Bourke’s Parakeet (Parrot)

Pink is not very common in the bird world, but there are still some candy-colored feathered birds. In Australia, where the animal world already has numerous animal surprises in store, another crook-billed cockatoo stands out in addition to the pink cockatoo: the Bourke’s parakeet, also known as the rose-bellied parakeet. The unusually colored bird, which in the past was falsely offered to European bird lovers as the “red budgie”, is a lovable and balanced companion that even beginners can keep without any problems.

Bourke’s Parakeets – Pink-colored Birds From the Steppe

The natural habitat of the Bourke’s Parakeets is the acacia-dominated steppes of bushes in the interior of Australia. The ornithologist John Gould first scientifically described the busy birds in 1841. A quarter of a century later, the first animals were presented in European zoos. In the eighties of the 19th century, the first successes in breeding occurred. Budgie breeding was about thirty years ahead at the time – a leap in popularity that the Bourke’s parakeet could not catch up. The bird has been on the Red List of Threatened Species since 2008.

Nice Drawing on a Dark Background – the Color of the Bourke’s Parakeet

The upper side of the Bourke’s Parakeet is rust-brown, the plumage on the breast and belly is pinkish-brown. The wing-covers are drawn with an attractive pattern by the bright edges of the coverts, the long tail is bluish. Females are not quite as intensely colored, and the cocks have a distinctive blue spot on the forehead – this is how the sexes can be differentiated in adult animals. Falcons, piebalds, cinnamon-colored, and purely pink-colored birds are known to be mutations.

The Day Just Starts in the Evening – the Bourke Parakeet Keeping

Like all parakeets, Bourke’s parakeets are flocking birds. In their natural habitat, they are nomadic in larger groups outside of the breeding season and search the barren landscape for something to eat. You will also sleep in the safety of the flock. Bourke’s parakeets should therefore at least be kept as pairs.

The animals are so peaceful that socialization with other parakeets is not optimal, but it can work. Due to the extreme temperatures in Central Australia, Bourke’s Parakeets are twilight-active – your feathered companion will therefore be particularly lively in the morning and evening hours.

When it comes to keeping Bourke’s Parakeets, essentially the same guidelines apply as for the closely related budgie: Bourke’s Parakeets need the company of their conspecifics, as much free flight as possible, and toys to play with. The birdhouse should measure at least 150 x 100 x 100 centimeters as a sleeping place and temporary place to stay; an aviary is of course better. A peculiarity of the Bourke parakeet behavior: Atypical for a parrot bird, the birds like to stay on the ground – this harbors an increased risk of accidents if they are careless. The gnaw drive is also less pronounced than in other parakeets.

Grain and Plant Foods for the Bourke’s Parakeet

In the wild, the Bourke’s parakeets are mostly found in dry, stepped terrain and feed on grass and its seeds. As pets, the pretty birds also have no special requirements: A good feed mix with small seeds for budgies, supplemented by a daily portion of vegetables, herbs, and fruit in moderation, keeps the animals fit and healthy. Please note that Bourke’s Parakeets feed on the ground and use pans.

Do Bourke Parakeets Get Tame?

In comparison to budgies, Bourke’s parakeets are rather calm representatives and are characterized by great serenity. If the animals are treated calmly and patiently – and millet as a bribe – Bourke’s parakeets can become tame, but they are less playful. The gentle birds are suitable as pets for children from the teenage years.

Bourke’s Parakeets

Central Australia;

19 – 22 centimeters;

30-50 grams;

Slender, wedge-shaped body with a long tail, the beak appears proportionally rather small, the eyes, however, very large;

Natural color upper side brownish, wing covers banded, belly and breast brownish-pink, tail blue; Hens paler overall, cocks with spot on the forehead; a few pints, cinnamon and piebald as color mutations;

Life expectancy
10-12 years;

Peaceful, rather calm, with a pleasant voice.

Mary Allen

Written by Mary Allen

Hello, I'm Mary! I've cared for many pet species including dogs, cats, guinea pigs, fish, and bearded dragons. I also have ten pets of my own currently. I've written many topics in this space including how-tos, informational articles, care guides, breed guides, and more.

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