Budgerigars, better known as budgies, are a small member of the parrot family and the sub-family of parakeets. That’s why some people call them parakeets, or shell parakeets. This isn’t a very good name for them because there are many types of parakeets but only one species of budgie.
Budgies are originally from Australia. They have been kept as pets since the 1840s, but all budgies sold today have been bred in captivity. While the wild birds are basically green with black markings, the domesticated bird comes in a wide selection of colours and markings.
Today there are two “styles” of budgies: the domestic and the exhibition. Domestic budgies are the type that are often sold in pet stores. The exhibition budgie is a larger bird, bred to a standard set by the World Budgerigar Organization (see links).