Canaries in the wild are mainly seed eaters. Depending on availability during the year they may at times eat fruit and insects too. Fruits are one of the pet canary’s most favored foods. They’re not only sweet and tasty, but most are chock full of vitamins and minerals, too. Bananas are one of the sweetest and most sugar-laden fruits, but they’re also one fruit that many people always seem to have on hand. Thankfully, you can share your morning banana with your canary so long as you do so in moderation.
Keep reading to find the benefits and risks of feeding your canary bananas.
What Are the Benefits of Bananas?
Bananas are chock full of vitamins like A, B6, and C. They also contain high amounts of potassium.
Hypovitaminosis A, also known as vitamin A deficiency, is common in birds, especially those fed an all-seed or all-nut diet. However, it’s also entirely preventable. Vitamin A is a fat-soluble vitamin and antioxidant that aids in the repair and growth of tissues. Birds need it for their eyes, skin, and bones to function properly.
Vitamin B6, also known as pyridoxine, helps ensure proper amino acid utilization and aids in the formation of antibodies. As a result, canaries deficient in vitamin B6 may experience immune dysfunction and stunted growth.
Vitamin C, also known as ascorbic acid, is an essential nutrient for maintaining collagen and elastin in your bird’s blood vessels. Canaries deficient in this vitamin may experience poor wound healing and increased bleeding.
Potassium is perhaps the most well-known mineral in bananas. It aids healthy nerve conduction, balances fluids and helps muscle contraction.
When bananas are fed in moderation, they can support your canary’s overall health.
Can Canaries Eat Too Many Bananas?
While bananas are a healthy treat, they must be offered in moderation. As with any other food, too many bananas can lead to weight gain or other health issues.
Bananas are very high in sugar, so your canary may experience gastrointestinal upset and diarrhea if it eats too much in one sitting.
If your pet eats too much sugar, it might become overweight. Unfortunately, canaries are one of the bird species most likely to develop obesity, so you must ensure you’re feeding your bird a healthy, balanced diet.
How Should I Feed Bananas to My Canary?
Peeled and diced bananas are the best way to offer the fruit to your bird. Serve them in small pieces so it is easy for your canary to eat.
Choose ripe fruit as they’re softer and easier for birds to eat. Ripe bananas are also much sweeter than their unripe counterparts. On the other hand, overly ripe or bruised bananas should be avoided as they will spoil faster and may not contain as many nutrients. Your canary may reach for the overly-ripened bananas as they have more sugar.
We don’t recommend feeding your canary the banana peel. It doesn’t contain many nutrients and can be difficult for their digestive systems to handle. The skin can also absorb pesticides, which pose a significant risk to your pet.
Treat bananas and fruit in general as an occasional treat. But remember, fruit should make up just a small part of your bird’s diet.
What Else Do Canaries Eat?
A high-quality seed pellet should represent about 80% of your canary’s diet. Pellets are commercially formulated to meet all your bird’s nutritional needs.
Vegetables and fruits should account for the other 20% of your pet’s diet, with the latter being more of a priority. Both are high in vitamins and minerals, but fruits are also high in sugar, which can lead to obesity over time.
Don’t stop with dark, leafy greens, however. Canaries will also enjoy cabbage, cauliflower, carrots, and peas.
Bananas are great as an occasional treat for your canary companion. Don’t get into the habit of sharing your daily banana with your bird, however, as too much can cause health issues like diarrhea or, over time, obesity. Instead, focus on providing your canary with a highly nutritious pellet diet, fresh veggies, and the occasional piece of fruit.
Featured Image Credit: GabiSanda, Pixabay