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Parrotlet Diet Discuss the diets of parrotlets here. Recipes can go here too.

pellets vs seed, discussion among vets

message board convo about pellets

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Old 10-03-2007, 11:40 PM   #11
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PaulPion: Welcome to Sunday Night Rounds. Tonight Join AF, DVM, DABVP, for Pet Avian Clinical Nutrition! "A" is a longtime VIN consultant - avian medicine. He has an all exotic practice in CA adjacent to the California Avian Laboratory that he founded and operates. See http://home.surewest.net/avianlab/ for more about the laboratory and the services Alan and his team provide. And with that, I'll turn the microphone over to Alan.

AF: Good Evening. Ever since pet avian medicine became a following 30-40 years ago, veterinary clinicians have recognized that malnutrition is a serious problem in our patients. For 50 years, dog and cat diets have been in the mass market, enhanced by years of good research. The same is true for commercial poultry, however pet avian medicine literature contains very little in the way of nutritional needs studies. Certainly our pathology reports have provided important information along with astute clinical observations. And, in my specialty practice, way over half of new clients are feeding just seed and claim to know nothing is amiss.
Gang, with the go-ahead, please answer this in short phrases - any and all history or clinical signs (physical exam) data that might be associated with malnutrition (example: easily fractured bone) - go ahead [this is a blanket ga to any and all takers].
  • PaulPion: poor feather condition
  • CailinHeinze: blunted choanal papilla
  • ToddGray: overgrown beak; liver disease
  • WilliamWhite: obesity
  • CailinHeinze: decreased immune system
  • KerryMilliken: oral abscesses
  • ChristineFernandez: upper respiratory disease
AF: Those are all good and common ones; yes liver disease can be histologically proven to be nutritional sometimes; URI - as it relates to Vit A of epi linings YES. Any other organ systems come to mind?
  • S: heart
  • Will: goiter from iodine deficiency
  • Cailin: integument
  • Kerry: digestive--oral cavity--squamous metaplasia
  • Chic: respiratory
  • Christine: gout
AF: S - elaborate on the heart.
S: cardiomyopathy? just a thought, e.g., mynah
AF: Yes gout at least in budgies, squamous tubular metaplasia assoc with Vit A def. How about reproductive tract?
  • Christinne: egg binding
  • Cailin: egg binding
  • Kerry: just had one-egg binding
  • Chuck: hyper estroginism e.g. feather picking, etc
AF: I am convinced that a vast majority of dystocias and related sx are preventable via diet alone. So what constitutes a good diet? Veterinarians who work with my laboratory know that they will be asked (during a lab consult) what is the patient's diet? Sometimes I have heard "he's on a good diet." To which I reply, what is the diet? (Checking the patient record)- "oh the client says it is on a good diet - but I don't know what it would be."
Unfortunately, most bird owners, unless they are working with an up to date veterinarian or are plugged into good information from a retailer (uncommon), a book (Birds for Dummies) or internet (good and bad information there), are probably poorly informed. I believe this starts with poor understanding of even human nutrition by many pet owners.
In the 1970's and 1980's we had the safflower seed based seed mixes (Toppers et al) touted by many, including "leading veterinarians." This was the solution for the "cholesterol and narcotics" of sunflower. Well of course there was no truth to these marketing lies nor was the total fat lower. Powders mixed in with oil were supposed to provide micronutrients. Well they didn't. Mr. Topper is gone and that diet concept is pretty much behind us. And for years, the "progressive" advice was to feed lots of fruits and vegetables (in addition to seed).
Gang - in short answers speak up - what do fruits and vegetables provide or what don't they provide (to "enhance" the seed diet)? Go ahead....
  • Christine: vitamin A
  • Cailin: water soluble vitamins, also vit A; need a lot of veggies to off-set the fat in the seed
  • William: fruits are high in glucose
AF: Christine name some produce sources of Vit A; question is positive and negative benefits of fruits and vegetables?
Christine: not good sources of lysine or protein; squash sweet potato bell peppers are Vit A sources.

