LUTINO BUDGIES [Breeding, Sexing, Diet, Care, Ino Mutation]

Leslie Berry
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What is a lutino budgie? A lutino budgie is a relatively rare green series yellow budgie with the ino gene, a sex-linked recessive gene that inhibits melanin production.

The average lutino budgie has red eyes, an orange beak, silvery-white cheeks, no dark or colored markings, and the tail and wings have paler yellow.

Inhibition of melanin production removes the budgie’s black markings and green colors and causes the budgie to become entirely yellow in appearance.

According to WBO standards, a budgie should not have any green color suffusion throughout to be counted as a lutino budgie.

Lutino budgies
A lutino budgie photo (Source: Reddit)

How to identify (recognize) a lutino budgie?

A lutino budgie is one of the easiest to recognize than other budgie varieties. Lush yellow body color makes lutino budgies easy to identify.

Here is a table containing lutino budgie characteristics to help recognize the lutino budgies.

General body-colorRich buttercup yellow, clear & free from all markings.
MaskRich buttercup yellow, clear & free from all markings.
MarkingsNo markings
CereFleshy pink, purple in males, and white, pale blue, and tan (bronze) in females.
BeakOrange colored
EyesRed or pink-colored with iris rings
Cheek patchesSilvery-white
Primary wing flightsYellowish white (Paler yellow)
Primary tail feathersYellowish white (Paler yellow)
Feet & legsFleshy pink
Lutino budgie’s standards and features table/chart

Lutino colors and markings

Lutino budgies have no black and green color markings. The ino gene that lutino budgies have removes the green and black pigmentation from the body and makes lutino budgies’ bodies pure yellow.

In some conditions, a lutino budgie has an active-visual cinnamon gene. This gene combination may give lutino budgie pale brown markings.

Lutino budgie legs and beak

Both female and male lutino budgies have orange beaks and pinkish legs.

The ino gene also removes most melanin pigmentation from all body areas.

Lutino budgie cere color

Lutino budgies have a slightly different cere color than normal budgies.

Female lutino budgies have primarily white and light blue variations. Female budgies have tan (brown, bronze) cere color with a crusty surface during breeding seasons.

Male lutino budgies have fleshy pink and purple cere. They may have slightly darker cere colors during the breeding seasons than in regular seasons.

Lutino budgie with red eyes

Lutino budgies have red, pink, ruby-colored eyes with iris rings.

The ino gene plays an essential role in forming the eye color of the lutino budgerigar. The ino gene removes the black pigments in the lutino budgie’s eyes. The absence of black pigments causes the blood flow in the eyes of lutino budgies to be visible from the outside. Thus, lutino budgies have red eyes.

Can a lutino budgie have black eyes?

All lutino budgies have an ino gene that makes eyes red by removing black pigments. So, lutino budgies can’t have black eyes.

If a yellow budgie has black eyes, that means most likely the budgie is a dark-eyed clear budgie or double factor spangle budgie.

Lutino budgie care

Lutino budgies need similar care as other budgie variations.

Lutino budgie diet and nutrition

Lutino budgies need a diet that includes seeds, vegetables, and fruits. They require clean water daily.

Lutino budgie owners should avoid seed-only diets that cause malnutrition in the body.

Lutino budgie’s health problems

Lutino budgerigar owners should pay attention to the following to avoid health problems with their lutino budgies:

  1. Regular veterinarian visits.
  2. A complete diet includes seeds, vegetables, and fruits.
  3. Keeping cages clean.
  4. Keeping away from new human and animal visitors.
  5. Trimming overgrown beaks and nails.
  6. Avoiding stress
  7. Providing regular bath sessions.

Genetics

Lutino budgies have different genetics than normal budgies. A lutino budgie has a yellow-colored body caused by a gene called “Ino.”

What is ino gene mutation?

The Ino gene mutation is a sex-linked recessive mutation that removes the budgerigars’ body’s primary color (green variants or blue variants) and markings, leaving them with their body base color (yellow or white).

What the ino gene does is listed as follows:

  1. The ino gene removes primary colors such as green, blue, olive green, sky blue, and violet from the body.
  2. The ino gene removes the black melanin pigment from the eyes. The eyes of the budgerigar turn red.
  3. The ino gene removes the black pigments from the beak and gives the budgie an orange beak.
  4. The ino gene removes skin pigments and gives fleshy pink legs and skin budgies.

