Melopsittacus undulatus

Our sweet and colourful budgies are fun characters who love to climb all over their enclosure!

Species Information

Click the tabs below to read about this animal.

The ‘budgie’ is naturally distributed across open land such as grasslands and scrublands in Australia.

Wild budgies are predominantly green. This bright green colouration is evolutionary beneficial because it keeps these parrots camouflage among trees and grass, but also plays a role in mate selection. However, with selective breeding, budgies can develop different coloured feather plumages such as blue and yellow, yet these colours are unusual in the wild as they do not increase a bird’s fitness. They have a high resting heart rate of 300 bpm and have monocular vision, so can move and see out of each eye independently.

They forage on the ground, primarily eating grass seeds which provides all the nutrients they need. But when in season, they eat berries and other fruits, and sometimes even insects. They also drink a lot of water, sometimes up to 5% of their bodyweight in one day.

About 4 years in the wild but up to 15 years, and up to 21 years in human care.

They are very social birds, gathering in flocks of up to 60,000! This is advantageous because they can deter predators by confusing them with flying murmurations. This flocking behaviour commonly occurs after rainfalls where they move to new food sources, but they also behave like so to socialise and court. Budgies chew on wood to trim their beaks!

As social birds, flocks will nest close to each other in trees. Budgies are generally monogamous, mating for life and also sharing chick rearing duties. They usually lay 5/6 eggs which then hatch after 18 days and after a further 30 days the chicks will leave the nest.

Least Concern

As well as the upper and lower eyelid, budgies have a third ‘inner’ eyelid to help lubricate the eye and remove dirt!