AF: Yes Christine, I would like to point out that typical American fruits are overrated for nutrition - Vit C need is debatable; sugars; high phosphorus. Yes the orange vegetables offer an advantage.

Todd: what about calcium?

AF: Fruits are upside down regarding CA. Fruits make a seed-based CA deficiency WORSE!! Kale collards mustard; almonds (a little); dairy products (watch out for the fat) -sources of calcium.

Chuck: some greens are good for CA

AF: What concerns me about excessive vegetables also - is they are also mostly carbs

Todd: exactly, most fruits don't provide much

Christine: most are bound with oxalic acid are they not?

AF: Oxalates- spinach, chard, bok choy- okay to feed but don't overdo.
Okay when you draw and submit a blood panel on an avian patient, whose nutritional history is substandard, what information (short answers) can you extract from the blood panel to support this?

William: hypoproteinemia

AF: Okay but I don't think we can quantitative - other than starvation

Christine: paucity of gram positive bacteria in fecal sample

AF: Christine - the gram stain issue regarding nutrition is a bit controversial and one that I am not convinced is reliable.

Kerry: elevated liver values

AF: Kerry can you be more specific?

Kerry: elevated AST

AF: How about the hemogram? Kerry- what in the malnutrition history would be responsible for AST elevation?

Ted: anemia

Kerry: Hi fat--seed can predispose to fatty liver syndrome

AF: Yes but while we aren't doing clin path tonight, we can list many causes of AST elevation including non-hepatic (e.g. skeletal/cardiac muscles).

Well for the hemogram - a non-regenerative anemia could be consistent with starvation. My point in the panel is that precious little in the blood panel provides scientific evidence of malnutrition - the history and physical are the most important. Certainly we can discuss plasma calcium but of course we aren't measuring total body calcium and hypocalcemic tetany (clinical signs/ low CA) will correlate with history.
Following cues from the Latin American "peasant diet" cooked beans, rice and corn diets are touted as healthy for birds. As a sole diet what positive OR negative items can you list about such a diet?

Christine: high in phosphorus

AF: Thanks Christine - I take that as negative

JT: corn good protein

Chuck: cheap... but poor diet

Cailin: can have good protein, but lots of carbs, and sugar (corn)

JT: bad carbs

Kerry: where is the vitamin A? promotes obesity

AF: Corn is incomplete protein other than "high Lysine" strains served up by international aids groups to farmers.

Christine: but a reasonably good low fat source of protein.

AF: Correct virtually no vit A; CA/P ratio upside down. Yes lower fat; but we all know too much pasta can end up on your belly. The kidney type beans (I was inferring) would constitute a complete protein source. But the human diet books will often condemn such a food as another carbo. So we have most of our energy from CHOs

Kathy: Rice and beans combined are supposed to make a more complete protein than either contributes separately.

AF: A bit better than all fat. But still too much CHOs. I am fine with such a food stuff as long as it represents a small % of total diet. So I will assume that everyone here is familiar with formulated diets. A couple of examples are cat chow and dog chow. In the trade, the same types of products for birds are referred to as "pellets." Unfortunately virtually none of the products are labeled as pellets and most of them aren't really pellets (but rather extruded and other processes). This adds to further client confusion.
Well our goal is to promote the idea of formulated diets as "bird chow or bird food" relegating seed mixes as a side dish or a treat, not unlike a bowl of "mixed nuts" for us. And since these products have been around for 15-20 years, why are they a well-kept secret among many bird owners? Well try to find them in supermarket or superstore chains. Even the large pet store chains - who have great info on their websites on proper nutrition, take a minimalist approach in practice- offering little selection, usage (in their livestock) or recommendation for such products. Why is this so? I presume that because seeds sell good. This may well mean that you may need to carry a product or at least be able to refer your clients to a retailer who does.

