The budgerigar is a popular pet mainly because of its small size and uncomplicated care. Nevertheless, some basic rules for species-appropriate husbandry should be followed. Read here how you can make the bird life of your feathered partner pleasant.
Water rat: A clean bathing place is essential for the budgerigar’s plumage – Image: Shutterstock / Vyaseleva Elena
A budgie has a life expectancy of up to 15 years. In order for the ornamental bird to have a good chance of reaching such a proud age, those interested should find out about some of the necessities relating to the optimal keeping of the animals before purchasing.
Only available in a double pack
Budgies are very social by nature, so by law these animals can only be kept in pairs or groups. Only sick or socially unacceptable specimens should be temporarily isolated. In this case, however, it is the owner’s responsibility to return the bird to the group as quickly as possible.
No pure cage keeping
Depending on the number of animals, a correspondingly large cage should be available. Despite their small body size of up to 20 cm, the colorful parrots need a lot of space to be able to move around. The cage should never be less than one meter in length. Half a meter in height and width round off the minimum dimensions for a budgie cage. In general, however, the bigger the better.
Furthermore, the cage should have a fixed location that is neither exposed to the blazing sun nor drafts. With an outdoor aviary, on the other hand, a heated retreat must be available at all times. If the animals and their cage are kept indoors, you should allow your birds free flight in the living areas for several hours a day. Before doing so, however, windows and doors must be closed and possible sources of danger such as burning candles, poisonous indoor plants, curtains and sharp objects removed. Water or food should never be given outside the cage.
Basic equipment for the cage
Inside the cage, some elements must not be missing to ensure the well-being of the budgies. This includes:
● Bird sand on the bottom of the cage, which needs to be replaced every few days
● at least two perches for the claws and the gnawing instinct
● Containers for food and water that need to be cleaned daily
● Beak whetstone, also called “Pickstein”.
● Bathhouse for preening, in which fresh bathing water should be available every day
● Toys such as bells, climbing ropes and wooden spinning tops
Fresh twigs from fruit trees are also recommended as they help with natural claw care. However, the branches must be renewed monthly. It is also advisable to purchase a bird lamp, as this has been proven to have a positive effect on the health of the birds. Vitamin D deficiency and behavioral disorders are counteracted by means of UV radiation.
A balanced diet is essential for optimal posture. In addition to fresh drinking water every day, a mixture of grains should form the basis. However, this alone is not enough. Fresh fruit, green fodder such as lettuce leaves and other vegetables should make the diet varied. Cucumbers, carrots, lettuce and grapes, for example, are often readily accepted by the animals. Important: Towards the evening, leftover fruit and vegetables should be removed daily.
You might also be interested in these topics on keeping small animals:
Buying a budgie: What is important when buying?
Cheeky budgie annoys kittens
Guinea pigs: occupation for the cute rodents