Bananas are edible and fleshy fruits produced by a particular herbaceous plant belonging to the Musa genus. They are often associated with monkeys because it’s their favorite fruit. Many birds including parrots also love bananas as well.
Like many other types of fruit, bananas are something that parrot owners like offering to their birds. In fact, many parrots love to eat bananas too, and they are often easy fruits to introduce to parrots. It is okay to offer your parrots bananas either as a treat or as a part of a balanced diet. They are generally safe and highly recommended fruits for your bird.
The only caution you have to exercise when feeding bananas to your parrot, is to give them in moderation. Although they don’t pose much risk to the parrots, too many bananas may not benefit your parrot nutritionally.
THE VERDICT: Can parrots eat bananas? YES, parrots can eat bananas. Read more below!
Are Bananas Good for Parrots?
There are different types of bananas commercially available out there. While bananas are elongated in shape, they are actually considered a berry! While there are more than 1000 types of bananas, more than half of them are inedible. The most common banana types that are eaten all over the world include Cavendish bananas, pisang raja, and plantains.
Banana images from iStockPhoto, credits to: Red banana: bhofack2; Pisang Raja: AmalliaEka; Cavendish: lovelypeace; Plantain: Markus Frenzel
Nutritional Information of Bananas
Bananas have nutritional benefits that are essential for the general health of a parrot. They are a rich source of the following vitamins, minerals, and nutrients:
Parrots don’t store vitamin B6 in their bodies. Therefore, you’ll need to consistently supplement vitamin B6 as it is necessary for your parrot’s health. Luckily enough, bananas contain plenty of vitamin B6.
Aside from facilitating digestion in parrots, vitamin B in general also enables the regulation of stress, especially during mating or molting seasons.
Bananas are also loaded with vitamin A. Here is how vitamin A may be able to benefit your parrot:
- Improves eye health
- Boost night vision
- Facilitate cell growth
- Boost immunity
- Enhance feather health
- Improve reproductive health
Vitamin A deficiency is very common in parrots, especially with those that rely on a diet of seeds only. A parrot lacking Vitamin A is more vulnerable to diseases, and a condition called Hypovitaminosis-A. So, it’s important that you provide your parrot with adequate vitamin A for him to stay healthy – bananas as part of their diet can be an option.
Bananas are rich in magnesium. Magnesium is one of the essential nutrients that regulate biochemical reactions in a parrot’s body, including the synthesis of new proteins. It’s essential for bone development and the creation of strong beaks.
Potassium is required to enable nerve cells to transmit signals properly. It is also needed to facilitate muscular contractions, balance fluid levels in the body, and metabolism of glucose and proteins.
A lack of potassium in your bird’s diet can lead to high amounts of body fluids being expelled from the body, as well as other conditions such as:
- Weak muscles including respiratory muscles
- Poor heart health
- Decreased egg production, thinner-than-usual egg shells
Parrots require vitamin C as they cannot produce it themselves. Vitamin C helps in some major functions in parrots including:
- Helping in wound healing
- Reduces risk of contracting diseases
- Prevents iron deficiency
- Necessary for growth and development
A banana contains around 2% of fiber. Fiber improves the digestibility of other dietary components in parrots. It enhances the movement of the digestive tract; therefore, creating better mixing and absorption of nutrients in a parrot’s body.
Bananas contain iron, a mineral that is responsible for the following:
- Manufacture of hemoglobin that is responsible for carrying oxygen
- Support healthy skin and feathers
- Boost immune system
- Conversion of blood sugar to energy
However, excess irons can affect the normal functioning of the organs while too little iron can lead to anemia. In birds, a health condition called iron storage disease results from too much iron accumulating in their liver. Birds eating diets with high iron content may not need this additional source of iron from bananas.
Are Bananas Bad for Parrots?
Too much of a good thing is always a risk, and this applies to bananas as well. Be sure to check on the recommended number of bananas to feed your parrots because parrots are normally prone to obesity. A large macaw parrot requires around 220 Calories in a day while a budgie needs approximately 12-16 Calories in a day.