JT: seed diets cheaper to sell

AF: I might suggest better profit margin but I am not sure that is the case. I call it a case of folklore (creation of the seed mix for " ___") and tradition: not science and nutrition.

Cailin: I worked at a large pet store, we fed pellets exclusively, and carried 6 brands. People still bought seed preferably if I didn't interrogate them first! They would ask what the "Trix" cereal was for!

AF: The big change is retailers selling properly weaned birds that are eating these better products. The marketing is confusing - for example Zupreme (popular in my area) - is called Fruit Treat - many people think it is a fruit substitute not a "complete diet" like a dog chow. By answering Y or N, how many carry these products for sale in their practices?
  • Ted: n
  • Janice: y
  • Todd: y
  • Kenneth: y
  • Richard: n
  • JT: n
  • Chuck: n
  • Christine: n
  • Charles: y
  • Susan: n
  • Cindy: y until I sold practice
  • Mary: y, sort of
  • Cailin: student
  • William: we don't see birds yet
AF: It can be a good service and what I see probably better margin than those dog/cat products that compete with other retailers (Rx diets, premium dog food etc).

JT: Alan, could it also be a lack of advertising... we see "Puppy chow" commercials every day on TV, but never anything for the avian patient...

AF: Unfortunately part of the "bird pellet" industry is a mom and pop sort of thing and the bigger ones are marketed through the chains - where as I said talk a good story on their websites but ignore the products in the store.

JT: So was Purina when it first started...

AF: Yes - I can almost remember when dog food was uncommon and knew old vets who used to see all sorts of dog/cat diseases due to serious malnutrition because these pets weren't being fed commercial rations.

William: Who is doing research on avian diets, and can you recommend some good brands?

AF: Sadly very little research; many testimonials. Roudybush did a bunch 15-20 yrs ago but the products are quite different than before. Some of the major brands will sponsor "aviculturalist trials" but it becomes testimonial. Ideally checks written to university research would be ideal. On the flipside problems good/bad performance noted by clinicians/pathologists-some of this gets back to manufacturers who make changes.

Mary: But how many universities have avian programs besides poultry?

AF: Mary if you are talking avian clinical (pet avian) - not enough but it is improving but our ABVP- Avian types aren't nutritionists by training.

Kerry: my hospital just started carrying Harrison's and LaFaber's nutriberry and pellet products--the patients seems to like them, and so do the owners but we just recently started. Any comments?

JT: Ted LaFaber was a pioneer in this, but a lot of his work was limited to his patients, rest his soul.

AF: We have experienced more renal problems with 100% LaF pellets but I don't recommend anyone's brand 100% (none are perfect for your species ... yet). You will be able to download my handout for the brands we "approve" the url later in the rounds

Cailin: if you are carrying HBD, does it "cheapen" it to also sell Exact, or Roudybush? Or can you sell a few different ones, plus HBD?

AF: My practice sells HBD, did sell Roudybush but I am impatient regarding customer service. I think Tom Roudybush is a brilliant scientist and they have good products. We recommend but don't sell them now... Also sold Hagen - but even though good product less interest. HBD is most expensive due to "organic ingredients" While I won't personally pay 3x for an organic apple, I explain to clients the reason for the cost and don't make any claims about the organic other than product performs well (as do several others).

JT: Alan, do you see other diseases (besides the renal ) or behavioral problems in patients on 100 % pelleted diets?

