Buying a parrot as a pet is a marvelous decision. They are sociable animals that will accompany you for long years. First, however, as with any pets, you’ll have to learn what kinds of foods they eat.
If you’ve already researched the topic, you know that fruit and vegetables are an important part of a bird’s diet. However, not all of them are equally useful. Some are even harmful. There are even a few foods in your kitchen that can kill the pet.
But what about cherries? This is a favorite fruit of many. That’s why I’d like to discuss these berries in detail with you. I’ll share the details about the valuable nutrients contained in them and the best ways to feed them to the bird. If you have any questions left after the article, please, feel free to leave comments afterward.
In general, parrots eat cherries and get some necessary nutrients from them. The only rule is to remove cherry pits that contain small amounts of cyanide. Overall, there is nothing harmful in cherries besides the pits. If you buy clean cherries without pesticides for yourself, you can share them with your pet.
Remember that domesticated parrots lack certain instincts the parrots usually have in the wild. Thus, you have to check its diet to be sure.
Now, let’s take a look at all the benefits your pet will get from those cherries.
What’s the Nutritional Value of Cherries for Parrots?
Cherries are a rich source of all kinds of valuable nutrients that every bird requires throughout its life. Moreover, all of them are applicable to humans to some degree. Thus, munch on these berries during their season, and don’t forget to share them with your parrot.
Many fruits and vegetables are rich in Vitamin C. And that is awesome considering how useful it is for animals. This is a superb overall immunity booster and a supplement that helps birds (and humans) overcome illnesses faster. All the cold drugs contain it!
Overall, Vitamin C positively influences blood pressure and sugar, overall heart, health, immunity, vision, and serves as an effective anti-aging agent.
Though Vitamin A is less frequent in fruit and veggies, it is still a necessary nutrient. Its effects primarily concern your derma. For parrots, it makes feathers healthier and brighter. A healthy parrot is a beautiful parrot.
The famous Vitamin C is combined with polyphenols to provide an anti-inflammatory boost which is a part of that improved immunity as well! For parrots, the benefits mostly lie in the protection against fatty liver disease and metabolic syndrome.
Anthocyanins that make cherries so deeply red are also antioxidants with prevention abilities against cancer and heart diseases.
The bloody-red cherries are actually effective for the production of hemoglobin! That’s an important task of naturally contained iron. Hemoglobin transmits oxygen to all parts of the body.
Be careful with the number of cherries you feed your parrot if you also give other iron-rich foods such as dry fruit and nuts that day. Too much iron is just as bad as too little iron.
I’ve written about the benefits of magnesium countless times. As it’s contained in enough foods birds like, you can easily ensure that your parrot gets the necessary amount of it. Overall, magnesium helps to absorb different minerals properly. Thus, the bird gets better-developed beaks, sturdier bones, and keratin production for beautiful heathers.
Calcium is a great pair for magnesium. Birds require calcium for strong bones and nervous systems, just like humans. And the magnesium in cherries ensures that the mineral is absorbed 100%!!!
Considering the mix of strengthening nutrients for bones, heart, and immunity, cherries are always in the diet of older parrots I take care of.
Can’t Parrot Eat Cherry Pits?
You’ve probably heard that seeds and pits of some fruits contain traces of cyanide. Cherries are one of those hidden dangers. While the berry itself is absolutely safe, the pit is a cardiac toxin. Of course, the pits are dangerous for people as well, but just one is no big deal.
However, if your parrot swallows just one cherry pit, act fast! Bring it to the vet as soon as possible and ask to check the live and kidney.
Well, I’ve probably scared you too much. Sorry. There are some cases when a bird just digests through the toxin, and nothing terrible happens. Sometimes, the bird just chews on the outer layer of the pit and stops as it gets to the contaminated core. It’s bitter, after all. If the pit the parrot ingested was small, it’s not gonna die that second!
Though, If you are still unsure whether to bring your parrot to the vet or can’t do that immediately, check your bird for such symptoms as
- change of droppings color and consistency
If you catch these signs, a trip to the vet is your priority. Immediately.
Overall, you should just cut the cherries before seeing them and throw away the pits. That way, there is no danger in cherries whatsoever.
Do Parrots Drink Cherry Juice?
Totally. You can safely give cherry juice to your pet.
- You can always pour a small amount of homemade cherry juice to your bird or, better, mix it with water! Your parrot will taste the taste, and you can lower the amount of liquid consumed.
- The second option is to mix it with nuts and seeds and create something like a granola bowl. Just make sure to keep a healthy balance of sugars consumed from fruits in a day.
Overall, fruit juice offers just the same amount of nutrients the whole fruits contain. You just provide some diversity for your bird. The juices easily consume light for the digestive system.
However, do not replace fruits with juice completely. Parrots still need fibers. Just mix and match.
Never buy store juice. They are full of added sugars. Besides, even the 100% label can be a trick. Instead, purchase organic cherries at a reputable store, pit them, and squeeze the juice by hand! This is the best kind of juice you can offer your parrot.
Can Parrots Eat Dried Cherries Safely?
Unless they are preserved with sulfur dioxide, you can feed dried cherries to your parrot. Admittedly, the shelf life of completely natural cherries is shorter but way safer for parrots. You can also feed your parrot dried grapes. Check their info in the article Can Parrots Eat Raisins.
A couple of cherries will work great as a snack. Be mindful that dried cherries are smaller in size, but you have to keep the overall number of cherries the same as the parrot is used to.
Do Parrot Droppings Turn Red After Eating Cherries?
Yes, it can happen. Cherries may be just slightly reddish or more so. That is completely normal! It all will return to the norm soon after. Provided that you don’t give cherries once more.
How To Feed Cherries to Parrots Without a Mess?
Cherries are brightly colored and juicy. Parrots are messy eaters. If you leave it as it is, the “dinner” can end only one way – in a total mess with hard-to-clean spots. Thus, you need to make sure that your bird doesn’t turn your apartment into a crime scene.
Serve them this way:
- Remove the pits
- Cut cherries into pieces as small as you can.
- Put the pieces into a deep bowl.
- Alternatively, offer the pieces one by one from hand. Thus, the parrots won’t throw away the bits.
Though the cutting process may turn your fingers red, this is the only way to keep the cage and surrounding floor clean. Also, if you are 100% sure that your parrot is a clean eater, feel free to give them in a bowl.
Are There Pesticides in Cherries?
Unfortunately, pesticides can be found in all fruit and vegetables if the producer uses the toxins—no matter whether it’s cherries, tomatoes, or parsley. Everything can be contaminated.
With that said, numerous manufacturers provide eco fruit and veggies. These are completely safe for your bird. Just find a trusted shop and buy your food there. Of course, you should always avoid pesticides, but, or parrots, this is an even more pressing issue. Local organic cherries bear no dangers aside from the pits.
There is always an option to clean your fruit with a specific washing liquid, but I always prefer not to use chemicals when it’s not necessary. Simple good washing can reduce pesticides up to 70%!
Overall, if you buy clean organic cherries, you can feed them to parrots freely. As soon as the pit goes away, the berry is safe for your parrot. Also, don’t forget to include cherries in your pet’s diet as they are full of useful vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants crucial for parrot health.