On the other hand, a single banana contains between 89-120 calories. This gives you an estimation of how you should balance your parrot’s diet in such a way that you don’t exceed the recommended calorie content.
For example, if you give your macaw a 100g banana in a day, you’ll be left with 120 Calories to work with from other food sources.
In any case, it is never ideal to make fruits such a large part of your parrot’s diet, as our home-based, caged parrots live sedentary lives, while diets high in fruits are often high in sugar as well. This is not ideal for a sedentary lifestyle and can lead to health issues down the road.
Do Parrots Love Bananas?
Parrots do enjoy bananas. It’s probably because bananas taste great and are easy to eat. Bananas offer the parrot a lot of nutrients in a small package. The only disadvantage is that wild parrots don’t come across bananas as we do buy in the grocery store, so it is highly likely that this is not part of many parrots’ natural diet.
Among my three parrots, only Loki the lovebird does not enjoy bananas because she does not like getting wet and sticky food all over her beak! Depending on the parrot’s personality, we may observe differences in preferences too.
How Many Bananas Can I feed My Parrot?
You can give your parrots 2-4 pieces of bananas in a week. The size of the piece depends on the size of your parrot – smaller parrots need only a small slice, while larger parrots can eat bigger chunks.
Otherwise, bananas should not be a staple fruit in your parrot’s diet. It’s sometimes suggested that we give them at least three different fruits every day (in small quantities) to provide some much-needed variety of nutrition.
How To Feed Parrots Bananas?
There are some fun and nutritionally recommended ways to offer your parrot bananas. Here are some of the tips you should consider when feeding parrots bananas:
Feed Parrots Raw Bananas
Parrots prefer them raw. So, it would be better if you give your parrot raw bananas. Besides, raw bananas are fully loaded with nutrients. Cooking eliminates most essential nutrients required for the wellbeing of a parrot.
You can only offer your parrots cooked bananas when they are sick and are not in a position to tackle a raw banana. However, cooked bananas don’t add any real value apart from their strong fruity aroma. They are just more edible. You may get a similar result if you mash up a raw banana to make it easier for your sick bird to eat it.
Give it Fresh
Fresh bananas contain maximum nutrients. Long storage strips them of all nutritional benefits. Cooking them also destroys nutrients. So, it’s advisable that you offer your parrots fresh bananas as a healthier choice.
Green Bananas are also acceptable
Parrots can also eat green (unripe) bananas, but like normal (ripe) bananas, give them in moderation. Green bananas are high in starch content and lower in sugar, but all those starch eventually convert into sugars after being digested in your bird’s body. In general, it is not always the best idea to feed our parrots high amounts of sugar in their diet.
Offer Bananas to them in a large chunk, diced, or mashed
The thing about parrots is that they are just like human beings. Sometimes we like our food to be presented to us in a certain way in order to make it look more palatable and appealing to us. Parrots like such variety too! So, if your parrot is not touching the banana that you placed in their food bowl, try offering the banana in different forms – sliced, diced, or mashed. It takes time to figure out what textures your parrot prefers best.
Let them watch you eat, and offer them some
Parrots are often curious about what their owners are eating, and want in on the action too! Some birds that are not familiar with bananas may be hesitant to touch them if they are not aware that they are edible fruit. Sometimes, when owners themselves eat a banana in front of their parrot, the bird might take the cue and have whatever their owners are having.
So, if you find that your parrot is wary of trying out a piece of banana in its bowl, try eating a banana in front of it and offer to let him bite a piece as well!
Just take note that when sharing food with parrots, avoid letting them come into contact with you saliva, as human saliva can contain certain gram negative bacteria (Pasteurella) which could infect your parrot. Parrots do not have the immunity to fight against these types of bacteria.
Can I Feed Banana Peels to Parrots?
