Do Budgies see Colors?

Last updated on February 5th, 2024 at 10:38 pm

Written by Isra P

Do budgies see colors? Is it true that budgies can see colored objects? Or can they only see in black and white? The answer to this question may surprise you and can definitely change the perspective we may have about the behavior of our feathered buddies.

Indeed, budgies can see colors. They can see a more significant number of colors than we humans do. Contrary to what we thought, birds have excellent color vision. As a matter of fact, birds have even better eyesight than cats and dogs.

Thanks to this ability, birds can see in 4 colors. These are blue, red, green, and ultraviolet colors, known as tetrachromatic vision. Also, thanks to this ability, they can easily find food, especially if their habitat is in nature.

Just imagine if birds could only see in black and white and could not differ between colors. Would that make any difference when looking for food? Unfortunately, when it comes to birds, there are more questions than answers.

We don’t know exactly how animals, in general, perceive the world. But we know that thanks to numerous scientific studies and years of observations, most birds, such as parakeets, have a sharp vision (source).

female budgerigar trying to reach something

Tiny objects that are hard to detect by human sight may be easier for parakeets. If having a keen eye helps them to hunt, locate small things, and detect other animals, imagine how much help it is to see in color all those objects.

Budgies, like most birds, enjoy neutral colors like those commonly found in nature. Green, yellow, and blue in tones that are not very strong. It is essential to mention that the toys and objects in their environment should be of these colors to feel safe.

When a parakeet lives in a natural habitat, that is, completely free, we can see that the predominant colors are green, blue, and yellow. For example, grass and the tree’s foliage are green, blue as the color of the sky, and some flowers, yellow as some fruits, and brown, such as trees, branches, seeds, and nuts.

manzanita bird perch

So that is why it is crucial that if we have budgies in our homes, we must make them feel as comfortable and safe as possible and provide them with a good environment that makes them happy and have an excellent quality of life

What Colors do Budgies Hate?

Budgies, like other birds, do not dislike any particular color. However, they do not like colors with solid shades. For example, birds generally don’t like intense colors like red and orange.

It doesn’t mean they hate all bright hues. Moreover, it does not mean that all parakeets fear the color red or that all birds fear those colors.

In reality, several birds do not pay much attention to the color of objects, but as a precaution, the colors surrounding them should be neutral colors such as green and brown. Likewise, we must avoid having red things near them to prevent them from feeling uncomfortable or scared.

Is a Budgie's Ability to see Color Important?

Yes, a budgie’s ability to see in color is essential. Not only does it help when flying, but it’s also necessary when looking for a mate. For example, when a parakeet looks at another parakeet, they see it in an ultraviolet spectrum (facts). However, when a person looks at a parakeet, they only see their plumage, such as green, blue or yellow.

do budgies see colors

When they decide to forage, budgies, like other birds, rely on their vision to help them find seeds to eat. But they also depend on their vision to flee from other animals that may attack them.

So it doesn’t matter if it’s day or night; keeping an optimal vision is very important, whether birds live in the wild or in captivity to play, fly and enjoy the company of other small birds and, of course, the company of humans.

In the following video, you will see how a budgie’s eyesight allows it to see many things and colors that are hidden from you:

Can Color Affect the Attraction Between Budgies?

We are often impressed when we see a budgie with beautiful bright colors. It is almost impossible for us to look away. Interestingly enough, we are not the only ones that react in that manner. As we mentioned, the color of a potential mate’s feathers is critical for a budgie.

Why? Because those colors provide helpful information on whether the possible partner is healthy or struggling. According to researchers, feathers with vibrant colors are a key indicator of good health, while dull hues may indicate the possibility of producing weak offspring (reference).

Since, unlike us, budgies can perceive the UV spectrum, they are able to detect colors that are typically impossible for us to see. These hidden tones can make a bird look even brighter, which is a telltale sign that a bird is frequently exposed to plenty of sunlight leading to a strong, thriving companion.

Why do Budgies Need to see Well?

If we carefully observe budgies, we can realize that the location of their eyes allows them to have an expansive vision of the environment in which they are since their eyes are on both sides of the head.

Therefore, they have the same idea of where everything is around them. However, although budgies have outstanding peripheral vision, it makes it a little more difficult for them to focus on a single object or to focus their eyes on a single point in time.

male budgerigar

Because of this, when they want to fixate on a specific detail, they can do so using only one eye. For this reason, they turn their head to observe us when we get close.

Can Budgies see in the Dark?

When it comes to birds that can see in the dark, the first animal that comes to mind is the owl. We often wonder whether the budgies could collide with objects if they go out scared during the night. However, these birds are much more capable than we imagine.

Without a doubt, budgies, like many other birds, have excellent vision during the day. However, one of the parakeets’ most remarkable features is that they can see in the dark. Their ability to see objects in the dark is much greater than the ability of humans to see at night.

Furthermore, they can distinguish tiny things. The reason for this is because, in their natural habitat, that ability serves as a defense mechanism since having night vision makes it easier for them to escape from other animals that threaten their safety, especially at night or during long periods of absence of light.

Although parakeets are very well protected in a cage at night, having excellent
night vision enables them to be aware of what is happening around them, and this allows them to be much calmer and feel safer.

Budgies cannot only see colors, but they can do it in much more detail than we do. Because of that ability, they can eat, mate, and survive more effectively than if they could only see in black and white. If you want to put it to the test, use more neutral colors in your pet’s environment. In a short while, you will see the difference it makes.

He is the leading creator of featheredbuddies.com, a website dedicated to helping bird owners. For many years, Isra P has cared for budgies and other birds to ensure their happiness and well-being. His passion and enthusiasm for them have led him to a quest to find out why birds act the way they do and how to enrich their lives.