The nutrition your bird needs

Bucktons, committed to cleanliness, consistency and quality.


It may sound obvious, but fresh, clean water should be provided on a daily basis. Water bottle feeders are useful as they are less likely to be used by the bird for bathing and it is easier to observe how much the bird is drinking. They are also less likely to become contaminated with faeces.

To reduce the risk of faecal contamination, place the water drinker high in the cage.


The foods birds eat in the wild are dependent upon the season and their availability. Naturally it is highly varied, both over the year, but even throughout each day. It is therefore essential to ensure that there is equal variety in your pet birds’ diets.

Birds have a poor sense of smell and few taste buds. Their food selection depends more on texture, shape, size and colour. Often they will reject novel foods until they have recognised it as being a food.

For the same reason when changing your birds’ diet, always do it slowly, as abrupt diet changes can lead to starvation. However they are inquisitive and so it is possible to vary their diets successfully.

The passerines have the highest metabolic rate of all birds. This means that they need food to be available all the time and should never go without. These birds dehusk their seed in the bowl, therefore always check that the bowl is full of seed and not just the husks that have been left behind.

For this reason we recommend that uneaten seeds and husks should be thrown away daily, the food container cleaned, dried and then replaced filled with fresh seeds.

Birds can be grouped according to what they eat.

The hard bills (the bigger parrots), sometimes called the hook bills, are the seed and nut eaters, but even so seeds should only ever account for around 30% of their diet.

There are also the soft bills, which is not a scientific category of birds, but describes a large group of birds that eat softer food. This term is most often used to describe pet bird species such as the Dove, Finch and Canary. In general soft billed birds eat soft foods such as nectar, fruit and insects.

Fruit and Vegetables

Fruit and vegetables act as a good source of both vitamins and minerals for your bird as well as providing both emotional and mental enrichment. They should always be part of your birds’ diet. For the smaller pet birds, fruit should be offered in very small quantities. Try hanging leaves of Romaine lettuce, or other vegetables, from the roof of the aviary for them to try.

Banana should only ever be fed in very small quantities if at all, as it is high in phosphorous and very low in calcium. Birds can become very addicted to bananas and it can lead to metabolic bone disease.


Apples, Apricots, Blackberries, Cherries, Grapefruit, Kiwi, Melon, Mangoes, Oranges, Pineapples, Pears, Papaya (peeled), Plums, Pomegranates, Tomatoes, Strawberries and Satsumas.

Cabbage, Celery, Carrots, Green Beans, Cucumber, Corn on the Cob, Turnips, Peas in the Pod, Water Cress, Brussel Sprouts, Kale, Broccoli, Spinach and Cauliflower.

Sultanas, Raisins, Papaya, Coconut, Apricots or Bananas.
NEVER give Avocado to your bird as it is poisonous.


Most seed eating birds require grit. This is to help break down the seed in the gizzard.

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