Parrots like feasting on banana peels. Unlike humans, parrots love the rubbery texture of banana peels. Banana peels from organic origin can be safe for consumption if you are sure they do not contain pesticides. In general, bananas are often grown with intensive use of pesticides, which get absorbed in the peel with time. Some of these pesticides eventually penetrate to the flesh, but not as much as some other fruits. However, the peels themselves are often very laden with pesticides. Some people also smear chemicals on the banana skin to fasten ripening.
You may not be able to completely get rid of the chemicals if you wash them thoroughly. So, in a nutshell, avoid feeding your parrots banana peels if you aren’t sure of their source. There are always other sources of food and toys to keep your parrot entertained, which are safer for their health.
Bananas are an excellent source of nutrients for parrots, containing many essential vitamins and minerals such as Vitamin A, B, and C, potassium, magnesium, and iron. They also contain fiber which is good for maintaining gut health. Therefore, you should incorporate them in a parrot’s diet, but in moderation. Bananas, like many other fruits, are high in sugar and starch, and it is not the best idea to give them bananas as a large percentage of their daily diet. Always take precaution when feeding banana peels since they are normally full of harmful chemicals and pesticides – go for organic in this case, or don’t feed at all.
Can Parrots Eat Bananas (Including Peels) – Safe Or Toxic? ›
Parrots like feasting on banana peels. Unlike humans, parrots love the rubbery texture of banana peels. Banana peels from organic origin can be safe for consumption if you are sure they do not contain pesticides.Is banana peel safe for parrots? ›
Most of the bananas you get in the market are laced with pesticides. Try to avoid feeding them banana peel or get organic bananas and wash them thoroughly. Do not feed the stem of the banana to the parrot.Are banana peels safe for birds? ›
The banana peel, while nutritious and full of vitamins, is not a good thing to give birds. The excess cellulose is tough to digest, which can cause gastrointestinal issues.Can African Greys eat banana skin? ›
What fruit can African greys' eat? You can serve any fruits available. Bananas, blueberries, strawberries, pineapple, watermelon, blackberries, cherries, grapes, kiwi, mango, orange, plums, pomegranate, pawpaw, passion fruit, raspberries, peach, banana peel, pears, raisins, dates, apples, papaya, melon, apricots etc.How do you prepare bananas for birds? ›
Birds go bananas for bananas! First, remove the peel and cut each banana in half lengthwise. Then, you can set the fruit on a tree stump or skewer it on a hook. Another idea is to put a few chunks in a mesh bag and watch hummingbirds dart around to eat the fruit flies that gather.Can birds eat a whole banana? ›
Fruits without seeds, like berries, raisins, grapes and mashed bananas can all be offered to the birds on your bird table – and they'll love them!Can parrots eat popcorn? ›
You can serve your bird either popped or unpopped kernels. If you choose to serve the popcorn unpopped, boil the kernels for a bit in plain water to soften the tough hulls.Can birds have potato peelings? ›
Do not give birds raw potato or potato peelings as they contains an enzyme inhibitor called protease, which prevents other enzymes from breaking down food and providing birds with nutrients. Raw potato also contains a lot of starch which can get stuck in the crop.Can parrots eat cucumber? ›
Can parrots eat cucumber? Yes, cucumber is fine for your bird. It's not very nutritious and it contains a lot of water (which can cause loose poops), but many parrots do like it.What foods are bad for African GREY parrots? ›
As birds are lactose intolerant, they should be offered dairy products only on occasion and in very small amounts. High-fat junk food (e.g., French fries, pizza, fatty meats), excessively salty items (e.g., chips, pretzels), chocolate, caffeinated products, and alcoholic beverages should be avoided.
Can parrots eat carrots? ›
Vegetables: Along with fruits, vegetables are another important source of nutrients for your parrot. Safe vegetables include asparagus, beets, bell peppers, broccoli, butternut, carrots, corn on the cob, dandelion greens, collard greens, hot peppers, spinach, sweet potatoes, tomatoes and zucchini.What is the best food for an African GREY parrot? ›
Fresh vegetables such as broccoli, Brussel sprouts, kale and spinach are readily enjoyed by most African Greys. Fresh vegetables such as broccoli, Brussel sprouts, kale and spinach are readily enjoyed by most African Greys. Remember to remove any uneaten veggies after a couple of hours.What is one food that is highly toxic to birds? ›
Onions and garlic
Onions contain sulfur compounds that, when chewed, can irritate the lining of a bird's mouth, esophagus, or crop, causing ulcers, and can induce rupture of red blood cells resulting in anemia. Garlic contains allicin, another chemical that can cause anemia and weakness in birds.