The ino gene is a sex-linked mutation. The ino gene is transferred by the X chromosome.

The ino gene is a recessive gene mutation.

A male lutino budgie has two ino genes, and a female lutino budgie has one ino gene.

What is split lutino budgie?

A split lutino budgie is a male lutino budgie with a single ino gene that is a recessive and X chromosome-linked gene. A male lutino budgie must have two ino genes to show lutino characteristics. Split lutino budgies do not show lutino characteristics and may transfer the ino gene to the next generations.

Lutino budgie breeding

Lutino budgies are popular with breeders because of their beautiful yellow coloration.

How to breed lutino budgies?

Breeders need a budgie with the ino genes to produce a lutino budgie.

Because the ino gene is sex-linked and recessive, breeders know which budgies to use to produce lutino budgies.

The ino gene is transmitted on the X chromosome. Males have 2 X chromosomes, and females have one X chromosome. For a baby male budgie to become a lutino budgerigar, it must receive two ino genes from both parents. For a baby female budgie to become a lutino budgerigar, it must receive one ino gene from its parents.

Because of the different parent pairings, breeders encounter multiple possibilities when trying to breed lutino budgies.

Lutino budgie breeding expectations (with table)

Lutino budgie breeding expectations table is as follows.

PairingResults/Expectations
Lutino Male + Lutino Female100% lutino chicks
Lutino Male + Normal Female50% normal/lutino males,
50% lutino females
Normal Male + Lutino Female50% normal/lutino males,
50% normal females
Normal/Lutino Male + Normal Female25% normal males,
25% normal/lutino males,
25% lutino females,
25% normal females
Lutino budgies breeding expectations table/chart

What’s the difference between an albino budgie and a lutino budgie?

Both lutino and albino budgies have ino genes. The lutino budgie is the green series budgie, while the albino budgie is the blue series budgie.

Body partLutinoAlbino
General body-colorRich buttercup yellow, clear & free from all markings.White, clear & free from all markings.
MaskRich buttercup yellow, clear & free from all markings.White, clear & free from all markings.
MarkingsNo markingsNo markings
CereFleshy pink, purple in males, and white, pale blue, and tan (bronze) in females.Fleshy pink, purple in males, and white, pale blue, and tan (bronze) in females.
BeakOrange coloredOrange colored
EyesRed or pink-colored with iris ringsRed or pink-colored with iris rings
Cheek patchesSilvery-whiteSilvery-white
Primary wing flightsYellowish white (Paler yellow)White
Primary tail feathersYellowish white (Paler yellow)White
Feet & legsFleshy pinkFleshy pink
Lutino budgie vs. albino budgie comparison chart/table

What’s the difference between a creamino budgie and a lutino budgie?

Lutino budgie is a green series budgie with an ino gene, while creamino budgie is a blue series budgie with an ino gene together with goldenface or yellowface mutation.

Lutino and creamino budgie have the same characteristics, but different body colors. Lutino budgies have yellow body colors, while creamino budgies have light cream to deep yellow body colors, depending on the mutations of the goldenface or yellowface. Goldenface creamino budgies have deep yellow body color, while yellowface creamino budgies have light cream body color.

How to tell if a lutino budgie is male or female? (Sexing a lutino parakeet)

It is hard to determine whether a lutino budgie is male or female, but it is not impossible. It is harder to determine the sex in lutino budgie chicks.

It is easier to tell the sex when lutino budgies reach their first breeding seasons.

Male lutino budgies have a slightly darker cere color than typical cere colors (pink or purple) during the breeding seasons. Female lutino budgies have tan-bronze cere color with a crusty surface than their standard cere colors (light blue, white) during the breeding seasons.

How long do lutino budgies live?

Lutino budgies have a lifespan of between 5-15 years with proper human care in captivity, while they have 4-6 years in the wild.

How to tell the age of a lutino budgie?

It is difficult to tell the age of a lutino parakeet once the budgerigar has entered adulthood. After the first puberty, the only indicator is the budgie’s cere color and texture.

There is no cere color and texture transformation before adulthood.

If a male baby lutino budgie starts to have a darker cere color (blue to a deeper blue, pink to a deeper pink) than always, that means the budgie is around six months old.

If a female baby lutino budgie starts to have a tan (bronze, brown) cere color with a crusty surface, the budgie is over six months old.

Are all lutino budgies female? (Can lutino budgies be male?)

