If you are interested in getting a Parakeet, then you will likely want to know how long you can expect them to live. While age ranges will depend on a number of factors, there is a general life expectancy for each specific species of Parakeet. I’ve conducted some research and would like to share that with you here today.
So, how long do Parakeets Live? Parakeets typically live to around 15 years of age. There are several factors that can impact their life expectancy including their diet, environment, genetic disposition, and the specific species. The Budgerigar Parakeet has the shortest life expectancy compared to the Plain Parakeet with the longest life expectancy.
With these Parakeet life expectancy in mind, its important to know how you can ensure they live their healthiest and best life.
It is in your care that you can ensure they live as long and as well as possible.
There are certain ways to care for them that includes feeding, setting up their environment and preventing illness. Let us now explore each of these topics further.
Parakeet Species Life Expectancies
Its important to note that each different species of Parakeet has a different life expectancy. This is due to a multitude of biological factors that involves their own unique genetic makeup and rate of metabolism.
As a general rule of thumb, Parakeets that are in good health and cared for live for between 10-15 years.
However, the Budgerigar Parakeet has a much shorter average lifespan than the Plain Parakeet.
The Budgerigar is expected to live for as short as 5 years and at most around 10 years.
The Plain Parakeet sits somewhere in the middle, and the average life expectancy for this species is 10-15 years.
Finally, another popular Parakeet for Bird Pet Owners is the Monk Parakeet. These generally live longer and can even reach 20 years!
Of course these are all averages. Some of the species of Parakeets will not reach these ages even if they are cared for. Like any form of life, we are all subject to factors outside of our control and if we were to contract a fatal illness, our life expectancy can dramatically reduce.
That being said, there is a lot we can do. Especially for our Pet Parakeets regardless of species.
Let us now look at some of the things we can do.
How To Look After A Parakeet
Looking after a Parakeet all starts with understanding their unique requirements and needs. Here are some tips and recommendations that established Parakeet Owners and experts routinely recommend and follow to optimize the chances of their Parakeet living as long and as healtily as possible.
The diet of your Parakeet is imperative to its health and ultimate longevity.
You need to ensure that their diet is as varied and wholesome as possible. Within reason of course. You do not want to feed your Parakeet anything that could make them ill or cause any issues.
A healthy Parakeet diet is one that provides plenty of variety and an abundance of safe seed, fruit and vegetables.
The problem is, Parakeets can be particularly fussy especially in the beginning when they are eating new foods for the first time.
This is why its always a good idea to feed them properly from the moment that you first get them. Nonetheless, with patience and regular feeding, you can improve a Parakeets diet over time.
Seed can be great, convenient and healthy staple to a Parakeets diet. However it important that it is supplemented with an abundance of fruit and vegetables.
Its also important that you opt for a nutritious seed blend that includes a great variety of ingredients to provide as much nutrition as possible.
The Volkman Avian Science Super Parakeet Diet Seed Mix is available for a great price on Amazon and is one of the most wholesome seed mixes on the market.
Regarding specific safe and nutritious vegetables, fruits and greens you will want to include:
- Field Lettuce
- Corn on the Cob
- Sweet Potatoes.
One other important point is that all fruits and vegetables should be given raw as cooking destroys and removes some of the important nutrients.
The more fruits and vegetables you can offer from that list the better. Its also a good idea to keep them chopped up finely to allow your Parakeet to consume them easily and safely.
Its important that you make your Parakeets food readily available and easy to obtain. Parakeets do a good job of naturally regulating their hunger, food and energy requirements so do not be concerned if they forgo a meal here and there.
Its only if they refuse to eat for a prolonged period of time that there may be an issue and assistance from a vet may be required.
Water is of course very important to Parakeets too. Be sure to provide ample water and be sure to also change this regularly and ensure the water bottles do not become clogged, leak or generally broken.
It also comes strongly recommended to keep all food and water together so that your Parakeet can access them during meal times together.
Another fundemental component to the longevity of your Parakeet is its home, or in other words its cage.
First and foremost you need to ensure you buy the correct cage for them. This needs to be spacious and it needs to be the right dimensions to ensure that your Parakeet can move, flex their wings and fly intermittently to where they would like to go.
A common mistake by new Parakeet Owners is to purchase a circular and or too small cage. However this will not suffice – they are the wrong shape and do not provide enough room.
Instead, it is recommended to get a Parakeet cage specifically designed for them. These generally will have a wider top when compared to the rest of the cage, it is often square.
