Ask Lafeber


May 6, 2020

Timneh diet

I recently rescued a four-year-old Timneh that comes from a tough background. The biggest struggle right now is getting him switched over to a healthy veggie and pellet diet. He is underweight already and I’m concerned about him dropping more weight while we attempt to get him to eat healthier. Do you have any advice about how to safely switch to a healthier diet?


Hi Claire,

I’m glad you were able to take this guy in. A nutritionally balanced diet is very important, but it doesn’t limit you to offering pellets. Our Nutri-Berries and Avi-Cakes are nutritionally balanced the same as a pellet, but they are not ground up. They can be fed along with or instead of pellets. Since parrots are naturally foragers, they will convert more easily to a foraging type food than a pellet. Pellets are great for nutrition, and most birds do like them once they get used to eating them. But they don’t offer foraging exercise and your bird can become bored with pellets. As far as converting, if you still want to stick to pellets, generally you would mix some with his regular food and then gradually increased the pellets and decrease the old diet until he is only eating the pellets. This can take days, weeks or months depending on the bird. If you also want to offer a foraging food, the process is the same, except sometimes they are more likely to try them if you break up the Nutri-Berries or Avi-Cakes at first. I’m not sure how long you have had him, but he needs to be fully settled in before you start trying to make a major change like his diet. Here is a link to our food guide for more information:

Thank you for asking Lafeber,


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