Sometimes it can be a bit challenging to feed birds, especially if you are a novice. If you have already purchased the best squirrel proof bird feeder for the money and you are now looking for tips and tricks about what is ok, and what is not when it comes to bird food, we are here to help.
In this short article, we have decided to provide you with an informed answer to the question can birds eat bread. So, if this topic is of interest to you, keep reading!
Is bread good?
Bread seems to be the most accessible thing that one can feed to wild birds. However, supplying birds only with bread is not a good idea. According to the scientists, although bread is not harmful to animals of this type, it cannot provide them with all the necessary nutrients that they need in order to have a long and happy life.
To make sure that your companions are given all the beneficial foods that they so much require, it is advisable that you also add other kinds of food in their diet. If you want to play it safe, there are numerous foods pre-packed and ready for you in the local pet store. So, check them out!
Whenever you want to give bread to your pet bird, remember to soak it in water because it is easier to eat. Also, if possible, some recommend that you feed your pet bird crumbled brown bread instead of white one.
When it comes to wild birds such as ducks, it is best that you do not feed them bread. Chances are that fellow park visitors have already done so. As an alternative, you can give ducks special mixes of seeds that you can find at your local pet shop, as mixes of this sort are specially formulated to include additional nutritious substances.
When can bread become dangerous?
As the experts put it, bread acts like a filling. In other words, it makes the birds feel full, but it does not supply them with the necessary nutrients that are so very vital for them to lead a healthy life.
When fed to wild animals such as the ducks from your local pound, bread can lead to the development of angel wings, a condition that is caused by malnutrition. Angel wings are developed when the bones and joints of a duck do not actually grow properly.
So, instead of them lying flat near against the body of the animal, they grow outwards. Because of this, birds lose their ability to fly and they cannot migrate whenever winter arrives. Also, they cannot fight off predators as easily.
At this point in time, angel wing is a malformation that is both irreversible and non-treatable. So, keep this in mind before deciding to feed aquatic birds bread next time when you visit the local park.
One thing that you should keep in mind before you feed birds bread is the fact that this food tends to mold rather easily. If you give moldy bread to birds, chances are that they will get sick from salmonella or other similar diseases.
Mold can also cause feather malformations that lead to the birds not being able to fly, as well as to respiratory illnesses that can prove deadly.
It is not good for the environment
When wild birds are fed bread constantly, they also produce more waste. This is especially true if we speak about a group of birds such as ducks that live in the same place for months on end. If the waste is not cleaned regularly, there is a chance that diseases are spread more easily.
Feeding bread to wild birds is also not good because it messes with their natural diet. Birds do not naturally eat bread. Therefore, if they get used to eating it, chances are that they will lose interest in searching for alternative food sources.
New generations of birds can get used to being given food to such an extent that they might not develop the necessary skills to look for themselves by foraging for food on their own.
Other foods you should be eerie of
Numerous vets point out that all bird owners should remember that there are some foods that they should never feed your pet birds.
Although avocados are classified as vegetables and, thus, they should be good for birds, recent studies have shown that feeding avocado to birds is dangerous because some types of avocados contain persin, a substance similar to fatty acids that has been linked to heart damage when fed to birds.
Because it is difficult to know which sorts of avocados are safe, it is generally recommended that you refrain from feeding this vegetable to your feathered friend. Plus, vets have noted that it is also quite challenging to determine just how much avocado a bird can eat without it being affected. Instead, you should give your pet bird other vegetables such as pea pods or carrots.
Chocolate is another no-no as it can also be toxic when fed to pet birds. This happens because this type of food is rich in caffeine and theobromine, two substances that can cause heart increase, vomiting, and diarrhea.
Some pet owners have also noted that chocolate-based treats can also induce seizures and tremors in birds. As an alternative, whenever you want to give a sweet treat to your beloved pet you should stick to fruits such as mangoes or papayas.
Feeding birds foods that contain high levels of fats is also not a good idea as this might lead to the pets building up cholesterol in their bodies. As a result, the bird might develop medical conditions such as obesity, arthritis and even heart diseases and strokes.
There are species of parrots such as the Quaker or the Amazon, that are especially predisposed to dealing with this kind of issues. This does not mean that you have to stop feeding your pet meals that are high in fats. If you present them with high-fat foods in low quantities, this should not be an issue.
Before you make any decision, be sure to have a chat with your local vet. Also, if you own a bird that eats foods that are rich in fats in the wildlife, you should still provide it with a sufficient amount of fats so that you won’t interfere with its diet in any way.
Onions and garlic
Because onions and garlic are vegetables, some pet owners consider that feeding these foods to their pets is safe. Still, once again, this might not entirely be the case. Garlic and onions are not beneficial to pets such as dogs, cats or birds. For instance, onions contain numerous sulfur compounds that can irritate the internal lining of a bird’s mouth, crop or esophagus.
As a direct consequence, the pet can end up suffering from ulcers or anemia. What is more, you should know that garlic is also known to contain allicin, a type of substance that can make your pet bird feel weak.
One artificial sweetener that you should avoid at all costs is Xylitol. Xylitol can cause a wide array of various diseases in birds such as liver damage or hypoglycemia. It should be pointed out that, at this time, there are not a lot of studies that have centered around the effects of this chemical substance on the well-being of birds. However, most vets recommend that pet owners avoid it.
Xylitol is often found in foods that are used to help pets lose weight. So, before you make any purchases, be sure to take the time and read the list of ingredients.
Fruit seeds and pits
It is a wide-known thing that fruits are generally safe to be fed to birds. Still, certain foods that also contain seeds, such as pears or apples, or those that include pits, such as cherries, should be fed with extra care.
From this point of view, it is advisable that one first removes the seeds or the pits of the fruit before giving it to the bird. This way, the risk of it choking on it is reduced. Even more importantly, these seeds and pits are not safe because they contain cyanide, a substance that is not good for the safety of your feathered companion.
Of course, there are some fruits that contain seeds that are safe, such as watermelons, grapes or tomatoes.