Ah the age old question, should I get a boy or a girl? A man or a woman? When you are considering whether you want your new pet parakeet to be male or female you can at least rest assured that there won’t be too many behavioral differences between genders. It has been noted by some parakeet owners however that a Male parakeet will bob their head and they are generally more active and more social whilst a female parakeet will generally tend to be more bossy and screechy/louder and some owners have also reported the females as being harder to train when it comes to talking and finger taming.
So, how do you tell if a parakeet is male or female?
The only real way to tell if your parakeet is male or female is by the cere. The trouble with this is that for all parakeets under 8 to 12 months of age they have the same colored cere which is usually a violet or bright pink colour. As your parakeet sexually matures the cere actually changes colour according to the sex of the budgie and also it’s genetics.
Male Parakeet Cere – A Male’s cere will be a purplish Blue in the normal variety of parakeet. In the lutino/albino, recessive pied, fallow, lacewing and dark-eyed clear varieties the cere color does not change from youth and remains a pinky violet color.
Female Parakeet Cere – Females are a little easier to pick as the color doesn’t change between varieties and is always has a tan or white/light blue cere. In some case they can also have a brown flaky cere which can actually build up to be a centimeter thick.
Pet shops will often base a parakeets sex solely on the cere color when they are young which often causes some confusion amongst pet owners as to what the actual sex of the bird is! If you are buying your parakeet at a very young age (which I encourage) you should look at their personality and how they interact with other budgies. As mentioned Females will often be a bit more screechy and bossy even at a young age so you can use the behavior of the bird as rough guide to it’s gender.