When selecting what would best suit your circumstances and desire there are a few thing you must consider before making that all-important purchase.
During my 10 years experience I have only dealt with small pet types of birds so unfortunately for some my knowledge is restricted to these only.
Firstly you must decide what types of birds you would like and if it would be suitable to your circumstances, then you need to be sure you have a home set up for your new feathered friend before you bring it home.
Choosing Types of Birds for Pet
Below is a brief but informative list of the most popular small types of birds for pet and the ups and downs of their upkeep:
From the parrot family and originally from Australia, the budgie is often called ‘parakeet’ or ‘long-tailed parakeet’. The budgerigar is without a doubt the most popular pet bird in the Western world and with good reason.
It is small enough to handle, easy to tame, inexpensive, a startling array of different colours, can be kept on its own, very friendly, a chatterer, minimum requirement to keep in good health, easy to breed, usually mixes well with other small types of birds. Ideal in a cage or aviary.
In the wild, budgies live in large flocks and so need plenty of interaction to save them from becoming bored. They therefore need to be kept busy with lots of toys and your attention, or alternatively kept with another of their kind, so as they can interact with each other.
Another Australian bird often called ‘tiel’ for short. These small parrots are also very popular as pets, due to their calm nature and unique character. A little bigger than the budgie so more space is required. The cockatiel also lives in large flocks in the wild so again interaction and toys are a must.
They can be kept an their own or in pairs or small groups, and easy to keep. Ideal as a cage or aviary bird, and because of their calm nature the cockatiel will normally mix well with other small birds of a different species. They can learn to mimic other sounds with patience and determination, and are easy to tame.
Somewhat smaller than budgerigars and cockatiels, and not part of the parrot family, the most popular types of finch are again very popular for good reasons. They are very easy to keep, good natured, small and compact, extremely active, cute, prolific breeders, usually low priced, little space required for good upkeep.
There are many types of finch available on the pet bird market but the most popular are: zebra finch, society finch, gouldian finch, java finch, the java being the largest of the four just mentioned.
There are many other types of birds available but the price is usually higher as they are not as common.
Many other types of parakeets however are still rather popular – ring neck parakeet, grass parakeet, kakariki, rosella to name but a few. The upkeep however for all small pet birds is basically the same.
Always remember to shop around for the best deal and if possible buy your new bird or types of birds from a breeder, or hobbyist rather than a pet shop.
A note on accommodation for your new pet bird
Most small pet birds will live happily in an aviary, and this is the nearest they are likely to get to their natural environment, but in an aviary your birds will become semi-wild and may not take very well to handling or one on one interaction.
Caged birds however are a different matter, and can often be tame and friendly towards us humans. Make sure that if you plan to keep your bird or birds in a cage then go for the biggest you can afford. Your bird needs to be able to stretch its wings to their fullest extent and still have some room left.
Most pet birds – especially parrot type species – will spend more time climbing than flying, even in an aviary.