I was recently told that my budgie is female (thank goodness I gave her a gender-neutral name). I kind of assumed she was a he, based on a cere that was mostly light blue with white around the nostrils. I assumed this light blue was going to darken and overtake the white area.
I know that in most cases, a young male has a pink cere, and it eventually becomes a dark blue. Likewise, young females can have light blue/white ceres that become brownish when they're in breeding condition. I know there are also exceptions, but I'm going to assume my budgie is not one of these exceptions. Also, I unfortunately don't know exactly how old she is, but she is currently molting, though I don't know if it's her first molt as an adult or not.
Anyways, here's my inquiry. How do the cere colors change? I've never owned a young male and had the opportunity to watch him "grow out" of his pink cere. I know you won't just wake up one day and see that the pink has magically turned into bright blue. Does the hue just sort of gradually change? Does the blue color start to appear at the nostrils and gradually move outwards throughout the whole cere? Likewise, is the color change process the same with females? Any input would be appreciated.
And the boy's cere's have veins running through them, turning them colors. I watch my babies as they grow and every single boy you can see the veins reaching through the cere to turn it colors, except in the case of the Recessive Pieds, who stay pink for their entire life.