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Parrot Nutrition, Diet and Feeding Discuss parrot nutrition, diets, foods and feeding.

 
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post #1 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-25-2014, 04:44 PM Thread Starter
 
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Birdy diet

So I have five birds at home at the moment: 3 budgies, a lovebird and an Indian Ringneck. Right now they're mostly on seeds as it's pretty much all they'll eat, but the ringneck will get fruit most days which she happily eats. The seeds I do offer them are ones that have maybe 12 different types of seed in so they get a bit of variety.

What I'm wondering is what is the best possible diet I could put them on?

I am reluctant to go with pellets as I've done some reading about positives/negatives and additionally they can be pretty expensive, so what I'm looking for is a diet that's a mix of seeds, veg and other stuff.

Firstly, do you guys think it's best to have a bowl of seeds around all day, or is it better to have set meal times? Is this more likely to get them to eat things they wouldn't usually eat? If you choose mealtimes, how many times do you feed your birds per day?

Could anyone please offer any examples about how they would feed their birds in a day.

How often should I try feeding things like brown rice, sprouted seeds etc. or is it best to mix this sort of stuff up into a chop?

Sorry for all the questions; I'm very interested to hear some of your answers.

Thanks!

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post #2 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-25-2014, 05:42 PM
 
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Hi - I feed my canary, parakeets and cockatiels a chop of kale, broccoli florets, carrots, and corn. I chop it lightly in a food processor, except for the corn which I add at the end when I mix it up. A few days a week I will hang a half ear of corn in the parakeet and cockatiel cages. Canaries actually NEED corn for their vision. My small birds relish this blend. They didn't touch it for about a week and now they fight over it. Once or twice a week I chop up some grapes and apple and give it to them but they like the veggies much better. I make enough chop to last around 3 to 4 days.

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post #3 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-25-2014, 11:55 PM


 
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I also make chop in the processor with different veggies and grains that I offer daily. When I make it, I freeze it in ice cube trays and then transfer it to freezer bags. This allows me to take a few out at a time to put in the fridge. Making a large batch saves time. I personally am not sure about the debate between pellets and seeds, so I just give my birds some of both. I dont think seeds are bad, but if given an unlimited amount, birds tend to only eat the types they like and become so full on that, they eat nothing else. This can lead to severe nutritional deficiencies and obesity. So limit the seeds to encourage them to try new things and eat all the seed types. I also provide fresh sprouts daily.

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post #4 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-26-2014, 02:43 PM


 
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When my linnies were new they wouldn't touch any fruits and veggies.
But I didn
't accept that. After two weeks of refuse I cut the fruits and veggies into small pieces and mixed it with the seeds, and they ate it. After two meals I could seperate the stuff again and from then on they've been eating fresh food.

You need mineral, vitamin and protein supplements as well, for example this:
https://ca-en.hagen.com/prime
A quarter of a hard boiled egg yolk for each bird is also helpful. And don't forget to offer greens like chick weed, dandelion and so on.

It's also a good idea to cook chop for your birds like Sherry and 4thebirds suggested.
The more various the diet the more healthier it is.
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post #5 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-26-2014, 03:37 PM



 
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I personally think that feeding chop, along with some more 'whole' fruits, vegetables, greens etc. is the absolute best way to go but I also think that seeds/nuts are vital in the diet too. Your lovie and IRN (so glad to hear she is still with you!) will be really easy to get onto a good diet but your budgies may be reluctant with chop. There's a ton of recipes to look for online, but throw as much in as you can as long as it is safe! Just save your fruits for snacks, as I don't like adding them to chop myself

Many parrot species will naturally feed first thing in the morning and in the late afternoon/early evening so it's best to feed at these times to stick to a more natural routine. Budgies however I feel do best with their seed mix constantly available to them

With my budgies I have their seed available at all times and I provide a plate of fresh foods every morning. They prefer leafy greens and shredded veggies the most though the occasional bird will try some fruits

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post #6 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-29-2014, 10:29 AM Thread Starter
 
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Thanks all for the input. I had a trip to the supermarket this morning so I decided to have a go at chop. Sadly they didn't have a lot of the stuff I wanted to try like various beans or quinoa or flak seeds, so this one is mainly veg. Things like spinach, cucumber, carrot, sugar snap peas, sprouted lentils, coconut, apple, chard and some other stuff I can't remember!



Remy, my lovie, was right in it as soon as I put it down and he had a good munch. Marvel, my ringneck, hasn't had a look yet. I have put their seeds away so maybe she'll pay more interest when she gets hungry. Since it's the first day I'll put their seeds back out in a couple of hours, but I'll see how it goes.
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post #7 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-29-2014, 12:32 PM


 
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What an awesome midsummer meal, I hope Marvel will like it soon.
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post #8 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-29-2014, 12:52 PM
 
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I think that looks excellent! I am a firm believer in pellets (Roudybush and Harrison's being my favorite) but I'm even more of a firm believer in variety and fresh foods. The more variety of foods and fresh foods, the better! Offer all types of foods - a lot of veggies (dark leafy greens are excellent!) some fruit, some grains (brown rice, whole grain pasta) and don't forget to treat them every now, with millet or similar! Calcium is also important, so incorporating a cuttle bone somehow is really beneficial. I think chop is a good way to get them to eat all sorts of veggies.




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post #9 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-29-2014, 04:04 PM Thread Starter
 
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Abby - do you think it would be beneficial to find some sort of cuttlebone type..or perhaps calcium powder to add to future chops? I couldn't find any brown rice amazingly, but I think I'll do some shopping online for the next chop for more things like grains, beans and other types of seeds. =)
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post #10 of 10 (permalink) Old 07-30-2014, 10:14 AM



 
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The cheapest places to get your things from would be Aldi, if you have one near you, and they have a good variety of stuff available seasonally. You can get Harrison's mash and sprinkle it into your chop instead of feeding pellets. I did this a couple of times a week for my birds and they loved it. As for cuttlebone and extra calcium, I'd just get a cuttlebone and hang it in the cage. Birds will use them if they need them. Your food looks really yummy!

- Alexandrine parakeets Holly, George, Koda & - Crimson rosella Kasumi Orange winged Amazon parrot Paulie
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