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A common question among new budgie owners is "What cage will I need?" The short answer is to buy the biggest cage you can afford. Budgies are intelligent parrots and a cage is their home. They need space to stretch their wings and can become depressed in too small a cage.
The minimum size cage recommended for one budgie is 30in X 18in X 18in. However, as previously stated: the bigger the better. As long as the bar spacing is right, no cage is too big. Bar spacing on a budgie cage should be no larger than 1/2in. Any wider and the budgie risks getting caught between the bars.
Budgies, like most parrots, love to climb. For this reason a cage with more horizontal bars is preferable to one with mostly vertical bars. Give your budgie a climbing-friendly cage and you will be rewarded with wonderful displays of acrobatic behaviour.
Budgies, like most everyone, love to feel safe. A rectangular or square cage offers corners to hide in when they are scared. A circular cage can leave them feeling vulnerable and unsafe.
The amount of outside-of-cage time your budgie will get is big factor in the size of the cage you will need. It is recommended that budgies get 2-3 hours of outside-of-cage time a day. If your budgie will be getting less outside-of-cage time than that on average, you will need to make sure your budgie has a much larger cage. You will also have to keep that cage well stocked with toys. When a budgie doesn't¡ get ample outside-of-cage time, their cage goes from being simply their home to being their world. That world needs to be large enough to accommodate their physical need for exercise and psychological need for a stimulating environment.
If you have multiple budgies, you'll need a larger cage. If your budgies are different genders, you'll need to separate them into different cages. Breeding birds should be left to experienced bird keepers, and even then is generally not encouraged. Left in the same cage, male and female budgies will often undertake making more.
Further complicating co-caging is that female budgies can be territorial and sometimes end up needing to be separated. Separating male budgies can also become necessary. While they are typically less territorial than females, sometimes personality conflicts necessitate separate cages. Putting multiple males in a cage with a female is never recommend, as it almost always ends up in fights. While larger cage sizes do make budgies less prone to fighting, sometimes there is simply no alternative to separation. Budgies are fragile birds and any fighting can result in serious injury. Even with birds that typically get along, you need to make sure there is ample space for them to get away from each other should they end up in a tussle. Lack of an escape route can turn a minor squabble into a dangerous fight. This is something to consider both when buying cages and when deciding how many budgies you can handle.
Apart from size, you'll also need to make sure that your budgie cage is made of bird-safe material. While one would hope that unsafe items would never be sold, unfortunately the reality is that they are: sometimes by the unscrupulous and sometimes by the uninformed. Materials like lead, zinc, brass, and galvanized steel can be toxic to birds. The best materials are powder-coated iron, stainless steel, and cold-pressed steel. Remember, budgies use their beaks to climb their cages, so they will come into frequent contact with whatever material the cage is made of.
Budgie Cage Requirements
- The cage should not be made of toxic metals such as zinc, lead, or brass (wet brass tarnishes - this tarnish is toxic). Stainless steel is best or powder-coated.
- Do not put your budgie in a cage that is rusted or has chipping paint.
- If you find an old cage in the attic, basement, trash-picking, or at a yard sale that only has a few rusty patches or a little chipping paint and you want to re-paint it for your budgie - DON'T. Throw it out and get a new cage on eBay or Amazon. The cost of getting a cage sanded down and then powder-coated is more than you would pay for a new cage online.
- Big enough for the budgie to not only fully turn around and spread out their wings, but to fly from one side to another - a absolute minimum of 18x18x24.. Buy the biggest cage you can afford. Parrot cages are MUCH cheaper online than they are in the petstore. Please check ebay or Amazon for new parrot cages at great prices!
- Horizontal bars because budgies love to climb!
- Width is more important than height as budgies fly horizontally.
- Bar spacing should be no wider than 1/2 inch so that the budgie doesn't get their head stuck between the bars. Their heads are smaller than they look!
- No round cages - a budgie doesn't feel safe in a round cage - there is no back wall to retreat to. Along the same lines, be sure there is a wall behind at least one side of the cage.
- A good size rectangular cage is best - the palace shape or house shapes actually restrict the room the budgie has to fly and play and create a mess of poop and food the others do not.
- Do not place the cage next to a window. Drafts can cause the budgie to become sick. Keep the cage out of direct sunlight.
- Place the cage in a room you spend alot of time in (though not the kitchen - because of fumes and hot unsafe surfaces) but that will be quiet at night.
- Budgies require alot of mental stimulation. Be sure they have lots of fun toys and that you rotate the toys frequently so that they do not become bored and so they get used to change.
