Australian Parakeets. Melopsitacus Undulatus. Budgerigar Budgie.

Pep Canto

Pep Canto

Scientific name: Neophema bourkii and Neopsephotus bourkii.- Order Psitaciformes, family psittacidae.

The Bourke parakeet measures 19-22 cms. in length, the predominant colors are pink, grayish brown and blue, have black beak, black iris and brown legs. The male in his modest coloration is more showy than the female, which lacks the bluish tones of the head, has less pink colored belly and shorter tail.


HABITAT This small bird has as its natural habitat the interior of the central and southern regions of Australia, roaming the steppes and the savannahs with eucalyptus, trees used to install their nests and to rest. In freedom their favorite food is the seeds of acacias and they love the tender buds of trees. In their natural environment they often reproduce between August and October.

The bourke (like a great majority of Australian parrots), was in serious danger of extinction because of the reduction of their natural habitats by the By the "thirty-forty" years it was believed to be practically extinguished, which forced the Australian authorities to consider it a protected bird, which allowed it the wild population began to recover, but even after this protection in 1958 some naturalists (including the American Greenway) considered it to be extinct.

However, it is still protected in Appendix II CITES and its populations continue to be threatened, always thanks to human intrusion (grazing, intensive agriculture, introduction of alien species, etc.). Hopefully your populations will continue to increase or at least remain stable.

In order to accommodate a pair of Bourke parakeets, it is advisable to have ample facilities, preferably in aviaries, since they do not accept life in cages unless they are very large. This can be outside with a covered area protected from cold and humidity (humidity is very harmful to this type of birds and does not like direct exposure to the sun). Because of their peaceful and tranquil character they can coexist with other smaller birds, but ideally they are isolated in pairs

FOOD: The basic diet is formed with a mixture of seeds complete: millet (white yellow and red), canary seed, peeled oats, mix for parakeets and canaries, two or three times a week will be given small pipes, some cane and negrillo. To this must be added vegetables and legumes (broccoli, cabbage, spinach, peas, beans, chard, lettuce and especially the carrot) and fruits (apple, pear, etc.). From time to time they can be given germinated seeds that they accept very willingly. In breeding season we will also provide "breeding paste" and it is convenient to add a vitamin complex.

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Chickens are born with a soft white down, grow very fast and should ring (4 mm ring) at seven-eight days of life, leave the nest after a month and are usually quite nervous and scary In the early days, parents continue to feed them for three to four weeks. More or less a month of life should be separated from the parents so that they start a new setting, should not be allowed more than two sets per years, as it can exhaust the female.

MUTILATION: / strong> Currently in captivity the pink and yellow mutation are perfectly established.

CURIOSITIES AND PERSONAL EXPERIENCE: The possession of this species has been extremely satisfactory, they are not noisy birds and do not gnaw the wood so they can be in aviaries with natural plants.

The pink mutation is somewhat more inactive and less prolific than the nominal or wild species.

If we get a prolific couple, we can have many If we have a large aviary we can put two females and one male, there will be no problems between them, except in the time of breeding among the females by some nest, but they can reach to create both with the same male, however this is not advisable.

Although they seem to be not apathetic birds and little active as defined by some people are simply quiet and peaceful, their greatest period of activity is at dawn and especially at sunset, when it begins to dusk. In fact, the Australians define them as "nocturnal parakeets, because instead of suspending all kinds of activity at night, these birds usually come in groups not too numerous to drink, something not very common in birds that when it gets dark go to their places of rest