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I have a female budgie, whom I have had for at least four years. She is in a cage about 3 ft square x 1.5 feet wide with a slightly younger male.

They used to groom each other and sing all day long, but for the past year the female seems depressed. She doesn't sing, rarely grooms the male, and doesn't play with her toys. She just sits, fluffed. She eats well, likes treats, and has normal looking excrement.

She just seems depressed. Not sure what to do.

  • Thank you for your suggestion that my bird may just be aging. Since I don't see any evidence of actual illness, age may be the situation. I didn't consider it before because I thought the birds lived much longer.... – M. Cavanaugh Mar 2 at 20:45
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Budgies live for 5-10 years in captivity.

From the Pittwater Animal Hospital in Australia:

On average, the life span of budgerigars is about eight years, but some live longer than twice that.

She is getting old for a budgie. Also depending on how old she was when you got her, she may be older.

The other thing to do is ensure all her nutritional needs are met. In many cases, for any animal including humans, nutritional deficiencies can take time to show symptoms.

Ensure your birds have cuttlefish, some access to some type of green grass. Growing some of your bird seed in moist tissue paper is good for supplying green peck. Also provide grit along the bottom of the cage for the budgies - this is now a controversial issue surrounding budgie ownership. As someone who grew up with budgies, and in the land where they are native, providing grit has always been considered beneficial and budgies will eat small amounts of grit in the wild. Be sure the grit has both soluble and insolube components.

From the Pittwater Animal Hospital in Australia:

In their natural habitat, budgerigars are mostly vegetarians, feeding on grass seeds, eucalypt leaves, buds, bark and other greens. On occasion pet budgies can be given cooked chicken bones and boiled eggs to increase their protein intake. Because such foods tend to go off quickly, they should not be left in the cage any longer than a day.

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