What Is the Difference Between a Budgie and a Parakeet?

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Budgies are now the third most common pet after cats and dogs. Despite this, many individuals are unaware of the distinction between budgies and parakeets. The word budgie isn’t commonly used in the United States, even though most of the world uses it interchangeably with a parakeet.

People are left questioning if the difference is due to species or American vs. British English. However, by reading this article, you will eliminate any questions about their differences. Let’s dive into it.

Difference Between a Budgie and a Parakeet



Budgies are the popular nickname for budgerigar, and their scientific name is Melopsittacus undulatus. In addition to various popular names, these birds are also known as shell parakeets. They have a tiny, lightweight body that measures around 18 centimeters and weighs between 30 and 40 grams.

The small size of their beak and the blue color of their cere are distinctive characteristics of these fascinating birds. Their forehead is yellow with a hint of green.

The unique coloration of budgies is the shell-like pattern of black and yellow stripes on their wings; these black stripes are also modest but conspicuous in the neck region.

Their dark-blue tail is a crucial characteristic to note. Budges developed naturally on the Australian continent and subsequently spread around the globe via captive breeding as ordinary pets. 

Budgies have highly developed eyes with tetrachromatic color vision since they are vulnerable to UltraViolet radiation and the fundamental red-green-blue hues that people can see.



Parakeets are small to moderate-sized parrots that may grow up to 30 centimeters in length. Their long tail feathers are a distinguishing characteristic between them and parrots. Parakeets are also known by the names Paraquet and Paroquet.

Small grassland-dwelling parakeets in Australia are known as Grass parakeets or Grasskeets. However, most parakeets in the U. S. are known as conures. In addition, certain more prominent species, such as the Alexandrine parakeet, are often referred to as parrots.

Every parrot species in Sri Lanka is a parakeet since their tail feathers are uniformly long. Parakeets generally are social nesters, yet they only mate with their chosen sexual partners. In other words, parakeets are not disloyal to their mate partners.


  • Budgies are a kind of parakeet, which is a type of parrot that includes many different species. Parakeets are a group of parrots that have several other species.
  • Budgies are exclusively found in their native habitat in the wilds of the Australian continent, in contrast to parakeets, which may be found in many different parts of the globe.
  • Compared to most other parakeets, budgies have shorter and more slender beaks.
  • Compared to parakeets, budgerigars have a far longer history of domestication all over the globe.

Can a Parakeet and a Budgie Mate?


Because not all parakeets are budgerigars, there are mating limitations between budgerigars and parakeets.

Budgies can mate and reproduce only with other budgies; they cannot mate with parakeets. It is because parakeets and budgies are distinct and unique species. 

Budgies possess their genus; thus, unlike other parakeets, which share at least some relatives within their genus, budgies do not.

Budgies are distinct and share only the fact that they’re parakeets with other parakeets. Due to the absence of shared genetics, mating budgies with other parakeets harms both species. It may produce an unhealthy bird.

Why Are Parakeets Known as Budgerigars?

Budgies and parakeets are sometimes confused and considered to be the same animal since budgies are the most prevalent species of parrots and the most popular companion birds.

Budgies are kept as pets due to their playful, affectionate, and playful nature. Since budgies are the sole parakeets that most pet owners have ever met in the wild, it makes more sense to most that the two are interchangeable.

If you visit a pet shop searching for a parakeet, you would likely only encounter budgerigars.

Do Parakeets Talk or Sing?

Parakeets represent one of the most vocal parrot family members. A pleased parakeet will generally tweet a song, speak, or even imitate noises it hears frequently.

Parakeets are capable of communicating using words they have heard. It has been shown that some dogs have learned hundreds of phrases from their guardians.

Final Thoughts

Budgies and parakeets are fundamentally the same; however, budgies are just one of many Parakeet species in the globe. The misunderstanding arises from the name. In the United States, they are called parakeets, while the rest of the world calls them budgies.

Thus, all budgies are parakeets, whereas not all parakeets are budgies. Despite this, the two have comparable characteristics and personalities and vary primarily in size and hue.

They are both incredibly clever, pleasant, and friendly birds that make excellent companions, and either option is perfect for a starting bird lover.

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Lizzy Ashton

Lizzy Ashton

Hi, my name is Lizzy Ashton, and I’m from Louisiana.
I consider myself an expert when it comes to raising parakeets and have been doing it for many years now. I’m 32 years old, live with my boyfriend, and together, we have 7 parakeets at home.
Our home is full of light and greenery, which my birds love. We even let them fly around the house (windows closed, of course)!

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