Cranberries can be the perfect mixture of sweet and sour that your bird likes, but can cockatiels eat cranberries, or are they toxic to them? Let’s find out.
Cockatiels enjoy a varied diet, including many things like fruits, leafy greens, fresh vegetables, seeds, and pellets. But what about fruits like cranberries?
Yes, you can give cranberries as they are packed with various vitamins and minerals which are good for the body of your pet bird.
It is a good source of vitamin C, which aids in boosting the immune system. It also has antioxidants that protect the cockatiel’s body cells from damage.
So, I would advise cockatiel owners should feed cranberries, but in moderate amounts, to their feathered friends.
Cranberries: Are They Nutritious For Cockatiels?
Fresh cranberries are made of ninety percent water, and the rest consists of fiber and carbs. Therefore, cranberries are highly beneficial for cockatiels. Let’s discuss this in more detail.
One cup of raw cranberries, or approximately 100 grams of this fruit, contains the following nutrients.
- Calories -46
- Water -87 percent
- Carbs -12.2 grams
- Protein -0.4 grams
- Sugar -4 grams
- Fiber -4.6 grams
- Vitamin C -14mg
- Calcium -8mg
- Iron -0.23 mg
- Potassium -80 mg
- Phosphorous -11mg
- Manganese -0.267mg
- Vitamin A -63 IU
- Vitamin E – 1.32mg
- Vitamin K -5g
- Vitamin C: Cranberries are loaded with vitamin C, which is essential for boosting the immune system of the feathered bird.
- Vitamin K: Raw cranberries even have vitamin K, which helps to clot blood in your pet bird. Additionally, vitamin K helps improve the health of your bird’s bones.
- Vitamin A: The fruit is also enriched with vitamin A, which is important for good vision. It even plays a vital role in having an excellent reproductive system and tissue growth in cockatiels.
- Manganese: Manganese in cranberries helps improve bone health and metabolism in your little bird.
- Calcium: Calcium helps improve bone health in birds and makes egg shells harder and hence more durable.
- Iron: Helps in the formation of red blood cells and hemoglobin in the body.
- Fiber: This fruit has a good amount of fiber, which helps improve your bird’s digestive system.
- Water: Fresh water is very important for these birds since they are made of nearly 75% water. They get water either directly or from fruits and vegetables like this.
Overall, I hope you can see why consuming cranberries has ample benefits. You should introduce this fruit to your cockatiel without any doubt.
How Can You Give Cranberries To Your Cockatiels?
Fresh cranberries are slightly sour, so it’s a bit difficult to introduce it to your cockatiels, who are notoriously picky eaters.
But as you can see from the section above, it is a good idea to have it in their diets. There are multiple ways to add this fruit to your bird’s daily food. Let’s look at them.
Raw Cranberry Fruit
It is not very difficult to introduce raw cranberry fruit to the cockatiel’s diet. Try to just put one cranberry near them and observe.
If the cockatiel starts eating, it indicates that your bird likes it raw. If your bird doesn’t like it, don’t be disheartened.
Fresh cranberry fruit is the best way to introduce your bird, as it contains no preservatives or sugar additives. Hence it will never harm your little bird.
Just try again after a few days. Cockatiels change their mind about food all the time, so your bird might like it the next time around.
If not, you can try cutting up small pieces of the fruit and mixing it up with seeds and other fruits. That might trick them into taking in the cranberries directly.
Here are a few more ideas:
Make a garland of cranberries and hang it on their cage. Take a needle and thread and put one or two cranberries and salt-free popcorn.
Hang the garland on the cage, and your little feather bird will enjoy the effort involved in eating it. It will be a lovely and nutritious snack for your cockatiel.
Another way is to drop one or two cranberries into the water bowl, and your pet bird will enjoy finding the fruit inside the bowl.
You can even give your bird cranberry seeds, as they are a good source of protein and fat. But don’t allow your bird to consume a lot of seeds, as it can cause digestive problems.
Always keep fresh water in a bowl so your pet bird can drink whenever it feels thirsty.
Dried cranberries brought from the store might contain sugar and preservatives. Sulfur dioxide is often used during the drying of cranberries.
If your cockatiel consumes sulfur dioxide, then it can harm your bird. Additionally, excess sugar can cause obesity and cause blood sugar level fluctuations in cockatiels.
Hence I will advise you to read the ingredients before purchasing dried cranberries.
If your dried cranberries are free from sugar, preservatives, and particularly sulfur dioxide, then you can provide it to your little feathered friend.
If not, it’s best to make dried cranberries at home yourself and serve your bird. Drying fruit at home is easy and one of the best ways to give fruits to birds that don’t like them otherwise.
You can give cranberry juice to your cockatiel. But it should be given only as an occasional treat.
Remember, most of the cranberry juice available in the market contains sugar additives which can cause obesity and various other health issues.
You can dilute the cranberry juice with water and sometimes serve it to your bird.
Most store-bought craisins have sugar additives and preservatives, which is not a healthy option for your bird.
You need to read the ingredients and choose craisins that have low sugar and no preservatives (mainly check for sulfur dioxide). If you find them, you can sometimes offer them to your cockatiel.
How Much (And How Often) Should You Give Your Bird?
Cranberries are safe for your bird. But that does not mean you will replace 100 percent of cranberry fruit with the regular diet.
The daily calorie intake varies according to the weight of your bird.
For instance, a cockatiel that weighs 100g should be fed approximately 30 calories of food in a day.
Fruits, vegetables, and greens should comprise 20-25 percent of the regular daily calorie intake, and the rest can be seeds and pellets to have a balanced diet.
Hence, fruits like cranberry should not be more than 10 percent of the regular calorie intake because of the sugar content. That would mean about 1-2 pieces of dried fruit or about a spoonful of cut pieces in the bird’s diet.
Are There Any Dangers To Giving Cranberries to Cockatiels?
Consuming too much of this fruit can cause some health problems like gastrointestinal problems and vomiting.
Additionally, the fruit has a little bit of oxalate, which can cause stones in the kidney of the cockatiel.
It is best to limit the fruit to not more than once a week.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are cranberries toxic to cockatiels?
No cranberries are not toxic to cockatiels. They are rich in numerous vitamins and minerals, which help to strengthen your bird and help it live longer.
For instance, this fruit contains vitamin A, which improves your bird’s vision and reproductive system. Similarly, it comprises vitamin K, which helps in clotting blood.
What fruits can cockatiels not eat?
Cockatiels enjoy the majority of fruits. Most of the fruits are safe for the bird. Certain fruit seeds like apples and pears are not good for the bird’s health as they contain toxic substances.
Similarly, fruit pits like cherries, apricots, and plums should not be provided to the bird. You need to remove the seeds and pits of these fruits and then serve your cockatiel.
Can birds have dried cranberries?
Dried cranberries are sweeter; thus, your feathered bird finds them tastier. Most store-purchased dried cranberries have preservatives and sugar additives that are not good for the health of your bird.
You need to read the ingredients carefully and purchase dried cranberries with no preservatives, particularly sulfur dioxide, and fewer sugar additives for your cockatiel.
It’s best to make dried cranberries at home and offer an occasional treat to your bird.
Cranberries are safe for your bird as they are a powerhouse of various vitamins and minerals. But you should always feed in moderate quantities as it has sugar content.
It even contains a bit of oxalate, which can cause kidney stones if your bird eats too much of it.
Cockatiels need a proper diet to stay healthy and live longer. To have a well-balanced diet, you should introduce several seasonal fruits like cranberries to your feathered friend apart from fresh vegetables, millet sprays, and grass seeds.
Thank you for reading this article.