AF: Renal is the biggie and can be fatal if not recognized soon enough - PU is typical clinical sign, followed by uric acid elevation.
So we get to conversion to these diets. Some practices offer an inpatient package- which can be a good service. And there are many tips out there. The information that goes out on our computer record (don't worry if you can't digest it all now- you can get the rounds archives from VIN):
Seed diets are deficient in most major nutrients and contain excessive fat for the pet bird.
Formulated Diets (extruded, pellets, crumbles etc) are designed in an attempt to provide a balanced diet to your bird.
HOW TO CONVERT YOUR PET BIRD TO A FORMULATED DIET:
Our target amount is 80% of the diet as fed. The key to conversion is initially limiting the seed quantity available to your bird to one-half of what the bird will eat per day. What is that amount? To find out:
1) Measure, in teaspoons or tablespoons quantity of seed mix you place in clean cage first thing in the morning. IMPORTANT: ALL SEED (including millet spray and seed trees) MUST BE INCLUDED IN YOUR MEASUREMENTS!!!
2) The next morning (24 hours later) measure, in teaspoons or tablespoons quantity of seed mix which is left uneaten.
3) Subtract remainder from the initial quantity to determine the actual amount of seed your bird eats in 24 hours.
4) Start feeding ONLY one half of the calculated amount of seed to your bird on a daily basis. Place an equal quantity of the new formulated diet (Harrison's, Roudybush, etc.) in the same bowl.
5) Gradually, over a number of days, decrease the seed percentage.
Worried your bird isn't eating enough? Solution: track your pet's weight. Buy a food or postal scale (or better yet a digital scale). Mark or record the initial weight. Then weigh your bird every morning. During conversion, we can easily accept a 5% weight loss. A 10% weight loss, except with obese birds, is excessive over a short time.
Most birds on formulated diets will tend to be a little leaner, due to a lower fat diet. They will, however, continue to have a regular dropping output, containing both green feces and white urates (kidney waste).
**** Important Note: the above conversion program is to be started ONLY with a bird that is not underweight and is not sick. If your bird is currently under our care with an illness - DO NOT START the conversion program - do ask us when to start it. You can, however, offer some of the new food as a side item. ****
It is not uncommon for clients to try to cut corners and skip the directions - we do document they got them (in their computer medical record) and on followup phone checks - will determine from their answers if they have followed the advice. Our biggest concern is small birds that don't recognize the diet as food and are offered nothing else initially and starve to death due to poor compliance (:
An Adobe Acrobat copy of the current care and feeding handout I use is available at: http://home.surewest.net/avianlab/AMCCARE.pdf
There are certainly other approaches. Anyone care to share theirs?

Kathy: IME - if you can convert a bird to sprouted seed, they will convert to pellets more easily.

Chuck: I agree with you. I remember when Wm Morrison Jr. gave lectures on dog nutrition on dog nutrition. Same problem now. Hang in there. I know you are on the right tract.

AF: Kathy as far as sprouted seed, I have no current experience but I no longer eat nor recommend alfalfa sprouts etc due to enteropathic E coli, Salmonella and Campylobacter-associated outbreaks.

JT: we crush the pelleted diet and put it over a favorite fruit or vegetable... a la shake and bake...

Cailin: I like to feed more people food, preferably hand fed while the person is eating it...then start adding pellets.

AF: I like to tell clients that half is the leadership challenge - the parrot already assumes they are boss of the house and owner typically reinforces that. They need to take charge and be the boss. Again Birds for Dummies book great help

William: during the Avian Fund course, Dr. Speer 'guarantees' in-hospital conversion or 'he eats the boarding fees'.

AF: Yes other clinicians offer the same and are always successful. We don't officially offer this service but end up doing it sometimes when patient there for something else. And always are successful.
I would like to caution to limit the people food in long run because the "boss" meaning the parrot will choose heavily the empty calories (starches and fats) And finally as you will see in the above handout, we don't recommend 100% formulated diet. Conversely, diluting the diet too much (often with empty fats and starches) will lessen the overall nutritional delivery. These diets aren't perfect- and unfortunately kidney disease can occur in some species with some products fed exclusively- often marked by polyuria for starters.

Cailin: are you familiar with Beak Appetite food? My cockatiel loves it, she gets that, veggies, beans, and HDB.

