I have a female budgerigar whose beak recently changed colour - its tip turned brownish-black. There are no bulges on the beak, nor does she have any other symptoms. I previously had a budgie whose behaviour changed dramatically as it was traumatised after a visit to the vet, so I'm rather scared of taking this one anywhere.

What could cause this beak discoloration in my budgie? Is there something I can do to help her, aside from taking her to the vet?

Edit: She is between 1 and 2 years old. I give her a commercial mixture of bird seed, consisting predominantly of millet (78%) and other types of seeds. I also give her a commercial mixture of parrot minerals.

The beak pigmentation looks like this:

enter image description here

  • Websearching "budgie dark beak" finds some possible answers, but I'm not a vet and don't know much about birds so that's the best hint I can offer.
    – keshlam
    Feb 10, 2016 at 15:48
  • @keshlam thanks for the advice :-). I've tried "budgie beak pigmentation" and after I've seen your comment I've tried searching "budgie dark beak" as well but I mostly found forums with conflicting information - some say it's normal, some it might be related to diet and some that it might be due to an injury or even fungus. It's a wide range of possibilities, I was hoping someone could narrow it down.
    – Lucky
    Feb 10, 2016 at 20:21
  • When there's conflicting info, that probably means "multiple causes with similar symptom, consult a vet." Have you shown your vet this pic?
    – keshlam
    Feb 10, 2016 at 21:56
  • @keshlam I was afraid of that. I'm trying to discern at least whether it is an emergency or the condition can wait until the weather is warmer, if a visit to the vet is inevitable. I did send the photo via e-mail but it was somewhat blurred so I had to send a new (this) one and I'm still waiting for a reply. It takes a while to get a response and I'm really worried.
    – Lucky
    Feb 10, 2016 at 22:45
  • 1
    I'm no expert on birds, so hopefully someone can weigh in on this. But it looks like a bruise to me.
    – Spidercat
    Feb 12, 2016 at 22:50

1 Answer 1


I happened to see this page.
I hope your bird still lives.
It may be the liver function of the bird that is giving this dark colour on the beak.It could be a bleeding. If the claws also are getting brown or darker it may also be the liver. Try Harrison Diet to feed your bird. I strongly recommend you to go to a bird vet specialist. This was the way I came to know why my bird had the same problem years ago.

  • Yes, she is alive and well :-). I still have no clue what it was, but the change of coulour is completely gone now. Still, thanks for the useful information, I will look up the diet you recommend. I misplaced the box of the food the vet recommended, I'll see if I can remember what it was and post the contents as a potential answer.
    – Lucky
    May 17, 2017 at 14:59
  • 1
    Hi.I amhappy to hear that your bird is well.
    – Lene Wold
    May 22, 2017 at 12:36
  • i am happy to hear that your bird is well. The food that the bird specialist is recommending is Harrison Diet. for grown up birds: Adult lifetime super fine, and for baby birds Adult lifetime High potency, superfine. This food is all organic and made in the US. You can google Harrison Diet and maybe buy from them or find someone in your country that sell it. this food is the best in the world for birds.
    – Lene Wold
    May 22, 2017 at 12:39

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