Can budgies eat strawberries?
Budgies love sweet berries, so don’t hesitate to give them the occasional strawberry. Just don’t go overboard!
Strawberries are safe for budgies to eat in small amounts, but they do contain some substances that can be harmful in massive amounts. Just like with most fruits and vegetables, strawberries can be served as a treat, but shouldn’t make up too much of your bird’s diet.
If you’d like to know how to safely prepare strawberries for your budgies, this short article will tell you everything you need to know!
Benefits of Strawberries for Your Budgie (Nutritional Value)
Strawberries are made up largely of water, so they are good for hydration. (That also means they are ‘good’ for triggering diarrhea if your budgie eats too many, so keep portion sizes small!)
On the bright side, strawberries contain a wide range of vitamins and minerals that will benefit your budgie.
Some of the most concentrated of these are:
- Vitamin C
Strawberries also contain antioxidants, which will support a healthy immune system and therefore prevent sickness.
However, there are some risks associated with strawberries that you need to be aware of.
Risks of Feeding Strawberries to Your Budgie
Strawberries contain a small amount of salicylic acid. This doesn’t pose any problems in small amounts, but it could make your budgie sick if they eat a load of them at once.
Don’t panic, as salicylic acid isn’t bad in itself. It has similar medicinal properties to aspirin and can be used to reduce inflammation. In fact, you’ll find it in a lot of skincare products!
However, if your budgie ate too much of this acid, they could become unwell.
Too much watery fruit and vegetables will lead to digestive problems and diarrhea. Keep fruit and veggies at 20% of your budgie’s diet as a maximum and you shouldn’t need to worry.
After eating strawberries, you might notice that your budgie’s droppings are pink or red. This is normal, and you don’t need to worry.
But… if you notice that your budgie’s poop is red even though you haven’t fed them any red fruits, you’ll want to call the vet and seek further advice.
These days, almost all fruits and vegetables are sprayed with toxic chemicals. Humans can cope with these chemicals in the short term, but the tiny digestive systems of budgies aren’t always so resilient.
Feed organic fruit and veg to your bird whenever possible. If you can’t, make sure your fruit is properly washed to reduce pesticide residue.
(I have known of birds that have died within 12 hours of being fed salad leaves that their owners didn’t wash, so it’s important to take this advice seriously.)
The Color Red?
A lot of online articles will warn you that budgies are afraid of red, so strawberries could freak them out.
While some budgies do have an aversion to red compared to other colors, it’s rather unlikely that a piece of strawberry will scare your bird into a frenzy.
As with any new food, introduce it slowly by cutting it into small pieces. (If your budgie does seem to react to a red piece of fruit, please let me know in the comments because I’d be interested in hearing about it!)
How to Prepare Strawberries for Your Budgies
To prepare strawberries for your budgies, you can cut them into small pieces and place them in a dish that’s easy to wash.
You’ll want to take the fruit out of the cage at the end of the day before it goes moldy or grows bacteria that could make your bird feel unwell.
If you want to do something a bit more inventive, you could make a fruit and veggie skewer that you place inside the cage like a perch. This will give your bird some enrichment as well as a tasty treat.
Alternatives to Strawberries for Your Budgie
Budgies like many different kinds of berries; just make sure to feed them in moderation.
Here are some examples of berries you can feed your budgie:
Fresh fruits are much better for your budgie than dried fruits, which often have a lot more sugar and might also contain harmful preservatives.
Budgies love munching on fresh strawberries, and I can’t blame them! Just make sure to keep fruit and vegetables nice and varied—and remember that they should make up only around 20% of your budgie’s diet.
Organic strawberries would be a better choice because they won’t have any pesticide residue that can be fatal for small birds. If you can’t get hold of organic fruit or vegetables, a thorough wash before serving will help ensure that they are safe to feed to your bird.
I hope you found this article helpful, and please don’t hesitate to comment with any questions you might have.
My name is Niels Joensen, and I’m the creator of Wings and Beaks. I got my first two budgies at the age of 13, and right away, I fell in love with these beautiful tiny birds. Wings and Beaks is where I share my knowledge and passion for budgies with other bird owners.