Changing Your Bird’s Diet from Seeds to Pellets

Changing Your Bird's Diet from Seeds to Pellets

Here we can see, “Changing Your Bird’s Diet from Seeds to Pellets”

For most pet birds, especially parrots, an all-seed diet is unbalanced and harmful. As a result, they will frequently select what they want and refuse to eat the remainder. However, diets that have been specially developed for individual animals are becoming more widely available. This should make up a portion (but not all) of most pet birds’ diet.

Because these diets come in various formats, including pellets, crumbles, nuggets, and more, the phrase “formulated diets” is more accurate than “pellets.” Although many birds are hesitant to move to pellets, almost any bird will eventually accept a tailored diet with patience and effort. Some or all of the following tactics may be utilized throughout the transition to pellets, which could take a few weeks or months.

Safety and Health

Most importantly, never force your bird to consume pellets; this can be hazardous and distressing for your bird. If feasible, keep track of your bird’s body weight during the conversion phase to ensure that no weight loss occurs. It’s best not to convert a sick bird. Only attempt this if your bird is in good health. Keep a close eye on the number of droppings and the bird’s weight. Back off on the new meals and feed more of the old diet if the number of droppings decreases and the bird’s body weight drops by more than 10% in a week.

Making the Transition Easier

If you’re rearing a young bird, begin feeding it pellets. Younger birds are more open to trying novel foods than elderly birds that may be “fixed in their ways.” If your bird isn’t used to a wide selection of diets, start with some new vegetables and other foods before moving to pellets. Introducing new flavors and sensations to your bird may aid with the transition to a tailored diet. Other new items can be introduced with pellets, but don’t overwhelm a bird with too many new things at once.

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  • Experiment with various pellet types. Some birds prefer different forms or sizes of pellets, textures, or flavors. Check if your local pet store gives tiny samples of various pellets.
  • Choose a pellet that contains few, if any, artificial colors or flavors.
  • To entice your bird to taste the pellets, finely ground some of the pellets and sprinkle them over their regular seeds or a favorite treat.
  • If the pellets are dry, try moistening them with warm water. Due to the risk of deterioration, any damp pellets should be removed after a few hours.
  • Hand-feed the pellets to your bird to make them seem like a treat.
  • Allow your bird to observe you as you consume some new food. They may be more enticed if they believe it is a human treatment.
  • When you feed pellets, you may notice a difference in the droppings (color, texture).

Choosing the Appropriate Amount of Food

Calculate how much food your bird consumes over a day (amount given minus the amount left at the end of 24 hours). To calculate the average daily consumption, add the amounts eaten per day for seven days and divide by seven. The total amount of seeds and pellets (combined) to feed each day is determined by this daily average. During the transition, gradually reduce the amount of seed fed and replace it with pellets to make up for the average daily consumption.

Timeline for Transition

Ideally, your bird will accept the new pellets right away, and you can make the transfer rapidly by following this schedule:

The first week:  Seeds should account for 75% of the calculated daily intake, while pellets should account for 25%.

The second week:  Feed 50 percent seeds and 50 percent pellets daily.

The Third week: Feed seeds for 25% of the daily intake and pellets for the remaining 75%.

The fourth week: For larger parrots, reduce the seed component even further.

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The transition may need to be much more gradual for pickier birds. If your bird isn’t used to eating pellets, you might want to try the following:

  • First thing in the morning, put out a pellet dish.
  • Reintroduce the seed mix after a few hours, but replace only 10% of the seeds with a prepared diet. To get to the seed, mix the pellets with the seed, so your bird has to work around the pellets. To help the bird get used to the flavor of the designed diet, crush some of the pellets and sprinkle them over the seed.
  • Once your bird has had a chance to try the pellets, gradually reduce the seed and increase the pellets until you reach the appropriate amount.
  • If your bird is still hesitant, provide the seed mix for only an hour or two many times a day, with a dish of pellets available.
  • Patience is required. The gradual transition may take months rather than weeks for persistent birds.
  • Keep a close eye on your bird’s weight if it’s a stubborn one (invest in a small gram scale and weigh regularly).

It Is Possible To Be Successful

You’ve succeeded with smaller parrots like budgies and cockatiels if you can get them to eat only 25% seeds (25 percent seed, 50 percent pellets, and 25% fresh foods). Then, reduce the seeds a little further for larger parrots until the diet is only around 10% seeds overall (with about 50–60% pellets and the balance made up of fresh foods and treats).

Making the changeover can be challenging, demoralizing, and time-consuming (not to mention the wasted pellets until your bird accepts them). However, keep in mind that your efforts will be rewarded with a healthy bird eating a well-balanced and nutritious meal.

User Questions

Is it possible to feed my bird solely pellets?

Pellets should be used to supplement a high-vegetable diet. They are, in my opinion, the equivalent of a daily multivitamin, which is meant to augment rather than replace a diet. Parrots that eat pellets don’t get enough nourishment and are more likely to have liver problems later.

Also See:  Vegetables That Are Safe for Pet Birds to Eat

Is it possible for birds to survive on pellets?

Although many birds are hesitant to move to pellets, almost any bird will eventually accept a tailored diet with patience and effort. Some or all of the following tactics may be utilized throughout the transition to pellets, which could take a few weeks or months.

Are seeds bad for birds?

Seeds are a fantastic thing to give your parrot in moderation. Furthermore, some parrots require more seeds than others. However, keeping a bird on an all-seed diet can eventually put its health at risk. Fat is found in seeds.

Do birds eat chia and flax seeds?

Unlike many other bird seeds on the market, such as flaxseed, Chia seeds do not need to be treated or ground before being fed to birds. Chia seeds are nutritious raw bird food that contains no extra ingredients.

Are Zupreem Fruit pellets good?

A bird’s diet must have some diversity and choice, and ZuPreem has many sizes and kinds to pick from. It’s also cost-effective compared to some of the more expensive pellet brands. So it’s a cost-effective way to keep your bird pals healthy.


I hope you found this helpful guide. If you have any questions or comments, don’t hesitate to use the form below.


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