The half-sider budgie is a fascinating occurrence that catches the eye of many parrot enthusiasts.
This unique variety, also known as a mosaic budgie, displays two distinct colors on each side of its body. One side may have vibrant green plumage, while the other side could showcase a beautiful blue hue.
What exactly is a half-sider Budgie?
Half-sider budgies are the rarest variety of budgerigars (parakeets) worldwide, and they are not a color mutation but a result of tetragametic chimerism.
This phenomenon occurs when two fertilized eggs fuse together in the early stages of development, creating a bird with two distinct genetic cell lines.
How common is a half-sider budgie?
Despite its visual appeal, the half-sider budgie color mutation is actually quite rare. Only a very small percentage of budgies exhibit this genetic anomaly. This scarcity adds to the allure and intrigue surrounding these birds.
Interestingly, some half-sider budgies may have the same color on both sides, despite having different DNA.
This can occur when the fused eggs share the same color genes. It is a phenomenon that highlights the complexities of genetics and the endless possibilities that can arise in the world of parrot mutations.
Half-sider budgie examples
One of the most famous half-sider budgie examples is Twinzy. Twinzy became an internet sensation with its vibrant blue and yellow feathers divided perfectly down the middle.
Another example of a famous half-sider parakeet is Houdini, as can be seen in the video below. These birds serve as a testament to the beauty and diversity found within the budgie species.
How do half-sider budgies happen? Understanding the unique process of tetragametic chimerism.
Half-sider budgies, or mosaic budgies, are formed because of a fascinating and rare occurrence called tetragametic chimera.
In plain English, tetragametic chimera happens when two eggs are fertilized by different sperm and then the fertilized eggs fuse together, resulting in a single individual with two different types of cells.
As a result, half of the budgie’s body will display characteristics from one parent, while the other half will exhibit traits from the other parent..
Tetragametic chimeras are not unique to parakeets alone. Cats, dogs, and even plants can also exhibit this genetic uniqueness. In humans, for example, people with different blood types in different parts of their body may be chimeras.
Is it possible to produce a half-sider budgie through selective breeding?
It might be possible to produce a half-sider budgie through selective breeding. But it is not a straightforward process.
If you are so inclined, we have seen some of our breeder friends get some success with the method below. But honestly speaking, it has been a mixed bag.
Breeding a half-sider budgie (or at least trying to)
We have seen our breeder friends try to come up with a half-sider using these steps. Again, it hasn’t been a 100% success so far, but this is the only logical way we see to breed half-sider budgies:
- Start with at least two unrelated male and female pairs of different colors. We choose unrelated pairs to maintain genetic diversity and to produce healthy offspring. The more unrelated pairs of different colors that you can start with, the better but a word of caution, this becomes complicated very quickly.
- Once they mate and produce offspring, you would have to look for the chicks that have some mixed colors of their parents. You might not find a perfect 50-50 half-sider in the first go. You would have to be patient through the process. Remember that not all pairings will result in half-sider budgies, as this process is quite rare and complex.
- Continue this process of breeding iteratively, selecting unrelated male and female pairs as much as possible. Select the budgies that are showing some mixed colors each time.
- Make sure that you are feeding the birds with quality vitamins. You would need a high-vitamin diet for the feather colors to be fully appreciable to the naked eye.
Selective breeding is a fascinating topic in the world of genetics, and when it comes to parrots, there are some amazing possibilities. One such possibility is the production of a half-sider budgie through selective breeding.
The half-sider budgie is a unique bird with different colors on each side of its body. This striking feature is the result of a genetic mutation that affects the distribution of pigment in the feathers. While the exact cause of this mutation is not fully understood, breeding experiments have shown that it is possible to produce half-sider budgies through careful selection.
By pairing budgies that carry the genetic traits for this mutation, breeders can increase the likelihood of producing half-sider offspring.
Selective breeding plays a crucial role in these experiments, as breeders need to carefully choose which birds to mate in order to increase the chances of producing half-sider offspring. By studying the genetic traits involved and following a selective breeding program, breeders can make progress in producing more half-sider budgies.
In conclusion, the possibility of producing a half-sider budgie through selective breeding exists. With the right combination of birds and careful selection, breeders can create these unique and beautiful parrots.
Half-sider budgies and bilateral gynandromorphism
Bilateral, what? Ok, apologies for the scientific speak but we would be remiss if we do not mention the topic of bilateral gynandromorphism or gynandromorphism in general, when we talk about half-sider parakeets.
Gynandromorphism is when a creature (not only a budgie) has both male and female tissue spread throughout its body.
Bilateral gynandromorphism is when they are divided into the two sexes right down the middle. This phenomenon has been observed in a range of creatures from spiders and butterflies to birds (not yet in humans).
Asymmetric gynandromorphism is when male and female tissue is asymmetrically distributed throughout the body.
If you have a gynandromorphic budgie on your hands, it will most likely be sterile (or unable to mate). So if you want to breed half-sider budgies, look out for gynandromorphs in your flock.
Half-sider budgies or half-sider parakeets are a rare occurrence and if you find one, count yourself lucky and enjoy the beautiful colors that the bird shows.