Subject: [UNCLASSIFIED] Budgerigar
Date: Tue, 14 Jun 2005 18:50:42 +1000
I haven't seen the budgies at the lake. 
I bred show budgies for about 10 years (mainly cinnamon, grey and lutino). I 
haven't kept them for 10 years but have tried to keep track of show budgies and 
pet shop budgies.
Looking at the photo it looks to me to be a cinnamon green male. Cinnamons have 
dark brown, rather than black scalloped backs and a slightly different shade of 
green to normals (they can vary a lot). This impression may be just due to the 
digital photograph/ camera. If the bird is a cinnamon then it is most likely 
they are escapees.
Milburn comments about 'blue cere' are basically right. But in practice it is 
rare for adult females to have blue ceres, usually it is patchy and it is very 
rare for them to have an all blue cere. When females get 'blue' ceres it looks 
like it has a pinkish or reddish tinge. Males can lose condition and get brown 
patches or be pale blue but the colour is still blue. However it is reasonably 
common for YOUNG females to have blue/pinkish ceres. The blue cere changes 
colour after a few months. Young birds out of the nest have forehead bars to 
the beak that progressively are lost. The bird in the photo is an adult male. 
The simplest explanation is usually the best- ie two males.

Two males will feed each other and mate, especially when they have no other 
options. If they have been together for a while one will be dominant and one 
subordinate rather than them alternating. They will act like a couple, budgies 
are very social.
They seem to be pretty tame which makes me think they are escapees.

I think Paul Taylors comments do not rule out them being captive birds. Most 
birds kept in aviaries will have perfectly fine tail feathers as will many cage 
kept birds. In budgies, green pied birds have yellow splotches/spots rather 
than white because they have a yellow base colour (blue birds have white). Pied 
is a less common mutation in budgies than in zebra finches. Normal green is by 
far the most common colour in budgies, still. Common budgie mutations are grey 
green, cinnamon, lutino, clearwing, pied, with equivalents in blue series.
I am not sure what comments about females having different 'structure' refers 
to. Show budgies are a lot bigger than wild type birds, and with varying degree 
of show blood in pet bird stock I think it would be very difficult to pick a 
male from female by 'structure' if they are unrelated.
Although I haven't seen the birds I think it is still very likely they are 

Benj Whitworth

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