can cockatiels eat banana

Cockatiels, also known as “Quarrions,” are popularly chosen as household pet birds for their cuddliness and bold nature. As they seem to be proud whistlers and their comical and curious behavior, these small parrots are ranked as the No. 1 pet bird in America. So if you’re planning to have a cockatiel or already have one, you need to know some basic principles of nurturing a cockatiel. And the diet of a cockatiel can sometimes be the most important of all of those principles.

So, can cockatiels eat bananas? The answer is YES. Bananas are one of their favorite fruits. A banana contains some essential nutrients, vitamins, and also factors that are must for their appropriate growth, so it is highly recommended to add a banana to the regular diet of your cockatiel.

Cockatiel’s Diet And Bananas

In general, seeds and seed mixes are used as the main material of the dietary plan for a cockatiel. Vegetables, pellets, and some cooked foods (beans, rice) are also compulsory for the diet. But the main source of vitamins and nutrients is fruits. Of those fruits, Bananas are a great choice. Because whenever we plan a diet, we need to keep 3 things in our mind,

  • Easily palatable
  • Easily digestible
  • Avoid toxication

Banana is that kind of fruit that perfectly follows all of these 3 requirements. Banana also has a satisfactory amount of Vitamin A, C and E and a good portion of minerals that ensure balanced growth of your cockatiel. Moreover, per 100gm of banana contains around 89calorie. So, It is recommended to include the banana in as much as 20-25% of the total diet and the result should be as effective as you want it to be.

Can Cockatiels Eat Bananas?

Cockatiels love bananas. Domestic research shows that if you put two bowls in front of a cockatiel having seeds in one and bananas in the other, it will mostly choose the bowl having bananas. Cockatiels are usually found in places having good amounts of water and food. And wherever they’ll find a good amount of water and food with a perfect environment, simply they’ll be shifting. So, supplementation of proper food is a must in case of having a cockatiel. And also, they are seen to be fond of bananas in the wild. So if any questions have ever crossed your mind, like, can cockatiels eat bananas or do cockatiels like bananas, the answer will be YES.

Are Bananas Toxic?

Bananas are not toxic at all. Some people, however, say that bananas are bad for cockatiels’ health but their concept is entirely wrong. There happens to be a large variety of bananas available in the market. Most bananas don’t have seeds at all since they do not require them to grow, but some of those contain seeds. These seeds are also non-toxic as they are to us. But there could be some bananas that grow in a nasty environment or unhygienic nature. They should be on your RED list. Other than that, the normal healthy bananas that we see in the market are perfect for your cockatiel and they are 100% non-toxic.

Safe And Unsafe Foods For Cockatiels

As we already know that bananas are non-toxic, we also should have an idea about all the safe and unsafe foods for our cockatiels.

Safe foods (Recommended to use in the diet) : 

Cockatiel eating vegetables
  • Seeds, seed mixes, sunflower seeds
  • Vegetables (Cooked potatoes, Carrots), leafy green vegetables (Except Cabbage)
  • Fruits (Banana, Mango, Pear, Apple, Orange, Kiwi)
  • Cooked food (Beans, Rice)
  • Cereal, cheese, bread (These are commonly used as treats in normal amounts)

Unsafe foods (Not recommended to use in the diet) :

  • Chocolates
  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine or caffeine-containing products
  • Avocado
  • Milk and milk products
  • Eggplants
  • Salt

These unsafe foods are mostly toxic for the health of the cockatiel and they will surely cause heavy damage, so these must be avoided if you’ve accidentally fed your cockatiel with such foods. You should contact a pet vet as soon as you can. And as bananas don’t show any kind of toxicity in cockatiels’ health, if you’ve been asking, can cockatiels eat bananas? My answer will still be YES.

Process of Feeding The Banana 

Now, as we already know that bananas are a great choice for the dietary plan of your cockatiel, you might ask, how do I feed the banana, or what is the process of feeding the banana? You should not just give the whole banana to your cockatiel. Rather, you should cut the banana into small pieces and then start feeding.

