How Long Do Budgerigars Live For?

By Josie F. Turner, Journalist specialized in Animal Welfare. Updated: July 12, 2017
How Long Do Budgerigars Live For?

When it comes to choosing a pet, remember you're making a commitment to look after an animal for its whole life - a life which, with your help, can be long and fulfilling. In general, small animals have a short life expectancy due to their increased metabolism, while bigger animals tend to live for longer.

Parrots and cockatoos are famous for enjoying long lives if they're looked after properly. But what about their smaller relative, the budgie? Keep reading this AnimalWised article to find out how long do budgerigars live for.

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Budgerigars can live for a long time

The budgie has the longest life expectancy out of all parakeets, since this species has gone through the least genetic manipulation for purely aesthetic purposes. Other parakeets which are bigger and have longer feathers, such as the English parakeet, live for less time.

A budgie's life expectancy varies depending on whether it lives in the wild or is kept in captivity, and the care the bird has received throughout its life.

A further determining factor can be illnesses, of which there are some that budgies commonly suffer from. These animals are very fragile when living in a climate that is different from their natural habitat, so you should consult your vet at the slightest sign of a symptom.

  • A wild budgie will die naturally at four to six years of age.

  • In captivity they can reach 15 years old. The life expectancy of a pet budgerigar is influenced by many factors, the majority of which we aren't aware of at the time of taking one into our home.

Check out the differences between male and female budgerigars in our AnimalWised article.

How Long Do Budgerigars Live For? - Budgerigars can live for a long time

How to help a budgerigar live longer

We can control two aspects which will affect the budgie's life expectancy:

  • Stop your bird from breeding regularly, since each nesting is exhausting and takes its toll on the parents.

  • Act quickly if you spot what is known as continuous molting. It's normal for a budgerigar to molt its feathers twice a year, or three times at the very most. On particular occasions, generally caused by stress, this bird can continually renew its plumage. This process obviously entails considerable wear and tear for the animal. Even when it is a regular molt, it's recommended to supplement the budgerigar's diet for the weeks of the molt with vitamins or a mixture of enriched seeds, prepared in advance.

  • Make sure that your budgerigar doesn't have problems with mites or lice, which can lead to anemia.

Budgerigars are normal-sized green parakeets with a yellow head; as a species, it has gone through fewer cross breeds, which aren't recommended. This, in theory, means it will live for longer.

This wasn't the case in my experience, and my budgie died at four years of age, whilst my other albino parakeet lived until eleven and a half, almost twelve years old. Both were adopted at a young age and were cared for in the same way.

How Long Do Budgerigars Live For? - How to help a budgerigar live longer

If you found this article useful you may be interested in Training a hand-fed budgerigar.

If you want to read similar articles to How Long Do Budgerigars Live For?, we recommend you visit our Facts about the animal kingdom category.

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