Why is there a separate parakeet beak page on our small pets site? Are beaks that important? Yes, they are. They need and deserve special attention when it comes to your parakeet's health.
Parakeet uses the beak to eat. Simple as that. He opens the seed with it to get to the tasty inner part.
However, the looks of it can warn you if a parakeet has any health problems. There is one important part of parakeet beak and that is its upper part ? the cere.
According to Dictionary.com cere is ?a fleshy, membranous covering of the base of the upper mandible of a bird? or in our simple words it is the bump above the beak.
Parakeets breathe through two little holes in cere. Those holes are for parakeets what nostrils are for us. This part of parakeet beak, its color more precisely, can show you what sex is your parakeet.
Cere color is usually showing your parakeet's sex. I must say it is not 100% sure but it is the most common way to see if your pet is male or female. Now, if you take your pet parakeet to the vet's he can determine the sex for sure.
One more way to determine sex is waiting for the pet to lay an egg, in case it did, it is a she. Not trying to be funny but sometimes it really happens that way. You think it is a boy, but it is not.
So how will the color of cere help you in determining the sex of parakeets? Female's cere is brown or pink and male's is blue.
Most of the parakeets have white(ish) cere when young. As I said before, it is not completely accurate since some parakeet's cere color is somewhere in between.
Parakeet beak grows. Like nails do. Like feathers. Or like hair on human. Sometimes there are genetic mutations and parakeet beak grows too much or has other problems.
I have heard about many cases where beak would grow way too much, break, even fall off. Reasons for this can be liver disease, genetic mutations, vitamin D deficiency, mites, bacterial or viral infections.
In case you notice any abnormalities, I definitely recommend taking the parakeet to a vet. In case the beak needs some treatment or trimming the vet will do it.
It is normal that the beak will grow. And it is up to us to make sure we prevent parakeet beak overgrowth. The most important thing that will happen if we let our parakeet's beak overgrow is that he will not be able to eat anymore.
For that reason you should have some cuttle bone in the cage. This is very cheap and it should be provided to the pet at all times.
The budgie parakeet will chew on this when ever he feels the need to. Chewing the bone will cause his beak to stay in shape. Cuttle bone is also a good source of calcium which he needs in his diet.
You can create chewing toys for your pet by yourself. Take some apple tree branches, peel the skin, get some water to boil, put the branches in the boiling water to disinfect them and make little perches out of them. The budgie will use them both as perches and chewing toys.
We recommend providing more chewing toys, not just cuttle bone. You can buy chewing toys in pet shops. There is indeed a variety you can choose from. Just make sure you buy a toy specially made for budgies and not parrots (these are much harder).
Even though you did all possible to prevent this situation your parakeet's beak is overgrown. Many people ask if they should trim the beak themselves.
My advice is not to do it.
Please, do not trim the beak yourself. Take the pet to the vet's. He is going to do it right. If you try to do it yourself you could hurt your pet and the injury could even be fatal.
Talk to the vet, maybe after several times he could teach you how to do it yourself. And in case you can not find an avian vet maybe there is a parakeet breeder somewhere in the neighborhood.
While writing all these pages for you I am watching my pet. And see him using his beak extensively :). It seems I forgot to include our parakeet's favorite use of his beak ? cleaning his little bird toes. He is so funny doing that. Unfortunately, he will not let me take photos of him in those funny situations. As soon as I approach him with a camera he plays all serious.
Our parakeet is not different than others so you will see your pet bird cleaning his legs and feathers all the time.
Last but not least is something you will feel on your own skin if not careful enough. Your parakeet can use the beak to bite you. If you have ever felt it you know it is not pleasant at all and can even go through your skin. So that is one more reason to make sure your parakeet's beak is in good condition, not overgrown nor infected.
As you know by now, parakeets are very friendly and he will not bite for nothing. But as soon as you annoy him enough - you better move away.
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