I love raising budgies; they are just the cutest and most adorable birds out there.
Male or Female?
So you bought yourself a budgie, and now the question has been nagging at you: Is it a boy or a girl? It's not too difficult to tell with budgies, but it can be confusing for beginning bird owners.
Here's a rundown of the signs you can check for:
How to Determine the Sex of Your Budgie
Most bird species are not sexually dimorphic. This means that you can't tell what gender it is simply by looking at it. Luckily, we're talking budgies here! Although it can be difficult for beginners and non-bird owners to tell the gender of a budgie, with a few simple tips, you'll be able to determine if your bird is a Tweeter or a Tweetine. (Dear Lord, please don't actually use those names).
Male budgies tend to be the calmer, more social of the species. The hens, while they can be very sweet, tend to be more aggressive towards strangers, will be more inclined to defend their territory, and will nibble on things more. This is due to their instinct to create and defend their nest. The males also talk a lot more. Very few hens actually chatter like the males do.
As mentioned, the males are also more social. They are more likely to create a strong bond with another male in the group, whereas females very seldom have a best female friend.
Of course, as far as behavior goes, that is easily modified and therefore not always very reliable. The above is something you'll more easily notice if you have several budgies. It's also possible that you have one female budgie that acts like a male. This is because she's spent a lot of her life around the males of her species and learned how to behave from them.
This is the one that's most often used to distinguish gender. Superficially speaking, there is absolutely no difference between cocks and hens. But take a closer look at the colored swollen patch on their beak (this is called a cere). The color of the cere is the key to revealing the mystery of a budgie's gender.
A male budgie will almost always (except when it's an albino) have a dark blue cere. If it's a very young bird, the cere will be purple. Observe the cere of the bird on the left in the picture above. It's approximately six weeks old and has a purple cere. Therefore, it is male.
After a couple of months, the budgie's cere will change color, indicating that it's maturing (but not fertile yet!). So purple turns to dark blue when it's a male. But what about a female?
Females are the cause of the most confusion. People with male budgies seldom wind up really being unsure as to the gender. But females sometimes have blue in their ceres, too, and that's mostly where the confusion sets in.
Females usually begin with a very light blue cere; sometimes it's almost white. If your bird is very young, you should be able to see very clear white rings around the nostrils. Not all hens have this, though, so don't let that make or break your decision. As she ages, her cere will turn to a darker light blue. Sometimes, she'll still have the white nostrils. Sometimes, her cere will turn a shade of pink. If she's feeling like breeding, it'll be brown and crusty. It could be beige. But it will never be dark blue!
So here's how to decide. Does your budgie have a dark blue cere like the bird on the left in the upper picture? Or does it have a purple cere like the one on the left in the top picture? Then it's a male. If it doesn't, you can be almost certain it's a female!
Many websites and bird owners juggle with lots of cere colors, saying that different feather colors will often result in different cere colors. But a male will have a dark blue or purple cere in 90% of the cases, and a female will not. Don't let yourself be confused.
This is the most telling of all, obviously. If your budgie lays eggs, you can be pretty sure it's a female. Well, that, or you call National Geographic Channel and tell them to come over.
Anecdote: Confusion Over My Budgie
As a budgie owner, I began wondering very strongly as to the gender of one of the birds I had acquired. I read all I could about cere colors, budgie behavior and links to gender, and so on and so on. I put pictures online of the budgie I wasn't sure on, got the advice of experts, and eventually consulted a bird vet. The guy who sold the bird to me said it was a male and had put the budgie in a cage with only males. Most experts said it was a female. Some experts said it was a male. Even the vet eventually said it was a male.
But I was so sure it was a female. The behavior was that of a male. The cere was light blue, but I couldn't find the white rings on it. The websites I checked said blue for males; females have white rings and sometimes light blue ceres.
I decided to trust my gut on this. The white nostrils weren't there, the behavior was male, but the cere was not dark blue. And so I decided, well, I feel it's a girl despite the evidence, so I'm just going to consider her a female.
Well, to summarize how it turned out: Until male budgies start laying eggs, I'll know the vet was wrong and I was right.
The moral of this tale: If you're in doubt, it's most likely a female. Follow your guts.
|Color of Cere||Gender|
Any other color
Still in doubt?
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. It is not meant to substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, or formal and individualized advice from a veterinary medical professional. Animals exhibiting signs and symptoms of distress should be seen by a veterinarian immediately.
