It is difficult to summarize food and nutrition in the world of birds. The diversity of parrot species makes developing a single ideal diet impractical. There are several universal facts to follow when feeding human food to birds for healthy, robust psittacines.
- Reduce the danger of salt poisoning by boiling or steaming vegetables in unsalted water. Select canned veggies that are salt-free.
- Fresh is always better. If it’s not fresh enough for you, it’s not fresh enough for your bird.
- Serve with fresh greens. Before offering veggies and fruits to your bird, thoroughly wash them. Bacteria and bug detritus may taint even organic vegetables. Scrub under running water, then dry with a paper towel.
- Some individuals are sensitive to dried fruits that have been preserved with sulfites. This hypersensitivity may also harm birds. Consider sulfite-free dried fruit.
- French fries and other fried meals are high in salt and fat. This is a major issue for overweight macaws and Amazons, who are predisposed to high cholesterol, lipemia (fat in the blood), and atherosclerosis.
- What about cheese? Please, please… This popular pizza topping and dairy product has caused numerous crop impacts. As a general rule, avoid feeding cheese. If your bird begs for a slice of pizza, make it a small, cheese-free slice.
- Asian foods are frequently overly salted, making them unsuitable for birds. Potato chips, salted nuts, and processed foods are also high in sodium.
For good foods, try these favorites:
- Corn on the cob
- Carrots, raw or cooked
- Cooked (in unsalted water) pasta
- Dried (sulfite-free) fruit
- Sweet potatoes
- Sweet red peppers
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