Do Budgies Like Music? Facts, Science and Tips


If ever you have seen a budgie bobbing their head excitedly listening to certain beat music, dancing or chattering away, you might have gathered that budgies love music. The fact of the matter is, you’d be right!

There is both research and anecdotal evidence that budgies really enjoy listening to music, and it provides many benefits for them. They are more relaxed and happier. Listening to music can strengthen the bond between bird and owner, and be a fantastic source of stimulation.

Once you realize this, you will also start to realize that a whole new world of bonding has opened up for you and your beloved budgie, because a happy and serene or even dancing budgie is far more receptive to you than one that is not. 

But how much do they love music? Well, you can quickly come across some sweet anecdotal stories, including tales of budgies shouting at their piano playing owner because they threw out an incorrect note! Now, how cute is that?

Perhaps by now, you are either searching for fun videos on the internet of dancing budgies or just simply music for budgies, and you will probably find tons of them. Different budgies enjoying different beats, but now that we have gathered that music is a great part of your bird’s life, let’s, first of all, learn how to introduce your budgie to music. 

Budgie in cage with cello in foreground

How to Start Introducing Your Budgie to Music

It is always recommended to start your budgies music-loving career with classical music. Classical has a lot of tunes and not too much base, so it is easy enough for a bird to get used to. It’s not brash fast or too loud with little sections that make them jump with fright. 

This also leaves the door open to you entertaining your budgie if you play a classical instrument. Budgies also love recorders, violins, flutes and pianos. Start at a slower pace and volume, which you can build up as you go along.  A fun fact to remember is once you and your budgie have worked out his favorite jam session, he likes it loud, really loud!

Until then, you don’t want to spoil things by playing too much, too soon and too loud. 

Another interesting fact is that budgies love surrounds sound to get the full experience. 

Some of the offshoots of your budgie listening to music are that he will become calmer, more relaxed and happier. 

Listening to music has other benefits for your budgie, these include:

  • It helps deepen the bond between you, as it is a form of communication 
  • It relaxes your budgie and makes your budgie have a better sense of well-being 
  • It stimulates your budgie and so, therefore, alleviates boredom

If you are not that good in the musical instrument department yourself, an internet search will bring about a myriad of options for your bird, often made by people who love budgies themselves. 

Some people have even remarked that the music has reawakened their pet out of a depression and yes, birds can appear to be a bit down if they are lonely or bored. 

So now you know that they enjoy music, let’s look at types of music they love. 

A Budgie and its Musical Tastes

As mentioned earlier, most Budgies love peaceful and relaxing music, which can be piano-based or instrumental. The list is varied. Some enjoy what people call relaxing music, hypnotic music, or new age type of music. 

There are so many types or genres of music out there. Not all birds are the same, and sometimes they like different types of music, like rock, drum and bass, as well as singing and instrumental jazz. 

Understanding Your Budgies Body Language and Communication Noises

Budgies by nature are great communicators. They can sometimes whistle softly, sometimes really loudly and sometimes it sounds as though they are whistling hysterically. The best way to ascertain which noise your budgie is making is to pair it with movements.

So for example, you might have a budgie whistling loudly, but his body is quite still, his feathers are towards his body and his head is staring ahead. This would indicate that he is relaxed. 

If he was whistling loudly, his wings were raised and the feathers on the back of his neck were raised, then this whistle would be interpreted as being either frustrated, bored or even angry. At these times when there is no obvious danger or reason to remove him from the source of anger, you could use music to calm him down. 

This is when music can help your birds. 

A screaming budgie is usually in distress. Again, you need to seek the reason for the distress. If it is obvious, then deal with that, but at times a screaming budgie can set off the whole cage of budgies and you will be left with not only a cacophony of noisy screaming budgies, but also confused and unsettled budgies. 

There is even a story of a budgie keeper who has at least 7 healthy budgies has experienced this a few times and has used music to calm them down. He remarked that it only took around 3 minutes to calm the whole lot of them down at once. 

Understanding Your Budgies Different Sounds 

Just a little more on budgie sounds. It is always better to learn about your pet’s behavior and to then see how music may help. There are many reasons for this. [Source]

One of them is that you can spot if your bird is unwell. This is one of the most important reasons. Animals cannot speak our language, but we can certainly communicate in other ways, and one of the best ways, aside from music, is to get to know their usual repertoire of sounds and body movements. Any devoted pet owner of any type of pet will tell you when they ‘just know’ when their pet is off color. 

Hissing 

Hissing, for example, is a very annoyed sound a budgie will make if he feels like he is being infringed upon. This is often from another bird being in his space.

If you can, remove the other bird. Either to another perch, if you have a smaller cage or right out of the cage, if you have the facilities to do this. Also, some relaxing music can make a difference with settling them down.

Contented Chatter 

When Budgies are content, they will chatter away, either to themselves or to each other. If you have more than one budgie this can sound quite noisy after a while. This can easily lead to them really enjoying themselves when you put some music on. Expect some head bobbing and dancing to take place. [Source]

Loud Chirping and Squawking 

Budgies will also chirp very loudly to get your attention and by attention we mean the whole hog. They might want to be picked up by you, being spoken to or being fed a treat.

