Optimal parrot health starts with a nutritionally enriched diet. Avian vets recommend that you feed your parrot 80% premium pellets like Harrisons Bird Food and the 20% fresh foods. "Our birds' bodies are adapted to fresh raw foods, such as fruits, vegetable matter, nuts, seeds, sprouts, berries, leaf buds, pollen, nectar, insects, larvae, and small vertebrae" (Excerpts from Avian Nutrition by Alicia McWatters, Ph.D., C.N.C.) Offering your parrot a variety of fruits and vegetables is essential to parrot nutrition. Dried fruits and vegetables are good while fresh fruits and vegetables are better. Fruits provide your parrot with essential protein, carbohydrates, vitamins, minerals and antioxidant. Fruits even contain fructose to support parrots energy level. The natural sugars in fruit are absorbed through the mouth providing an immediate energy boost aiding in re-hydration. A variety of vegetables provide minerals that are not available in some fruits. For instance, leafy greens contain essential vitamin A .
However, sometimes getting your parrot to eat a variety of fruits and vegetables is difficult. Parrots are picky by nature. In the wild, adult parrots acutally teach their young what foods are safe to eat through demonstration. Your parrot may not feel that a new offering is safe unless you show it. Birds that have been taught to eat a variety of foods tend to instinctively know which vitamins and minerals their body needs. For example, while your parrot may avoid eating the stems of many fruits, they eat the stems of vegetables such as Kale, Broccoli, or Mustard Greens which have increased nutritional values in the stem. Some root vegetables have combined nutrition from the root and the leaves. Dandelion Greens and Roots offer different, more complete nutritional benefits.
Clean your fruits and vegetables thoroughly to remove pesticides from the skin before feeding them to your parrot. Avicine (bird safe disinfectant) or GSE are two good products to try. You can also peel most fruits since parrots usually disgard the peel. Try leaving a few chunks of fruit with the peel on for the fun of it. Parrots have a natural ability to peel foods due to of the unique shape of their beaks and tongues. Most parrots make a fun foraging game of shredding up fruit peel or picking at and tossing fruit seeds from fruits such as Papaya and Cantaloupe. If there is a significant portion of the fruit or vegetable that is leftover, you can toss the unused portion in the food processor and freeze for later use.
Several things can influence whether or not your parrot eats a particular piece of produce or not. Keep the FAITH! If once you do not succeed, try, try, try again! Entice your parrot with creativity!
Crushed Ice Fruit Shake! Blend ice with tropical fruits such as Papaya, Mango or Pineapple.Fun Bird Recipes To Try:
All prices are in USD