Most pet birds require more and better nutrition than the seed diets
provided by most owners. Although, for many years, it was thought that
the all seed diets were adequate, recent knowledge indicates that a
smorgasbord is more appropriate, especially if you have a bird in the
parrot family. The Association of Avian Veterinarians has established
the following guidelines for pet bird diets:
Grains, breads and cereals.
About 50% of a bird’s diet should come from this group to make sure
that the bird receives its B vitamins. Suitable foods include seeds,
whole wheat bread, cooked brown rice, monkey biscuits or other whole
Fresh fruit and vegetables.
Approximately 45% of a pet bird’s diet should come from this group to
provide vitamins A and C and essential minerals. Among the recommended
vegetables are broccoli, endive, carrots, parsley, pumpkin, winter
squash, collard greens and sweet potatoes. Vegetables without fruit can
fulfill the dietary needs of pet birds, but small amounts of fruit,
such as apricots, papaya or cantaloupe can also be offered. The
combined amount of fruit, meat and dairy products offered to a pet bird
should comprise no more than 5% of its total diet.
This group provides protein and fat for pet birds. Acceptable foods
from this group include beef, chicken, water-packed tuna or other fish,
hard boiled or scrambled eggs, peanuts, navy beans, or lima beans.
Excessive consumption of foods in the dairy group is not advised, but
the group does supply calcium, which pet birds need, especially if
seeds comprise a major portion of their diet. Small amounts of yogurt,
cottage cheese or hard cheese may be offered, and calcium supplements
such as cuttlebones, mineral blocks or oystershell should be added to a
bird’s diet. Remember, this is primarily for the parrot group of birds.
Be sure your bird is in this group before changing the diet. Also, diet
changes can be difficult to achieve and will require diligence on the
part of the owner to produce the best results.
Learn more about diet & nutrition for different animals below:
• What? My Pet is Fat?
• Introducing Your Pet to a New Diet
• Pet Bird Nutrition
• Iguana Diet
• Nutrition for Rabbits