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Can Budgies Live With Cockatiels?

The realm of avian companionship offers a wide array of options, and two of the most favored choices are budgies and cockatiels. Both of these species are known for their endearing personalities, attractive plumage, and engaging behaviors. However, potential bird owners often ask themselves “Can budgies live with cockatiels?”

In this article, we will take a look at these two distinct species and find out whether they can peacefully coexist together.

Can Budgies Live With Cockatiels?

Yes, budgies can live with cockatiels, but only under certain conditions. Before diving into their compatibility, it’s crucial to understand the unique characteristics of budgies and cockatiels. While these two bird species may be similar in many ways, they also have some differences you will need to take into consideration when answering the question “can budgies live with cockatiels?”


Two budgies perching
Two budgies perching

Budgies are small parakeets that typically measure around 7 to 8 inches in length. They have an average lifespan of 7 to 10 years, but there have been a few budgies that lived for over 15 years. These birds are known for their curious and playful nature.

Because they are social birds, budgies thrive when kept in pairs or small groups. Budgies are talkative, often heard making chirping noises, and even have mimicry abilities. Their diet consists of seeds, pellets, fresh fruits, and fresh vegetables.


Two cockatiels resting
Two cockatiels resting | Image by wasi1370 from Pixabay

These birds are larger than budgies and typically measure about 12 to 13 inches long. Their lifespan is also a bit long, living between 15 and 25 years. Cockatiels have an affectionate and gentle disposition, oftentimes forming strong bonds with their owners.

While they are not usually as talkative as budgies, they do whistle and can mimic tunes. Cockatiels and budgies do have a similar diet, which consists of seeds, pellets, fresh fruits, and fresh vegetables, but the cockatiel tends to need higher fat content.

Can Budgies And Cockatiels Live In The Same Cage?

Most experts would discourage you from having a budgie and cockatiel in the same cage. While it is true that these two avian species have successfully coexisted together in the Australian outback, which is their natural environment, it is much different when these birds are living in captivity with one another. Territorial instincts, size differences, and even energy levels are just a few issues that can cause conflict between these two birds when put together in a small cage.

Territorial Instincts

Because budgies are relatively small birds, they inherently have the need to safeguard their nesting areas in the wild, protecting them from predators. This causes the budgie to exhibit strong territorial tendencies, especially in the presence of other birds. The good news is that this trait is usually less pronounced in domesticated budgies, but it can still surface at times, which may lead to fights between the budgie and cockatiels.

Size Difference

Budgie and cockatiel
Budgie and cockatiel | image by Jen Smith via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY-SA 2.0

Cockatiels are larger than budgies, and when you confine these two species to a small space, injuries can occur. Even if the cockatiel isn’t necessarily mean or aggressive, just being larger can lead to accidents and even death of the smaller budgie.

Energy Levels

Budgies are more active and vocal than cockatiels, while cockatiels have a more calm demeanor. While this may not seem like such a big deal, it can cause stress in cockatiels. Because budgies need more mental stimulation, they can start to annoy cockatiels, which can lead to fights and other disruptive behavior.

Can Budgies And Cockatiels Live In The Same House?

Although cockatiels and budgies have some similarities, such as a shared native habitat, housing them in the same cage is generally discouraged by most experts due to various factors. You can, however, have budgies and cockatiels living in the same household as long as each species has its own cage and living arrangement.

Can I House Budgies And Cockatiels In The Same Cage If They Are Friends?

Cockatiel and budgies
Cockatiel and budgies | image by Harsha K R via Wikimedia Commons | CC BY-SA 2.0

While it is possible for budgies and cockatiels to share a cage, there is no guarantee that they won’t fight with one another. Even if you provide them with the perfect environment and the birds appear to be close companions, sudden altercations can arise.

When this occurs, potential injuries to one or both of your birds could occur. Because of this, it’s just better to keep these two bird species in separate cages.

Can I Let My Budgies And Cockatiels Out Of Their Cages At The Same Time?

Letting your budgie and cockatiel out of their cages at the same time is not advisable unless you provide consistent and careful supervision. While it is true that both of these birds are social creatures and can get along, there is also the potential for aggressive behavior and territorial disputes. This is especially true if the two birds are not familiar with one another.

Additionally, because the cockatiel is larger and has a stronger beak, they can unintentionally injure the budgie even when they are not purposely trying to hurt them. If you want the two birds to interact with one another, it is best to introduce them slowly and always under close supervision. In fact, monitoring all interactions between the birds will go a long way to keeping them safe and happy.