Bird Seed for Pet Birds: Types and Recommendations

In this very interesting article, discover everything you should know about bird seed for pet birds. Read on!
Bird Seed for Pet Birds: Types and Recommendations
Francisco María García

Written and verified by the lawyer Francisco María García.

Last update: 27 December, 2022

To provide your pet bird with a balanced diet, you must know the essential nutrients they need to ensure healthy development. In other words, bird seed for pet birds.

The importance of bird seed for pet birds

Most of the birds that are best suited for captivity are partially or exclusively granivorous. That means that their diet is based wholly or mainly on dry or fleshy seeds. These seeds can be derived from arboreal and/or herbaceous vegetables.

You can find a variety of commercial feed for domestic birds that consist of mixtures of seeds, vegetables, and nuts. The proportions are suitable according to the animal’s species and age. You can use these products as the foundation of a balanced diet for your pet bird.

A parrot eating.

However, many experts advocate the benefits of supplementing their diet with bird seed for pet birds and dried and fresh fruits and vegetables. Obviously, you have to respect the specific needs of each animal.

Why you should include bird seed in your pet bird’s diet

Most seeds consist of the fertilized eggs of plants that have a sexual reproduction cycle. When they’re grown under optimal conditions, the seeds create new plants just like the parent plants.

To allow the germination of a new plant, the seeds must have a high concentration of energetic substances. When they begin to germinate, they give rise to sprouts that synthesize vitamins and plant hormones.

Therefore, embryonic seeds and vegetable sprouts are considered excellent sources of essential nutrients. And they provide many benefits to the diet of different animals, including humans.

Bird seed for pet birds is a natural source of carbohydrates, fats, and vegetable protein. It provides energy for the development of their metabolism and boosts their immune system.

How to combine bird seed in your bird’s diet

There are many different types of diets for birds. This is because there are carnivorous, insectivorous, granivorous, and frugivorous birds. The body of each bird is adapted to a diet, from their peak to their digestive system.

Most pet birds need a lot of seeds in their daily diet. In addition, they also need fruits, vegetables, and animal proteins.

However, no single diet is suitable for all birds. Each species needs a specific energy input, vitamins, and minerals to preserve their health.

Variations in the different stages of life

Bird diets also vary according to the stage of life. When birds are still young, most require a high protein intake to develop their muscles and wings. In the wild, their mother would offer them partially digested insects.

For captive breeding, you can find special mixtures for chicks. They’re highly recommended. This is because they contain balanced amounts of nutrients and have a longer shelf life than homemade potatoes.

For adult birds, the case is a little different. It’s important that they eat corn grains, sorghum, oats, wheat, bird seed, barley, rice, lentils, carob, flax, beans, and sunflower seeds every day.

Types of birds and bird seed for pet birds

  • Common parrots. 70% to 80% of their diet should consist of fruits and vegetables. The other 20% or 30% should come from the combination of bird seed for pet birds, nuts, and small portions of boiled egg and yogurt. You shouldn’t give them raw rice, nor feed them rice in any form very often.
Two birds spending time together in a tree.
  • Canaries. Experts recommend choosing specific mixtures for canaries because they contain suitable proportions of seeds and vegetables. To complement their diet, it’s best to offer them grated carrots, peas, and broccoli.
  • Doves. They’re almost 100% granivorous. Ideally, you should feed them 90% bird seed for pet birds and 10% small pieces of fruits and vegetables.
  • Gray parrots. Their diet requires a high intake of minerals and calcium. 70% of their diet is based on seeds and the other 30% on fresh fruits, dried fruits, and vegetables. Experts recommend preferring calcium-rich vegetables. For example, cabbage, broccoli, mustard greens, carrots, endive, apricots, and figs.
  • Exotic birds. 40% of their diet should favor fresh fruits and vegetables, 30% must consist of seeds, and 20% of nuts and mixes for birds. It’s important to offer them vegetables rich in vitamin A and calcium. For example, pumpkin, carrot, sweet potato, papaya, mango, nuts, chestnuts, broccoli, and peas.

In addition to balancing the proportions, it’s essential to properly store bird seed for pet birds. As a result, this will avoid the proliferation of microorganisms that can affect your bird’s health.

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The contents of My Animals are written for informational purposes. They can't replace the diagnosis, advice, or treatment from a professional. In the case of any doubt, it's best to consult a trusted specialist.