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Can I feed my AG wild bird food mix? Need some advice!


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I'm taking home an African Grey this weekend, and I have a lot of experience with birds and I'm so excited! I noticed that parrot food is really expensive, and I thought that I could combine (inexpensive) wild bird seeds to create my own parrot blend of seeds. I researched AG seed mixes, and added seeds in the same proportions that were in the commercially packaged foods. I mixed safflower, red millet, oat groats, unsalted nuts, some sunflower seeds, cracked corn, milo, and sesame seeds. I also mixed in cuttlebone powder for calcium, and a high quality vitamin and mineral powder supplement. Will this diet be sufficient enough for an African Grey? If not, is there anything else I could add to make it healthier? Thank in advance!

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Please research feeding your Grey, The diet you are feeding will shorten your Greys life and possible cause death and illness. I'm sorry for being so blunt but if you can't afford the proper food for your Grey maybe you should get a different kind of pet. There are many currant threads and archived threads on this forum. Has your new bird had a Well Bird Check-up and blood work? that usually cost a couple of hundred or more depending on out come, must be done yearly, do you have indoor full-spectrun UVB lighting? You never give vitamins or any supplement unless ordered by a avian vet..http://www.greyforums.net/forums/showthread.php?190462-We-Feed-Our-Fid-s!!!-Update This just 1 example....NO, you can't feed wild bird seed to them...Sorry, Thank you....Jayd

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Jay is right, keep the wild bird seed for the wild birds as it is not suitable for greys, please do read thru a lot of the threads in the bird food room for grey's nutritional requirements, they do eat some seed but it is far from their mainstay, they need lots of vegetables, especially dark green and yellow ones, a few fruits occasionally, nuts, grains, legumes, rices, some pasta occasionally, a little meat from time to time and they can have some of what we have for dinner as long as it is not on the forbidden list, all of which you will find in the bird room, so settle back and have a good read thru.

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My fellow moderators gave you some great advice and I support their advice.

There are many other foods they can have other than bird seed that we as humans eat every day and seed and pellets are supplemental in them having a choice.

OH Before I forget, Welcome to the grey forum and please understand that the advice we try to give is in the best interest of your new grey for its better health and wellbeing

Edited by Ray P
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Everyone gave you the perfect advice. Most of what you're talking about is used for budgies and finches--nothing larger. Greys and other medium sized parrots eat large sized foods such as what's in parrot mix. Usually, there's even a picture of the type of birds that a certain sized food is used for. The smaller the bird, the smaller size is the seed. They should have a large amount of veggies too.

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Parrot food is expensive, yes. But when combined with proper amounts of veggies like everyone has mentioned, it can last. A bag of Harrisons High Potency Coarse is around 35 dollars (and this is one of the more expensive foods) but it lasts my Grey about 3 months or so because I also feed other things.

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You bring up a good point about looking at what is in the commercial mix and finding ways to mitigate the cost by finding similar ingredients. I tried to do that with the bean mix that I was cooking for my parrot. It looked a lot like the soup bean mix in the grocery store. There were some things in there that I couldn't readily obtain like raw paddy rice. I am a do-it-yourselfer and Sam's club bulk purchase kind of girl. When I got right down to it, in the proportions I would have to locate and purchase, I did the math and discovered it was cheaper per pound to buy the avian specific brand. Even with the Harrison's, when I get it down to cost per serving, it isn't near as bad as the sticker shock the first time I bought a bag. Of course all I had to compare to was a good brand of dog food and a ten pound dog. The dogs get really excited when I fill their dish and eat every morsel. A parrot dines in a different manner entirely. I even considered weighing the far flung food from the parrot. LOL. Basically, it seems really expensive to buy the food when you are first starting out because your mind compares it to food prices you have been used to seeing for much larger animals and humans. It is human nature to compare to what you know. When our vet first recommended a couple of the pricier name brand pellets, it was difficult to process the numbers. Once I got into this parrot lifestyle and realized the pellets are a percentage of their diet, I realized how many things I really should be eating and changed my own eating habits around the fresh veggies and whole grains that have slowly changed our diet. What is recommended for healthy humans is coincidenally parallel to what our parrots should eat for the most part. The bonus is when we share a healthy plate with our parrot, it is a flock activity that helps strengthen our bond.

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