It is not required to peel the banana as well because the banana peel is also non-toxic. But banana leaves are not recommended to be fed. Though they are not poisonous, sometimes they can make the cockatiels’ stool hard, which will put your cockatiel in utter discomfort. Also, bananas should be fed in the adulthood of the cockatiel. It is also not recommended to feed cockatiel in their early stage with bananas.

Bananas As Treats

Birds simply love treats and cockatiels are not exceptional. To reward the cockatiel, you must treat it with appropriate food items and for that, a banana is perfect. As we know, cockatiels are proud whistlers. They must be treated properly to encourage them while whistling or they will soon become bored watchmen.

Now, how to use bananas as treats? You can use banana bread and banana chips for that. But you need to be advised that those items should not contain preservatives. The banana bread should be crumbled in a way it won’t cause any choking hazard. The reason why these items can never be used in a regular diet is that they contain high sugar, which can cause hazardous reactions. These are for bananas as treats, and can cockatiels eat bananas? Surely they can.

Risk of Feeding Bananas

Although bananas are non-toxic and beneficial for the health of your cockatiel, there happen to be some risk factors. Let’s take a look at them.

Overfeeding

We all are familiar with the saying, “Excess of anything is bad.” Though bananas provide your cockatiel with high nutritional benefits, overfeeding them will eventually lead your pet bird to a health risk. Bananas contain high amounts of sugar, so it is very common that if you feed too many bananas, too many sugars will be added to your cockatiel, which will soon make it suffer.

Processed Bananas

It is always recommended to feed your cockatiel fresh bananas. Processed bananas contain high amounts of preservatives and sugars. These will eventually harm your cockatiels’ health and also can cause permanent damage.

Misunderstanding

Now, this one may sound irrelevant but in fact, it is an important issue as well. Cockatiels love to nibble on the peels of bananas but that doesn’t mean they are hungry. They like to play with banana peels. So, if you ever misunderstand that and take that as a sign of their hunger, this is where you’re doing wrong and eventually, you are feeding your cockatiel too much. The risks are the same as overfeeding, though. 

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. Can cockatiels eat dried bananas?

Answer: Well, the answer is yes, they can. But dried fruits contain less water and nutrients. Our main goal is to provide cockatiels with nutrients and vitamins to support their growth and body maintenance. Dried bananas are enjoyed by the cockatiels as much as the raw ones but our desired goal will remain incomplete. 

Q. How often do I need to feed my cockatiel?

Answer: Most the cockatiels usually eat twice a day, Morning and Evening, in their adulthood but in their early stage, it is recommended to hand-feed them 3-4 times a day. It is also recommended to include bananas in adulthood since their digestive tracts become fully functional. Just include bananas as 20-25% of the total diet (as the fruit section) and you’re off to go.

Q. How do I feed my cockatiel a fruit?

Answer: For most of the fruits, the process is quite the same. You should cut the fruits into small pieces so the cockatiel should feel comfortable eating them. Most of the fruits do not require to be peeled off as the peels also contain large quantities of vitamins and minerals and energy. But there are some fruits that have peels that are very hard to digest, like Oranges. So, such fruits should be peeled off before feeding. Also, the fruit pieces should be small and palatable enough to avoid choking hazards.

Q. Do I need to cook vegetables before feeding the cockatiel?

Answer: Mostly, the answer would be no. But some vegetables require cooking beforehand, like Potatoes. Raw potatoes are simply toxic for the health of your cockatiel and it is a must for it to be cooked before you feed your cockatiel.

Final Verdict

Cockatiels are one the most curious and comical birds you will ever see. They are perfect for the position of a good pet bird. And a good pet bird keeper always focuses on the dietary plan of the pet bird. So, if we roll back to the original question of ours, which was, can cockatiels eat bananas? The answer will be YES. They love bananas, they love banana peels and the banana seeds don’t cause any harm as well. So bananas are kind of the ideal fruit for cockatiels if we see them.

By ensuring the perfect amount of bananas in the dietary plan and also by using bananas as treats, you can expect to have a healthy outcome and your cockatiel will grow to its full potential.

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