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Parrot Diet

Parrot Diet-What you feed your bird will make a difference

Feeding Your Parrot the Proper Parrot Diet

Feeding Your Parrot the Proper Parrot Diet

The first thing a potential parrot owner will consider as a good parrot diet for his or her bird is an enriched seed mixture. The reality, though, is a parrot diet that is primarily seed based will probably shorten the life of your bird. The nutritional requirements needed to insure a long life for your parrot is a hotly debated issue among avian experts.  Just because a particular food is good for your bird, doesn’t mean he will consume that provided diet. When this happens most bird lovers fall back on what the bird will willingly eat, which is usually a seed diet.

The problem is that good nutrition is probably the most important ingredient contributing to longevity, good health and reproductive health in your parrot.  If your bird is not getting a balanced parrot diet it tends toward malnutrition and this leads to all types of medical problems such as bacterial, viral and fungal diseases.  In fact, most parrot deaths are a result of a poor parrot diet.  It is no different from human’s problems.   Malnutrition leads to compromised immune systems and that opens up the chance of disease and other problems developing.  You would think that since written examples of parrot captivity goes back to the earliest recorded text that we would have figured out what it would take keep a parrot in good health via a perfect parrot diet.

Here is a little known fact among new parrot owners.  Parrots are omnivores. Look up the definition.  Omnivore means that a parrot in the wild will feed on both meat and vegetables.  A seed parrot diet is missing the protein necessary to insure a good healthy bird. If you want your bird to be around for 50-60 years you have to feed it properly.  If you don’t you can probably count on a much shorter lifespan.  Studies have shown that if you don’t feed a parrot the proper parrot diet, it is not unusual to see life spans of the larger birds be in the 5-10 year range.  In fact, it is well documented that many birds have virtually starved to death because their owners were ignorant of this fact. It is rare to find a parrot that lives for 60 years on an all seed diet.  Those diets are high in fat and cholesterol and this plays havoc with a parrots health just as in humans.

Parrot Diets in the wild are different.

In the wild, parrots will naturally gravitate toward higher fat content foods.  Those foods can be fruit, vegatation, grains, seeds, nuts, blossoms and even carrion. Those parrots also burn off a lot of calories because of their foraging activities.  They burn off a lot more calories than your pet parrot sitting in his cage.  For this reason you have to adjust your parrot’s diet to compensate for this. As a general rule, I find the more active a bird is the more seed it can consume without ill health consequences because of the calories it will burn off.

The solution is a partially pelleted parrot diet.  Science has come to the rescue and developed a “package solution”. 70-80% of your birds diet should consist of this mixture. The remaining 20-30% should be whole grains, beans, pasta, rice, dark yellow and green fruits, protein and fat. If you look at the requirement for a human diet, you will find it is not far off of the ideal parrot diet. This is not a universal formula, as certain birds need a different mix and I recommend that you consult an avian vet for specific requirements for your bird.

I personally feed my bird an organically produced pelleted parrot diet because I don’t want a parrot diet that uses artificial colors and preservatives in its production. Stay away from avocado, guacamole, onions, rhubarb and raw milk as these products can seriously affect their well being. Use the resources of the internet to do further research on this subject as it will directly affect you parrots longevity.


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