Can cockatiels and parakeets live together?

Birds are fun pets,, but sometimes it’s difficult to choose which one to get. Cockatiels are cute but so are budgies, which is another name for the parakeet or budgerigar. At first, you considered one bird but couldn’t decide between the two. So now, you’re considering getting one of each but have so many questions. We’re here to answer them for you. 

Can cockatiels and parakeets live together? Yes, they can. But there are specific rules you will need to follow. Cockatiels and parakeets live together in the wild and interact so they can share a home as well. 

Can they live in the same cage? No. You should not put a cockatiel and a parakeet in the same cage together. When out in the wild, parakeets and cockatiels are used to seeing each other because they are both from Australia, which is home to a beautiful array of bird varieties. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that they want to share a home. 

We realize we said they could live together, and it’s true that they can, but they can live together in your home. To do so successfully, each of them will need a home of their own. 

When birds live in the wild, they may see each other out and about, but they create their nesting areas inside trees. Both of these birds are protective of their nests.  

so, when you try to put them in the same cage there is likely going to be an issue. To solve this you will have to get each their pen to call home. 

Can they eat the same food? It’s not good to feed your cockatiel and parakeet the same food. While they share some of the exact dietary requirements, cockatiels require fatty foods where parakeets can’t handle a fatty diet, which is another reason why sharing a cage is a bad idea. They stay out of each other’s food. 

Can they live with other birds? Some birds can live together and some cannot. We broke it down for you below. 

Birds that can live with cockatiels (not in the same cage)

  • Turquoise parrots
  • Red-crowned parrots

Birds that can live with parakeets 

  • Small parrots
  • Lorikeets
  • Zebra finches

It’s not a good idea to put parakeets with canaries. As it turns out, parakeets can be quite the bullies when they want to be. They may bully canaries to death, which happen to be very fragile little birds. 

When is best to introduce them to each other? Introducing your parakeet and cockatiel to each other is a long process so be patient. Some good friendships happen fast and others are developed over time. The latter will be the case with your two birds. 

How to introduce your birds to each other

Step One: The first thing you do is separate the new bird from the one that has been living in your home for two weeks. If you recently purchased both birds it’s still a good idea that you keep them separated for two weeks. This is to prevent any possible illnesses to pass from one bird to another. 

Step Two: Time for you to bond with your birds. If you haven’t done this already it’s important that you bond with your birds before you even consider introducing them to each other. If a scuffle were to break out it would be more difficult to break up if your birds didn’t even trust you. 

Step Three: Place the two cages near one another. This way they will become familiar with the sights and sounds of each other. Let them sit next to each other in their safe space so neither feels threatened. You should keep up this step for at least a month before moving on to the next. 

Step Four: Let them out of their cages, one at a time. If neither bird is used to being out of the cage they may consider the other bird a threat because they are in unchartered territory. If you give each of them space to move around and get their grounding then an introduction between the two will likely be smoother than, if they first met each other, the first time they were ever out of their cages. 

Step Five: Decide where the neutral area in your home will be. You can build a play area for them or simply clear a table for the first meeting. Positon several perches around the room so each of them has an option to fly to if and when they are feeling nervous. 

Step Six: Don’t leave them alone. In fact, you should be watching everything that happens when you first let them out of their cages at the same time. Be aware if either of them is getting aggressive or stressed, which would prompt them to bite, hiss, lunge at each other, and scream. As we said, parakeets are bullies, and they go after the toes. Cockatiels are more timid so this is a distinct difference in personality. You don’t want this behavior so, if you observe it, get them back into their cages and away from each other. 

Step Seven: Limit these first meetings to an hour at the most. As time progresses and you find your birds are more comfortable around each other then you can lengthen their playtime. 

When will it no work to have them together? If you have taken your time and followed all the steps properly and your birds are still not getting along you will just have to accept that they aren’t going to be friends and will have to be constantly separated. This may mean letting them out of their cages at different times so there are no scuffles and extra attention from you so they both feel loved and bonded. 

Can they live with Conures? Yes, but prepare for possible conflict. They cannot live in the same cage. Conures are a variety of parrot that originate from South America. There are various varieties of conures including the Blue-Crowned Conure, the Green-Cheeked Conure, the Jenday Conure, and the Sun Conure. 

Cockatiels are not as aggressive as other birds, which typically allows for them to be bullied. Conures are more combative and may injure your cockatiel. They can live together in the same room, but in separate cages. Also, if you let them share free time outside of their cage it’s a good idea you keep constant watch of what’s going on. 

Can they live with Love Birds? In the same home but the love bird might intimidate and/or attack your cockatiel. While love birds are smaller they have been known to torture larger birds. Cockatiels are less voliatile and sweet to other birds so they are typically the object of a bully. 

Can they live with Finches? The same rules apply with finches as we’ve listed with the other birds in this article. In general, you should keep birds in their own cages and supervise and out-of-the-cage time they might share. 


If you want two birds then you should consider getting two of the same kind. This would not only be ultimately better for the birds but it would be less costly for you since you won’t have to double up on all the supplies and necessities. But, if you are insistent on getting a parakeet and a cockatiel then we highly recommend you follow our guide so you will create a loving and safe home for both of them. 

Rick Matthews

Hello, I am Rick Matthews, I have helped raise 100's of pets in my life living with my Father who while we did not live on a farm, raised all sorts of animals to sell them to families. We had so many different pets we all quickly became experts intending to them and helping them stay healthy. Back then we did not have the internet to look up thing on how to take care of their kids. As my kids got older, they wanted pets and of course, I did not want to have as many as we did when I was a child, but wanted to share my experiences. Many of these articles are written to help educate families on what to expect when looking to get a new pet for their children.

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