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Home > Birds > Can Budgies Eat Mango? Our Vet Explains

Can Budgies Eat Mango? Our Vet Explains

Can Budgies Eat_mango

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Dr. Luqman Javed

Veterinarian, DVM

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Budgies, or budgerigars, are predominantly seed-eating parrots (also known as granivores) that feed mostly on the seeds and grains in the wild. Though wild budgies don’t eat frequently, captive budgies are often provided with fruits as treats. But what about mangoes? Can budgies safely eat mangoes?

Yes, they can! The soft, sweet juicy flesh of mangoes is irresistible to most budgies, but of course, some may not enjoy it, as all birds have their preferences. As with all fruits, mangoes should only be given as occasional treats, as too much mango can be detrimental to your bird’s health. In this article, we look at the potential benefits and concerns of feeding mangoes to your budgie.

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Budgie Nutrition

When considering a pet budgie, attempting to replicate their wild diet isn’t advised. Wild budgies are constantly flying for long distances every day and eating a highly varied diet that is mostly seed-dominated. Their lifestyle dictates that they have a very high metabolism, which means a diet high in seeds isn’t detrimental to their well-being. The energy the seeds offer them is quickly expended as they fly great distances every day.

As pets, their lives are much different. Our pet budgies a much more relaxed lifestyle. Therefore, the seeds their wild counterparts consume are no longer considered safe for them when they’re kept as pets. They simply do not have the mileage to justify eating high amounts of seeds.

Likewise, for granivores like budgies, fruits pose a risk. Fruits are very high in naturally occurring sugars, making them unhealthy for budgies when consumed in excess, as they can easily lead to an overweight pet. Excess weight is associated with many other ailments in pet budgies.

A budgie’s diet should consist of a commercially made pellet. These pellets do not have the high calorie content of seeds. However, to date, no pellet is considered nutritionally complete for parrots. You must supplement your pet’s diet with vegetables, nuts, seeds, grains, protein sources, and a small amount of fruit to ensure that they get all the nutrients they need. Fruits, however, should form the absolute minority of your budgie’s diet.

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Potential Benefits of Mango for Budgies

Mangoes are fruits, so they should not form the bulk of your budgie’s diet. Nonetheless, fruits are necessary for your budgie and shouldn’t be ignored just because of their small share in their diet.

Incorporating mangoes into your budgie’s diet is relatively easy. Freshly washed, peeled, and de-pitted mangoes can be offered to your pet in small quantities as part of their daily fruit quota. It’s best to rotate different fruits around for your pet’s diet; monotony with fruits isn’t recommended.

As with all fruits, you should discard any uneaten mango after 2–3 hours of it being left out, as it may quickly form sludge in your pet’s food dish if left out longer. In addition, the dish in which mangoes are served must be thoroughly cleaned. Otherwise, the sludge may perpetuate harmful bacterial growth, which could cause health issues for your pet.

Like all fruits, mangoes will offer your parrots hydration, some vitamins and minerals, and carbohydrates in the form of fruit sugars. Interestingly, while humans tout the vitamin C content of most fruits, this isn’t a selling point for including fruit in a parrot’s diet, as they make their own vitamin C.

mango isolated on white background
Image By: Maks Narodenko, Shutterstock

Potential Health Risks of Feeding Mango to Your Budgie

While mango is a tasty and healthy treat for your budgie, there are risks to consider too. The biggest concern is the high amount of sugar in mangoes, accounting for the vast majority of the calories in this fruit. These sugars can cause issues if consumed in excess. Just like humans, your budgie can easily develop a taste for sugar and may even reject their usual food as a result.

This sugar can lead to rapid weight gain, especially when you factor in the sedentary lifestyle of a pet to that of a wild bird. This remains the largest drawback of mangoes (and most other fruits) for budgies.

Raw Mangoes  

Raw mangoes are sometimes sold for use in human foods (often to be pickled or preserved). The good news is that raw mangoes are safe for budgies to consume. However, their flavor might not appeal to all budgies. Furthermore, their toughness might prove slightly challenging (though this might not be a major hindrance for some individuals). Overall, though safe, it’s best not to obsess over offering your budgie raw mangoes.

Isolated image of a blue budgie on a branch
Image By: pets in frames, Shutterstock

Pickled Mangoes

Mangoes are a popular choice when it comes to pickling. The pickling process encases the fruit in a mixture of select spices and herbs and results in a (usually) bitter-tasting piece of mango with a very long shelf life. Pickled mangoes are a delicacy in many parts of the world; however, they aren’t considered safe for parrots (including budgies).

The reason pickled foods aren’t advised is because the process adds many oils and seasonings to the fruit. These oils and seasonings are desired by the human palate but are considered unsafe for budgies. Therefore, you should not offer your budgies pickled mango, or other picked fruits.

divider-birdsFinal Thoughts

Though parrots are often portrayed as fruit eaters, it’s important to thoroughly assess a species before offering them any fruits. Mangoes are a safe fruit you can incorporate into your budgie’s diet, but only in moderation.

Ripe mangoes are preferred to raw variants. Pickled mangoes are used as a condiment for human cuisine but aren’t considered safe for budgies to consume.

To learn more about which fruits and vegetables are safe for your pet to consume, it’s best to consult with your veterinarian.

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