One avid budgie owner said they never needed an alarm clock, as every morning without fail all the budgies in the house would start to cheap very loudly some even squawking to get her attention. I bet you can guess who won that war! She would dutifully get up and tend to her birds. 

In this situation, music can serve as a distraction to your budgie. It can be enough to take their attention away from you and onto something else.

Screaming 

A budgie will scream if they are in distress, this includes if you play the wrong song for them. Yes, they have been known to do this! If your birds are very noisy and you do need some peace, a blanket over the cage and some soft music can help to quieten them for a little while. 

So, we have worked out so far that starting your bird’s music-loving habit off slowly is the best bet, and also to stick to classical sounds and instruments at first. 

budgie with bell in cage

Start Slow Then Raise the Pace a Little 

Once you’ve tried the softer, more gentle type of music, you can progress to all sorts of different types of music. In my time, I have seen chill relax budgie enthusiasts, piano die-hard loving budgies, and of course house music and traditional rock. There seems to be no limit to the types of music budgies love. 

It also gives you and your budgie time to get to know one another better, and can be great entertainment for both of you along the way, which is a huge bonus. 

If your budgie loves house music, he will start to bob his head frantically and even move his body in a type of dance. If a budgie starts to scream at you, it probably means it’s time to change the station. 

Budgies Don’t Only Hear it, They Feel it

Budgies don’t hear music the way we do, they hear it, and they feel it through their whole bodies, and this is why surround sound is so good to use when trying out this type of experiment. 

Sometimes when listening to rock, a budgie may also look as though he is playing an electric guitar. His feet can curl as if around the guitar holding on for dear life. His beak can open and close with no sound, which would make him look as if he was singing.

Budgies Hate Certain Noises 

There are noises that birds instinctively hate. Like screaming noises, this will alert them to trouble as they use this noise themselves when they are upset, angry or afraid. So if you play music with a lot of screaming it in, this will mimic the sounds they dislike and cause them anxiety. 

If Your Budgie Loves Classical 

One of the most loved genres agreed upon by many budgies is classical, but not just classical. They seem to love complex classical music. It might be fun to join a forum of budgie lovers to share the great composers and add to your music knowledge too.

One important note to mention is not to add essential oils to your budgies relaxing music therapy, because budgies not only hate essential oils, but some can be very bad for them too. 

Sometimes Sharing Your Budgies Taste in Music is Funny 

Sharing your budgies favorite songs, genres and types of music might have the readers splitting their sides in laughter. You will also get new ideas too! It can be quite specific as to what each bird loves. Some have mentioned Motown hits, specifically 70s hits and even 60s great classics. 

You might be amazed to learn that birds do really sing themselves, and even create melodies that sound very tuneful and rich. Experiments have been done whereby birds have been recorded, then slowed down. The results were amazing. Beautiful melodies that mimicked a type of Oprah for birds. 

Make Your Own Playlists or Search for Premade Playlists for Budgies 

When you look for premade playlists made by bird lovers, many will have long play times on them. Some will even play for eight to ten hours at a time. These are a little too long when you are just introducing your birds to music. 

Once you get to know your bird’s likes and dislikes in the music world, you can make your own playlist with a variety of songs, perhaps starting slow and easy then progressing to a harder and faster beat, ending with soft and relaxing music. 

Don’t leave the list on and go out though. Nothing could be worse for a budgie if he is fed up with the music, and he cannot turn it off. You don’t want him traumatized by the end of the day!

Some important tips when playing music 

When you play the music, don’t blast it into their cage. Once you’ve learned which music your budgie loves, you might be tempted to put the speaker right next to their cage. 

This is not advisable. Although budgies love good loud music, and good is purely subjective, loud noises can upset them, and I mean upset them a lot.  It is better to get a surround system that is placed well away from their cage. Remember birds feel the music as well as hear it, so the sudden tempo changes might not be to their liking, and they could get panicked or annoyed. 

Music and Budgies Take-Away

Birds love music, but just like humans, there is a time and a place for everything. They need to be introduced slowly to music and to not have the music placed too close to their cage. This could be overkill and upset budgies.

They can be traumatized. Instead, aim to play a more gentle dispersed kind of sound well away from their cage. Under supervision, you can play louder music and quite upbeat music for shorter periods if you have learned that they love that. 

You can also try your budgie soothing skills by playing your musical instrument, to see if your budgies enjoy it. They will always love a well-played piano or violin, for example. They might even enjoy your singing. Remember, Budgies are known to be prolific singers themselves from time to time. 

Try some of the tips mentioned earlier, start small and then leave the music on longer if you wish but always stick around in case your budgies get fed up with the music. 

Barry Gray

Barry is a freelance writer from Scotland. He has written about pets for over a decade, and his work has been turned into a range of ebooks, courses, and material for diplomas. Barry is passionate about all animals, but particularly dogs, fish, rabbits, birds and spiders. You can find out more about Barry at https://mercurypets.com/our-writers/

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