A lutino budgie can be male or female without any problem. There is no such thing as “All lutino budgies are female” or “A lutino budgie can’t be male.”

Are lutino budgies rare?

To be a lutino budgie, a green series budgie needs to obtain ino genes from the parent, but not all budgies have ino genes. So, lutino budgies are relatively rarer than other budgie varieties.

However, the breeders choose to breed the lutino budgies especially. The situation causes the lutino population grows over time in the total budgie population worldwide.

What does lutino mean in birds?

“Lutino” refers to a situation in which an animal exhibits a yellow pigmentation. The yellow pigmentation is also called “xanthochromism.”

Can lutino budgies talk?

Lutino budgies can talk without any problems. A well-trained budgie can talk around 1000 words.

Are there albino lutino budgies?

No, there is no such a budgie variety as albino lutino budgie. Both albino and lutino varieties have ino genes; however, the albino budgie is a blue series budgie, while the lutino budgie is a green series budgie. A budgie can’t be a green series and blue series simultaneously.

Lutino exhibition budgies

Lutino budgies have been popular around breeders and fanciers for a long time.

The competitions and exhibitions always welcome lutino budgies.

Here are some exhibition lutino budgie photos:

Lutino budgies
An exhibition lutino budgie photo. “Nestling Pets Best Colour on Show Challenge Certificate Lutino” (Source: showbudgies.co.za)

Lutino lacewing budgie

A lutino lacewing budgie has the ino gene and the cinnamon gene at the same time. Both mutations must be visually active to be a lutino lacewing budgie.

Lutino lacewing budgies have red eyes, pink feet, and orange beaks. They carry both characteristics of lutino and cinnamon simultaneously.

Lutino budgies
A lutino lacewing budgie photo. (Source: al-nasser.co.uk)

Lutino budgie names (What to name a lutino budgie?)

A lutino budgie can be named as follows:

  • Amber
  • Aurora
  • Banana
  • Barney
  • Billy
  • Biscuit
  • Blondie
  • Bumblebee
  • Buttercup
  • Cheddar
  • Cookie
  • Corny
  • Corona
  • Cream
  • Cupcake
  • Curry
  • Daffy
  • Daisy
  • Dandelion
  • Delilah
  • Doll
  • Donald
  • Dove
  • Ducky
  • Ginger
  • Goldie
  • Goldilocks
  • Honey
  • Honeycomb
  • Jasmine
  • Lemon
  • Lemonade
  • Lemony
  • Lily
  • Lime
  • Nacho
  • Pac-man
  • Pamela
  • Peaches
  • Peanut
  • Penny
  • Pikachu
  • Pip
  • Polly
  • Poncho
  • Popcorn
  • Precious
  • Pumpkin
  • Saffron
  • Sunflower
  • Sun kissed
  • Sunny
  • Sunshine
  • Taff
  • Tinkerbell
  • Toffee
  • Amber
  • Aurora
  • Banana
  • Barney
  • Billy
  • Biscuit
  • Blondie
  • Bumblebee
  • Buttercup
  • Cheddar
  • Cookie
  • Corny
  • Corona
  • Cream
  • Cupcake
  • Curry
  • Daffy
  • Daisy
  • Dandelion
  • Delilah
  • Doll
  • Donald
  • Dove
  • Ducky
  • Ginger
  • Goldie
  • Goldilocks
  • Honey
  • Honeycomb
  • Jasmine
  • Lemon
  • Lemonade
  • Lemony
  • Lily
  • Lime
  • Nacho
  • Pac-man
  • Pamela
  • Peaches
  • Peanut
  • Penny
  • Pikachu
  • Pip
  • Polly
  • Poncho
  • Popcorn
  • Precious
  • Pumpkin
  • Saffron
  • Sunflower
  • Sun-kissed
  • Sunny
  • Sunshine
  • Tinkerbell
  • Tweety
  • Twinkie
  • Wafer
  • Yellow

How much are lutino budgies

Lutino budgies have a price range between $20 and $30 in pet stores worldwide.

According to the rarity of lutino varieties such as lutino lacewing, budgie prices may change.

Lutino budgie photos

Lutino budgies
A lutino budgie photo
Lutino budgies
A lutino budgie photo
Lutino budgies
An exhibition lutino budgie’s photo

Resources:

  1. https://www.world-budgerigar.org/colourstds.htm#LUTINO