- Budgie-proof the room the budgie will be flying in by making sure no open water surfaces, open windows/doors, uncurtained windows, other pets, etc will harm them.
- Be sure to cover the cage at night to provide darkness and a secure cover to prevent night-frights.
- Several perches of varying widths are necessary to promote healthy feet and legs and to prevent foot sores caused by plain wooden dowels. We recommend the wood branch perches and rope perches.
- Avoid: sand perch covers (cause foot sores), mite protectors (cause respiratory illness), bedding (breeds fungus and can cause crop impaction when injested) - paper towels or plain newsprint are best so you can watch poops for health.
- Covered food and water dishes so budgies don't poop in them and get sick.
- Cuttle bone to chew on. It's good for their beaks and provides needed calcium.
- Secure all cage doors and windows with stainless steel quicklinks. Budgies are smart little buggers and can quickly and easily figure out how to give themselves some unsupervised out time!
- Place the best wood perches up high - and the stone ones that are good for toe nail health down low. Budgies like to be up high and will spend most of their time on the nicer perches that are good for their feet. We don't recommend using the wooden dowels that come with cages for anything other than step-ups and collecting budgies from around the room to return to their cages.
- Make sure there is a food bowl for each budgie in the cage so that they don't have to fight over it or the dominant budgie doesn't let the other budgies near the food.
- If you are going to have several budgies in the same cage - it's better to move them at the same time rather than moving a new bird into another's birds cage to avoid territorial issues.
Recommended Budgie Cages
There are 2 budgie cages we would recommend without hesitation: the 1 or 2 door version of "Everyone's Favorite Cage", and the 30x18x18 flight cage.
Best Budgie Cage for up to 4 Budgies
Everyone's Favorite Cage, aka: EFC, (1 Door: 32x32x59) or (2 doors: 32x 21x 35)
2-door version - personally I far prefer the 2-door version because you can pop your budgies back in through the bottom door or exchange food/water bowls without your budgies flying out. I don't know about your little guys, but some of mine are pure brats and love nothing more than flying out of their cage at inopportune times when I'm trying to change out the food bowls and then flying with great hellbent excitement all over the room, refusing to get back on the stick and go back in their cage (Rainbow, Plum - you know who you are!)
I recommend this cage above all others - as does everyone in all of the budgie communities I am a member of. It is known widely as the EFT, aka: "Everyone's Favorite Cage". It is big and spacious, safe, easy to put together, easy to clean, and inexpensive. You can fit several budgies in here and there is plenty of room for flying around and playing with toys. It's also nice that the cage has 2 doors. I get the budgies out of the upper door when it's play time outside of the cage. However, when you are changing food and water bowls and don't want all the budgies to fly out - it's great to be able to open up the lower door and do so without fear of having to chase budgies all over the room for the next 15 minutes. It's also easier when it comes time for everyone to go back in their cages. You just slip the budgies in on their stick through the bottom door and set them on an upper perch. Budgies prefer to be up high so everyone doesn't fly out when you put the next budgie in the cage. I have 2 of these. One houses four of my budgies: Cloude, Dandelion, Star and Cricket.The other houses 2 cockatiels: Henry and Dubbins. (I have the one-door variety for the tiels as they don't tend to try to escape all the time and they are easier to collect when it's bedtime. It really is the best budgie cage ever.
- Available in these colors: Charcoal, Bronze, White, Platinum, Blue, Green
- Dimensions: 32" wide x 21" deep x 35" high
- Overall height: 59"
- Bar Spacing: 1/2"
- Removable Tray & Grill
- 2 Long aviary style cups
- Wood Perches
- 2 Side Doors
- Storage shelf
- Constructed of Bird-safe wrought iron
- Durable powder-coating finish
- EZ Roll Casters
- Assembly time: approximately 30 minutes
- Tools required: screwdriver, pliers
Best Budgie Cage for up to 2 Budgies
Budgie Flight Cage 30x18x18
This cage is 30x18x18. It is bigger than it looks in this piccie. Throughtout this page there are some shots of my guys in the cage so that you can get a good idea of the size. I would not put more than 2 budgies in this cage. The cage comes with a removable divider. Definitely take that out so that the cage is nice and roomy.
- Dimensions: 30" L x 18"D x 18"H
- 1/2" Wire spacing
- 2 Slide-up front entry doors (One door per 15" side)
- 4 Clear Plastic Feeder cups* accessible from 4 feeder doors (Two per side)
- 4 15" Wood Dowel perches (2 per side)
- Removable center divider (to make one 30" space)
- Stationary Inside Grille
- Molded plastic tray for easy removal and cleaning
- Attached Carrying Handle
- Stacks easily on other flight cages
- Some assembly required
- a pair of pliers would be helpful
- 30" Divided Cage
- This cannot be stressed enough - please buy the biggest cage that you can afford.
