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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have been feeding Kiwi and Avi Higgins cockatiel food (Vita Seed Cockatiel — Higgins Premium Pet Foods) but they pick through and only eat what they like. They like veggies like lettuce, but only like it when it's dried/dehydrated. they liked any nuti-berries, but they can be pricey and are meant for larger birds so they can only eat around it.

Sometimes I will be eating a sandwich or grilled cheese and they fly to my arm and try to eat the cheese, they bit me when I say no or pull away the sandwich. once I was eating avocado on my burrito (no, not Avi the bird, the food) and kiwi only went for the avocado, then bit me when I pulled away the burrito.

is there and food for picky eaters? I've tried the Higgen's parakeet sunburst, Higgen's vita seed, and African grey food even, and there's always a ton of leftovers and scraps.
 

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Birds will always go for the seeds that are high in fat first. The Higgins Vita Natural Cockatiel Mix is full of sunflower seeds. Sunflower seeds should only be given as a treat. I only give my bird a couple a day. It would be a good idea to remove the sunflower seeds before giving any more of this seed mix to your birds. Save the sunflower seeds for treats later on. Too much fat is not good for birds - It leads to obesity that can cause fatty liver disease. Do not give parrotlets food for larger parrots like African Greys. It is not suitable for smaller birds. Seeds specifically for parakeets are not a good choice either. Cockatiel mixtures are best and anything that says that it is specifically made for small hook bills like parrotlets.

Lettuce has no nutritional value, there are other green leafy foods that are healthier for them like kale, collards, etc. And definitely no dairy products like cheese. Since they are going after you when you are eating, that might be a good time to put them in their cages temporarily.

This is the Higgins mix I give Cleopatra -

I also give her also Goldenfeast - the petite hook bill legume blend is her favorite. It is a bit pricey, but it does last a long time, though with you having two birds it will go a bit faster!

 

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Nutriberries is your friend here. They have a variety of flavor and sizes. It is basically a nugget (berry) of seed and pellets stuck together with vitiams. It nature basically makes it hard for them to just pick through for their favorite seeds.


My guys like El Paso Nutri-berries

and Sunny Orchard Nutri-Berries

Pellet-Berries for Cockatiels 10oz
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Nutriberries is your friend here. They have a variety of flavor and sizes. It is basically a nugget (berry) of seed and pellets stuck together with vitiams. It nature basically makes it hard for them to just pick through for their favorite seeds.


My guys like El Paso Nutri-berries

and Sunny Orchard Nutri-Berries

Pellet-Berries for Cockatiels 10oz
Tysm for the link to the nutri berries🙃 could I feed them a mix of cockatiel pellets, a bunch of different nutri berries, and the vita seeds? And the popcorn as a treat for training?
 

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Tysm for the link to the nutri berries🙃 could I feed them a mix of cockatiel pellets, a bunch of different nutri berries, and the vita seeds? And the popcorn as a treat for training?
should work. You will just have to see what your guy like. I mix and match depending on their preference.
 
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If you get the smaller nutriberries, they won't have a problem eating them and breaking them up. Nutriberries helped me transition Monty to pellets, but I still feed some seeds. For the vegetables, keep trying different ones. Sometimes the bird will turn their nose up at it and sometimes they will eat it - you'll be able to figure out which ones Kiwi and Avi will not eat at all (e.g., Monty hates bananas and bell pepper pieces).

Try feeding them a bell pepper core with the seeds attached, Monty loves those. Broccoli, peas and carrots are usually a hit too. Try feeding them in the morning when the bird is most hungry, or at a time you notice they are wanting to eat. Try different cutting methods too - sometimes birds will eat shredded carrot but not cubed, or eat carrot sticks but not shredded. Try different ones to see how they like it.

In terms of them wanting your food - this is normal and if you think about it, it would be a flock behaviour to eat the same foods together. If you are eating something they cannot have (avocado, onion, garlic, chocolate, etc.) I would advise you to put them in their cages, because I know from experience the little buggers are fast, and they will keep trying to get at it. If you are eating something they can have, feel free to rip a piece off and share with them. I tend to eat with Monty when he has he own bowl of food, that way he has something to eat for himself, and I do not let him on my plate usually. I'm trying to train him that my plate = no. Even then, he will try to see what I have. It's bad enough keeping one parrotlet tongue away from my food but two would be twice as hard.
 

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Nutriberries is your friend here. They have a variety of flavor and sizes. It is basically a nugget (berry) of seed and pellets stuck together with vitiams. It nature basically makes it hard for them to just pick through for their favorite seeds.


