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Nutrition of lovebirds and other small parrots

1. The basic diet of lovebirds

Lovebirds have a strong curved beak that allows them to feed on nuts and seeds, but other ingredients must also be included in their diet so that they do not lack vitamins and other important nutrients. To stay healthy, lovebirds should receive a serving of fresh vegetables every day along with the seeds. Every day you should offer your lovebirds a seed mix containing black and white millet, flax, peas and oats. A mix for parakeets or canaries is also usually added, although you can buy them separately and make your own mix. This food does not spoil and you can always leave some in the feeder.

2. Complementary foods for lovebirds

It is advisable to add some type of nutritional supplement for lovebirds , to guarantee the presence of amino acids and other micro-components in the diet. You can also find food for small parrots in pellet form. Some birds do not accept them well, but they have the advantage that they cannot separate the seeds they like the most, wasting the rest. In addition, they provide complete nutrition. It is difficult to know if they are of good quality or not, so many breeders recommend them as a supplement to other foods, especially in the breeding season, and not as a basic diet.

The fresh portion of food is administered every day or at least 3 to 4 times a week . May include the following vegetables: beets, green or red bell peppers, broccoli, dandelion flowers, clovers, corn on the cob or grain, chickpeas, banana, apple, kidney beans, celery, green beans, cabbage, carrots, parsley, spinach and many other seasonal fruits and vegetables. The sprouts of grains and seeds are an excellent source of protein and lovebirds eat them with relish.

It is very easy to prepare your own millet sprouts or any other cereal; just leave the seeds for a few days in a glass jar with a lid and spray it with a little water. It is necessary to open the lid for one minute every day to ventilate. When you see some green leaves appear, they are ready to eat; if they do not sprout, the seeds may be too old. Use more vegetables than fruits , they have a high sugar content and should not be given in large quantities. At the end of the day, remove all the fresh food that has not been consumed to prevent it from spoiling and contaminating the cage of your lovebirds.

We must always avoid foods that are toxic and can harm our lovebirds, such as apple seeds, avocado and rhubarb leaves. Lettuce is not toxic, but it does not provide important nutrients either. Remember to wash all the vegetables well to remove any traces of pesticide that could harm the birds. Be very careful if you use Teflon pans in the environment where the cage is located. When heated they give off toxic fumes that could kill a small bird.

3. Snacks and prizes for lovebirds

From time to time they can be given some extra food as a reward, such as a piece of whole wheat bread or cooked brown rice. Avoid accustoming your lovebirds to eating foods that contain a lot of fat, salt or sugar, such as cookies, cakes or chips, although a snack from time to time does not hurt. You should also not give them drinks such as coffee, tea, soda or chocolate, much less alcoholic beverages. It is always better to keep the diet as natural as possible , without refined foods or those subjected to industrial processes, this also applies to you!

Take advantage of the food to tame a young lovebird. Offer him food for lovebirds directly from your hand , this way you will be able to gain his trust and accustom him to the presence of people near the cage. Feeding them by hand also helps make them less noisy than their peers raised by their parents. A natural diet can take more time and effort than just giving your lovebirds seeds, but it will be well worth it to see them happy, healthy and extend their life for many years.

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