The high susceptibility of budgerigars (Melopsittacus undulatus) to neoplasia, and specifically renal neoplasia, has often been reported. Further investigations led to a suspicion of a retrovirus as the causative agent for renal neoplasia in budgerigars, but definitive proof has yet to be found. In the present study, 32 budgerigars suspected of having renal neoplasia (based on the clinical presentation) were examined. The objectives were to investigate the use of different diagnostic methods for the ante-mortem diagnosis of this condition and to find more supporting evidence of a retroviral aetiology. The predominant clinical signs observed in budgerigars with renal neoplasia were lameness and absence of deep pain sensation of one leg. Alterations in haematology, plasma chemistry, and urine analyses could not pinpoint the cases of renal neoplasia. Contrast radiography of the intestinal tract proved to be diagnostically more useful compared with plain radiographic studies. Histology confirmed the renal neoplasia as adenocarcinoma. Investigations for virus identification included product-enhanced reverse transcriptase assay and enzyme-linked immunosorbent assay for the detection of avian leucosis virus group-specific antigen. Cell cultures and electron microscopy were performed on a limited number of patients. These investigations could find no presence of an exogenous, replicating retrovirus, neither could viral particles be detected by electron microscopy. Based on the current findings, it can be concluded that there is no evidence of retroviral involvement in the occurrence of renal neoplasia in budgerigars.