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Top 10 Small Bird Breeds That Will Make Great Pets

Did you ever wonder if having a bird as a pet would be a good choice for you? Which one, if any? Do you have a preference? Birds aren’t large animals that will need to much of space to keep them, but there are really small bird breeds that do not just stay small as pets but are also very easy to care for.

Based on (APPA), the American Pet Products Association’s National Pet Owners Survey for 2019-2020, 9.9 million American households have bird pets (often more than one).

Beginners can choose from the following options when they wish to own a bird pet. Beginner-friendly pet birds exist. Pets like these are easy to care for because they are naturally affectionate instead of choosing something aggressive and frightful.

The chances of getting a bird bite are inevitable. By picking friendly pet companions, you can reduce this risk.

You can find a list of the best birds as pets here; choose one that sounds right for you, and then follow these expert tips to help you raise it successfully.

What Are Small Bird Breeds?

Having a small bird as a pet can make a wonderful companion. Despite their size, they’re relatively easy to take care of, and generally more quiet than large bird species.

Even small birds have their own personalities. They can be kept alone if they have lots of human socialization, but they generally prefer living with other birds. 

Top 10 Small Bird Breeds That Make Apt Family Pets

Atlantic Canary is the smallest bird breed that can be your excellent companion. A canary’s distinctive colors and voice set them apart from other birds.

The colors of these birds range from yellow to brown to green to bright orange. Other birds down the line include rosy-faced lovebirds, parrotlets, doves, and many more.

Read more to explore everything about these pet birds. Here are the top ten small birds that make great pets for families and individuals. 

Small Bird BreedsSize (smallest to larger)AppearanceCost
Budgerigar5 – 11 inchesLong-tailed and blue cheeks$10 – $35
Cockatiel11 – 13 inchesMale has yellow head and female has grey head$120 – $250
Rosy-Faced Lovebirds6 – 7 inchesGreen body with peach color face and throat$25 – $200
Parrotlet4.5 – 5 inchesLarge head, curved beak with tiny tail$200 – $350
Atlantic Canary3 – 4 inchesYellow green head with dark streaks on sides$25 – $150
Conure10 – 20 inchesWhite ring around eyes and a long tail$150 – $500
Finch5 – 6 inchesOrange or light red marking on the chest$20 – $100
Dove8 – 14 inchesLong tail and plum body$20 – $100
Pionus10 – 12 inchesBare eye ring and square tail$500 – $2000
Meyer’s Parrot9 – 13 inchesGreen body, black or brown wings and tail$200 – $600
Size, appearance and price comparison of small bird breeds
Cockatiel and Budgerigar small bird breeds
Cockatiel and Budgerigar


Usually called the budgie or the parakeet in American English, the budgerigar is a small, long-tailed, seed-eating parrot.

As mentioned on Wikipedia, various factors contribute to breeding difficulties in Budgerigar. Diseases and adult attacks may cause some chicks to die. A budgerigar (virtually always a female) may attack another or a brood over the nest box.

When properly taken care of, they are friendly and affectionate pets. Their tiny size makes them cute, and they can be trained to perform several tricks.

Buggies are not only adorable, but they can also make excellent pets because they can learn to talk.


The cockatiel is a pint-size parrot that needs its cage to be spacious and to have a wide range of perches.

The average lifespan in captivity of a cockatiel is 16 to 25 years. There are reports of cockatiels living as long as 32 years, but it is sometimes given only 10 to 15 years, as per Wikipedia

Keeping these smart birds entertained while alone requires many playtimes, so provide them with toys. You can help them to forage and shred toys and change their toys every week.

It is best to give cockatiels more pellets and vegetables than seeds and treats to avoid them packing on the pounds and give them plenty of room in the cage so they can flip, fly, and exercise.

Rosy-Faced Lovebirds

When playing with lovebirds, you can simply put them in your pocket if you wish. They are about 5 to 6 inches long.

These birds enjoy playing and learning tricks.

Their lifespan is up to 20 years, so expect them to be running around in their beautiful cage for a number of years.

Wikipedia indicates that Lovebirds eat mainly seeds and berries. In times of abundance, flocks of birds may form containing hundreds of individuals. In agricultural areas, it can feed on millet, which can sometimes be a pest.

Small and easy to care for, this parrot makes it one of the most common parrots kept in captivity. It is better to keep the birds in pairs due to their social requirements.

Parrotlet and Rosy-Faced Lovebirds
Parrotlet and Rosy-Faced Lovebirds


Many people consider parrotlets to be ideal pets for their homes. Their tiny, cute size and ease of upkeep make them very popular.

Those who spend most of their time outside the house might not benefit from them, as they require a lot of attention.

