Ask Lafeber

Question:

January 22, 2021

Feeding


Good day. We have a 3 month old African Grey parrot.
I am not sure what the brand is, but she eats a formula in the form of baby food twice a day which amounts to 40ml.
She also eats bird food such as seeds. Once again, not sure what it’s called.
We would like to know when we can start feeding her fruits and vegetables? Is 3 months too early?


Answer:

Hi Cindy,

You actually should have started introducing a variety of food to your chick as soon as she started showing an interest in picking at things or picking at the syringe or spoon with the formula – between 6-8 weeks. You should go ahead and start offering her everything – this is called abundance weaning, where you offer a variety of healthy foods and fresh water so the bird will learn to eat right from the beginning. Most breeders wean their greys by 3 months old. However, in the wild, the parents would still be supplementing a self feeding chick for several more weeks. So don’t feel bad that she isn’t weaned, but do start trying to get her to self feed more. I would not offer her loose seeds at all. These will not provide much in the way of nutrition, and birds get fat on loose seeds because they keep eating since their nutritional needs are not being met. You can offer seeds in the form of our foraging diets – Nutri-Berries, Pellet-Berries & Avi-Cakes. These diets are nutritionally balanced the same as a pellet, but they are not ground up. They provide natural foraging exercise since the seeds in the diet are whole and not ground up into a pellet. I know this sounds confusing, but we recently presented several nutrition webinars, so I would recommend that you view these to learn more about her diet needs. I will provide links for you. You can feed any of the three diets I mentioned alone or along with pellets. We recommend offering both pellets and a foraging diet. You can also start offering fresh fruits and veggies, leafy greens and healthy table foods as 20 percent of her diet – the pellets & foraging diets should make up 80 percent of her diet. While you are weaning her, offer all of these foods along with fresh water so she can pick through them – she will waste a lot but she is learning. It’s best to serve these foods first thing in the morning and leave her alone for about an hour before you give her any formula. You want her to be hungry and explore the foods. Go to another room so she isn’t just begging you for formula. The dry foods and water can stay in the cage all day, the fresh foods should be removed after a few hours. You can also cook come brown rice and add chopped veggies and offer this to her, warm, with the other foods before you hand feed her formula. Here are some links about diet and nutrition and the webinar link. The webinar link takes you to a playlist of three nutrition webinars.

Bird Food Guide

Thank you for asking Lafeber,

Brenda

Subscribe to our newsletter