The most popular parakeet in the US is the Budgerigar (Budgie). These tiny birds (measuring less than an inch) are probably what you think of when you hear the word parakeet. However, there are actually many different kinds of parakeets ranging in size.
For example, the Alexandrine Parakeet can reach 23 inches while the Lineolated Parakeet is 0.7 inches. So, depending on what species you’re looking at, there are going to be a few differences in size, upkeep, and temperament.
Parakeets, in general, aren’t the most cuddly of parrots though that’s not to say they’re unfriendly. You just won’t be perching them on your shoulder or having them nuzzle your neck. The smaller ones tend to make minimal noise, which makes them great pets if you don’t want to worry about being kept awake all night.
The small, brightly colored Budgies are especially popular because of their small size and easy upkeep. They’ll look beautiful in your home and don’t need too much attention. The male Budgies can be taught to talk, so make for great entertainment.
While none of the Parakeets require that you spend all of your time near them, the smaller and larger varieties have different needs. Budgies and Bourke’s, for example, are both under an inch in size and need diets for small birds (mostly grains and seeds, but also some meat and veggies).
They’ll be okay if they’re kept in a large cage most of the time. The larger types, like the Rosella or Indian Ringneck, need a diet for medium birds and space to fly.