- This is your budgie's home - where she or he will spend most of their time.
- They need to be able to stretch out, to fly and play. A cage for one budgie should be no smaller than 30x18x18.
- A budgie needs room to extend their wings fully in all directions and fly about with a wingspan of room between the tips of their wings and the side of the cage. They should never hit their wings or tail against the bars. Buy the largest budgie cage you can afford.
- Proper bar-spacing for a budgie cage is less than 1/2 an inch. Any wider and a budgie could get their head stuck between the bars and hurt themselves.
- Avoid cages that have alot of vertical bars. Budgies love to climb and need horizontal bars in their cage to do so.
- A part of family life Place the budgie cage in a room near the center of activity - the family room or living room. Budgies are flock birds and want to be near you. The best location for a budgie cage is a high, well-lit spot near where your family likes to spend most of their time.
- Away from other animals and windows Be sure this spot is away from any other animals such as dogs or cats and not in front of a window that is drafty or gets direct sunlight.
- Avoid kitchens and bathrooms It is also not advisable to place a budgie cage in the kitchen or bathroom because of various fumes from cooking and cleaning that are too toxic for budgie lungs. Teflon fumes in particular are toxic and deadly.
- Up high Be sure the cage is high up, away from the reach of any pets, yet not so high that you can't see the bottom of the cage to check budgie poops and easily clean.
- Away from danger Keep the budgie cage away from doors, windows, heating vents and air conditioners.
- Temperature A budgie cage should be kept out of direct sunlight and away from drafts. Place the budgie cage in a place where the temperature remains steadfast between 65-85 degrees and does not fluctuate alot.
- Be sure to secure all of your budgie's cage doors with stainless steel quicklinks. Don't use twistties or pipe cleaners because the metal in these may contain zinc, which is toxic for budgies. Budgies are smart and will easily figure out how to lift doors to escape unsupervised into the room. Their head can get caught in guillotine doors and in their panic a budgie can injure themselves or die.
- Clean your budgie's food and water bowls daily.
- You can wash toys, perches, and dishes in the dishwasher with hot hot water to kill any bacteria.
- You can use dish soap, Poop Off, or vinegar.
- Clean your budgie cage at minimum weekly - changing out the paper lining and cleaning poops from any perches and toys with diluted vinegar water. Give the cage a good wipe down
- You can use a bleach-water solution outside away from your budgie, rinsing very very well and let the cage dry in the sun.
- Be sure not to use toxic chemicals: Windex, etc to clean your budgies things.
- The cage should be thoroughly cleaned monthly with diluted bleach - and thoroughly rinsed to remove any traces of the bleach.
- A rectangular budgie cage is the best shape.
- Avoid round budgie cages because a budgie needs a flat wall behind them, to feel safe.
- A round budgie cage offers no safe place.
- Also avoid budgie cages with alot of decorative flourishes such as those shaped like a house or palace.
- These actually offer your budgie alot less room to fly around and play than a rectangular cage and when they perch on the outer rounded edges, their poops do not stay within the cage but fall onto the table outside the cage.
- Also, a budgie can get their foot or toenail stuck in the decorative bits and get hurt.
- The width of the cage is more important than the height as budgies fly back and forth horizontally, not up and down, not vertically like helicopters. In a tall cage, budgies tend to stay at the top of the cage as they like to be up high for safety so all of the room below them is wasted space. Avoid round cages - a budgie feels safest with one side of the cage against a wall.
- The best safe cage metals for a budgie cage are: stainless steel, and powder-coated wrought iron or cold-pressed steel. Wrought iron budgie cages and cold rolled steel budgie cages must be powder-coated.
- Avoid zinc, galvanized steel, lead, and brass as these are toxic to budgies.
- Budgies love to chew and will chew the cage bars and also use their beaks to climb around their cage. You do not want to put your budgie in a cage that will make them sick or may kill them.
- Brass contains zinc and forms a toxic tarnish when wet.
- Always ask what the cage is made of.
- Never buy a budgie cage that is rusted or has chipped paint. It is more expensive to have a budgie cage re-powder coated than it is to buy a new one. Spray paint is toxic. Budgies use their beak to climb and they love to chew *everything*.
- When you let your budgie out for out-of-cage time, be sure the room is budgie-safe: all windows and doors closed and secure, curtains pulled closed so that the budgies don't fly into them and hurt themselves, mirrors covered, no poisonous plants or chemicals.
