What Do Cockatiels Eat? (Foods & Feeding Tips)

Cockatiels are one of the best choices for people who keep birds as their pets. Many of them have a question about what do cockatiels eat? What to feed cockatiels?

They are avid eaters, and they enjoy their food. They eat various seeds (grass seeds), fruits, berries, and vegetables. Cockatiels eat different types of foods, and you can also feed them these foods.

Cockatiels eat different types of foods, including bananas, berries, papaya, kiwis, carrots, peas, seeds, pellets, and many more foods.

Table of Contents:

What Fruits & Vegetables Can Cockatiels Eat?

Cockatiels are a bird of love, and they like to eat and enjoy a variety of different fruits and vegetables. The food they like to eat includes vegetables, fruits, and seeds too.

what do cockatiels eat, feeding cockatiels,

If we talk about the fruits that cockatiels can eat, they are talking about the fruits that cockatiels can eat: apples (without seed), bananas, berries, mangoes, oranges, and apricots.

On the other hand, vegetables are also good for cockatiel health, and these are the best source for getting nutrients for them.

So when we talk about the vegetables that a cockatiel can eat, we come to know that they can eat many vegetables. Here we are going to mention some specific vegetables that cockatiels can eat are:

Carrots, Broccoli, almonds, Corn on the cob, beet green, dates, and Peas are vegetables they can eat. A cockatiel can also eat dark and leafy greens, vegetables that are a good source of iron, and other nutrients.

List of Favorite Foods of Cockatiel

Cockatiels like to eat foods of different types such as seeds, fruits, vegetables, and pellets.

Favorite Fruits of Cockatiels:

  • Berries
  • Melon
  • Grapes
  • Nectarines
  • Papaya
  • Kiwi
  • Apple (without seeds)
  • Oranges
  • Banana
  • Apricot
  • Mangoes
  • Pears
  • Cherries (without pit)

Favorite Vegetable of Cockatiels:

  • Carrots
  • Broccoli
  • Corn on the cob
  • Green lettuces
  • Peas
  • Honey
  • Honey stick (once a month)
  • Millet spray (once a month)
  • Celery

What Foods Cockatiel Cannot Eat (Foods to Avoid)

When we talk about food, we know that although food is good. But every food is not suitable for everyone. Every food has its Importance and nutritional value, but it doesn’t mean that everyone can eat it.

Eating requirements of different foods vary due to their nutritional benefits so, yes! Here we will discuss those foods that are not good for cockatiels, and the owner should avoid them giving his cockatiel.

First of all, the food you should not give to your cockatiel is avocado. It contains carbohydrates that may not be digested or absorbed in a good way, or the cockatiel faces difficulty digesting it if he eats it.

The second thing which the owner should avoid giving the cockatiel is chocolate. It contains the alkaloid theobromine, an element that birds cannot digest.

There are also some other foods that should avoid from giving cockatiel are:

  • Raw potato
  • Cabbage
  • Tea 
  • Coffee

What Food is Toxic To Cockatiels?

First, we get to know about the word toxic meaning. The definition of toxic is poisonous or harmful.

So, now we will talk about those particular things which are toxic for cockatiels. Here we are giving the list of foods that are toxic for cockatiels:

  • Onions
  • Garlic
  • Dried or uncooked beans
  • Salt
  • Caffeine
  • Alcohol
  • Fat in big amount
  • Sodium in large quantity
  • Foods that contain a high level of sugar

Please don’t give your cockatiel above mention items as they are highly toxic to them moreover if you find any food in the market that claims “sugar-free” by advertisers.

Please don’t give it to your cockatiel because these sugar-free products might contain Xylitol, which is harmful to your bird become cause severe hypoglycemia and liver damage.

How Often Do Cockatiels Eat Foods?

Feeding requirements and quantities vary from bird to bird according to their body size and nutritional needs.

If we specifically discuss the feed of cockatiel, and how often the owner should feed his cockatiel, then we find its answer in this way.

When your cockatiels start feeding, they start depending on you, but how many times you feed your bird depends on his feeding habit and demand for food. It is important to examine how much food is being consumed by the cockatiel.

If you notice a lot of food left over at the end of the day, you should reduce the amount of food you are putting out to avoid waste.  

Cockatiels do have not a habit of overeating. So do not worry about their overeating. The owner should be careful and responsible about providing food to cockatiels in a good amount of good quality.

You should follow the general rule, and it is best to put out food at least once a day. Hence make sure that you keep the bowl of your cockatiel three-quarters full and refresh it regularly every day.  

There is also one more thing to confirm it provides the food to your cockatiel at a fixed time daily so the bird can develop his eating or feeding habits according to it.

How Much Do Cockatiels Eat?

Everyone eats according to their body’s requirements.

Similarly, cockatiels are small in size, and their bodies are not significant, so their food requirements are also small in quantity.