© 2011 Elysianphoenix
Me on September 06, 2020:
Hi my budgie supposedly is a male 5 year old budgie. His name is drizzle and he is the blue budgie variation. But his cere is Blue AND Purpleish pink so I do not know...
Lacey on September 01, 2020:
My budgie looks like an Albino but I do not know if he or she is. She or he does not have red eyes. Can somebody help me define the gender please?
Ayushimis on August 30, 2020:
I am still confused with my budgies gender
Hermione on August 12, 2020:
My budgie has a white and really light pink cere. you can hardly see the pink.so i'm still confused on the gender. Does anyone know? We got her in February
Sukie on August 07, 2020:
My budgie Blueberry has a light blue cere, but I was just wondering if she can mate without a male? (p.s her best budgie friend Mango flew away and now she's very lonely...) HELP
Sara on August 05, 2020:
My Bougie is a female because her nose is white and blue
Louiselawmon on June 20, 2020:
I have to young budgies. One has a dark purple beak and the other lighter purple. But one makes a lot of noise the other is a lot quite. How do i know what sex they are. I think they are a year this july.
giax0410 giax0410 on June 20, 2020:
mine is pink but i see a purple color too so....
Budgie GIRL on May 30, 2020:
Somebody on April 13, 2020:
My budgie's cere is greyish, blueish and whitish... the people in the shop said it was a female but I'm not sure. Help?
Budgie on April 01, 2020:
My budgies cere has a dark blue outside and a white inside. Is it a male of female?
Maurice Robinson on March 20, 2020:
Can anyone help me to know which gender my budgie is, my budgie has bright blue
Me on February 14, 2020:
I still don’t know the cere is a purple-ish light blue
Harriet on November 27, 2019:
My 2 budgies have pink beaks but with blue spots on them are they molty gender or something?!
Emma on November 11, 2019:
Some my grandma has a parakeet and it has a kind of tan light blue and light purple color of its cere so what do u think it is depending on the colors I posted on this question/comment
Birdwatcher on September 27, 2019:
I have 3 females and 1 male. Can the male breed with 3 females ?
eileen on September 26, 2019:
my budgie has pink and blue
Beki lou on September 05, 2019:
Hey guys I really need some help. I purchased a male but I’m now so convinced that she is a hen. Territorial suddenly. Lunging and biting. Got a male companion in separate cage and when let the new bird out the “boy” started stamping and kicking him. He is definitely a he. Totally different character and cere is purple. The other is a light purple blue. The man who sold him to me bred Budgies and was quite sure lol. But this bird is insane. Fine once out on free flight but have to move other cage or she try’s to get at the other. Biting his feet. She isn’t scared of anything and bites with intent! If I knew for sure he was a she is feel much better about her behaviour
PhilOfOlympia on August 01, 2019:
i had a White budgie and a green-yellow budgie together for a few months, and i now wonder what their genders were. they didnt mate, and one looked like an old budgie, but it may have been an albino. the green one hade a few blue feathers on (his?) cheek, like the ones above. the white one had one, too, but i am completely confused as to the Budgie's genders. unfortunately, the budgies are gone and i cant tell you if thay have changed looks sence i last saw them last may... i miss them very much, more than you could know. i just want to know what thier genders were, and if they could have mated had they been around longer. *sigh* you have no idea how much i miss them....
Ella.shannon on July 11, 2019:
Thanks.and the same thing happened to us when we got my brothers bird from the pet store the person who gave it to us said it was male but that was when it was Young and now we know that it is female I can’t remember what age it is right now but it now has a browny kinda colour on its cere
Eden on July 04, 2019:
Hey my budgie lemon I don’t know what gender he/she is
lucile on June 23, 2019:
My budgies is a rescue and it has a silver ring around its left foot but it’s cere looks pinkish to me???? I’m looking to get my bird a mate so I need to know the gender
Sam on May 27, 2019:
My budgie has a dark blue cere but also has rings around the nostrils. Is it boy or girl?
Gary on May 06, 2019:
My budgie is approx 11 months old is it normal for the bird to change from a light blue cere to a pale brown cere in that time also what months are the breeding months
alen on May 06, 2019:
hi! I have no idea what gender by bird is or the age. please help
Hi on April 22, 2019:
I have an albino budgie and a blue budgie (got them today) the blue one (blueberry) has a pinkish cere with a tint of blue so I’m pretty sure it’s a girl. But snowflake (the white one) is like i said the albino it has almost white kind grey with little of blue what gender is it?