While fresh tomatoes are not actually toxic to birds, many vets recommend not feeding them because they are acidic and can irritate a bird's digestive system. Lots of bird parents also skip tomato products like ketchup, salsa and all the other ways tomatoes make their way onto our plates.What fruit do parrots like best? ›
Fruit and Vegetables – all fresh fruit and vegetables are generally safe for parrot consumption but the favourite ones we have found are carrot, beetroot, peas, sweetcorn, apple, banana, grapes, orange, papaya and pomegranates.What fruit do birds like the most? ›
Berries and small fruits, including blueberries, raspberries, currants, blackberries, mulberries, beautyberries, serviceberries, sumac, holly, juniper, and viburnum are especially popular with many birds. Birds also enjoy other fruits such as oranges, plums, apples, grapes, cherries, crabapples, and prickly pear.Can birds eat popcorn? ›
It's not the worst food you can give to birds. It's not toxic like chocolate or honey; a small amount probably won't cause significant problems. However, it's best to avoid feeding popcorn to birds in large quantities. Never give birds salted, cheese-covered, buttered, or caramel popcorn.Can birds eat cheese? ›
Cheese: Stale, hard bits of cheese will readily be eaten by birds. Mild flavors such as American or mild cheddar are most suitable, but soft cheeses such as cream cheese are not. No moldy or rancid cheese should be offered to birds at any time.Do birds like apple peels? ›
In addition to the red-bellied woodpecker, squirrels, cardinals, mockingbirds and towhees help themselves to the oatmeal and apple peels. The squirrels and cardinals really go for the apple peels. The woodpecker is interested only in oatmeal.Can parrots eat grapes? ›
Grapes are a perfect fruit choice for parrots because it's more nutritious. But as much as you'd like to give your parrot a quick energy boost, always remember not to give them too much of it too frequently. THE VERDICT: Can parrots eat grapes? YES, parrots can eat grapes, but IN MODERATION.
Can parrots eat Cheerios? ›
“Parrots often accept Cheerios or Grape Nuts (cockatiels seem to love them!) instead of seed, and they then seem more willing to try other things, like pellets,” Muscarella says. “If one is concerned about additives, there are organic cereals on the market.Is it OK to feed birds Cheerios? ›
Birds can eat Cheerios and often love to do so. But that does not mean that they are the healthiest choice for birds (or even for us!). Their high sugar content and salt content mean that they are not the best option if you are looking for foods to share with the birds.Can parrots eat honey Cheerios? ›
There are healthier ways for your bird to get his or her crunch on. If you want to go the cereal route, make it of the low-sugar, low-sodium variety, plain Cheerios vs. Honey Nut Cheerios, for example. And keep it to a couple of beak-sized pieces.
We've all heard the warning: don't feed rice to birds or don't throw rice at weddings because birds will eat it. Fact is, rice cooked or uncooked won't hurt wild birds at all. The rumor is that uncooked rice hits the bird's tummy and then swells causing its stomach to explode. It's simply not true.Are crackers safe for birds? ›
Please don't give wild birds bread, crackers or other human snack foods. Bread has zero nutrition for wild birds. In fact, bread, crackers, chips and other human snacks are, in some ways, WORSE than feeding birds absolutely nothing.Can birds eat bacon? ›
As long as you can be sure the bacon is not salty, you can put it on your bird table. Since bacon can be too tough for many birds to tackle, chopping it finely will allow a wider variety of birds to eat it.Can parrots eat celery? ›
Among other things, celery is a source of essential nutrients like vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin K, folate, and potassium, all of which help to keep your feathered friends in tip-top health. There is nothing in celery stalks that is dangerous or toxic to birds.Can parrots eat bread? ›
Birding experts Kenn and Kimberly Kaufman say, “We discourage people from feeding bread to birds, as there are far too many potential risks. If moldy, bread can be dangerous to birds. Bread gets moldy quickly, and mold can pose a number of health problems for birds.Can birds eat celery? ›
Similarly, while many birds enjoy the crunch of celery stalks, their high water content offers birds few nutrients, so they too, should be fed sparingly.What not to do with parrots? ›
- Smoke. ...