There are usually about four to over one hundred parrotlets traveling in a flock in the wild. About five to forty birds make up most flocks. Their choice of partners can be lifelong, and tight-knit partnerships affirm Wikipedia

You could also let them climb a rope ladder, hunt for treats, and ring a bell to keep them occupied.

Atlantic Canary

A canary is a lively, cheerful, and good-natured songbird that requires little attention.

An average Atlantic canary weighs between 0.53 and 0.86 ounces. The Atlantic canary’s wingspan ranges from 8.3 to 9.3 inches, and it grows to anywhere between 3.9 to 4.7 inches in length, as mentioned on Wikipedia

Supplement canary with vegetables like kale, spinach, and sweet potatoes. Whenever possible, avoid sugary fruits (such as bananas). Make sure the water is fresh every day.

While larger than budgies or cockatiels, canaries are still playful, especially with toys that help them groom their beaks.

Conure and Atlantic Canary
Conure and Atlantic Canary


Generally speaking, conures are smaller to medium-sized parrots that are diverse and loosely defined. 

Your attention is needed to help them thrive. They enjoy spending time with you, both inside and outside of their cages. They are intelligent, playful, and slightly mischievous.

Roomy cages appeal to conures! It should be large enough so that the bird’s tail doesn’t touch the bottom and its movements aren’t restricted.

In Wikipedia, it stated that their condition would determine the dietary needs of each conure. Various factors will affect nutrition, such as activity level, physiological condition, growth, reproduction, egg production, and raising of young. 


It is easy to watch them because they are small, fast-moving, and lively. Their cage should be large enough to allow them to fly around since they don’t like to climb.

As per Wikipedia, there are over a hundred species of true finches in the family Fringillidae. Often with a colorful plumage and a stout conical bill, finches can eat seeds and nuts.

If you put the cage in the family room or living room, they will be able to entertain themselves as long as it is large enough.

A mixture of grains, seeds, spinach, watercress, and lettuce, along with some seeds, is enough for keeping a finch going a whole day. 

Dove and Finch birds
Dove and Finch birds


During the night, doves love to nest in a pair or flock. They are small, playful, and make great pets. 

Wikipedia notes that Doves measuring 12 inches or less in length are called mourning doves. The average weight of a mourning dove is 4.5 oz, ranging from 4 to 6 oz.

It drinks by suction, as do other columbines, without lifting or tilting its head. This species frequents drinking places at dawn and dusk.

Many infections and parasites can affect mourning doves, including tapeworms, nematodes, mites, and lice. A particularly severe form of the parasite is Trichomonas gallinae.

Make sure your dove food contains specially formulated pellets prepared for it. 


There are no flashy markings on a Pionus Parrot, which is another reason they are overlooked. Their small size makes them easy to handle and keep.

In Mexico, Central and South America, and Central America, the Pionus genus of parrots is found. 

There are three distinguishing characteristics that define this genus: chunky body, naked eye-ring, and short square tail, as per Wikipedia

The birds are inevitably remembered as sweet by people, and for a good reason.

Their beauty is undeniable, and they manifest a very affectionate relationship with their owners. 

Meyer's Parrot and Pionus
Meyer’s Parrot and Pionus

Meyer’s Parrot

A cool and calm creature, they enjoy playing around and getting attention.

In views of Wikipedia, the Meyers parrot is a parakeet native to Africa. They live in forests and grasslands of the continent, traveling in small groups or pairs.

Regular handling with neck scratches can make them affectionate and appreciate attention without becoming too demanding.

Meyer’s parrots can develop respiratory problems when exposed to drafts and cold temperatures, as well as in unclean environments.

Even though seed mixes still often accompany pet bird’s homes, high-quality, pellet bird foods provide an attractive and more balanced diet option for many avian pets, including Meyer’s parrots.

Pros Of Keeping A Small Bird As A Pet

The benefits of owning companion birds are numerous. Here are a few advantages that might surprise you.

Birds bring a lot to a home with their cheerful, inquisitive nature, something you can’t imagine until you’ve lived with one. They certainly require a lot of work, but the rewards for your efforts are plentiful.

  • Keeping birds encourages social interaction.
  • Long life span
  • Lower stress 
  • They promote empathy in kids
  • Keep your mind sharp
  • They are fun to be around

Wrapping Up

Beginners may want to consider the above birds. You don’t need to check on them constantly, as they require minimal maintenance. You can be sure that your bird companions will be amazing if you take proper care of them.

Veterinary care can be vital to the health of any bird breed in your family. When you’ve chosen your ideal pet bird, take him to a vet as soon as possible so that he can undergo testing for his health.

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