Sam on March 23, 2019:
I have one budgie parakeet and it has a brown kinda crust cere, it is about 1 year old. I looked it up and it said it could be a sign of cancer, or it could be a female. I’m scared and not old enough to take it to the vet on my own. My parents think it is nothing. I’m nervous, any advice?
Izzah on March 21, 2019:
I had a budgerigar that looked just like the one above. I think the one above's name was nala, however, my budgie Kiki looked like her but Kiki tragically died due to cold.I knew that she was a female because before she got sick, she gave eggs which went rotten. P.S, I'm just a child that is almost 10
Izzah on March 21, 2019:
I want to know how to tame budgerigars ;please.
Izzah on March 21, 2019:
I have 5 budgerigars, but I am not sure about one. It had mated with a female, which died , so I guessed it was a male.But now it went and sat in a nesting box . Then it came out. What gender is it?
Amin on March 08, 2019:
My budgie is a little over one and a half mounth now. And he/she sitll has a purple cere. Which gender is that. I really want to know because her to breed with my male budgie.
Chloe on March 02, 2019:
I just got a parakeet yesterday and I have been doing research and it says that the bird is under 4 months old bc of the eyes being all black! But I still can’t figure out the gender the cere is pinkish-purple,the bird never chirps unless I put on parakeet chirping and play it and it doesn’t bite ether and I’m not sure bc of the age it doesn’t chirp or what can someone plz help me?
Brandon on February 27, 2019:
my budgie is cere is haf white and blue. i and know is a female or male ?
Erbi on February 26, 2019:
My budgies have got orange mixed brown ceres are they males or females?I'm thinking they are females,but I'm not sure.
Erbi on February 25, 2019:
Brween on February 22, 2019:
My birds Eli and Eathan are confusing! I’m pretty sure Eli’s a girl and Eathan a boy. And I’ve read online and doing research and it says they are about 8+ months old, and more research, I pretty sure they are at least 10 months probably! And they are tapping there beeks together but not going in there nest box! It’s almost nesting season, and I don’t want late eggs. What should I do? Did I not tell you something? Tell me!
Nellie on February 18, 2019:
I have just bought a parakeet about three days ago, im still unsure whether or not its a male or a female. It has a blue cere but purple is also there? It has blue near the nostrils, but purple near the bottom of the cere. Is it male or female?
Alanah on January 22, 2019:
I have a parakeet and it has a pinkish colored beak but no white rings it’s very dominate and sometimes aggressive it bites a lot,and never chirps unless we try to take it out when it’s tired,but it’s previous owner said it was a male parakeet although I think it’s a girl,but I honestly think it’s a girl,can anyone confirm this
anon on January 22, 2019:
hi there, I have a very young budgie, 8 weeks old, and his cere is a purple colour. around the nostrils are light blue rings and on the sides of his cere is slightly blue. he acts like a male and the breeder I got him from said he would most likely be a male. he does not bite and is quite hyper and friendly. I hope he is a boy but something is telling me he is a girl although when I first brought him home his cere had a very blue undertone. since it is purple (its kind of dark but not super dark) now I was wondering whether you think he is a boy or girl, your opinion !! thank you
Samarth on January 20, 2019:
PLEASE GIVE ANSWER
I HAVE TWO LOVEBIRDS ONE HAS BLUE NOSTRILS AND SECOND ALSO HAVE BLUE NOSTRILS WHICH ONE IS MALE AND FEMALE
Anonymus on January 17, 2019:
Hello! My budgies cere used to be blue, but now it’s A weird tan color, sometimes you can see the blue under the thick tan layer. What does that mean? Is he/she okay?
Elysianphoenix (author) from Belgium on October 06, 2018:
Hey Robin, a purplish white cere would indicate a boy. Look at the picture of the two grey budgies next to each other. The one on the left has a purplish cere and is male, the one on the right had a very soft color and was female.
robyn on September 27, 2018:
I think my parakeet is a boy but it has a purplish white cere and it is young is it a boy or girl
Rhea Satterfield on September 02, 2018:
my parakeet has like a darkish but not that dark purple ?? would that mean he (or she) is a male or female ? i’m so confuzzeled
Stephanie on September 01, 2018:
Her or his nose is like black
Joe 1235 on August 13, 2018:
Recommended for You
MY budgie has no bars going to the cere and the color of the cere is light blue and by the nostroll is pale the iris ring is also visible
LittlePiedDaisy on August 13, 2018:
So Snowy is a female, with a light blue cere. How about Daisy? He’s almost a year old (or she?) but I think he or she is a pied (pretty sure) and has a purple cere. So, female or male?
