How to Feed Your Bird a Balanced Diet
Your Bird has Special Dietary Requirements
Birds come in many shapes and sizes. Because there are many varieties and species of birds, there needs to be many types of bird food to meet each of their needs. Nutritional deficiencies for birds, is believed to be one of the causes of premature death in caged avians. As an example, Amazon parrots in the wild live to be about 45-60 years old. Yet as caged pets, they live to about the age of 30. It is challenging to figure out what makes a bird’s diet complete. There are things you can do to help add years to your bird’s life.
Pellets, Seed, Nuts, Fruits and Vegetables Make a Balanced Diet
Birds such as parakeets and budgerigar, cockatiel and finches are the most popular birds kept as pets. Bigger birds, like parrots can become ill due to a lack of nutrients, if fed only a seed diet. Seeds contain only a small amount of calcium, not enough protein, and are high in fat. Pellets have replaced seed mixes in some brands of bird food. Pellets have added calcium. Birds have a tendency to having a vitamin A deficiency.
Pellets can give these larger birds more nutrients, but they are not the total answer for a healthy bird diet. Birds enjoy eating foods that we eat also. Fresh food like raw or partially cooked vegetables , some fruit, cooked whole grains, pastas, and some cooked meat is good for your bird also. You don’t have to make them a special meal. Just give them some of the food you are cooking for dinner for your family and yourself, before you season it up for yourself.
- pellets are fortified with the best nutrients for proper nutritional balance.
- pellets leave less mess and waste
- easy for your bird to digest
- your bird processes the quality ingredients, making their droppings firmer and easier to clean up
Give Your Bird Fresh Food and Water Daily
The answer for balanced nutrition for our pet avians is to feed them a variety of foods. Because different species have birds, have different requirements for a balanced diet, the variety depends on the type of bird you have.
- for medium to large birds like parrots, feed them ⅓ pellets, ⅓ seed, ⅓ fresh food
Your bird needs diversified foods for the best balanced meals.
Adding fruits and vegetables to your bird’s diet will make their food more interesting and fun for them also. Birds can easily become vitamin A deficient. By adding yellow and orange vegetables to their diet, you can make their meals more balance. You bird will love eating cantaloupe, carros, leafy green vegetales like romaine lettuce, endive and collard greens and cooked squash.
It is important to give your bird the proper mixture of food as an initial step towards keeping them healthy.
- make sure food and fresh water is available all day long for your bird, In the wild they would eat a few times a day.
Complete nutrition and a balance diet will help your bird maintain proper body functions, known as homeostasis, and help them grow and feed their cells for a long life.
Make Sure Your Bird Always Has Food in the A.M.
- It is never too late to improve your birds diet
- The younger you start them, the better, they will be more open to trying new things
- Let your bird see you eating the fruits and vegetables you want them to eat. Birds can be social eaters and they will be curious watching you and may try it themselves
- Morning is a great time to introduce new foods. They naturally look for food in the morning and may be more anxious to try something different.
- Give them their regular food in the afternoon
- They may not recognize new food and not realize it is food, so be sure to put it in their regular familiar bowl.
- Birds are attracted to brightly colored things, so cut fruits and vegetables into bite sized pieces and their curiosity might get them to try it.
- Try raw and cooked vegetables. Some birds might have a preference. Some birds may prefer their cooked vegetables cool, others might want them warm.
- Some birds like their fruits more liquidy
- Mix new commercial food with raisins, sunflower seeds, and some of the food they have been eating to help them eat the new food easier
Do's and Don'ts of Feeding Your Bird
Your bird will eat to meet their individual energy needs. Fresh fruits and vegetables served to your bird is a low energy food and your bird will continue to feed on the pellets you give them. Seeds and nuts are higher energy food and will lower their pellet intake. This is why it is good to feed them a balance of different foods. fruit and vegetables and limit the amount of seeds and nuts.
When it comes to feeding your bird, avoid these common mistakes
- the bowl looks full - when birds eat seeds, the hulls that are left behind can look like food in the bowl. Replace food and water at least once a day, if not more often.
- If your bird is only eating from the floor of the cage, try lowering theri bowl. This happens often with baby birds who are not too adept at finding food yet. This can happen with food and water. With the high metabolism birds have, it is important they eat frequently, as they would in the wild.
- When switch their food, do so gradually, to make sure they are eating some food.
- Even if all your bird wants to eat is seed, remember seed alone does not offer enough balance for your a nutritious meal.
- A stubborn bird, can, through patience convert their diet to some seed, pellets, and fruits, and vegetables.
- clean their food and water bowls and bottles every day
- If the water bottle or bowl feels slimy, there may be bacteria.
- observe your bird and notice any change in their behavior or body language, and make sure your bird is eating.
Never Feed your Bird
- chocolate - it can be poisonous.
- avocado and guacamole is also toxic to your bird
- alcohol -
- caffeine -
- watch out for poisonous houseplants
Your Bird and Food
Making the right choices for your bird is a matter of educating yourself. A balanced diet for your bird comes from many sources. Seeds, nuts, pellets, fresh fruits and vegetables will give your bird the proper nutrition for a longevity, good health, and a happy bird.