Parakeets make great, friendly pets. If you have one, you might be curious as to whether it's male or female for naming purposes. And if you want to breed parakeets, you will definitely need to be able to tell if a parakeet is male or female. However, young parakeets do not have visible genitals, so you'll need to use other methods to determine your bird's gender.
Look above your parakeet's beak, where you will see a set of nostrils. There is a strip of flesh there that is different from the beak and anything else on the bird. This is the cere (pronounced seeree). This is where the gender of the parakeet can be determined.
Look closely at the color of the cere. A parakeet with a blue or purple cere is a male bird, while a parakeet with a pink or brown cere is a female bird. Sometimes it can be difficult to determine the color of the cere because some females have a little bit of blue and white around their nostrils. But males have all blue or purple ceres; if it is any other color, it is a female.
Determine the gender of a parakeet when it is younger than 1 year old, because the bird has not fully developed yet at this point. This means the cere is usually different. In young males the cere is a bright, purplish pink, while in young females the cere is usually white.
Robert Byron/iStock/Getty Images
Some parakeet behaviors can help you tell if the bird is male or female. Males bob their heads more, sing more and interact with humans more. Females are more territorial and bossy, and they chirp loudly more than they sing.
If you want to be absolutely sure of your parakeet's gender, you need to make an appointment with an avian vet (a veterinarian who specializes in birds). The avian vet will use a few feathers or a toenail to get a small amount of blood to test the bird's DNA. When the results come in you will know without a doubt if your parakeet is male or female.