Parrots are one kind of pet that is able to eat almost everything edible you can think about, cucumber, mango, meat, and even bread. However, not all kinds of foods are healthy for them, yes they may eat them and like them.
But, in the long run, that parrot may suffer from some health problems related to feeding on food that is not natural to them.
Besides that, parrots are generally granivores. Granivore animal is the animal the feeds mostly on seeds. Some parrots feed mostly on fruits (frugivores), just like Eclectus parrot.
However, not all kinds of seeds are healthy for parrot, some of them will harm your parrot, and might cause poisoning. Apple seeds for example. And in this article, we will dive into one of the most beneficial seeds, which is chia seeds.
Can parrots eat chia seeds?. Absolutely, parrots can eat chia seeds. Chia seeds are safe for all birds, including parrots. It contains many nutritional benefits that your parrots need like, protein, fiber, fat, calcium, magnesium, manganese, and phosphorus. And most importantly, Omega-3 fatty acids which are essential for parrots.
Let’s dive into more information about these amazing seeds, and by the way, I don’t recommend chia seeds only for parrots. I highly encourage you to add them to your diet.
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What is The Chia Plant
The plant chia is native to Mexico and Guatemala, and people used to grow to benefit from its seeds thousands of years ago. They are not new, and people have proven chia seeds to be healthy and beneficial depending on the experiment.
This plant is in the same family as the mint (Lamiaceae), and it’s known with multiple names like Chia, Mexican Chia, and Salba chia. Chia plants have a very good smell, similar to mint, pineapple, cannabis, or just like a mix between all of them.
The chia flowers are purple, and when they get slightly dry, the farmers know that this is the time for harvesting the precise chia seeds.
Why You Should Feed Chia Seeds to Your Parrot
As mentioned above, Chia seeds contain many beneficial nutrients that every parrot needs on a daily basis. I know most of these nutrients can be found in many types of food, and these different foods can make it up to your parrot.
However, there is a specific nutrient that is not commonly found in other seeds, fruits, or vegetables. This nutrient is called Omega-3 fatty acids.
Yes, chia seeds are rich in omega-3 fatty acids, that parrot needs. Omega-3 is an essential nutrient that parrots can not produce within their bodies, even us humans. And we will need to get it from an external source like fish oil, or Chia seeds.
Omega–3 fatty acids are one of the “good” types of fat. They may help lower the risk of heart disease, depression, dementia, and arthritis.
According to USDA, every 100 grams of chia seeds contain the following:
- Calories: 486
- Water: 6%
- Protein: 16.5 grams
- Carbs: 42.1 grams
- Sugar: 0 grams
- Fiber: 34.4 grams
- Fat: 30.7 grams
- Saturated: 3.33 grams
- Monounsaturated: 2.31 grams
- Polyunsaturated: 23.67 grams
- Omega-3: 17.83 grams
- Omega-6: 5.84 grams
- Trans: 0.14 grams
How to Feed Chia Seeds to Your Parrot
Preparing chia seeds for your parrot is easy. Just remember to mix the seeds with your parrot’s food, because chia seeds are very small. So you can either grind them and sprinkle the powder on your parrot’s food.
Or you can just grab a pinch with your fingers and spread them on the food. You can also soak the seeds for 4-5 hours and add them to a piece of apples. Just remember that soaked chia seeds are sometimes not appetizing to parrots, so it’s better to sprinkle them without soaking.