My guys like El Paso Nutri-berries

and Sunny Orchard Nutri-Berries

Pellet-Berries for Cockatiels 10oz
My Parrotlet Cookie loves these! I buy the garden ones too, which have a lot of veggies. They also satisfy her foraging instincts, because she needs to peck at them to find what she wants. It's also fun to put one into a one of those tennis shoe toys (which she also loves) for them to "find!" I feel for you - Cookie is extremely picky, and I've made both birdie bread and chop (freeze them in ice cube trays) and try putting only that into her cage for the first three hours to see if she'll eat it, and she never does. She does love pepper seeds but that's really about it. I've tried eggs, oatmeal, avocado, all types of berries, broccoli, banana, peas, corn, carrots, mango and lots of other things and she won't touch any of them! I've only had her since December, and I'm not sure how old she is - she was definitely a juvenile when I got her, so most likely coming up on a year this summer. If you have any suggestions that you think might work, please let me know. I remove her seeds at night to make sure she's very hungry in the morning and then only put in the other dish.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I've tried eggs, oatmeal, avocado, all types of berries, broccoli, banana, peas, corn, carrots, mango and lots of other things and she won't touch any dish.
uuummm, I don't think avocado is safe

this is what google says: Avocados contains persin, which is toxic to the heart in several species, but not humans. All parts of the plant—skin, meat, pit, leaves—contain the toxin. The most common signs of persin toxicity in birds are collapse, lethargy, heavy breathing, and sudden death.
 

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Good catch! Yes, avocado is on the list of poisonous plants for our creatures. Apparently it has to do with how they are produced to make them able to be shipped or something, but it makes them poisonous.
 

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uuummm, I don't think avocado is safe

this is what google says: Avocados contains persin, which is toxic to the heart in several species, but not humans. All parts of the plant—skin, meat, pit, leaves—contain the toxin. The most common signs of persin toxicity in birds are collapse, lethargy, heavy breathing, and sudden death.
OMG Thank you! Thank God she didn't eat it - the book that I have has a blurb about it being controversial and that there are many aviculturists and breeders who do feed their parrots avocados, including fruit, pits, leaves and branches and have reported no ill effects. It also says that many vets do not feel it is toxic at all, but I will err on the side of caution and never offer it again. It's high in fat anyways and probably not a good choice, toxic or not. Thanks again :).
 

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OMG Thank you! Thank God she didn't eat it - the book that I have has a blurb about it being controversial and that there are many aviculturists and breeders who do feed their parrots avocados, including fruit, pits, leaves and branches and have reported no ill effects. It also says that many vets do not feel it is toxic at all, but I will err on the side of caution and never offer it again. It's high in fat anyways and probably not a good choice, toxic or not. Thanks again :).
Have you tried offering the veggies in different styles of dishes, cut up in different ways, or hand feeding them? My guy eats his veggies but sometimes he's a baby and wants me to hold the veggie for him. :rolleyes: He also particularly will eat his vegetables if he is eating at the same time as us (i.e., as a flock). Have you eaten at the same time as your Cookie? Maybe sitting with them and eating breakfast? I find that chop didn't work at the beginning for me and my guy actually prefers one or two types of veggies per day, but he will sometimes eat chop. You can also trydifferent wetness of the veggies - my guys prefers his veggies kind of wet (e.g., when you thaw frozen veggies) as opposed to dry cut vegetables.
 

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Have you tried offering the veggies in different styles of dishes, cut up in different ways, or hand feeding them? My guy eats his veggies but sometimes he's a baby and wants me to hold the veggie for him. :rolleyes: He also particularly will eat his vegetables if he is eating at the same time as us (i.e., as a flock). Have you eaten at the same time as your Cookie? Maybe sitting with them and eating breakfast? I find that chop didn't work at the beginning for me and my guy actually prefers one or two types of veggies per day, but he will sometimes eat chop. You can also trydifferent wetness of the veggies - my guys prefers his veggies kind of wet (e.g., when you thaw frozen veggies) as opposed to dry cut vegetables.
Thank you! these are great ideas! I will try eating with Cookie, but it's a little tricky with me since I am an "intermittent faster" and have been for over two years. I fast between 20-22 hours a day and only eat an evening meal, but I can certainly take her out next to me while I'm eating at that time. She will eat the pepper if I have it cut with the seeds in it, and I've tried hanging veggies from various places in her cage, but I've not tried different dishes - great idea! I'll also try some of the wet veggies and see if she'll eat. It's weird because now that you are saying this, I remember a long while back serving the chop in a different dish at the bottom of the cage and she was eating it! Idk why I didn't keep that up! I'll also try cutting stuff up in different ways - I'm going to write this down on a Post-It and put it on the fridge - thank you again!
 

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Thank you! these are great ideas! I will try eating with Cookie, but it's a little tricky with me since I am an "intermittent faster" and have been for over two years. I fast between 20-22 hours a day and only eat an evening meal, but I can certainly take her out next to me while I'm eating at that time. She will eat the pepper if I have it cut with the seeds in it, and I've tried hanging veggies from various places in her cage, but I've not tried different dishes - great idea! I'll also try some of the wet veggies and see if she'll eat. It's weird because now that you are saying this, I remember a long while back serving the chop in a different dish at the bottom of the cage and she was eating it! Idk why I didn't keep that up! I'll also try cutting stuff up in different ways - I'm going to write this down on a Post-It and put it on the fridge - thank you again!
You can always pretend to eat rather than actually eating too! I used to do IF too so I know the struggle.

It's just a matter of trial and error for sure. They can be really weird and picky.
 
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