Does A Budgie Bite Hurt? {3 Keys To Stop The Biting}

Are you concerned about budgies that bite? Will it puncture the skin? Will you need a tetanus shot? In this article, we’ll answer these questions and many more on the topic of budgie bites.

Does A Budgie Bite Hurt?

The bites are usually warnings to us and shouldn’t break the skin. It can happen though. A bigger or angrier budgie that feels threatened may bite harder. Getting your budgie to trust you and bond with you will help stop the bites.

Why Does A Budgie Bite?

A budgie bites because it can. It’s a useful tool for eating and building nests. When they bite us, they are doing so for the following reasons:

  • threatened
  • scared
  • can’t fly away instead
  • defending territory
  • playing
  • boredom 
  • mating season


A threatened budgie will respond by biting. It could be our finger or anything else that is causing your budgie to feel like harm is coming their way. It’s an instinctual reaction. They may not trust your intentions yet.


Fight or Flight. The fear causes your budgie to bite. Sudden movements or quick motions to reach inside the cage may trigger this fear. Try moving slower and use your gentle soothing voice at the same time to ease the fear.

Can’t Fly Away

Since your budgie is in a confined space, the option of flying away is impossible. The only other response in a threatening situation would be to fight. Many budgies have clipped wings. The inability to trust their wings to get away makes the only logical choice to use the beak to bite instead.


Budgies need a territory to feel comfortable. We need to provide them the perches, toys and zones in the cage or confined spaces in the house for our budgies to claim as their home.

They may learn to fly, but will return home to rest. If we invade the space before building a strong rapport with our budgies, they may bite out of defense.


Some budgies take small nips when they’re being playful. This is not the most common reason for biting. We shouldn’t react or encourage it. We should stop playing if biting happens. We can return later and praise positive play when they are not biting.


A bored budgie is not enriched. This budgie has energy to burn and nothing to do. You’re providing your finger for a bored budgie to bite just to get a reaction from you.

Mating Season

Mating season makes budgies do strange things. If you notice more aggressive behaviour during this time, know that it’s temporary. The male budgie might be displaying confidence and dominance to impress a possible mate. A female could bite to defend her nest during brooding.

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How Much Does A Budgie Bite Hurt?

Let’s think about about a budgie’s bite in three different ways.

  1. nips
  2. bites
  3. chomps

A Nip

A quick nip may happen in the blink of an eye. You may not be able to react quickly enough to stop it. Thankfully this type of nipping won’t break the skin or cause long lasting pain. You may be surprised and react alarmed. Your budgie may notice this and feel fear by your reaction.

Simply stop what you were doing and wait for a better time to show gentle feelings and praise. At this point, getting upset won’t help. You can say, “No”, or just take a break and walk away. Your budgie will notice that too.

A Bite

The bite is definitely intentional. Your budgie doesn’t trust what is happening right now. Your budgie is threatened. This bite will hurt for a little while. The pain will subside. It may last longer in children. A little ice will help.

A Chomp

This is the full force of your budgie’s ability to bite. Your skin might get punctured. You will need to apply some ointment, iodine, alcohol or hydrogen peroxide on it and bandage it up.

Your budgie was angry or extremely scared. This little bird is scared stressed right now and doesn’t want to negotiate with you. “Back off ” is the meaning of this signal. Let’s see what we can do to help calm our budgie to trust our best intentions.

What Does A Budgie Bite Feel Like?

A budgies’ bite feels like:

  • a light poke
  • a pinch
  • a small sting
  • a sharp pick
  • small pliers

All of these feelings are based on the severity of the bite or your pain threshold. If you have experienced a budgie’s bite and you have a better comparison, let us know in the comments or email us with your story!

How Can I Stop My Budgie From Biting?

Building trust with a budgie who feels your love and gentle tones are being genuine helps things get better in the long run. Your budgie bit you, but would rather play with you or perch on you.

Lets try three techniques to stop the biting.

  1. Ignore (Don’t React)
  2. Schedule Sleep and Playtimes
  3. Positive Reinforcement

1. Ignore (Don’t React)

Instead of yelling, getting angry or shouting, let’s just stop and take one breath. Once we exhale it out, we should exit the situation. We can leave the room and the message will be clear to your budgie that you are not interested in fighting or threatening your budgie further.

2. Schedule Sleep and Playtimes

A threatened budgie could be irritable, pent up with energy or just tired. The timing is not right for you to stick your finger in front of your budgie. You can alter the schedule with lights on or off and a blanket over the cage to signal the time to rest.

3. Positive Reinforcement

Instead of reacting when things go wrong, let’s save it for when things go right. Praise your budgie for being such a good bird when they are behaving their best with you. Give a treat or gently make contact.

Be soothing with your voice. You would like your budgie to crave these moments by repeating the actions you liked so much when you offered so much praise. They may stop doing anything negative that doesn’t get them rewarded.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Should I Let My Budgie Bite Me?

You shouldn’t encourage negative behavior by allowing it. You can back away and ignore the bite instead. Your budgie may have wanted you to react, but you didn’t. The better move is to leave it be and not scold your budgie, but also not encourage it.

Can Budgie Bites Break Skin?

Budgies and parakeets can break skin with the hardest of bites. Chances are that a nip or average bite will only cause temporary pain without breaking the skin. You will not need a tetanus shot with a captive budgie that has been bred to be your pet and companion.

Do Budgies Like To Be Held?

Budgies like contact if it’s gentle. You can try petting your budgie to show that you care. Budgies make contact with each other to show bonding or to keep warm. You are doing something natural by making some contact with your companion.


We wish your budgie well and hope that you don’t experience pain from any bites. Things will improve and your bond will get stronger. Thanks for stopping by at and see you soon!