Do budgies forget how to talk? [+SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH]

Leslie Berry
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Budgies begin to forget the words (or sounds) that they have learned, if they do not repeat for along 180 days.

Budgies have a talent at imitation of sounds (human words etc.) in the nature.

Male budgies use their ability to imitation of sounds to attract female budgies most of the time.

Couple budgerigars always respond to their partner’s calls to strengthen the relationship between them.

Paired budgies begin to forget mate’s calls if they stay separated for along to 180 days.

If I own a second (male or female) budgie, will my first budgie stop talking?

In some conditions, budgies stop talking like before when they have met new budgies.

This situation shouldn’t be named as a “forgetting to talk” situation.

Getting a second opposite sex budgie

In this scenario, male budgies may stop talking to owners. At the same time, male budgies show more interest to female budgie.

Male budgies may stop talking specific words to you, but they begin to court to female budgies with in other words and sounds.

This situation is not a “forgetting to talk” situation.

After the heating season of paired budgies, you can hear the words you miss hearing.

Getting a second same-sex budgie

Generally, female budgies talk less than male budgies.

If you get a female budgie to your female budgie, nobody knows what is going to happen.

Female budgies more protective about their territories, especially to other female budgies. Before considering talking habits, 2 female budgies must solve the territory problems.

If you get a male budgie to male budgie, you may see a little competition between them. (Male budgies have no female budgies to fight for.)

But generally, male budgies become friends to each other.

Budgies that become friend to each other shows abilities at talking themselves often.

In rare conditions, male budgies fight with each other for territorial reasons, food etc. But these scenarios are not just about sex differences.

Why do budgies start talking?

In the nature, budgies imitate sounds to attract opposite sex (Generally male budgies tries to attract to females.)

When humans have started to live together with budgies, budgies started to imitate human sounds (words) to attract humans.

Especially male budgies that living alone with a human, talk a lot to attract to their mate (human that living together).

Male budgies often see humans as a mate, so they show courting behavior to humans.

As a part of courting the human mate, budgies imitate human sounds for attracting them.

Budgies show imitation behaviors more in the mating season.

🧑‍🔬[SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH] A budgie can remember sounds up to 180 days!

Scientist made a study on budgerigars, which has a title “Long-term maintenance and eventual extinction of preference for a mate’s call in the female budgerigar”.

Male budgie mating calls and sounds recorded while budgies are in pair formation.

Scientist blocked any auditory or visual stimuli from males to females for 1-2 months.

After 1-2 months, scientists let female budgies listen to different male budgie sounds.

Female budgies showed more attention to their mates than to other foreign males.

However, females ceased to prefer their mates’ calls after 6 months of separation, indicating that the preference response of females is eventually extinguished.

Animal Behaviour
Volume 82, Issue 5, November 2011, Pages 971-979

After 6 months of separation of paired mates, female budgies lost interests to their own male mates’ calls.

Besides the fact that female budgies forget the calls or sounds of their own mates after 180 days, scientists are still debating this situation, whether it is caused by memory loss or some other yet unknown cause.

How to prevent budgies from forgetting to talk?

Here are ways to prevent budgies from forgetting words and sounds:

  1. Budgie owners should repeat words and sounds to them that they don’t want their budgies to forget.
  2. When budgie owners begin to teach new words to their budgies, they should not forget to remind the words to budgies that budgies already know.

Generally, if a budgie repeats certain words or sounds time to time, it is hard for them to forget the words or sounds they have learned.

Budgerigar owners should spend time with their budgies each day to maintain a strong relationship.

Strong relationships make budgies show their all attention on human mates all day long. Thus, budgie owners listen to different sounds, words from their budgies.

[SCIENTIFIC] How can a budgie physically talk?

Budgerigars don’t have vocal cords like humans, they have an organ named syrinx to generate different sounds.

Syrinx is a vocal organ that located at the place that trachea divides into bronchi.

Budgies move air into the syrinx to generate specific sounds.

Syrinx organ can generate sounds whether while inhaling and exhaling.

Do budgies forget how to talk? [+SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH]
Do budgies forget how to talk? [+SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH]

Resources:

  1. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0003347211003101