- Cook. ...
- Use Cleaners/Disinfectants Or Set Your Oven To Self-Clean Mode. ...
- Host A Big Party. ...
- Place A Phone Call. ...
- Organize Important Paperwork. ...
- Swear. ...
- Spray Anything But Water.
Can parrots eat ice cream? ›
Because there is some risk to eating ice cream, it is best to avoid giving it to birds. Instead, give them a homemade ice cream cone feeder, a dairy-free frozen treat, or crushed ice. This will let you spoil your pet or backyard birds a little bit without risking their health and safety.What can parrots not drink? ›
Caffeinated drinks such as coffee, tea and soda are tempting to share with your bird, but even a few sips of these beverages can be extremely hazardous to your feathered pal. Caffeine may cause increased heart rate, arrhythmias, hyperactivity and even cardiac arrest in birds.What is a green parrots favorite food? ›
The majority of parrot breeds enjoy vegetables such as kale, zucchini and shredded carrot, while their favourite fruits are papaya, banana and rockmelon. Never give your parrot chocolate, caffeine, avocados, fruit seeds, mushrooms, peanuts, onions or garlic. Your parrot's species will dictate how often they'll eat.Do parrots eat rice? ›
Yes, parrots can eat rice! As parrot owners, we can integrate rice into a bird's diet as part of a healthy lifestyle.Can parrots eat raw broccoli? ›
Broccoli is definitely safe for your birds, both cooked and raw!What is better seed or pellets for my bird? ›
Less nutritional imbalances and greater health are provided to birds when they consume more pellets in their diets. One of the greatest tools an owner has at home to keep their birds healthy is to feed them a proper diet; therefore, a pellet-based diet is advantageous to a seed-based diet for pet birds.Why is my African GREY parrot pulling his feathers out? ›
Environmental Causes: Atmosphere
A common one is an atmosphere that is too dry for Parrots – central heating, shut windows, a lack of humidity can all cause feather picking. Even in winter a bird should have the choice to bathe.
Foods that should never be offered to parrots include chocolate; caffeinated and alcoholic beverages; avocado; shellfish; and any meat, fish, poultry or eggs that is undercooked or has been cooked, refrigerated and then reheated. Many bird owners have heard the warning about chocolate, but it's worth repeating.Can parrots eat peanutbutter? ›
Peanut butter is a good high-protein food for birds, and they can eat any of the same types humans do. If you're buying it specifically for birds, look for natural or organic types with the fewest additives.Can parrots eat yogurt? ›
While there are some birds that like to have milk or cheese or yogurt in their diet, many of those things do have lactose in them. Do not feed too much dairy product to a pet bird or parrot, because they can't really digest it properly, which can lead to diarrhea.
