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why is my budgie so big?

Why Are Some Budgies Bigger Than Others?

Budgies are normally a similar size to one another. Due to their plumage and overall build, males and females look similar in size. It’s also difficult to tell if a budgie is getting fat at a glance.

When one budgie is bigger than others, the larger one is usually an English budgie.

This budgie is selectively bred to be twice the size of American budgies. They serve as show birds in competitions, where size, color, plumage, and markings are distinct.

An English budgie stands at 10-12 inches, while a normal budgie is 6-7 inches tall.

However, tumors or other diseases can lead to a budgie’s size becoming distorted. In extreme cases, severe obesity can leave a budgie appearing larger than normal.

However, if your budgie has always been this size and appears healthy, you may have purchased a juvenile English budgie thinking it was an adult American or Australian budgie.

Why Is My Budgie So Big?

If you notice that your budgie is larger than other budgies, it’s either:

  • Overweight
  • Tumors
  • An English budgie, not an American budgie

If your budgie appears to be twice the size of the others, it’s an English budgie.

Even a fat budgie won’t double its size in height and girth. It’ll also show a visible difference in body mass placement. Instead, a scale-up of a normal budgie isn’t obese; it’s a show budgie.

This variety has been historically bred to become larger and more colorful than wild budgies in order to compete more favorably at shows.

The domestication and breeding of English budgies began in the 19th century after the English colonized Australia. This is the native home of these birds.

Sailors and traders brought back thousands of wild parakeets from Australian territories. They started breeding them into the variety that is today known as the English budgie.

Several physical and behavioral traits distinguish English budgies from other parakeet varieties.

To tell whether you have a large American budgie or a small English budgie, look at its:


Of course, English budgies are larger than other varieties. A fully grown English budgie can be twice the size of a regular budgie.

If you purchase a young one from a pet store, it is not unusual to find a 2-3 week old English budgie that is much larger than an adult wild budgie.

Body Markings

English budgies have always been bred as show birds. They are also selectively designed to be more colorful.

You can distinguish an American budgie from an English budgie by the longer and fluffier plumage on their heads and bodies. Furthermore, the markings on their necks are more prominent than wild budgies.


English budgies have more calm and laid-back personalities than the energetic (and sometimes aggressive) temperament of American budgies.

Moreover, they tend to be more social and are less prone to biting their human handlers. So, if you observe that your budgie is strangely affectionate toward you, it has an English heritage.


English budgies are known for being much quieter than regular American budgies. While they love to sing and chirp like all parrot species, they tend to be less loud.

They are also skilled at mimicking human vocalizations, although males are better at it than females, according to Ethology. Therefore, if you want a talkative budgie, an English budgie is the ideal pick for you.

what are large budgies called?

Should I Be Worried If My Budgie Is Larger Than Normal?

Due to selective breeding, budgies with an English heritage are larger than American budgies. Therefore, you shouldn’t be concerned if you notice your English budgie is larger than other parakeets.

Nevertheless, a sudden increase in your budgie’s size can be triggered by health problems. That’s true whether you own a large American budgie or a small English one.

Consult a qualified avian vet if you notice any of the following changes in the size or shape of your pet budgie:

  • Enlarged chest
  • Swollen feet and legs
  • Inexplicable increase in weight
  • Growth or swelling around the wings

If something has progressed to the stage of clear physical differences, you’ll need medical intervention.

What Are Large Budgies Called?

There’s no fixed name for a large budgie. Instead, they’re distinguished by their breed, which is the primary reason for a size difference.

It’s incorrect to call an English budgie a large budgie, as it’s distinct from the American budgie, which is regarded as a normal budgie. That’s because it’s the most common pet species.

English Budgie vs. Normal Budgie Size

An adult English budgie is 10-12 inches in height and weighs between 1.6 to 2.2 ounces. In contrast, a fully grown wild budgie is only about 6-7 inches tall and will weigh between 1.1 to 1.4 ounces.

Are Male or Female Budgies Bigger?

Usually, male budgies are bigger than females. However, the size difference is quite minor. Therefore, it’s not easy to spot unless you put the two sexes side by side and examine them closely.

Can Budgies Get Too Big?

While budgies are small birds by nature, they can experience drastic weight changes due to several different factors.

For instance, a budgie that overfeeds and does not engage in exercise is likely to become overweight. That’s especially true if it consumes a diet rich in protein and fat.

Symptoms of an overweight budgie include:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Depression
  • Diarrhea
  • Beak softening
  • Breathing difficulties

According to LafeberVet, obesity in birds may predispose them to health problems. These include:

  • Hypertension
  • Cardiovascular disease
  • Cloaca prolapse
  • Egg binding in females

Therefore, you should take the necessary preemptive measures to prevent your budgie from becoming overweight. This involves providing a diet low in fat and proteins.

A budgie that’s larger than others is a different breed. Due to the way their feathers lay, it’ll be difficult to tell if a budgie is overweight.