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Parakeet: Bird Term of the Day

Definitions of words used by pet bird enthusiasts with the pet bird slant.

By Angie Hendrickson

“Parakeet” is a term that refers to many types of unrelated species of parrots with long tail feathers. In the United States, the term “parakeet” is often used when referring to budgeriers (budgies), but in reality the term is much broader and encompasses many other species of parrots.

The term “parakeet” is not scientific and is a general definition of a small parrot with long tail feathersincludes many small bird species. Because the term is not scientific, it can cause some confusion. For example, the linoleated parakeet looks similar to a parrotlet and has a short tail, but it’s still considered a parakeet. It can also create some differences in the names of different birds. You may often hear “parakeet” and “parrot” used interchangeably, such as an Indian ring-necked parakeet also being referred to as an Indian ring-necked parrot. Either way is technically correct.

Besides budgies, many other popular pet birds are considered parakeets. This includes many of the Psittacula parrot species, such as the Indian ring-necked parakeet, the Alexandrine parakeet, and the plum-headed parakeetQuaker parrots are often referred to as quaker parakeets or monk parakeets. Other common parakeets include rosellasBourke’s parakeets and Australian grass parakeets, among others.

Fun Fact: The only species of parrot native to the United States was the Carolina parakeet, which has been extinct since the 1920s.

Bird Word of the Day

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Parakeet: Bird Term of the Day

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Reader Comments
james, brooklyn, NY
Posted: 8/26/2011 6:50:44 PM
melinda, westchester, NY
Posted: 8/26/2011 6:46:33 PM
The fun fact wasn't very fun, and it was Feb. 28, 1918 at Cincinneti Zoo, Ohio(not to critisize or anything), sorry, I have no idea how to spell that. Otherwise, this is a great article!
Qing, Rochester, NY
Posted: 8/26/2011 11:46:42 AM
stephanie, no smithfield, RI
Posted: 8/25/2011 4:33:17 PM
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