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Female English BudgieAre there different budgie species? This is one of the frequently asked questions people send to me via e-mail, because they heard of so-called "English Budgies" or "Show Budgies". The answer is simple: No, there are no different species. All budgies belong to the species Melopsittacus undulatus and there are solely different varieties concerning the colour(s) of the plumage. There is also a difference in the size of the body. Domesticated budgies are bigger than their wild ancestors from Australia and English Budgies are even bigger. On the right, you can see a typical English budgie with its huge head and many throat spots.


Green pet budgie, color variety: opaline light greenNearly all budgies that are kept as pet birds in Germany and the rest of Europe are as small as Pauzi. Here in Germany, breeders call the smaller ones "Hansi-Bubis", because those two names are the most popular ones for budgies in my country as you can see in my statistics on budgie names.

In Germany, most of the English Budgies are especially bred for exhibitions or shows. Such budgies should be shaped as an ideal that was set by some breeding associations. This ideal has little in common with the so-called wild form of the budgies. In Australia, one can find wild budgies that are 18 cm long and weigh about 25 g.

Portrait of a male pet budgieAfter their discovery by George Shaw in 1805, budgies were shipped to Europe. People successfully bred the small parrots, and a few years later the first mutations in colour appeared: blue birds with white faces, see photo on the right, albinos (pure white birds with red eyes) and lutinos (pure yellow birds with red eyes). Pieded mutations and other exotic markings followed. Specific colour varieties were specifically bred and some body proportions gained importance during the years. In UK, there was the origin of the modern breeder's ideal: the English Budgie.

Female English BudgieEnglish Budgies are about one (budgie-)head taller than the wild ancestors, and they look more bulky because they weigh 50 to 60 g. Many people don't like this ideal of beauty. They prefer the wild form of the birds that can hardly be found in the breeder's ideal. Make your own decision about all this and have a look at the photo on the right. It shows an English Budgie from Germany. In Great Britain, these birds are even taller!

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