AlbinoKeetMom on August 13, 2018:
Ok so there needs to be information for when u get an albino keet. Cere is just white. Everything is just white, so what do u do in terms of identifying gender?
Pet lover on August 05, 2018:
I have two budgies one is a girl one is a boy I don't know if they'll have eggs
iceLush on July 29, 2018:
Hello there! I adopted some budgies about a month ago. They are both abour 1 year now and i cant tell their genders. The lady we bought them from said they are both male. But i am unsure. Chimera and Zintli. Zintli has a very purple-ish pink and Chimera is a royal-ish blue on the outside going to very light blue then pure white.
Annika on July 03, 2018:
I noticed my budgie who I thought was male has a purple cere with one blue ring around each nostril. Is he a girl?
Chloe on June 23, 2018:
My budgie is almost a year old an the budgie has s pink and blue cere what did I do?
Chrissa on June 22, 2018:
I want to tell if my parakeet is a male or female
Naomi on June 19, 2018:
Mine too, Sarah :D
Sarah on June 19, 2018:
I was wondering if anybody can tell mewhat gender my budgie is... I THINK, its a male, but im not sure... its has a combination of a purple-ish pink, and a light-ish blue. He/she is quite young so I don't know of its a male or female....
Mermer on May 30, 2018:
My budgie has some blue and purple on his or her nose and a bit of yellowish white on his or her nose
Holly on May 26, 2018:
I thought my parakeet was a boy, until his cere turned tan, like a female's.Now I'mreally confused.
peril on May 17, 2018:
i think mine might be a pied ive been buying female budgies to realize they are all peids
Dh0m_4ever on May 06, 2018:
Hi Jusly, I believe that you’ve a female Budgie. And Caz, I think if it’s too young then you’ve to wait a little to see if the cere changes or not. But you mostly have a male Budgie.
Caz, budgie lady on May 05, 2018:
I have a young budgie which has a blue cere is it male
Jusly on April 28, 2018:
i have just got one budgie with brown cere is male or female?
Dh0m_4ever on April 23, 2018:
I’ve just got two budgies one week ago ( this not my first time with Budgies ). So after reading this article I believe I’ve a couple. That’s because one of them has a dark blue cere so he is a male for sure. And the other one which I’ve had the doubt about has a white to light grey cere with a little light blue stains (not all over the cere), so I wasn’t sure weather it’s a male or female. However, after reading this article I believe I’ve a female. Please share if you think she’s actually a female.
budgie lover on April 18, 2018:
i have 2 budgies i KNOW 1 is a male but i am not sure about the other one he/she is multi has coloured feathers and have lost colour in her/his beak and cere can you help cause i also read off a wbsite that when their beak lost colour than their sick. can you please help me?
Aiko on April 08, 2018:
My 2 Bird has blue and pink on her nose! But the seller said it is a girl??
lynne on April 01, 2018:
lynne on March 29, 2018:
I DON'T GET IT:(
Jenga on March 29, 2018:
My budgie acts like a female by pulling out things and not being social but she is 22 weeks old and has a light blue cere with white nostrils
meheueh on March 17, 2018:
+Bob it means its a female
bookpaw on March 05, 2018:
my bird is a female parakeet
Bob on March 03, 2018:
My budgie has a pink cere with white around the nostrils.
Does this means it's a make or a female?
anonymous on February 05, 2018:
my budgie is light blue and its whiteish also
naomi on January 28, 2018:
I need help I have a white budgie and on the top of his/her beck is a really lite blue the a purple pink around the nostrils can anyone help
Natalie on December 20, 2017:
Our first budgie died and it's so sad
Bailey on September 25, 2017:
WRONG! I have 4 budgies all genders have been checked and my male budgies have either a purplish pink nose or a dark blue nose. girls have either a brownish pink or white!!!!!!
IF TO LAZY TO READ THAT THEN READ BELOW
GIRLS: Brownish pink OR White
BOYS: ANY SHADE of blue OR Pinkish purple
Hello on September 14, 2017:
I have 2 budgies 1 I'm pretty sure it's a male because he's more social, but the other has a light blue and white and it's more aggressive. They also feed each other after each meal
Stacy Bakley on September 04, 2017:
I have a light blue and amale dots blue on beak blue in color so my allight blue a female they argue alot
Gokul on September 01, 2017:
Please give a list of food that my lovebirdscan eat please
Vicky on August 28, 2017:
I have two parakeets and I just assume the white one is female because her cere was always light pink, but I saw that it turned brown, I wonder what that means
Birdy on August 22, 2017:
Young Male parakeet have Pinkish Cere
And Young Female have Light Blue Card
Adult Male Parakeet Have Dark Blue cere
And Adult Female Parakeet Have White Cere or Crusty Brown (in breeding condition.)
