Cost
1Parakeet$25
2Finch$40
3Dove$50
4Canary$60
5Lovebird$60
6Cockatiel $80
7Parrotlets$150
8Conures $250
9Lineolated Parakeets$250
10Pionus Parrots$500


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About the Author

Kirstin is a writer at A-Z Animals primarily covering animals, news topics, fun places, and helpful tips. Kirstin has been writing on a variety of topics for over five years. She has her real estate license, along with an associates degree in another field. A resident of Minnesota, Kirstin treats her two cats (Spook and Finlay) like the children they are. She never misses an opportunity to explore a thrift store with a coffee in hand, especially if it’s a cold autumn day!

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