Confused By Seed Diets

Mandy82

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Feb 1, 2021
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Sunny Sun Conure
Last time I had a parrot feeding was much easier. Give her some seed, a couple veggies and a cuddle bone and she was good to go.

The more I research what I should be feeding my newest baby, me more confused I get.

I want to make sure that she is getting what she needs while I figure out what she likes to eat. Every day I try her on a new fruit or veggie to see what she does or doesn't like. I would appreciate some advice, very much.

The first photo is the seed mix the breeder sent home with me. Sunny doesn't eat any of the pellets or black seeds at the bottom. The seed mix is mostly the safflower on the right and the grain on the right; there is very little of the corn, peas, sunflower and pumpkin. I just got a digital kitchen scale so I can track how much she is eating.

The second photo is what the breeder called pellets. She tries to eat these, but because they are so hard when she tries to bite them, it just flies out of her mouth onto the bottom of the cage. I've started softening some before I give them to her in the morning. I only give her about 5 of them because she won't eat anything else until they are gone. Is this good or bad? I've see smaller versions of these in the store, but didn't want to buy them until I find out what they really are.

The third photo is a fruit/nut mix the breeder gave me. I give her 1/8 teaspoon every other day because I was told not to give her to many nuts.

Lastly, any suggestions on training treats? I want to start some basic training but have nothing to reward her with.

Thanks for the patience:orange:

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Ira7

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Feb 9, 2020
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Do you have a scale to weigh her?

I don’t think any of those seed mixes are “great,” but I don’t really know.

I would concentrate on getting more fresh veggies into the diet.
 

chris-md

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All seed diets are horrible. You really want to introduce pellets, those fruity pebble looking pellets are horrible though. Look into Harrison’s or TOPs brands. And definitely introduce lots of fruits and vegetables.
 

wrench13

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For a training treat try pine nuts (pignoli nuts) cut into 3rds. Most Parrots love them.
 

Clarin

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Try giving diced apples ..dice it into a very small size or something she likes eating alot as a treat...my parrot loves apples so I stopped giving apple in its diet n jzt used it as a treat
 

fiddlejen

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You say she won't eat anything else until those pellets are gone? The colored ones in the middle? That's actually good, many folks have difficulty getting birds to eat pellets. You want to take advantage of this before her tastes change.

However those pretty colored ones, I think they're Zupreem? , are not really all that great. Harrison's or TOPS are among the best. If you get Harrison's you want to start with the "High Potency Fine." (That's the most likely to be the right size for her.)

As far as the seed mix. That one looks reasonably okay. Right now I'm using Higgins Sunburst. There are others that are reasonably good too. Read the labels & try to get ones with good stuff. IDEALLY if she will eat a good pellet like Harrisons or TOPS, if you can make that the main part of her diet, you can then use her favorite seeds for her training treats.

As far as fruits and nuts, etc. You want to go more with veggies. Birds don't need lots of sugar nor lots of fruit. You are doing good to save that for a treat. If she shows a great preference for particular type nuts, take note; that will make a good training treat as well.

My own Sunny does not like any northern fruits. (ie, apples, blueberries, cranberries, pears, etc). My own likes all tropical-type fruits (ie mango papaya etc...) -- except, not bananas. She does love oranges!! In fact, she has a Strong Preference for any orange-colored food. She loves Orange bell peppers, and is pretty happy with carrots too.

You will learn what she likes and dislikes, just by observing her. Offer various Vegetables. There is a long post stickied in the Foods - subforum, which lists foods that are safe and not-safe. (Onions=Not safe; Avocado=Not safe; mushrooms=Not safe... there are more. Beans need cooked.)

Good luck! :)
 

Scott

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RIP Gandalf and Big Bird, you are missed.
Parrot diets are not without controversy! Most of us (there are exceptions) prefer minimal seeds, abundant fresh veggies/fruits, and quality pellets.

First image is typical seed mixe, heavy with safflower and sunflower. Middle almost certainly Zupreem Fruit Blend. Not the best nor worst, but widely accepted due to bright colors and inoffensive flavors. Unfamiliar with final pic, appears laden with dried fruits? Possibly lots of added sugar and oil.

Best to continuously offer veggies/fruits even if ignored or tossed overboard. I've had parrots dis an item literally for decades before trying and loving. Check these threads from our Parrot Foods, Recipes, and Diet forum:
http://www.parrotforums.com/parrot-...7-converting-parrots-healthier-diet-tips.html
http://www.parrotforums.com/parrot-...afe-fresh-foods-toxic-food-lists-sprouts.html

Given legendary fussiness, the best pellet may be the one your bird actually eats. May have to experiment with several brands/varieties before finding something that appeals. Not pushing Harrison's, but I've used their conversion protocol with great success. Should work with any brand! Main considerations are to feed pellets without distraction of seeds or veggies/fruits, and never starve a bird into submission:
https://www.harrisonsbirdfoods.com/using-our-foods/large-bird-conversion/
 

chris-md

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Middle almost certainly Zupreem Fruit Blend. Not the best nor worst, but widely accepted due to bright colors and inoffensive flavors.