- Budgies need as many hours as possible of out-of-cage time.
- Out-of-cage-time should be supervised at all times and the room must be budgie-proof: no other pets in the room, all windows and doors closed, curtains drawn so that budgies don't fly into them and break their necks, no open containers of water (including drinks) as budgies can fall into them and drown, no access to poisonous chemicals or plants.
- Make sure no other pets have access to the room.
- Budgies out of cage must be supervised at all times.
- They can quickly and easily get stuck behind furniture, chew electrical cords, etc.
- Think of budgies as perpetual thre-year-olds.
- It's best to line a budgie cage with plain newsprint or plain, white paper towels.
- You need to moniter a budgie's poops to be sure they are healthy.
- Get a cage with a removable tray and grille for easier cleaning. The grille ensures that your budgie will not play in or eat their poops. Line the bottom of the tray with newspaper or newsprint and switch it out with clean newspaper weekly. Avoid bedding, shavings, corncob, litter, etc as these are not good to line the cage with as they can be ingested by budgies and cause crop impaction, encourage mold growth, and you can't easily watch a budgies poop to be sure they are healthy.
- Budgies must have several toys to play with in their cage at all times.
- These are intelligent creatures and need interesting things to do while you are away or not paying attention to them.
- All parrots love to chew and shred things so any wood chew toys or shredding material is good.
- Mirrors and spinning toys are great.
- Swings and ladders are big favorites.
- Budgies should be covered at night so that lights and shadows in the room don't cause night-frights that can injure a budgie.
- Cover your budgie cage at night for privacy, total darkness, warmth, and sense of security.
- Make sure to buy your budgie cage before you get your new budgie.
- You want to have the budgie cage in it's proper location, fully accessorized and decked out with toys - all ready to go when you bring your new budgie home! You want to give your full attention to your new bird rather than rushing around trying to get the cage set-up while your budgie waits around.
- Have the cage in it's final location, already prepared for your budgie with perches, toys, food and water *before* you bring your budgie home.
- Search for wrought iron flight cages on Amazon and eBay. The cages are new and sellers often offer free shipping.
- You will pay at least twice as much for a budgie cage at a pet store as you would online.
- A budgie cage needs several perches made of varying materials (wood perches, rope perches) and of varying sizes (for proper foot health).
- The wooden dowels that come with budgie cages should just be used for step-up training and transporting your budgie about the room.
- Recommended wood budgie perches include: Manzanita perches, cactus perches, cholla perches.
- Get perches of varying widths to give your budgie proper foot exercise.
- If a budgie can only perch on the plain wooden dowel, they can get pressure sores on their feet.
- Also avoid sand perch covers as these will rip up a budgie's tender feet.
- Put the best perches in the highest positions as these are the ones the budgies will use the most.
- Put cement perches and other nail-trimming sorts of perches down low.
- Do not position perches over food or water bowls.
- It is best if you can have food and water bowls with hoods to keep budgie poop out.
- Each budgie should have their own food bowl.
- Provide cuttlebone and a mineral block for extra calcium and to keep the beak trim.
A budgie cage needs covered water cups for drinking.
Note: don't get the water cup with the attached perch, they can get their head stuck in the perch part. This happened to my Henry bird, thank god we were in the room to help him. He was traumatized for weeks.
Various perches of varying widths and textures for budgie-foot-health.
Each budgie in the cage should have their own bowl to eat from to discourage bickering and fights.
Make sure any cement perches are lower in the cage as these aren't good for budgies to stand on for long periods of time.
Place the best perches high in the cage as budgies will like to perch as high as possible.
Avoid sand paper perches as these can tear up the tender skin of budgies feet.
Avoid placing perches over food/water bowls as this will contanimate the water.
Also provide a cuttlebone for calcium.
Be sure to secure all doors of the budgie cage with a stainless steel pear quick link.
Budgies are clever and can easily lift those doors and get their head stuck, freak out and get hurt.
These questions will be answered asap!
- Can my budgie and bourke parakeet live in the same cage or do they need separate cages?
- Can I hang my budgie's cage from the ceiling?
- Can I put a mirror in my budgie's cage?
- Can I keep my budgie's cage outside in the summer?
- Can I paint my budgie's cage a different color?
- Can I put a wheel in my budgie's cage for exercise?
- Can I put a climbing structure in my budgie's cage?
- Can I put a birdbath in my budgie's cage?
- Can I put a small piece of turf or grass in my budgie's cage?
- Can I put a birdhouse or nesting box in my budgie's cage?
- Can I put a heat lamp in my budgie's cage during the winter?
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