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Go Back   Talk Budgies Forums > Budgie Talk > Your Budgie's Health > Diet and Nutrition


Diet and Nutrition Discuss issues related to diet and learn about encouraging your budgie to a variety of healthy foods

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  #1  
Old 05-12-2017, 10:15 AM
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Default Introduction veggies and fruit?

Hi all,

new to the forum and being a budgie owner in general. I'm so new that I just discovered, thanks to this forum, that my two "boys" are actually a boy and a girl. Yikes!

So going on day 5 with the budgies now, and all they will eat is seed and millet. I've tried giving them fruits (bananas, apple, tangerine) and they've ignored all 3 at various times. I attempt to introduce them at dinner time when I know they're hungry (I've seen them chow down at 6pm every day).

Any tips on how best to introduce healthier foods for my budgies?

This morning we had a small "hand" breakthrough...my oldest daughter held her hand in the cage and fed some millet to Coco. Previously they would be pretty scared when hands went into the cage, but this morning no issue (with Coco anyway)

Coco is the boy, and Auston is the girl, so far in the few days we've had them we notice that Coco is the braver one in terms of our hands around the cage. Auston always seems to be a bit more scared.

Anyway, enough of the tangent, my original question of veggies and fruits stands.

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Old 05-12-2017, 10:40 AM
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There is really great advice to be found here in regards to getting them going on healthy food's. It will take time and patience on your part but you will succeed. Read up and ask any additional question's you may have. Since you have a pair it would be very wise for you to take steps now, including reading up the info found here to help you ensure your bird's don't breed. Limiting their daylight hours to less then 12 per day, and keeping any thing that could be used as a nest out of cage are good starter's.
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Old 05-12-2017, 10:52 AM
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Thanks for the reply. Been reading through various "healthier food intro" threads and notice that in a few of them they talk about having the budgies out of the cage first. We're not at that point, the birds are not hand trained yet.

So..I'll attempt the "hanging veggie" method with some kale or spinach hanging in the cage near a perch, and see if they take to it. Slow steps..this is all new to me.
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Old 05-12-2017, 11:53 AM
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My birds took awhile to learn to eat their fruit and veggies and are still stubborn about it at times This is certainly a common struggle and there are many threads dedicated to it. I'm sure you'll find many helpful responses on those as well as this one if you can't find what you're looking for.

Here's one with lots of creative ideas on mixing up the diet with pictures, which is always helpful What's on the Menu Today (part 2) On-Going
Here are a few things that I've learned that make it easier
1) I keep the veggies in a food dish so they have the freedom to take a few bites whenever. Just make sure you don't let the food spoil.
2) Chop up the fruits and veggies. My birds won't eat anything that's from the whole fruit or veggie. They will sort of nibble on it, but they won't actually bite and swallow it. I've found a cheese grater is a great way to quickly separate the food into bite-sized pieces for them.
3) When I first started, I mixed in some millet or some of their "treat seed" in with the chopped up bits. They became much more eager to eat their veggies and I was able to slowly wean them off the seed mixed in. Now they get excited about the veggies themselves!
4) Your budgies may also be picky eaters like mine. I always have the best luck with carrots (and they're the easiest to put through the grater since they're hard). They refuse to touch bananas, tomatoes, or anything that's really squishy.

Good luck! Please keep us updated
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Old 05-12-2017, 12:21 PM
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I plan to be a regular poster, not just a "post and dash" guy looking for quick answers. I'm looking forward to the journey of raising these two budgies and seeing how their personalities are. I hope to get to the point where I can take them around the house with me (my daughters will love to be able to have them perch on their hands) so we'll see if we can get to that point.

I know not to rush anything, we've only had them going on 5 days now, so patience is the key with everything! Luckily as a father to 3 young girls, I've learned my lessons of patience already.
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Old 05-12-2017, 02:08 PM
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Hi
Romaine lettuce was the first veggie that my budgies would eat and I've seen it mentioned a lot of times on here. Try placing a leaf in reach of a favoured spot.
My birds have tended to be the opposite to Katie's (above), in that they wouldn't eat finely chopped veg until quite recently, but I think that it's my birds that are the odd ones .
I'd say that herbs, spinach & broccoli are their favourites.
Budgies in general, tend to be wary of anything 'new' in the cage (mine would often take a couple of days to approach a new toy), so keep on offering the veg, hopefully curiosity will eventually get the better of them.
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Old 05-12-2017, 06:18 PM
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It can take several weeks for budgies to decide to try a new food.
Fruit is high in sugar content so vegetables are actually healthier for your budgies with fruits given only occasionally (once or twice a week)

A Healthy Diet for your Budgie

Please take the time to read the Budgie Articles and the Stickies posted at the top of each section of the forum.
Most basic questions have been answered there.

You will find many different tips with regard to presenting vegetables and encouraging your budgies to try new foods in the Diet and Nutrition section of the forum.
The first vegetable which my budgies that had not been weaned to vegetables tried (and loved) was sweet corn kernels sprinkled with a teeny bit of garlic powder (NOT salt).

Budgies seem to love "spicy" tastes.
They also adored fresh basil, cilantro, chickweed, zucchini and red pepper.

Diet and Nutrition - Talk Budgies Forums

Using Apple Cider Vinegar (with the mother)
as a natural pro-biotic is very beneficial to your budgies:

Apple Cider Vinegar

When I introduced pellets to my budgie, my Avian Vet recommended using Harrison's High Potency Mash and sprinkling it on the budgie's seed mix every day. This way, when the budgie hulls the seed it tastes the pellet mash and ingests bits of it as well. This helps the budgie identify the taste as a food source.

Many members seem to find the easiest pellets to use for introducing pellets to their budgies to be the CANARY sized Zupreem fruity pellets. Most budgies like the taste and the "Canary" sized pellets are tiny enough for them to easily eat them. Once they've become accustomed to the Fruity Pellets, introducing the smallest "natural" pellets is then an easy step.

Other than when I was using the Harrison's mash, I've never mixed my birds' pellets and seed together. My birds have three separate dishes each with a different brand/flavor of pellets available to them 24/7. Their seed is rationed to approximately 2 teaspoons of seed per budgie each day. I give them seed first thing in the morning right after putting clean newspapers on the bottom grate of the cages. I sprinkle their morning ration on the paper so they can forage for the seeds. I then do the same thing in the evenings (after replacing the soiled newspaper with clean) and again allow them to forage for their seed.

All of my birds have the option to eat the available pellets whenever they like throughout the day and they all enjoy them!

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Old 05-14-2017, 08:16 AM
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Progress! I saw a video from a veterinarian suggesting to finely cut up broccoli florets and mix them in with with the seed so the birds think it's all seed. Tried this morning and they immediately went to the food and started eating. They stopped for awhile and were on the perch by the food seemingly thinking about it. Flew away for a bit, but then came back later and continued to eat!!! Success! Finally a veggie for the birds. Going to continue with this mix and slowly increase broccoli content. Then try to move onto other veggies I can chop up like celery and cucumbers.
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Old 05-14-2017, 09:02 AM
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They went back again for more food! Broccoli is being consumed!

https://youtu.be/YQubCy4u7UA
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Old 05-14-2017, 10:23 AM
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Well done!
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