Parakeets make great, friendly pets. If you have one, you might be curious as to whether it's male or female for naming purposes. And if you want to breed parakeets, you will definitely need to be able to tell if a parakeet is male or female. However, young parakeets do not have visible genitals, so you'll need to use other methods to determine your bird's gender.
- Skill level:
Find the cere (pronounced "seeree") by looking above your parakeet's beak, where you will see a set of nostrils. There is a strip of flesh there that is different from the beak and anything else on the bird. This is the cere.
Look closely at the colour of the cere. A parakeet with a blue or purple cere is a male bird, while a parakeet with a pink or brown cere is a female bird. Sometimes it can be difficult to determine the colour of the cere because some females have a little bit of blue and white around their nostrils. But males have all blue or purple ceres; if it is any other colour, it is a female.
Determine the gender of a parakeet when it is younger than 1 year old, because the bird has not yet fully developed. This means the cere is usually a different colour. In young males the cere is a bright, purplish pink, while in young females the cere is usually white.
Pay attention to your bird's behaviour. Male parakeets bob their heads more, sing more and interact with humans more. Females are more territorial and bossy, and they chirp loudly more than they sing.
Make an appointment with an avian vet if you want to be absolutely sure of your parakeet's gender. The avian vet will use a few feathers or a toenail to get a small amount of blood to test the bird's DNA. When the results come in you will know without a doubt whether your parakeet is male or female.
Tips and warnings
- The DNA gender test is the only absolute way to tell if your parakeet is a male or female. The other methods are scientific guesses.
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