The reason why you need to ensure your cage is the right dimensions is due to the fact that Parakeets fly horizontally. You therefore need to ensure they have adequate room to do so. If you see a round cage, it was designed with a different bird to home in mind.
Secondly, cages that are spacious enough allow you areas to place water dispensers, toys and items like perches without comprising their general living space.
It will also mean that they can access their food and water more easily which is of course central to their well-being. Overall, this will all make your Parakeet feel much more at ease, comfortable and satisfied in their surroundings.
Similarly, cages that ensure a lot ot light can enter will be generally more homely, welcoming and prove a nicer environment for your Parakeet to live.
Another aspect to consider for yourself this time, is one that is simple to clean. A clean environment is essential to remove germs and bacteria and to ensure your Parakeet is not subject to any that can linger.
Getting a suitable cage will enable you to clean it quickly, effectively and regularly. Some of the best cages allow you ample space to place your hand within the cage and some even have bottoms that slide out so you can tip and dump any waste.
With all these factors in mind, you can see why the Prevue Hendryx Wrought Iron Flight Cage on Amazon has been so widely received and has such great reviews. If you’re looking for a new cage you would not go wrong getting one like that.
- Our flight cage makes the perfect home for multiple parakeets, canaries or finches
- 4 Plastic double cups and 3 wood perches are included
- Bottom grille and drawer slide out for convenient cleaning
- Durable wrought iron construction is easy to assemble
- 31-Inch long, 20-1/2-inch wide, 53-inch high with 1/2-inch wire spacing
Ultimately ensuring that your Parakeet is content and has a home whereby they can live their best life will ensure that they can live as long as possible. And a good life at that. Space is often a neglected component by bird owners, but its essential. Oh, and make sure you regularly clean it too!
An easily overlooked aspect is how your Parakeets will be mentally stimulated. Sometimes, owners purchase a Parakeet only to leave them in the cage without anything to do.
Instead, its widely accepted that by providing things like Toys will do your Parakeet a world of good.
Toys serve several purposes but for the most part they will prevent your Parakeet from getting bored and idle. They will provide mental stimulation to the point where they do not start undertaking self sabotaging behaviours like pecking at their feathers.
Secondly, Perches enable your Parakeet to move about the cage freely and frequently and give them a different persepctive. This in itself will mentally stimulate them and ensure that they believe they are in a more natural and free environment.
When it comes to placing Perches, consider adding several at different heights and in various positions. Dont be afraid to move them from time to time just ensure that they are securely fastened. Otherwise your Parakeet could take a fall which could be dangerous.
By placing some higher and lower it will prove an incentive to get your Parakeets to fly around and exercise which will do them a lot of good.
When it comes to purchasing Perches, there is a lot of controversy around the materials that are used to make them.
To keep your Parakeet safe, it is often recommended to get ones that are free from any chemicals or natural elements that can cause harm to your bird. So, all-natural perches (like this one) tend to be a safe and effective choice.
Even Oak and some other woods can be problematic so you need to be careful here and not just purchase any Perch you like the look of.
Regarding things like Mirrors, there are reports and even some scientific studies of these causing damage to a Parakeets mental well-being.
While a mirror can prove as a way to give them something to look at, as the reflection cannot replicate their behaviour, it can lead to issues. For the most part and if you are truly looking at how to ensure yiur Parakeet lives its longest life, they are probably best avoided.
If you did decide to get one, it would be advised to monitor your Parakeet and look out for any abnormal behaviour and signs of negative responses.
Instead, you could look to get a second Parakeet. This is the better option and it ensures that they will have a companion and outlet to socialize. Socializing is a big aspect of a Parakeets well being so this would be a good idea if you have the space and can afford to look after another one.
Setting, Habitat and Atmosphere
When it comes to homing your Parakeet, you want to ensure that the setting, habitat and atmosphere is as safe, calm and appropriate as possible. The way you can ensure this is by appropriately placing their cage within your home.
You will want to ensure that the room is bright and is naturally warm. If it is not, you will need to ensure it is heated at all times to keep it at a higher temperature.
Refrain from placing the cage within direct exposure to the sun, you also want to make sure that the cage does not sit directly behind a window or that the Sun reflects off a mirror on the wall.
This can quite literally bake your Parakeet as they will ensure prolonged heat and will not have a way to cool down.
It is also advised not to place the cage in an area that will endure a draft or periods of prolonged cool wind. You will therefore need to think about any doors that are nearby as this can cause this response if regularly opened and closed.