AF: Cailin I am not - is it marketed as a "complete diet"?

Cailin: no, I don't think so. but it seems pretty good to me by human nutrition standards... she gets it as part of a diet.

AF: I would like to point out 30 years the feds started requiring dog/cat food to be balanced diet because Kitty Queen chopped liver was killing cats. We have no regs nor standards for birds

Christine: Have you seen any correlation between pancreatitis and a pelleted diet fed almost exclusively? I believe it is HBD fed to a Macaw.

AF: Christine - we don't have the k9 model for pancreatitis in birds - and there are many etiologies - but no I cannot say that. And w/o histo you cannot characterize the pancreas and well as SA clinicians feel they can with non-invasive diagnostics.

Kerry: I know that this is off the beaten track, but I am rescuing a 3 year-old emu what has been fed cracked corn for the past year. I ordered the Mazuri emu maintenance pellets to try to convert, but it's been very difficult finding out nutritional specifics for ratites. Any suggestions?

AF: Mazuri emu has performed well - however the caloric balance for such a diet should vary with the clime. Start with alfalfa offerings.

Richard: who is the publisher for Birds for Dummies?

AF: used to be IDG press now Hungry Minds. Good to sell in practice. If you order 20 copies you get the good price. Also have Iguanas for Dummies now

Richard: thanks... price range?

Cailin: 19.99 retail.

AF: you are looking at about 11-12 bucks including UPS your cost.
TaskeenTharianimirza: any recommendations for a formulated diet for pigeons?

AF: Ah pigeons and their owners who know more than DVM/VMDs! The traditional pigeon diets have problems in my opinion. Since most of my pigeon patients are cherish pets (other than the $10000 racer) I recommend a crumbled pet bird formulated diet. I think it is important to use handouts - I prefer to write my own but note Kathy Lyon is here- she runs the AAV office that offers quite a few AAV topic handouts.

Kathy: 21 titles, to be exact.

Taskeen: any makes in particular that are better suited to their needs?

AF: They have done well on mostly Roudybush or Harrison's to name a couple.

Richard: Kathy: can we get them on the web site?

Kathy: I will be posting an order form next week, but for now, you can read titles and call our office. The URL for the AAV website is http://www.aav.org/

AF: Note that they are a fund-raising item for the AAV
WilliamWhite: how much difference is there in pellets for parrots, conures, budgies, etc, i.e. are they very different?

AF: Good question - in most cases the difference is only size. But for example sunflower based seed mix is 50 +/- % fat; "form diets" are 5-6 % and macaws often need more; 'toos and ams we try to limit extra beyond the form diet. We are seeing emergence of "species specific diets like Kaytee Macaw (higher fat) and Pretty Bird African ("more digestible calcium") but based on concepts rather than hard research. Most of the time it is a picture of a parrot on the bag but still more valid than cockatiel mix, budgie seed mix, parrot seed mix

William: thanks, appreciate it.

JT: Alan do you think it might be possible that, like some dog foods and dog breeds, some species can not handle the "Basic" formulation of Protein and CHO, thus the renal or other diseases?

AF: I suspect with time we will see some of that (based on hard science). But realize you have 50 brands of dog food that are pretty darn good and they know exactly what the species (if not the breed) needs. We are far from that but have come a long way in 20 years - much more to go. Your mission as clinicians is to help your clients care for their family members better (you already knew that).

JT: :-)

William: Silly question, but do you see food hypersensitivity in psit's?

AF: Based on skin/feather follicle biopsies - macaws are high on suspicion list and clinical response to removal of seeds (to which I will speculate mycotoxins may play a role. Also Tom Tully at LSU and Pat Whirter (Melbourne Aust) doing skin testing with interesting results (last few years of AAV proceedings US. Euro AAV and Aust AAV meeting)

Richard: got to go, thanks Alan! great addition to the Avian Fundamentals course.