Naseer shabbir on August 16, 2017:
I'm so confused. My two budgies have pinkish cere... some experts say that the they are male but some says no they are not males they are female's.... please help me I'm really very confused.
Betu Asuncion from Athens Greece on August 10, 2017:
Thank you so much for letting me know! That means a lot. Thank you
Sadie on July 19, 2017:
My, Peerket was white with blue wings with a very light, white, Can it talk, i know it Nod's it Head so much and, also I called it blue snow, she is very noicy when we talk, So can she learn to talk?
Stacey Hill-Foy on June 19, 2017:
Thank so far out all research of different articles this somewhat gave me some idea or some what ok so the pet store work might be right that it a girl. When we first got her though we played a video on youtube of male which make sense she does some stuff that could be acting little more like male. The only thing that through be the most is how male are more vocal and loud. Which our bird can be vocal but not very loud. There sometimes our bird can be very quiet as well. I also saw on the article that female are more territory and aggressive which I do see in ours. The funny part is our bird like female more in our house then my uncle(which technically the bird was his Xmas Gift). I can see our bird doesn't really like stranger(which make female trait). This pass few week we did have our little cousin over which the bird has meet a few times and really got along with them very well this last time. I have done a lot training with this bird to learn to trust us. For first three month this bird didn't want much to do with us and a lot bitting. So in the end of all really unsure with what gender bird we got. I am going to role with it most like a girl.
Robyn on June 08, 2017:
How long do budgies live for
FC on May 12, 2017:
I have two budgies one is yellow one is dark blue and they are always playing and touching each other but I am not quite sure if they are female or male though I think they are both male could anybody help me.
BudgieGirl on April 30, 2017:
Is my budgie male? He has a blue cere with purple at the edges and pink feet. He is about 1 yr 3 months old. Thank you!
Vivek Kumar on April 14, 2017:
Below are the pics of my budgies. Can you please confirm the gender:
Along with this, if there is any idea about the age, that would also be a great help
lily on February 28, 2017:
need more info
Teresa Beets on February 25, 2017:
I catch a young budgie this afternoon. She has only one leg and 3 toes on the leg. She is very scared. Any advise that will help to calm her. I love animals and going to give her a loving home.
Chloe on February 12, 2017:
Thanks for helping❤
Donna Great house on December 05, 2016:
I just got me a budgie. Its about 5-6 weeks old. I can't decide if it's a male or female. It's actions say it's a male. But not sure
Tina Jenks on November 26, 2016:
I loved the article ~~informative and funny !!
Taylor on October 17, 2016:
I have a male budgie named BoBo. We want to get a nother perikeet and want to get a female. Yesterday I went to pet smart and fund this beautiful albino perikeet. What I want to know is was it a girl or boy? It was a baby and had a purple cere. What I'm trying to ask is if the bird was a girl or boy, because I know that albino perikeets are different to tell the gender?
Kristina on October 06, 2016:
I can't tell if y budgie is male or female because its cere is pink/ light blue with a bit of purple is it a female?
Milena on September 24, 2016:
I have a beautiful budgie girl, named Neda Starkovic - originally meant to be Ned Stark but her cere turned brown and so I lost my head ;) - and now I have another budgie named Pedro (1 year old), whom I now suspect is more Sofia Vergara than Pedro... Please solve this terrible dilemma for me... Thank You in advance
Kingbudgie on August 23, 2016:
Hi my budgie is a girl but i found something wierd the outline of my budgies eye is turning yellow but she is a blue budgie
lil101 on August 18, 2016:
Plz answer me
ruth on August 17, 2016:
Hi I have a grey budgie the cere color is light blue with rings around it. I don't know if it is a boy or girl. Can you please tell me what you think it is? Thanks.
lil101 on August 17, 2016:
Hi I have a budgie I have had for a while and the cere is light nlue with white rings for a while I thought a boy but am unsure now. I also have a pied male they kiss, preen each other, amd follow each other around everywhere. Plz held.
Katrina on August 12, 2016:
My male budgie is over a year and his cere is still very pink! He is pied though. I've had my female for three years and shes only gone into breeding condition once sadly.