What birds Cannot be eaten? ›
The pitohui, the ifrita, and the rufous or little shrikethrush all sequester batrachotoxin in their skin and feathers. The African spur-winged goose is toxic to eat as it sequesters poison in its tissues, from the blister beetles that it feeds on.Can parrots eat olive? ›
We like cluster palms and arecas since they are easy to control and will take more chewing by large parrots without dying. We have used a variety of olive in the past and our birds showed no ill effects. They liked to eat the tiny green olives and buds.Is spinach safe for parrots? ›
Spinach. Spinach and other types of leafy green vegetables such as romaine lettuce and kale are also wonderful additions to any pet bird's healthy diet. 2 Not only do most birds love to eat these healthy veggies, but they are also full of nutrients and antioxidants that can boost your bird's immune system.Can parrots eat cheese? ›
Cheese is not healthy for parrots. It can lead to stomach ache and other digestive issues in your parrot. So is best to avoid feeding cheese.What calms parrots? ›
When you're trying to calm your parrot down, make it a special point to always generously reward desired, calm behavior. Toss a treat in his dish as a reward. Or, stop and talk to your bird, whistle and dance with it. Jingle a toy or play directly with the bird.Can parrots eat tuna? ›
Offering these fish to our parrots in moderation will not cause them harm, but there are other types of fish which present less concern such as salmon, catfish, cod, pollack and canned tuna (only use water packed tuna).What are parrots favorite snacks? ›
Parrots are known to love nuts, with each one having their own preference, but almost universally they loved peanuts. The rule of thumb when offering nuts to your pet parrot is to make sure there is a variety and always offer unsalted, unroasted nuts, in shells. Some favorites for parrots include: Almonds.Do parrots eat raw banana? ›
So, can parrots eat bananas? This is an excellent question that every parrot owner should know the answer to when designing a diet for their pet. The short answer is yes, parrots can eat bananas.Are eggshells good for parrots? ›
As for the eggshell, it is a good source of calcium. This can immensely help with the growth and development of your parrot. Calcium is so important for your parrot's growth and overall health, that is why we recommend to always offer cuttlebones!What animal can eat banana peels from? ›
Banana peels are sometimes used as feedstock for cattle, goats, pigs, monkeys, poultry, rabbits, fish, zebras and several other species, typically on small farms in regions where bananas are grown. There are some concerns over the impact of tannins contained in the peels on animals that consume them.
Is it safe for animals to eat banana peels? ›
Be wary of peels. While the peels are not toxic to dogs, they are hard to digest and may cause a blockage. Even without the peel, feeding your pup too many bananas can cause stomach upset. If you have any questions or concerns about how much to give your dog, consult your veterinarian.What fruits can parrots not eat? ›
While most fruit is safe and generally healthy for birds to consume in small amounts, certain fruits containing seeds (such as apples and pears) and pits (such as cherries, apricots, peaches, nectarines, and plums), should not be offered to birds without removing the seeds and pits first, as these seeds and pits ...What human food is safe for parrots? ›
Safe vegetables include asparagus, beets, bell peppers, broccoli, butternut, carrots, corn on the cob, dandelion greens, collard greens, hot peppers, spinach, sweet potatoes, tomatoes and zucchini. Parsley is also an option.Do parrots eat boiled eggs? ›
The short answer is yes, your parrot can have some boiled egg. If you'd like to know more about how much to feed, which parrots benefit from a little boiled egg in their diet, how to feed eggs and more, keep reading!Why you should not throw away banana peels? ›
The skin will decompose slowly and release nutrients into the soil. You can also add the peels to your compost pile, where they will decompose with the rest of the waste. Another method of fertilizing your plants with banana peels is grinding the dried skin.Why shouldn't you eat a banana peel? ›
Eating banana peels can expose you to contaminants or pesticides, so it's important to scrub them carefully if you happen to like the taste and texture.Is it OK to throw banana peels outside? ›
You may have learned that natural foods decompose in nature; Glacier National Park reminds us why it's a bad idea.What are the benefits of banana peel in animal feed? ›
Nutritive value of banana peels as silage
They have high moisture content (around 15% DM), which helps animals to stay hydrated. Banana peels are also a good source of minerals, especially potassium and sodium, and have a fibre content of around 30% compared to the fibre content of around 45% in most grass species.
On behalf of law enforcement and environmentalists everywhere, the short answer is “no.” While it isn't far-fetched to think some things like banana peels, orange peels, apple cores, nuts, shells and seeds will be okay and disintegrate on their own, law is law and you could still find yourself paying the price.Can I throw an apple outside? ›
The apple core is equally as dangerous as any other type of litter because it WILL help a hungry animal find a meal – by the side of the road. Food items thrown from cars attract wild animals to the sides of roads, and roads are not a safe place for animals to be.