JT: we had a B&G Macaw allergic to Pine Nuts... again I suspect a mycotoxin there.

AF: Pine Nuts have a holy status because of the thick billed parrot natural history but they are mostly fat and hard to imagine an important diet component. Mycotoxin testing (you need to know which to ask for) often available at your state dx lab. We used to do an ELISA (in our lab) years ago made for feed corn and every seed mix sample tested exceeded federal req for corn.

JT: Thanks Alan...

Taskeen: Can you clarify what test we should ask for if we send of a sample?

AF: No I can't - it depends on the situation. Ask the toxicologist. For example those darned walnut shells make toxin and may be different from say corn. There are several types and whether you are testing liver, kidney, or feed etc. And my lab doesn't run these mycotoxin assays - state labs.

Taskeen: I was thinking more of feed.

AF: Again you would best ask your govt lab what they have available. Also chain of custody issues - ideally unopened pkg for assay.

Kathy: g'night, Alan. great program!

Cailin: thanks! look forward to reading your handouts!

Taskeen: thanks

Christine: thanks for all of the information and comments!

Paul: super job alan -- thanks!

Kenneth: thanks, good night all.

Chuck: GREAT job!! thanks, Alan...

Kathy: great session, thank you!
William: good-nite, Alan and all. enjoyed it.
AF: good nite all! thanks and have nice PM
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Old 10-03-2007, 11:44 PM   #12
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This is all I can find for now. I've put off doing a journal article review to do this, but now i HAVE to go do my homework. . . I love procrastinating, I'm very good at it.

If you all want me to look up more stuff post it and I'll see what I can do! Oh and Art, I'll get your recipe to you, I haven't forgotten.
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Old 10-04-2007, 03:16 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by catfish View Post
HOW TO CONVERT YOUR PET BIRD TO A FORMULATED DIET:

Our target amount is 80% of the diet as fed. The key to conversion is initially limiting the seed quantity available to your bird to one-half of what the bird will eat per day. What is that amount? To find out:
1) Measure, in teaspoons or tablespoons quantity of seed mix you place in clean cage first thing in the morning. IMPORTANT: ALL SEED (including millet spray and seed trees) MUST BE INCLUDED IN YOUR MEASUREMENTS!!!


2) The next morning (24 hours later) measure, in teaspoons or tablespoons quantity of seed mix which is left uneaten.
3) Subtract remainder from the initial quantity to determine the actual amount of seed your bird eats in 24 hours.
4) Start feeding ONLY one half of the calculated amount of seed to your bird on a daily basis. Place an equal quantity of the new formulated diet (Harrison's, Roudybush, etc.) in the same bowl.
5) Gradually, over a number of days, decrease the seed percentage.
I just thought I'd share something I was thinking about as I read this part of the post shared by catfish. I know that my bird eats seeds, but leaves the husks in the food dish for the most part, so instead of measuring by the spoon, I think it might be better to weigh the seed before and after to give me a more accurate idea of how much he's is eating.
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Old 10-04-2007, 12:29 PM   #14
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Well, I think he is implying you have to remove the hulls from there. The amont you would be weighing would not register on any typical scale you would get at the stores, especially the amount givent to a p'let.
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Old 10-04-2007, 01:26 PM   #15
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Catfish that was a brilliant piece of information - being able to read that was really very interesting. I for one would love to have you post more.

What I took away from it was the Veterinarians themselves are at odds to the proper diet for pet birds - Which supports what we have all heard - that their is no known "completely balanced" Pet Parrot food. So as far as I can gather its still best to feed a varied diet consisting of seed/pellets and fresh foods.

As the posts started out talking about Parrotlets eating Seed vs. Pellets. The original question stated:


Quote:
i have been told that Parrotlet mutations (blues,yellows,whites) must be fed a seed diet ,as they are not able to process a protein diet. Would appreciate any feed back.


