Parakeets both male and female are energetic, talkative and entertaining companions. Females look just a little different, and their behavior is only slightly different, too. Female parakeets have meaner bites and smaller vocabularies than their male counterparts, but they are just as suitable for keeping as pets as males are.
Sexing Your Parakeet
To know whether your parakeet is male or female, check the cere. The cere is the colored fleshy area above your parakeet's beak. Parakeets younger than 12 months are difficult to sex, but the cere color of mature parakeets differs according to gender. Male parakeets have blue, purple or pink ceres. Female parakeets have thicker ceres that tend to be brown, white or tan.
Female Parakeet Behaviors
In general, the female parakeet's role as the builder and protector of the nest makes her slightly more aggressive than her male counterpart. Her strong beak, designed to chew through wood for nest-building, gives her a harsher bite. If you stay on a female parakeet's good side, though, she can be just as tame and relaxed as a male parakeet. Most parakeets are docile until provoked, so female parakeets are still safe pets.
Female parakeets tend to be less chatty than male parakeets. They're less likely to mimic human speech than males, though it is possible to train them to talk. In general, female parakeets chirp less and exhibit fewer social behaviors than males. This doesn't mean all female parakeets are quiet, boring or unfriendly. On the contrary, they are lively and playful birds that can grow deeply attached to their human companions.
Deciding to Get a Female Parakeet
If you're wondering whether to get a male or female parakeet, remember that all parakeets have distinct personalities. Some female parakeets are more docile and willing to talk than some male parakeets. In the end, the parakeet's personality and the bond the two of you form will determine how much you enjoy spending time with your pet. The gender of the bird has little to do with it.
June Mebei is a Virginia-based writer who earned her B.A. in English at Georgia State University. She began writing professionally in 2008, and has published narrative essays, editorial articles, short stories and poetry.