Moreover, if these doors are slammed or shut with too much force it can create loud noises that can scare your Parakeet and cause them a shock.
Be sure to regularly clean the cage; at least once per week at the minimum. You want to keep their living conditions free from bacteria, germs, and potential infection and their poop and excrement can become a breeding ground for these things.
Consider that Parakeets are known to poop often, and depending on their diet or individual needs, may be more than you would expect.
Therefore, in certain cases, you may want to up the cleaning to two-three times a week.
Only you will be able to know when and how to do so but there are clear indicators the time has come (visual and smell).
By keeping their environment clean you will ensure your Parakeet remains strong and healthy prolonging the length of their life in the process.
To make the process easier you can always line the bottom of your cage with sawdust or something like a newspaper. This can then be quickly changed each week or each time you want to clean out the cage.
Only ever use safe products when cleaning and do not use anything that contains a lot of chemicals and that can cause harm.
Installing a bird shower is another thing to consider and this will enable you Parakeet to regularly clean themselves. It can serve as a form of entertainment too. Again, you will need to clean this out regularly and ensure it does not become a breeding ground forn germs.
Bird Sprays are particularly effective for cleaning your Parakeet, and you can use them safely to ensure hygiene.
Just make sure you get a product like the NatraPet Bird bath brand on Amazon, as again the ingredients need to be safe and clear from any damaging chemicals.
A Bird Spray is particularly effective if they accidentally get something on their feathers, like poop as an example.
Regarding sleep, you may want to hang a blanket over the top of your Parakeets cage. This will limit the amount of light and sound that can enter and will help induce a sleeping environment.
However, do ensure that the blanket does not prevent any air from getting to the cage. To do this, leave a section of the cage uncovered.
When it comes time for your bird to sleep (or when it is going to be loud in your house), drape a towel or blanket over the cage.
This will keep your budgie in a darker area and block out some of the sounds. Make sure that your budgie will still get enough air.
Socializing Your Parakeet
Just like any pet and animal, a Parakeet need time to become confident in its new surroundings and to new and unfamiliar voices and faces.
If you have just got a Parakeet, you need to understand that this is a big change for them and they will need some time.
A good practice is to speak softly to them so that they can start to get an understanding of what you sound like.
Feeding your Parakeet with food and treats (like wholesome vegetables) is a great way to build a bond with them. You can also let visitors or other members of your family do this to also bed in your Parakeet and make them feel more at home.
Regularly saying your Parakeets name will help them to learn the word and associate it with them.
It goes without saying but if you want to pet your Parakeet, be calm and relaxed. Do not move quickly as this could frighten them. Additionally, it is a good idea to not let young children handle them, especially if they have not handled any animals or birds before.
That being said, despite their small constitution, it is preferable to play with your Parakeet as much as you can.
This will help them to not only become familiar with you but to associate you with safety. Birds actually require a lot of socializing, especially if you only have one of them.
You should notice in time that as your Parakeet gains confidence and trust in you, they will be more likely to want to play, more vocal, and more likely to come to the cage to greet you when you are nearby. These are all excellent signs.
Taking it a step further, be sure to attempt to feed your Parakeet yourself. You can either feed them vegetables or seed and you can either offer your finger or palm.
You should know when the time comes that you can attempt this, however if your Parakeet backs off or shows signs of anxiety you should stop immediately.
If the environment is safe and closed off, you can always let your Parakeet out to play in your home. Just make sure windows/doors are closed and keep an eye at them at all times.
To put them back in the cage you can do so through manipulating light. Parakeets naturally venture towards it, so you can place a lamp in their cage and close the curtains/blinds or darken the room by turning off any lights.
One thing never to do is kiss your Parakeet. This can actually cause illness in them which is of course not ideal nor good for their longevity.
With good care and the right approach, you can ensure that your Parakeet lives a long, happy life in your care. You can and should expect this to be anywhere from 5-20 years depending on the species in which you own.
To ensure your Parakeet remains strong and healthy, be sure to regularly visits your vet and take them there if you see any signs or symptoms of ill-health or discomfort. This can include changes in behavior, eating habits/patterns and physical deterioration of some kind.
I am an experienced pet owner with decades of experience owning a number of different pets, from traditional pets like dogs and cats, to the more exotic like reptiles and rodents. I currently own a Cockapoo (pictured) called Bailey. I am also the main writer and chief editor here at Pet Educate; a site dedicated to sharing evidence-based insights and guidance, based on my vast pet ownership knowledge, experience, and extensive research.