They're widely accepted because they are SWEET. They've got loads of sugar added as one of the top 5 ingredients.
:jumping40:jumping40:jumping40:jumping40 And we won't go into the fact that they are primarily corn and soy based :D

I'll add, specific to these fruit blend and any other artificially dyed , they are formulated the same, but obviously colored differently. Birds will get selective about which one they eat based on color alone, which can cause half the bag to be tossed to the cage floor unnecessarily. A lot of waste associated with these kinds of pellets.
 

plumsmum2005

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I took on a Patagonian which had been fed mostly on seed for his fourteen years. He came to me because my friend was dying of cancer and she wanted to know he was in a good home. I had him previously for his hols. I always fed him the same as my bird(s) and he took to it no problems. What did I feed? Veggie chop, sprouts, and Harrison's pellets, treats - he loved walnut. His colours were phenomenal after a short time and a moult, so vibrant. He used to squeak in delight in the mornings over his breakfast. I did still give him seed for his tea, a no sunflower mix. :)


PS as mentioned above I did the six months on Harrison's High Potency (fine) and then transitioned to the Adult Lifetime with no problems. You may find a bird goes mad at first and then it settles down, they eat less of them? This is what I have found with all of my newbies.
 
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SailBoat

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Jul 10, 2015
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Your are so correct, the World of Diet continues to become ever more confusing as the meaning of words have change as a result of misuse.

Resulting from more than a few Species that have sensitivities to specific food groups within what had commonly been referred to as Standard Parrot (Bird) diet. And, to add to the confusion, marketing efforts pushing Pellets as a complete diet.

Let's look a Pellets and develop an understanding as to What is Good and What is just plain Bad. Pellets are part of the Dry Side of a Parrot's Diet. Like the majority of Dry goods they can spoil (loss freshness) and/or become bug (moth) laden. As a result, they should be kept frozen until ready for use. In addition, Pellets are classified as a fortified product, which means that specific minerals and vitamins are add to the base mix. As a result, it is possible to over provide certain minerals and vitamins, which can be problematic to some species. In addition, some brands add color, sugar and salt, which can be a problem as well. Color additives can have you running to your Avian Medical Professional after your Parrot elected to eat only one color and their Poop becomes rich in that color. Too much sugar and possible salt can add to the excitement during Hormonal Season with some species. IMHO: Pellets should be an additive to a well balanced natural diet.

Okay, what the heck is going on with a Seed Diet. The sad reality is that the vast majority of Parrots (birds) are being provided the cheapest package of 'seed' available, commonly 'wild bird' seed! This is commonly loaded with Sun and/or Safflower 'seed' with dried corn and other 'stuff' dumped in to add color and variation is size. Upgraded version are available with a bit less of the Sun and/or Safflower and a bit wider supply of other seeds and like with Pellets its 'fortified.' There are several Premium Seed products, which over a wide selection of Seeds, Grains, and other dry good stuff. This product commonly requires the Buyer to pull out those things that are questionable for their Parrot's species. As with Pellets, Freezing is very important for the same reasons.

Let's go Nuts. As with Seed, there is vast differences in what ones Parrot will tolerate and others containing fungus, which can be problematic for Parrots in general and seriously problematic for others. Peanuts, tend to be the center of problem for species like Amazons. As with Pellets and Seed, Freezing is very important for the same reasons.

The Wet segment of the Diet is filled with a vast cross-section of Veggies, starting with dark green and continuing though the offerings.

Fruit has long been a much enjoyed segment of a Parrots Diet. But, as noted above, they tend to include sugar, which as also noted above can enhance the joys of Hormonal season. In addition, freeze dried Fruits tend to enhance the Sugar contain by volume. IMHO, and a rule we follow in our house hold, we cut the fruits out as we begin to enter the Hormonal Season for our DYH Amazon.

So, at this point, you are likely even more confused than before, right! The most important thing is to design your Parrots Diet around its Species and their specific needs!!!

We blend our Amazon's diet providing a wide cross-section of the above items and assuring that no one item or group represents the vast majority of the diet on any given day, week or month. We also, follow a strict schedule of Blood Testing every 15 months with our healthier Amazon. Over five years, we are able to view the natural variations of our Amazon in each season of the year. See the Amazon Sub-forum and the Thread near the top Tilted "I Love Amazons --," within that huge Thread is a segment titled Diet for an Amazon. You will find it helpful in identifying groups and % each group should be included.

Sorry for the Wall of Words!
 
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noodles123

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Middle almost certainly Zupreem Fruit Blend. Not the best nor worst, but widely accepted due to bright colors and inoffensive flavors.

They're widely accepted because they are SWEET. They've got loads of sugar added as one of the top 5 ingredients.
:jumping40:jumping40:jumping40:jumping40 And we won't go into the fact that they are primarily corn and soy based :D

I'll add, specific to these fruit blend and any other artificially dyed , they are formulated the same, but obviously colored differently. Birds will get selective about which one they eat based on color alone, which can cause half the bag to be tossed to the cage floor unnecessarily. A lot of waste associated with these kinds of pellets.




