What do parakeets eat?

In this article, we are going to answer what parakeets eat, what are parakeets, what parakeets can’t eat, what human food can parakeets eat, what parakeets eat in the wild, and how to feed a parakeet. 

What do parakeets eat?

Parakeets are granivores meaning they consume mostly seeds and grasses. The majority of parakeets’ diets include seeds and other food such as:

  • Seeds such as millet seeds, sunflower seeds, safflower seeds, and canary seeds.
  • Nuts such as acorns, hazelnuts, peanuts, pistachio, pecans, and walnuts.
  • Fruits such as apples, bananas, coconut, melon, watermelon, and pineapples.
  • Vegetables such as broccoli, stems, cabbage, carrots, celery, green lettuce, asparagus, zucchini, corns, peas, cooked beans, and leafy vegetables.
  • Grains in their natural presentation, not flour or processed products such as buckwheat, barley, oats, rye, and quinoa. 

What are parakeets?

Parakeets are a type of long-tailed parrot that range from small to medium species. The name parakeets comes from the French word perroquet. Parakeets include about 115 species and they are normally found in groups or breeds. 

They can live in a variety of climates and are found more normally in forests, meadows, and humid or water-rich areas. They are commonly found in India, Sri Lanka, Australia, and from the Pacific Islands to Southeast Asia. 

Nowadays, they have been domesticated and are one of the most common pets around the world. The most common pet parakeet is known as Budgerigar or shell parakeet or also called a lovebird. Budgerigars can live between 5 to 10 years. 

What parakeets can’t eat?

Parakeets should not eat or drink coffee, tea, candies, fried or salty food, dairy products, and alcohol. Other foods that should not be eaten include avocados, bread, mushrooms, tomatoes, fruit seeds or pits, crackers, onion, and garlic.

There are some foods that can be choking hazards to your parakeets that must be avoided such as cherries, apricots, and fruit that is small and have seeds or pits that can do harm to your parakeet. 

Fruits given to parakeets must be fresh fruit, do not give jam or any fruit that has added ingredients. 

The most toxic food for parakeets include:

  • Chocolate
  • Onion and garlic because of thiosulphate
  • Comfrey
  • Avocado because of a fungicidal use in avocados that is toxic to birds
  • Fruit pits and apple seeds
  • Process foods
  • Sugar-free candy because of xylitol
  • Plants such as potatoes, peppers, and eggplants

What human food can parakeets eat?

There is not a lot of human food that parakeets can eat. They can be fed in small amounts with

  • Peanut butter
  • Pasta raw or cooked
  • Sometimes you can add hard-boiled eggs, tuna in packets with water, or other cooked meats.

What parakeets eat in the wild?

In the wild, parakeets are known to eat tree seeds, buds, and barks and they even consume more seeding grasses than other types of parrots. They normally eat what they can find in the place where they live but some common food include

  • Flowers such as African violets, carnations, chrysanthemum, daisies, magnolias, marigold, petunias, roses, sunflowers, or violets
  • Grains
  • Vegetables
  • Fruits
  • Nuts
  • Seeds

There is no exact food a parakeet eats when they are not domesticated because it depends on what they found but their diet is made up mostly of seeds. 

When they live in the wild they eat as much as they want. When in captivity, they need to be fed every once in a while to prevent them from starving. 

How to feed a parakeet?

Domesticated parakeets should be fed two meals per day or you can practice free feed where you leave food for the parakeet and put more when he finishes it. 

  • Choose the correct food for parakeets. Use fruit, vegetables, and seeds.
  • Put the food in a small tray. Remove from the cage, put the food in it, and then put it again in the cage but let your parakeet know what you are doing so he can stay calm. 
  • Food can be mixed with a little bit of water, especially in warmer places. 
  • Use a cuttlebone and mineral block especially for birds so he can get all the minerals he needs. 
  • Always have a water tray and change it daily. 

Follow this link for a video on how to feed your parakeet


This article answered what parakeets eat, what are parakeets, what parakeets can’t eat, what human food can parakeets eat, what parakeets eat in the wild, and how to feed a parakeet. 




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