If you are in the market to adopt a parakeet of some sort you are probably curious as to how long the average lifespan of a parakeet is, and what you as their owner can do to prolong that life expectancy for as long as possible.
There are some steps that can be taken to prolong the parakeet life expectancy, from what you feed them to how often you play with them.
Budgie Life Expectancy: Captive vs Wild
The difference in life expectancy of a Parakeet in the wild versus in captivity may shock you, and maybe even reconsider adopting one. Of course, their captive lifespan can vary depending on you and how well you take care of your Parakeet. In the wild, Parakeets have been known to live a long and happy 25 to 30 years of life.
Which may be an eternity of a difference in bird years, compared to the 10 or so years of life they are expected to live on average in captivity.
With the right nutrition and adequate exercise, a Parakeet in captivity can easily live a good 10-15 years longer than expected. One of the major factors making a wild Parakeet have such a long life expectancy is that they are free to fly about and get plenty of physical activity.
Captive Parakeets don’t have nearly a fraction of the space to get around and get exercise daily. This can lead to obesity, which takes a significant toll on the life expectancy of a Parakeet. Therefore, it’s important to provide your Parakeet with as big of a cage as you can, per your budget and living space limitations. That and filling their cage with plenty of objects to play and interact with will not only keep them active but also very happy and content.
What They Should be Eating
Diet is a critical factor in the lifespan of any living creature. For Parakeets who live in captivity and cannot get as much physical activity as their wild brethren, they really need to be watching what they eat. Providing good nutrition is just as important as making sure your Parakeet doesn’t overeat and become obese.
The Parakeet diet should consist of birdseed as the staple. Two tablespoons of birdseed daily should suffice but can be moderated depending on your Parakeets' nutritional needs. Such as if they are underweight or overweight. In addition to birdseed, there is a wide variety of fruits and vegetables that Parakeets love to eat and should be given daily as a sort of midday snack. These fruits and vegetables can include but are definitely not limited to, melon, apples, grapes, spinach, lettuce, and broccoli.
Just like with any other kind of food, everything in moderation is the way to go. Too much fruit could inadvertently cause your Parakeet to gain weight because of all the extra sugar they’re getting in their diet.
What to Do if Your Parakeet Gets Sick
There are several illnesses that birds can contract, some of which are common. It’s important that you become aware of the signs and symptoms of these illnesses so that you can spot them right away and take the steps needed to help them get better.
Coccidiosis, for one, is a condition that can cause your bird to develop wet or runny droppings. You may also find them to be more lethargic than usual. If you find your bird acting in either of these ways, the first thing you can do is try and make some small changes in their diet and watch them for a day or two to see if it makes any difference. If the runny droppings and lethargy persist it’s important that you get your Parakeet to a vet immediately for treatment.
Another common condition that some Parakeets may face is rectal prolapse. This condition can happen in humans as well so you may have heard of it before. It’s essentially when their intestines become “turned inside out”, in a sense, and are sticking out of their rear. It may appear to look like a small red marble sticking out of them. You will want to take them to the vet immediately if you find that they have developed this condition.
It’s important that you do not try to treat your Parakeet’s illnesses at home, as this could lead to worsening of their condition. Always take them to a vet when something seems the matter so that a professional can address their condition.
Parakeets can easily live just as long of a life in captivity with you, as they could out in the wild. It is all dependent upon the quality of care and hygiene maintenance that you provide to them. Their diet is key, just as it is with any living being on the planet.
Sometimes getting sick is unavoidable, no matter how well you care for your Parakeet. The way in which you care for them when they do become ill, and how quickly you do it, can also have a huge impact on their life span.
Good caretaking of your pet Parakeets can make a difference of up to 15 years being added to their life expectancy.