Parakeets are some of the most commonly found pet birds in households and the most bred. They are also one of the most vocal birds in the parrot family and are estimated to have a vocabulary of at least 2,000 words.
These colorful birds are known to be vocal and expressive. However, one question still remains. How do you identify between a male and a female parakeet?
Tips To Identify The Sex Of Parakeets
Differentiating between a male and female parakeet is one of the toughest because, unlike many other birds, they display prominent sexual dimorphism, especially in coloration. This means that you can barely tell the difference between the two genders just by looking at their physical characteristics.
Normally in birds, both genders show significant differences when it comes to color and patterns on their skin and feathers. Well, that’s not the case with parakeets because they go through many color mutations as they mature making it pretty much impossible to tell males and females apart.
But don’t go anywhere because this is not the end of the article. Below we have listed some ways using which you might be able to identify the sex of parakeets.
💠Color of the cere
Cere is the band of skin that runs across the parakeet’s beak. The color can vary and is generally not defined until the bird reaches maturity, which is roughly when they are a year old.
Typically, adult male parakeets have cere that has shades of blue to purple, while adult female parakeets have white to brown ceres and sometimes they can be pink or lavender. During mating season, the ceres tend to be brighter colored.
In females, the cere color can vary depending on their hormones and age, and can sometimes take the color found in males. Although the cere color can help determine the sex of your parakeet, it is not obsolete.
Like all birds, female parakeets lay the eggs and males help fertilize them to produce parakeet chicks. Usually, when a male fertilizes a female’s eggs, they will lay anywhere between four to eight eggs and incubate them for 18 days before hatching.
There are also cases where females go through hormonal changes without a male being present laying eggs. But these female parakeets cannot produce chicks because they are infertile without a male.
It is way easier to identify a female due to its ability to lay eggs and produce offspring.
Another way to easily differentiate between male and female parakeets is by their vocalizations. Known to be some of the most vocal species in the parrot family, they possess a vocabulary of 2,000 words.
Although both male and female parakeets are expressive, females tend to be less vocal than their male counterparts. Females usually stick to one type of vocalization which can oftentimes sound fussy and excited. Whereas, males are likely to mimic the different sounds they hear, even your own if you spend a lot of time around them.
If your parakeet mimics you, they are male and if they make sweet quirks, they are most likely to be females.
Behavior is not always the most reliable way to identify the sex of your birds but it surely helps determine whether your parakeet is a male or a female. Like the color of their cere, the behavior of parakeets is a generalization, as it can work as a clue but cannot be considered a guaranteed solution.
Male parakeets tend to be energetic and playful while females are generally less active and more delicate. The males are more expressive and can often be seen head bobbing and flicking their wings.
Females are known to be aggressive whereas males are easy to handle and can be picked without much of a fuss. When sharing an enclosure with other birds, male parakeets display courtship and mating behaviors.
On the other hand, females who are generally less active, display aggressive behavior and become territorial when it comes to protecting their nest, eggs, or offspring. Females are known to be difficult to handle and will only approach a hand once it has established a trusting relationship with the person.
Another key difference in behavior between male and females is that female parakeets often displays back-arching maneuvers that males do not perform.
It is hard to tell apart male and female parakeets if you have never kept them as pets before. But there are some key differences between the two that can be identified using different methods.
Try checking the color of their cere – a band of skin above a parakeet’s beak – which if blue is a male and if pink is a female. Or else, you can identify them by their ability to lay eggs.
Only female parakeets are able to lay eggs and the male’s role is to fertilize them before hatching. The third and most common way of identifying the parakeet’s sex is by looking at its behavior.
If the parakeet is active and mimics the different sounds in its surrounding, you are most likely to have a male, and if your parakeet is aggressive and less vocal, you are likely to have a female.