Generally, cockatiels eat approximately 15 grams of food per day. To add variety to your cockatiel’s food, give them food pellets or seed pellets as alternatives.

What Do Cockatiels Eat In The Wild?

As all the creatures in the wild are free, and similarly, birds also live freely. If we talk specifically about cockatiels, they live freely and independently in the wild.

They eat what they want to eat and enjoy the life and beauty of nature completely. Cockatiels like to eat various seed types in the wild as different plants come into the season, like grass seeds, millet, and sunflower seed.

Millet and sunflower seeds are often chosen by cockatiels to eat. They also like to eat fruits, berries, and vegetables.

The Fruits Cockatiels Like To Eat In The Wild

  • Apples (without seeds)
  • Banana
  • Oranges
  • Apricot
  • Mangoes
  • Pears
  • Cherries 

List of Vegetable Cockatiels Like To Eat In The Wild

  • Carrots
  • Peppers
  • Broccoli
  • Corn on the cob
  • Dark green lettuces
  • Peas

Now we will further discuss the diet which they eat in captivity.

What Do Cockatiels Eat In Captivity?

Here we will mention the food or diet that the owner should provide to his/her cockatiel or the food that the cockatiel eats in captivity.

A cockatiel can eat fruits, vegetables, seeds, and berries for sure. If we see their nutritional requirements, we know they need calcium, vitamins, protein, and carbohydrates.

A variety of green vegetables and fruits are beneficial for them. Formulated food pellets are also a good option.

You can also give your cockatiel pellets to fulfill their nutritional requirements better as these are formulated diets according to their dietary needs.

What To Feed Baby Cockatiel?

Here are the details about the diet of a baby cockatiel.

When you bring baby cockatiels to your home, it is new for them, your home, and their home (cage) everything. So it is easy to handle because everything is new for them as he is also new in the world himself.

But you should be very demanding and show caring behavior towards them as they need more attention and affection than an adult cockatiel.

When the newborn hatches, he takes nourishment from the yolk sac. It is examined that parents begin feeding the baby after 8 to 12 hours of hatching.

Cockatiel babies are very delicate, so handle them carefully if their parents are not there or feed them. So, the first two feedings should be a mixture of Pedialyte and probiotics.

After that, you can feed baby cockatiels with the formula diet or pellet of any brand you prefer to feed him. Make sure that mix the formula according to the given instructions from the manufacturer’s side.

The temperature is also a crucial thing to maintain in the range of 102 to 104 degrees Fahrenheit. You can achieve this temperature range by using hot water.

Keep in mind that you don’t use a microwave to hot the formula because the hot spot of the formula will burn the baby’s crop.

Best Seed Mix For Cockatiels

There are so many seed mixes available in the market from different manufacturers to feed your cockatiel, so some top seed mixes are mentioned below.

Kaytee Forti-Diet Pro Health

It is cockatiel bird food. It is a seed-based blend of fresh and good for a cockatiel, consisting of canary grass seed, millet, and sunflower seed. This food of mixed seed offers a variety of tastes, colors, and textures for your bird.

Higgins Sunburst Gourmet Blend

It is the best mix seed for cockatiels as it is loaded with premium quality seeds, dried fruits, and nutritional supplements. Your cockatiels surely like it. 

It is a problem to see that cockatiel selectively eat seeds, and other fruits stay there. So make it possible that your cockatiel finishes all t food.

Best Pellet Food For Cockatiel

It is not a natural diet for a cockatiel, but it is easier to give your bird a good diet based on pellets. Many experts suggest that pellets are part of the staple diet for cockatiels.

There are many custom-designed pellets, which you can give your cockatiel. Some of them are given below:

Lafeber Classic Nutri-Berries

It is a nutritionally complete food for cockatiels that helps to increase their foraging behavior.

Kaytee Exact Natural Bird Food For Cockatiels

It is an affordably priced food pellet formulated to deliver balanced nutrition with every single bite. Surely it is a great affordable food for cockatiels.

Harrison’s Adult Lifetime Fine Pellets

It is also a nutritionally balanced pellet with every bite, and these pellets are made with premium quality and certified organic ingredients. It is the packaging of good quality and is sealed for freshness and flavor.

Can Cockatiel Eat Bread?

Pieces of bread do not have many essential nutrients in them. It can compensate for the hunger of your bird but cannot meet its nutritional requirements.

Let us come to our question can cockatiels eat bread? The answer is Yes, cockatiels can eat bread. They like to eat bread on toast because it is more crunchy and dry than simple bread.

However, the owner should not give bread to his cockatiel a high amount as it fills his tummy and leaves no space for other foods that might not be good.

It would be best to give bread to your cockatiel in small pieces, not in large sizes. They face difficulty eating large-size pieces.

Final Words

Cockatiels love to eat various foods, including fruits, seeds, vegetables, and homemade food. If you are feeding cockatiels different kinds of foods, it is beneficial for them to get different essential nutrition from various foods.

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