Lovebirds are often the choice of many people who like to keep birds as pets. Small and delicate, they are always in pairs and have an average lifespan of fifteen years. Knowing that your feathery companions are going to be with you for so long, it is in their best interest that you find out the ways you can keep them healthy and strong.
Nutritious Food for Lovebirds to Keep Them Healthy
Most people just run down to the shop and buy a bag of bird food or seeds for their birds, but did you know that there is a whole variety of food that your birds will love and benefit from? Here are some lovebirds food items that you should know about:
Special food pellets are made for birds like lovebirds and parrots and adding them to your bird’s diet will be the perfect addition to the nutrients they are getting from their other food.
You can give your lovebirds apples as long as you remove the poisonous seeds. You can also give them fresh bananas, citrus fruits, berries, mangoes, melons, grapes, kiwis, papayas, peaches, plums, any kind of pears, and star-fruits.
3. Whole Grains and Whole Cereals
Foods such as barley, amaranth, couscous, flax-seeds, oats, whole grain pasta, quinoa, wild rice, whole wheat, and whole rice can also be given to your lovebirds.
4. Greens and Grasses
Cabbage leaves, cauliflower leaves, broccoli, bok-choy, dandelion leaves, mustard leaves, kelp, spirulina and seaweed are some greens and grasses that your bird can benefit from.
5. Edible Flowers
There are certain edible flowers that are great to feed lovebirds. Flowers like chamomile, carnations, dandelions, honeysuckle and many others can be turned into bird food. Just be sure to do your research as the leaves of certain flowers can be poisonous to your pet birds.
Lentils, beans, nuts, tofu and peas are all good for your pet lovebirds because they are full of proteins that your birds need.
Sweet potatoes, yams, tomatoes, zucchini, parsnip and turnips are some vegetables that you can feed your lovebirds.
8. Grains and Legume Sprouts
Sesame seeds, red kidney beans, sunflower seeds, pinto beans, buckwheat, moong beans, lentils adzuki beans and alfalfa beans are also nutritious for your feathered friends.
What Things Should You Not Feed Lovebirds?
Though it may seem that your lovebirds can eat pretty much anything, there are some things that are best not fed to your pets. You should never give them fast food, anything containing sugar, food that is greasy, salty or fatty and also avoid carbonated and caffeinated drinks. Alcohol must never be given to your bird under any circumstances. Certain fruits and vegetables like avocado, lime, rhubarb and navy beans are also considered bad for your lovebirds as they can cause damage to the liver.
Important Points to Consider
Here are some things you should keep in mind when feeding lovebirds:
- Make sure that your lovebirds have clean water to drink at all times.
- Keep an eye on how much your birds are eating every day.
- Don’t feed them the same thing every day, but offer them a variety of fresh food.
- Keep their water and food containers clean.
- If your birds refuse a certain food that is good for them, it does not mean they will never eat it. If you keep trying, they will eventually give it a go and may even decide they like it.
Here are some of the most frequently asked questions about lovebird’s diet:
1. How Much Food Can I Feed to Lovebirds in a Day?
If you are feeding seeds to your lovebirds, the ideal amount is one or one and a half tablespoons of seeds per day. As for fruits and vegetables, it is best that only twenty to twenty-five per cent of your bird’s diet consists of them. Keep in mind though that vegetables that have more water content do not offer as much nutrition as others.
2. How Can I Feed Lovebirds?
Most lovebirds are usually fed a diet that consists of seeds. While seeds are good, your lovebirds will get sick if the only things that you feed them are seeds. Firstly, the seed mix that you feed your lovebirds should consist of a variety of seeds, not just one type. You can mix hemp seeds, canary seeds, oats, sunflower seeds, sesame seeds and millets.
Second, your birds will need variety in their diet so you will have to take the trouble to wean your bird onto other foods as well if they are already used to consuming a seed-only diet. Adding fresh fruits and vegetables to their diet will be very beneficial, so be sure that you do this daily, or that you feed them fresh food at least four times a week. Any fresh fruits or vegetables that your lovebirds do not eat should not be left in the cage but should be removed so that they don’t end up eating spoilt food.
Check if the fruits and vegetables you are feeding your birds are not toxic to them. Feeding your birds fresh fruits and vegetables right from a young age is the key to ensuring that they continue to eat this healthy diet even in adulthood.
You need to feed each of your birds in a separate dish so that you can know how much each is eating. If you are someone who has a flock, you will need to take extra care as birds that are at the bottom of the pecking order will not get to eat as much as the rest. Wash everything thoroughly and then chop the food into small bite-sized pieces for your birds so that it is easier for them to eat.
3. Do Lovebirds Need Gravel and Grit?
The reason that gravel and grit are added is that they are used to help in removing the outer shell that whole seeds have. This is why the only birds that really need gravel or grit are birds who consume whole seeds, like doves. Since lovebirds have hookbills and are perfectly capable of shelling their own seeds, you do not need to add any gravel or grit. After removing the outer covering, lovebirds are able to properly digest the seeds.
Remember that your lovebirds are bound to have different needs at different stages in their lives, so if you are not sure what to feed baby lovebirds, love birds that are laying eggs and elderly lovebirds, you should always consult with your veterinarian for proper instructions and advice.