I know for a fact that Zupreem is like the "Fruity Pebbles" of bird food, but I once told a friend to look into Harrison's and she complained about the ingredients. Look at the first few on the label:


"Ingredients: *Ground Yellow Corn, *Ground Shelled Peanuts, *Unrefined Cane Sugar"
 

Flboy

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Middle almost certainly Zupreem Fruit Blend. Not the best nor worst, but widely accepted due to bright colors and inoffensive flavors.

They're widely accepted because they are SWEET. ........

I know for a fact that Zupreem is like the "Fruity Pebbles" of bird food, but I once told a friend to look into Harrison's and she complained about the ingredients. Look at the first few on the label:


"Ingredients: *Ground Yellow Corn, *Ground Shelled Peanuts, *Unrefined Cane Sugar"
THANK YOU! But. recommend by 9 out of 10 dentists! Umm, wait! Oh ya, that’s my toothpaste!
I get knocked around for not being on the Harrison’s bandwagon all the time!
Why is it so recommended? The brand is trusted. It won’t kill the Parrot! And, it’s a good money stream for the office! Yes, I used to give it to my birds– I never had to pay for it! Where my daughter worked, they would give it to us when it hit the expiration date! I found Harrison’s believed in erroring on the side of caution with setting their date! As I said, they are a trusted brand!
 
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Scott

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Goffins: Gabby, Abby, Squeaky, Peanut, Popcorn / Citron: Alice / Eclectus: Angel /Timneh Grey: ET / Blue Fronted Amazon: Gonzo /

RIP Gandalf and Big Bird, you are missed.
Middle almost certainly Zupreem Fruit Blend. Not the best nor worst, but widely accepted due to bright colors and inoffensive flavors.

They're widely accepted because they are SWEET. They've got loads of sugar added as one of the top 5 ingredients.
:jumping40:jumping40:jumping40:jumping40 And we won't go into the fact that they are primarily corn and soy based :D

I'll add, specific to these fruit blend and any other artificially dyed , they are formulated the same, but obviously colored differently. Birds will get selective about which one they eat based on color alone, which can cause half the bag to be tossed to the cage floor unnecessarily. A lot of waste associated with these kinds of pellets.




I know for a fact that Zupreem is like the "Fruity Pebbles" of bird food, but I once told a friend to look into Harrison's and she complained about the ingredients. Look at the first few on the label:


"Ingredients: *Ground Yellow Corn, *Ground Shelled Peanuts, *Unrefined Cane Sugar"

I used to feed Zupreem and eventually chose what I perceived to be a healthier alternative pellet. Fresh "chop" remains the largest part of their diet by volume.

Zupreem Fruit Blend ingredients from mfgr website:

"Ground corn, Soybean meal, Ground wheat, Wheat germ meal, Sugar, Vegetable oil (preserved with mixed tocopherols), Oranges, Apples, Grapes, Bananas, Calcium carbonate, Dicalcium phosphate, Iodized salt, Natural flavors, DL-Methionine, Choline chloride, L-Lysine monohydrochloride, Vitamins (Vitamin E supplement, Niacin supplement, Biotin, d-Calcium pantothenate, Riboflavin supplement, Pyridoxine hydrochloride, Thiamine mononitrate, Vitamin A acetate, Vitamin D3 supplement, Menadione sodium bisulfite complex (source of Vitamin K activity), Vitamin B12 supplement, Folic acid), Citric acid (preservative), Mixed tocopherols (preservative), Yellow 5, L-ascorbyl-2-polyphosphate, Red 40, Yellow 6, Minerals (Manganous oxide, Zinc oxide, Copper sulfate, Sodium selenite, Calcium iodate), Color added, Blue 1"

Harrison's Adult Lifetime Course ingredients from mfgr website:

"*Corn, *Hull-less Barley, *Toasted Soybeans, *Peas, *Lentils, *Peanut Kernels, *Sunflower Kernels, *Toasted Oat Groats, *Brown Rice, *Alfalfa, *Psyllium, Calcium Carbonate, Bentonite, Mixed Tocopherols (a source of Vitamin E), *Sea Kelp, Salt, *Algae Meal, Vitamin/Mineral Supplement (Vitamin A Palmitate, Vitamin D3 Supplement, dl-Alpha Tocopheryl Acetate, Vitamin B12 Supplement, Riboflavin Supplement, d-Calcium Pantothenate, Niacin, Pyridoxine Hydrochloride, Biotin, Thiamine Mononitrate, Folic Acid, Zinc Sulfate, Manganese Sulfate, Copper Sulfate, Calcium Carbonate and *Sunflower Oil

*CERTIFIED ORGANIC INGREDIENT

Guaranteed Analysis: Crude protein (min.) 15%, crude fat (min.) 5.5%, crude fiber (max.) 6.5%, moisture (max.) 10%."
 
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