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How to Keep a Budgie Warm in Winter

Winter is here, so those of us in cold climates have to think about keeping our budgies warm. Not all heating solutions are bird-safe, so it’s crucial to know when and how to introduce an artificial heat source near your birds.

When it comes to safety and comfort, it’s not enough to simply know what temperature range is optimal for your budgie’s environment. There are many other factors to take into consideration, including whether your chosen heat sources are safe for use around birds. Follow along as we answer common questions you might have about keeping your budgie warm! 

What temperature range is safe for budgies?

65-75°F is a pretty comfortable temperature for most budgies.

They can, however, still do well in lower temperatures of 55°F+. If the temperature in your home dips below that, it’s definitely time to think about some bird-safe heating. Not all human heating solutions are bird-safe, so read labels carefully and contact companies if necessary to get more information. 

Can budgies tolerate sudden temperature changes?

Sudden, large changes in temperature can be dangerous for budgies and should be avoided.

Budgies are nomadic parrots originally hailing from the semi-arid regions of Australia where temperatures fluctuate widely from near-freezing to extremely hot. However, these changes are usually gradual throughout the day and not acute, sharp changes.

Should I add extra insulation to my home to keep my budgies warm?

If they aren't already, make sure your windows in particular are well insulated.

A poorly insulated window can allow warm air to leak out and cold air to leak in. Most home improvement stores sell pieces of foam specifically for this purpose. Tape the foam to the bottom of the window and shut the window on it, creating a seal. The foam should be hidden by the window so your bird cannot access it. This will help prevent drastic temperature changes and help you save on your utility bills which is good for your wallet and the environment. 

Is it dangerous to expose a budgie to drafts?

It's best to avoid having a draft blowing on or around your budgie.

Cold air in motion carries heat away from the body, so a space that would normally be warm when the air is still can actually become quite cold once the air starts moving. Try not to have your birds right in front of a window, and as mentioned earlier, insulate your windows and doors to prevent drafts of cold air from entering your home.

5.) What heating solutions are not bird safe?

Any heaters that require the burning of gas or fuel are not bird-safe.

Many electric space heaters also cannot be used because a Teflon coating is applied to their internal parts to prevent dust accumulation. These coatings are sometimes burned off gradually over time, but it’s hard to know how long this takes and/or how old your heater is, so it’s wise to avoid these types of heaters altogether.

Are oil radiators safe to use around budgies?

Oil-based heaters are generally considered bird-safe because the heating elements are not exposed and they usually don't contain Teflon.

However, it is critical that you check with the manufacturer to be sure! Some of these heaters also have a burn-in period, so make sure to read the manual carefully to see if that is the case. It may need to have that burn-in period elsewhere before it can be used safely in your home. They can still become quite hot to the touch depending on the setting so weigh that factor carefully. If it is too hot too touch the back of your hand to for a few seconds, it’s too hot for your bird to land on. 

This is the one we have been using in my office where the budgies are for the last two years. I called the company Pelonis and they said there is no Teflon in the heater. When I first got it, I ran it on max settings on the porch for 12 hours before bringing it inside so burn off any other potential coating on it. 

1,500-Watt Oil-Filled Radiant Electric Space Heater with Thermostat

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Are ceramic heaters safe to use around budgies?

Ceramic heaters can be safe but need to be kept out of reach to prevent burns.

Ceramic heating elements get very hot to the touch, so they must be used in a way where birds cannot physically touch them because landing on them or touching them can result in burns. Some ceramic heaters can also contain Teflon so we would recommend calling the manufacturer to be sure. 

Can I use heated panels or perches with my budgies?

Heated panels that can be mounted on the side of a cage are a viable option for providing additional heat.

Before using a panel in your bird’s cage, plug it in for several hours and feel it with your hand–it should be warm but not extremely hot to the touch. Devices should be built with a temperature regulator so that they only heat up to a certain temperature but they can potentially malfunction in rare occurrences. These are safest mounted next to a medium length perch so birds can scoot away if it malfunctions and overheats. On the other hand, heated perches pose more of a risk to your bird and so is less ideal. If the perch overheats when you aren’t around (e.g., the middle of the night), your bird may not be able to get away easily and could sustain burns.

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Do budgies need a certain amount of humidity?

Yes! Most homes range 40-60% humidity and is ideal but budgies do well even outside of this humidity range.

Budgies are a species from the semi-arid regions of Australia and so their biology prepares them for a much drier environment and higher water loss to their environment than the rainforest species like conures and macaws. As a result, they do well in the typical 40-60% humidity range but continue to do well even outside of this range. 

Now that you know how to keep your budgie warm during these chilly months, check out our other articles at The Budgie Academy to learn more about your bird and their care requirements. And don’t forget to follow us on TikTok, Facebook, and Instagram so you never miss out on new content!

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2 thoughts on “How to Keep a Budgie Warm in Winter”

  1. blank

    There’s a budgie that comes to my outside bird feeder. I live in southern Ontario, Canada. Any suggestions for how to cage it so I can bring it indoors. It’s November.

    1. blank

      Hi! Oh goodness someone must have let that budgie out. Could you DM me on Instagram? This is going to take more than a one sentence comment to make it happen.

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