This is not my understanding as to why Parrotlets and especially Parrotlet Mutations should not be feed a complete Pellet diet. My understand is that because of their high metabolisms they eat more than the average bird pound for pound (or gram by gram ) and being on a "dry" Pellet diet they consume much more water than they were designed to consume - therefore drinking more water than they should in turn over works their Kidneys which leads to them having Kidney issues.

This isn't a question of Parrotlets being unable to process Protein - so the opening question is invalid to the Seed vs. Pellet diet in Parrotlets - Is it not?

Also the one Vet who is categorizing Parrots into Seed eating and non seed eating species, is generalizing IMO -
Lets say in his opinion a Parrotlet is a Seed eater (which to his point they are) - The African Senegal is considered a seed eating species also.

I've had both of these birds. My Senegal was on a Pellet diet. My Parrotlets aren't they are on the varied diet, which include Pellets. BUT my Senegal was a MUCH less active bird than my Parrotlets. My Parrotlets must burn -in my humble guess - at least 5+ times more calories than my Senegal ever did - For the most part my Senegal sat most of the day messing with toys or sitting on me or moving about VERY slowly - even when fully flighted she VERY rarely flew

My Parrotlets on the other hand are all over the place and moving constantly.


Parrotlets need high energy foods - I think more so than an all Pellet diet can offer. This makes sense to me anyway.
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Old 10-04-2007, 01:55 PM   #16
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Although I may need to rethink my smorgasbord way of feeding. What they stated about the bird seeming to be eating all the foods offered but what they probably are doing is only eating the tasty "high fat" portion that is in that particular food. - That makes sense -

To me my birds seem to be eating everything I offer but are they actually consuming everything or moving it about and actually only swallowing certain items in that food

I have noticed when I was preparing their Crazy Corn (an alternative to Beak Appetit) I usually add in rice. The last batch I made I did not add in the rice and the birds were just picking through the rest looking for the rice. Since there was no rice there they ate only a fraction of the time they normally spend eating it and usually its the pasta in the mix they like too.

Something to think about - I think I'll watch them more closely
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Old 10-04-2007, 01:57 PM   #17
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See that's what I am thinking, they burn the extra calories by their activities. I had to wait until I got paid to go buy more beak appetite, so the plets have been on their seed and veggies lately, which makes me feel sad. I think I'll still feed as I have been with a little pellet available... daily seed, some beak appetite, and vegetables.
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Old 10-04-2007, 02:11 PM   #18
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Exactly, so you can't put all seed eating birds into the same category - each species needs are different.
Plus the P'lets Kidneys can't handle the extra water processing.


On the Beak Appetit next time I get it (they will be on the Crazy Corn for a while as I have an unopened 3lb bag still ) I'm going watch to make sure they aren't only eating the seed items - I believe most of the Beak Appetit (if not all?) have different seed added.
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Old 10-04-2007, 02:33 PM   #19
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While watching my two, they like the mash part of the nuts about alfredo. They only nibble on the vegetables... I love watching them eat, it's so cute when they fling the food and rub beaks.

I think once my quakers regain some body fat, I'll begin to try and switch them over to a pellet diet again. Last time, they lost too much weight and I had to stop. My female is really stubborn, the male was eating it, but not enough of it. I think he would only eat when he felt he had to.
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Old 10-04-2007, 02:49 PM   #20
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You know this whole thread makes me crazy. Jo won't eat antyhing. I read this earlier and made her a dish of green beans squash blueberries pecans and purple grapes. Little chopped up bites. She touched nothing, in fact she acted all scared of it..... once again.
The mention of them being malnourished and having overgrown beaks, has freaked me out. She has always had beak issues. I read the green rump do have those anyway but it scares me. I have had her around 8 years maybe a little longer now and she has never eaten food good for her.
If I could only get her to eat something. If I put it on her seed then she throws it down and even with a tiny taste when she does thatdoes not get her to eat it.
What a world..what a world......
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