Monday, June 11, 2018

Budgerigar Types: Melodic Birds Of Australia With A Funny Personality

Budgerigar Types: Melodic Birds Of Australia With A Funny Personality

Bird ownership in Asia has transcended from small species of singing Birds for competitive purposes and leisure to admiration of larger Parrot species. And for the folks whom stand in-between, small species of Parakeets and Parrotlets were perfect. As one of the most popular Pet Birds you may find in your local Pet shop or Bird market, Budgerigars were introduced as feathered companions longer than we can imagine.
Budgie Care
Vivid colorations and a fairy-like long tail isn't all that they boast— most of them have got a sense of musical funk you just can't ignore ☺

Parakeets: Budgerigar

(Melopsittacus Undulatus)

Found predominantly in Australia, Budgerigars are nomadic birds and one of the smaller Parakeet species amongst the variety of feathered Pets. First records were as described by George Shaw in 1805, an English Zoologist and Botanist. The binomial name of Budgies (Melopsittacus Undulatus) was given in 1840 by renowned English Ornithologist John Gould.

Fun Fact #1      The term Melopsittacus means "Melodic Parrot" in Greek, and Undulatus translates to mean Wavy-patterned in Latin. 
Wild Budgie colour
For a Bird of this size, the myriad of names they are commonly known as in different parts of the world are rather astounding— Shell Parakeet, Common Parakeet, Canary Parrot, Warbling Grass Parakeet, Zebra Parrot, and Scallop Parrot. The most well-known term has to be Budgie, a loving abbreviation. As for the origins to the name Budgerigar, there are a few popular findings:

In the English slang of Australians, "Budgery" = Good. The closer sounding term derived from Aboriginals "Betcherrygah" on the other hand, has been debated to either mean Good Bird, or Good Food.

Fun Fact #2      In Mandarin, Budgies are referred to as the Tiger-print Bird— take a closer look at the markings of an original/normal Budgie, and you'll see why this name is pretty apt in fact! 

Budgie Types And Colours

Size — A small parakeet growing to an average length of 18cm (inclusive of tail), weighing 30g or slightly more, and has a wingspan of about 30cm.

Features — Depending on colour/marking mutations, most Budgies have recognizable features such as wavy markings on their wings, cheek patches, and throat spots on both sides of their necks. They also sport long tails. Males are usually identified by the colour of their cere (nostrils)— Unless albino, Males are known to have blue or purplish cere, depending on mutation type. 
Budgie Care tips
Colours — Colour variations include Albino, Cinnamon, Violet, Spangled, Blue, Grey and more. There are currently more than 30 colour mutations for Budgies, classified under Normal, Opaline and Pied:

Normal types refers to Budgies with the closest similarities in wing markings as wild Budgerigars (yellow head with a light green body). Normal Budgies can come in different dominant colours other than light green. Wing markings can also be of a Brown or Grey hue instead of Black.

Opaline types are Budgies with slightly different wing markings— instead of Black, Brown or Grey with White or Yellow, Opaline Budgies usually sport Black, together with their dominant colour.  

Pied types have little to no markings at all, if seen, colours are usually in a splash or disarrayed manner. 

Fun Fact #3      Ever seen a larger-sized Budgie? That's the English Budgerigar, commonly bred for shows— these English fellas are taller, and most distinguished by their larger domed head crowns. 

Budgie Personality And Behaviour

Why are Budgies fun? Once tamed and comfortable in their surroundings, you're in the company of a real chatty feathered friend. Pop in a mirror or it's favourite toy, and observe how your Budgie has a friendly banter with the aforementioned. Also renowned for their mimicry skills amongst small parakeet species, some owners have managed to train their Budgies to speak their native languages. 
Budgerigar Care
Training — While tempting as all that sounds, it is important to note that these are rather skeptical and wary Birds at initial stages. Patience is key when gaining your Budgies trust, gradual steps such as leaving your hand in the cage for a few minutes everyday, to eventually coaxing them to eat out from your hands play huge roles to basic taming. On top of all that, speak to your Budgies daily, reminding them of their names and your voice. 
Budgie Fun
It is not unusual to see a Budgie get some funk in their moves, this is just one of the many amusing quirks for most owners. Every Budgie differs, but this does not deter them from being highly responsive to sounds, especially music. With proper care, love and attention, the average lifespan of a Budgerigar is 5 to 8 years or longer.

Budgerigar Care Tips

Hygiene —  For baths, you may opt to use a fine-spritzer spray bottle to give your Budgie(s) a cool mist and maintain good personal hygiene. Alternatively, owners place a hanging bowl with shallow water— one wide enough for your Budgies to take a dip whenever they'd like. 
Budgie Type
Food — Seeds are the primary staple in a Budgie's diet. Feeds can be found at any Bird or Pet store, you may even concoct your own combination of seeds if you are certain of which. Spray millet is usually used as a form of treat for training purposes. Aside from seeds, a small amount of fruit or vegetable can also be included occasionally. 

View a list of safe parrot foods:

Housing — Small parakeets like Budgies are often housed within a good-sized cage where they eat, sleep, play and naturally defecate. It is important to keep their homes clean, by washing out their cages at least once a week. Cages are advised to be non-circular, wide, and large enough for all necessities, short flights, hops and climbing about. Keep your Budgie's cage in a naturally lit space in the day, away from cold and areas with too much wind.
Budgerigar Colours
Toys & Accessories — Budgerigars are known to be perky, active funny characters whom are capable of self-entertaining if you are unavailable at times. Bells, mirrors, rattan balls and rope perches are amongst the many toys you can include in your Budgie's home. The necessary accessories include a water bowl, food bowl, and wooden perches. 

Other Pets — Budgies are generally open to companionship of another, unless of a different species. Even with introducing a new Budgie to another, approach with caution by placing separate cages side by side to observe for a few weeks. Other household Pets such as Dogs or Cats require much slower introductions, due to their predatory nature. Unless your furry companions are extremely tamed, avoid any unfortunate consequences by keeping them safely separated.

You might also be interested in:

How To Tell If Your Pet Bird Is Feeling Sick

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