Like all animals, parakeets need a balanced diet. Most people feed their parakeets seed blends bought from major pet stores because it is more convenient.Most of these blends are no good however, and its lack of quality shows when you first open it.
How do you know if your bird food is good or not? Smell it when you open the bag, if it smells dusty or in anyway bad, it is most likely a cheap seed blend that has been heated to kill germs.
This heating process is so intense that it often kills nutrients as well, leaving your budgie to eat mostly empty calories like you would eat a whole can of peanut butter.
There are many seed blends on the market, but here at Parakeet Place, we recommend Dr. Harvey's Our Best Parakeet Blend.
Many commercial mixes that claim they are good for budgies like Kaytee, Lafeber or even Zupreem, but none of their products will be as good or fresh as Dr. Harvey's mix.
His parakeet blend is made fresh everyday with fruits, vegetables, grains and seeds in a proportion that is best for your bird's health unlike junk food blends that use mostly millet. The mix is so fresh it smells like human quality food when you open the bag and needs to be refrigerated because it has no preservatives.
Pellets are a good supplement to seed blends. Contrary to what people think, most veterinarians now recommend that parakeets eat mostly seed and only some pellets.
Their diet should be 80% seed and 20% pellets. Again, many bird supply companies will push pellets as a healthier alternative to seeds, but that is because most seed mixes are dead and bad for your bird.
If you are feeding a seed mix that is alive and has not been heat processed, you are simulating the natural diet of a wild parakeet. Examples of good pellet mixed used by many experienced breeders are Roudybush Mini Daily Maintenance and Harrison's Pellets.
Feed your budgies fresh food such as spinach, kale, carrots, peppers and hard-boiled eggs. You can also try sprouting your own seed, read all about sprouting your own seed here.
To sprout your seeds, use the seed mix that you normally feed to the birds. If the seeds do not sprout, you know that the mix is dead and processed.
Be sure to remove all the seeds after a few hours, as fresh food can spoil easily and make your birds sick. Humans may be able to eat food that have spoiled a bit without even getting a stomachache, but since your bird is so small, they can get very sick from just a bit of spoilage.
For a list of foods that are toxic or non-toxic to your bird click here. Use ctrl+f on the page to find info on if a food you are going to feed is good or poisonous.
Parakeets also need a cuttlebone to supply calcium to their bones, feathers and beaks. Some cuttlebones come with mineral blocks around them that your parakeet may also like.
Mineral supplements also come in hut and perch form so that your parakeet can play and get their vitamins too! For a list of good cuttlebone and mineral sources click here for reviews on these products.
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