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Home > Birds > Can Cockatiels Eat Blueberries? Vet-Reviewed Nutritional Info

Can Cockatiels Eat Blueberries? Vet-Reviewed Nutritional Info

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Owning a pet cockatiel can often have you questioning which foods are safe for them. It can be tempting to sit down with breakfast and toss them a few fruits that were sitting on your plate, but not all fruits are safe for cockatiels.

Are blueberries safe for cockatiels to eat? Yes, cockatiels can be given blueberries in small amounts; they are considered one of the best fruits to incorporate into their diet.divider-birds

Nutritional Benefits of Blueberries

Blueberries are sweet, nutritious snacks that are popular in most homes with pet birds. These small berries have lots of minerals, vitamins, and antioxidants while remaining very low in calories. They aren’t only delicious, but they help keep your birds’ diet well-balanced.

Some of the most significant benefits come from antioxidants and minerals. These keep your cockatiels feathers healthy and shiny. The high sources of vitamins C and K also help regulate their immune system. As long as you aren’t solely feeding your cockatiels blueberries, then there is no harm in giving them some in moderation.

Image By: Tatchai Mongkolthong, Shutterstock

A Cockatiel’s Diet

On top of a clean environment and regular exercise, a diet full of a variety is crucial for keeping your cockatiel illness free. In the wild, cockatiels are classified as granivores; they eat an abundance of different types of seeds that they forage in their home range. Smaller portions of their diet consist of other various shrubs, fruits, and vegetables. Even though they are considered herbivores, they occasionally feed on small insects or grubs.

When kept as pets, it’s almost impossible for an owner to acquire the various seeds they normally eat in the wild; these parrots have been observed foraging over 60 different types of seeds! This, coupled with the fact that seed diets are often high in fats and the exercise a cockatiel gets in the wild is also extremely difficult to replicate in captivity, has made pellets a popular dietary staple for cockatiels. However, no pellet diet is fully sufficient for cockatiels. They need additional nutrition from vegetables, nuts and other sources of protein (such as eggs), and fruits.

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What Are the Best Fruits for Cockatiels?

Feeding cockatiels various fruits is crucial for their health. Fresh greens, veggies, and fruits make up around 25 percent of their diet. Serve fruits in small amounts only after they are properly washed and chopped into small pieces. Here are some of the most common fruits that people feed cockatiels:

  • Blueberries
  • Apples
  • Kiwi
  • Bananas
  • Grapes
  • Pears
  • Peaches
  • Strawberries
  • Blackberries
Since cockatiels don’t only eat fruits, here is another quick list of safe snacks to feed them:
  • Carrots
  • Corn
  • Broccoli
  • Hard-boiled egg yolks
  • Millet
  • Sunflower seeds
  • Grains
  • Beet greens
  • Celery
  • Chard
  • Coriander
  • Cucumbers
  • Dill

Feeding your cockatiels the wrong mixture of seeds can be dangerous to their health, so we recommend checking with an expert resource like The Ultimate Guide to Cockatiels, available on Amazon.

The Ultimate Guide to Cockatiels

This excellent book will help you balance your cockatiels’ food sources by understanding the value of different seed types, dietary supplements, fruits and vegetables, and cuttlebone. You’ll also find tips on everything from housing to health care!

Blueberry fruit
Image Credit: kimkyungok, Pixabay

Are Blueberry Seeds Safe for Cockatiels?

Blueberries are entirely safe for cockatiels to eat. You have good instincts if you are concerned about fruit seeds because there are some fruits that are safe for cockatiels, but the pits themselves are not. Examples of such fruits include apricots and peaches. When in doubt, you shouldn’t risk feeding your pet bird the pits of fruits.

Thankfully, blueberries do not contain any toxic substances, and in addition, seeds from grapes, raspberries, pomegranates, and squash are all safe.

Yellow-gray cockatiel perched on a branch
Image By: Marlon Roth, Shutterstock

Toxic Foods for Cockatiels

  • Avocado (including the pit)
  • Processed foods
  • Caffeine
  • Chocolate
  • Garlic
  • Onions
  • Honey
  • Alcohol
  • Some other fruit pits (from plums, apricots, and peaches)

Final Thoughts

Giving your cockatiel the same foods over and over again is going to lead to a lot more health problems than you’re willing to put up with. They require a varied diet, and fruits are an important part of their diet. Blueberries are popular fruits and are considered safe for cockatiels.

Berries cannot be the only thing that your bird eats. Offer them a wide range of options to keep their bodies healthy and have them feeling their absolute best.

Featured Image Credit: congerdesign, Pixabay

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