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Go Back   Talk Cockatiels Forums > Cockatiels > Your Cockatiels Health > Food And Nutrition

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Food And Nutrition Post any questions you may have about your cockatiels diet here. Also feel free to share any cockatiel recipes you may know of.

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  #11  
Old 12-29-2016, 12:52 PM
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Sorry, bit of a long story, I hope some of it is useful to you though!

If the seeds won't sprout at all, it could be they are poor quality or simply too old (just like old seeds for planting in your garden do not always sprout, even if the quality is/was good) It may also be that some kinds of seeds take longer to sprout. To be sure you could make a second batch (just for testing this, not necessarily to have your bird eat them) and see if some of the seeds do take longer to sprout than others. I haven't tried sprouting seeds yet myself, so no useful advice on that from me, but I did hear it takes most people a couple of tries to get it right.

When I got Puck, he was on an all-seed diet too. He was still very young (around 8 weeks I believe) and only just recently had started eating completely on his own. He was partially handfed because his parents refused to feed him anymore (it is illegal here to handfeed a bird unless it is to save it from starving if the parents won't feed it themselves) But since it is easier to make sure a bird doesn't get a shortage of nutrients with pellets, I did want to switch him to those.
At first I gave him two separate bowls:
  • One bowl filled with seeds
    It's a mixture for Lovebirds, not perfect but he loves it and it was the only one I could find at that time, that had no sunflower seeds in it.
  • One filled with pellets
    I currently still feed him this, they're Versele-Laga's NutriBird B14 pellets (for tiels, neophema's and lovebirds). But I checked and there's quite a lot of colouring in this food (and they smell reaaaaallly sweet) so I would recommend getting something else. I plan to switch Puck to a different pellet eventually, too.

He refused to try the pellets until I pretended to eat some myself. Still, he wouldn't eat much of it at all, maybe 3 pellets a day? So I decided to give him a 50/50 mixture of seed and pellets in a single bowl, and give him a measured amount of this mixture daily (making sure he'd get enough food even if he would refuse to eat the pellets in the mix).
Then I would give him a fresh batch of this every day, so I could see how much he ate of the pellets. To my surprise he did start eating more of the pellets then, although he still prefers the seeds.
Knowing that he will now definitely eat the pellets, I give him a fuller bowl, and just let him decide when he wants to eat his pellets and when he eats his seeds. I'll give him a fresh batch whenever he has somehow pooped in his bowl (he still sits in his bowl while eating sometimes) or when he has eaten so much of it that what is left isn't enough to feed him for an entire day (I have school during the daytime but the hours are irregular).

I think I'll continue to give him a 50/50 mix of seeds and pellets, as in my opinion eating seed is part of a bird's natural behaviour and as such should the bird be able to show this behaviour. Puck regularly gets fresh vegetables and fruit (we're still trying to figure out which ones he likes) so I don't worry about him not getting all the nutrients he needs with this food.

And yeah, he'll definitely try to eat anything I (pretend to) eat myself, as he was terrified of green beans when I got him, and now actually likes eating them, after he saw me eating them for dinner :P
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Last edited by Lore; 12-29-2016 at 12:55 PM..
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  #12  
Old 01-09-2017, 09:22 PM
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its been almost 2 months now and Pablo wont eat pellets or vegetables or fruit. He tries sprouts but shakes his head and throws it on the floor.

I give him kale carrots and brocolli every day, apples every 2nd to third day, boiled egg once a week, sometimes strawberries bananas and lettuce but he wont eat them. I tried hanging them on a kabob and sprinkling seeds over it for over a month now and he wont eat it. I tried hiding millet inside kale and nothing. I give him mixed veges with his seeds every morning and he wont eat it. I tried grinding up zupreem pellets and sprinkling it on veges, on his seeds and he still wont touch them. I am starting to lose hope he will ever eat healthy. My budgies only took a week to try new veges and they took to pellets in 3 days.

I got nutriberries in the mail recently and he wont eat those either. I am really at a loss.

All he wants is millet and safflower seed. He would eat sunflower but i only give them sparingly.

I never had this issue with my pet budgies He also doesn't trust me yet either. So if i eat in front of him he doesn't care. He doesn't like leaving his cage much . He is a 2 1/2 year old rehomed bird. I dont know much about what happened to him before besides the fact he was homed with anotehr cockatiel for a year or longer.

I'm a little stressed out, I didn't think it would be this difficult to make him happy and healthy. He is pretty cage bound and dislikes humans.

Last edited by frozengirl; 01-09-2017 at 09:25 PM..
  #13  
Old 01-10-2017, 08:14 AM
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Like I had previously stated, this can take time. Every bird is different and he has to learn that humans aren't scary. It's definitely going to take longer than just two months.

Do you hang the kale in his cage like a toy? That always worked for my picky eaters. Tiels don't really eat a lot of fruit, I could never get mine to eat any, although some do like it. Taming is going to be key in getting him to try new things because once he trusts you it will be easier.

Have you tried crumbling the nutriberries up like seeds? Also, try offering the pellets first thing in the morning. Take his seed out the night before and when you feed him, only give him pellets/veggies/nutriberries for the first hour or two. That's when he's hungriest and it will encourage him to try them. Then put the seed back in for the rest of the day.
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  #14  
Old 01-10-2017, 05:38 PM
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Yeah i tried all that. I put some kale on a kabob for a couple hours every day usually (Unless im out of kale) and the grocery stores has none.

It hangs in front of his favorite perch. I tried crumbling the nutriberries too and he wont eat them. Im really surprised because they look like seeds that way.

Well, I noticed when I take him for a shower or clean his cage, he will step on my finger if I move him away from the cage on a handheld perch reluctantly. Since he is clipped he doesn't fly away.

Should I keep him perched on my finger for 30 minutes a day and talk to him or would this make him hate me / slow down the bonding process?
  #15  
Old 01-10-2017, 05:52 PM
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Raisins aren't good? I give my boy this product and it has raisins in it... But he is not keen on them anyway.
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  #16  
Old 01-10-2017, 07:23 PM
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I'm not sure on the raisins. They seem to be in a lot of bird products, it's just not something I would give my birds.

Quote:
Yeah i tried all that. I put some kale on a kabob for a couple hours every day usually (Unless im out of kale) and the grocery stores has none.
It's going to take a while. You just have to keep doing it. It can be discouraging not to see a change. And you do have to realize that not all tiels are gonna be cuddly. He may not every fully accept head scritches or cuddles. Some birds are more standoffish than others.

At this point, if he will sit with you, let him. Offer him millet while he does it so that he sees that sitting with you is fun.
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  #17  
Old 01-10-2017, 10:26 PM
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Thanks Roxy, well , he will sit with me but kind of because he is clipped and cannot fly away. So in a way he doesn't have a choice. So thats why I asked if it will ruin the bonding process. He didn't seem distressed when I did it, but when I brought him back to the cage he took a huge leap as soon as he could lol.
  #18  
Old 01-11-2017, 07:50 AM
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The cage is his safe place. When I first got into tiels I had one standoffish one that really didn't know what to do. So I made him hang out with me and gave him millet every time he did. He slowly warmed up to me that way. It took months to get him to like me but he became a very good buddy after that.
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