Monday, March 22, 2010

Differences in Newly-Hatched Parakeet Varieties

For the fun of it, here are photos of new baby Budgies, baby Bourkes and baby Splendids, just to compare the differences.

A baby Budgerigar parakeet.
An albino baby Budgie parakeet.
Budgerigar parakeets don't have fuzz and hatch out completely bald. Notice the one on the left has dark eye sockets and the other doesn't. The one on the right grew to have pink eyes, an albino. It is five days old already and still not fuzzy.

Newly hatched Rosy Bourke parakeets. Not bald like Budgies.
Bourkes sometimes have pink eyes too, but their feathers are typically still pink, although their faces are often white. You can always tell who will have pink eyes and who won't, by the color of the sockets even before they open their eyes. These all have dark sockets. Baby Bourkes show very pink skin under their fuzzy down. Of all newly hatched babies, I think Bourkes are the cutest. There are four babies shown here, huddled together. Unlike Budgies, Bourkes like pine shavings or something similar under them, rather than an indented wood surface. So do Splendids.

Splendid (Scarlet-chested) Parakeet chicks also hatch with fuzz.
These are Splendid/Scarlet-chested baby parakeets in my hands. Their skin color is slightly darker and more tan-toned than pink like the Bourkes. They, too, have soft fuzzy down, but less than on the Bourkes. And, certainly more than on a Budgerigar!
Splendid Parakeet chicks (also called Scarlet-chested parakeets).
They have more "fuzz" than Budgies, but less than Bourke parakeets.
All three varieties of parakeet are approximately the same size.


Deborah said...

Hi,I wonder if you would be able to give me a little advice? I have a pair of Bourkes. The hen has hatched two sets of eggs but each time she has appeared to abandon the nest once they hatch and all the babies have died after a few days. She has now hatched another 4 chicks but seems to spend very little time in the nest box and I'm not sure if she is feeding them. I am out at work all day and it is possible she goes in the nestbox during the day but whenever I am home I rarely see her in there and she does not spend the night in there. Is this normal or should she be in the box most of the time. I don't know how they are keeping warm! Do these little ones need hand rearing or should I leave our Ruby to look after them...and risk losing them again?

I really appreciate any advice you might be able to give me.

The Splendid Bourke Bird Blog said...

Hi Deborah...I don't know if you will get to see this right away, so I'll move it to the main blog page.

The Splendid Bourke Bird Blog said...

This was an older post, although one of my favorites. Smile. Go to my archives below at left and open the posts for June. My detailed answer is on the June 16, 2010 page. Hope your babies are okay! You can also reach me by email at:

Zookeeper said...

How old does a baby budgie need to be before you can handle it? I'm wanting to breed budgies.

G. A. Lewis said...

Dear Zookeeper, If your hens are used to you, their young can be handled briefly even while in the nest. However, you can begin taming them by taking them away from their parents as soon as they are eating on their own. It's been my experience that budgies begin eating very quickly once they leave the nest, but watch to be sure they are are eating. Bourkes require parental feeding for about two to three weeks after they leave the nest, but Budgies seem to mature faster. They seem to start eating right away and the younger they are, the easier to hand tame. Removing them from other birds and constant interaction with you will tame most young budgies very quickly. That isn't the case with Bourkes, however. Although sweet and easily tamed and handled, they need to be with their parents longer than Budgies.