There is something fascinating about watching as your pet eats. It’s probably the cute way they do that. Each animal eats differently.
When it comes to parrots, there is a wide variety of foods they can eat. But also many ingredients that are dangerous for the bird! You have to be extra careful when it comes to choosing our parrot’s meal! Making sure that your pet is healthy should be your priority.
In this article, I’ve chosen quite a common ingredient that confuses many novice owners.
Parrots can eat almost all fruits and vegetables, with a few exceptions. Grapes are not harmful to them if grown properly. Pesticides may become a pressing issue for all pets who enjoy garden produce. Clean eco grapes are useful to parrots when consumed in moderation. These treats are full of fructose that can bring negative consequences in high doses. The main rule: make grapes an occasional treat instead of a regular meal.
Always remember to buy fruit and veggies for your bird at trusted vendors! The issue of pesticides is more grievous for small birds than for resilient humans even. A parrot can die.
Judging from personal experience, I can attest that grapes are among the favorite treats for parrots, as for many other animals. But are parrots animals? You can read about this in detail in my previous article. For example, my cute rabbit adores them as well.
The sweet taste of grapes attracts parrots and makes them a bit addicted to the treat (something like sugar to us). So you’ll see your bird easting all the grapes given and leaving other, more nutritious, food uneaten if you are not careful with limiting grapes.
Okay, enough of this scary stuff! Let’s discuss how to feed them properly to make your parrot happy instead!
Are Grapes Harmful?
Generally, grapes are safe. They are not toxic to parrots. If grapes are free of pesticides, they are entirely safe both for you and for your bird.
The only issue with grapes, as I’ve mentioned in the introduction, is their quantity. Too much fructose can make your parrot overweight. But, well, that concerns all people as well. Everything is good in moderation.
Are Grape Seeds Harmful?
No, the whole grape is harmless. Its seeds as well. Moreover, remember that grape seeds contain a number of nutrients that should be included in a parrot’s diet!
In addition to numerous nutrients, grape seeds are the perfect antioxidants. I personally order grape seed extracts as supplements for the seasons when fresh naturally-grown grapes are unavailable.
You may want to cut grapes for your parrot, so it’s easier to consume. Be sure to include all the fallen seeds as well! It generally depends on the size of the grapes and your bird, but you may need to cut even the seeds in some cases.
Overall, a grown-up parrot will find it an exciting challenge to crunch those seeds.
The only exception – chicks and very young parrots! Their digestive system has not formed yet and cannot deal with such heavy food as grapes.
Can Parrots Eat Grape Peels?
Yes. This part of a grape is safe as well. Imagine how hard it would be to feed your parrot grapes without the peels? Pealing them is not an easy task!
A study concludes that pesticides, if they are present, are located both in the skin and pulp of grapes, with some minor differences in the types of pesticides. Thus, make sure to buy in trusted shops. Here’s the link to that study.
Overall, it shows favorable results for the grape industry in Portugal. But I’m sure clean grapes can be found in all countries.
Also, note that thoroughly washing grapes before consumption can eliminate up to 70% of pesticides on their surface.
Can Parrots Eat Grape Leaves and Vines?
Yes! You can go even further than fruits and give your parrots bits and pieces of leaves and vines. You can even go as far as to offer a full clipping and see what your parrot eats first! If you are growing grapes in your garden, that is the perfect treat for your bird. You know that it is completely safe and will be helpful to your pet.
While grapes have high glucose concentrations, their leaves and vines lack the sweetness and bring lots of nutrients in their stead. They are not toxic (if not sprayed with pesticides deliberately) and do not rot!
They are a tasty source of vitamin C, E, iron, and fiber essential for a healthy digestive system.
Nevertheless, you should also wash leaves and vines just as you would with grapes. They are dirty with bird droppings and such. There is a special food washing liquid that can be used. Do not wash them with your dishwasher soap!
And you know what your parrot will like even more? If you dry out the leaves under the sun for a bit!
How Can Grapes Benefit a Parrot?
Yes, grapes are overall useful for parrots, but there are also those exceptions that I’ve mentioned. In the vast majority of cases, you can feed your pet grapes and don’t worry about its health. However, there is a small percentage of issues that may work for the worst!
I do not want to sugarcoat parrot care, though! Just be mindful of the simple rule: quality and moderation.
With these two rules in mind, you will only get the useful effects of grapes.
Let’s check what benefits they bring to your pet, shall we?
Do you know that grapes are an effective anti-cancer supplement? As I’ve mentioned before, grapes are considered antioxidants. Antioxidants are varied and diverse, and each brings its benefits. Thus, grapes are full of polyphenols and carotenoids. These two particular antioxidants are known to be effective in strengthening the heart and combating cancer. Another antioxidant found in grapes is resveratrol. This is the magic source of free radicals!!
Be sure to give your parrot seeds and skin of grapes as they contain the most antioxidants.
I cannot stress enough the importance of antioxidants for any animal! Your parrots have to receive the proper numbers of it.
Thus, note that dark-skinned grapes are slightly richer in cancer-fighting antioxidants than green grapes.
Also, do not panic if your parrots fall ill. With proper treatment, most cancer types found in parrots are treatable.
Overall, grapes contain a wide range of vitamins and minerals. And as you get all the necessary elements for your organism, you boost your immunity. The same concerns parrots!
One pair of elements, in particular, is notable for boosting your health – resveratrol and Vitamin D.
Boosts Heart Health
Certain antioxidants boost heart health. That is the known truth for people and animals alike.
Besides, grape antioxidants help in preventing the hardening of arteries which can lead to heart attack stroke.
Aside from the abovementioned resveratrol, grapes have a few other valuable elements for the heart as well. Among them are
- polyphenols (boost HDL levels and reduce inflammation)
- potassium (regulates blood pressure levels)
Speaking of blood pressure, the positive influence of potassium results from inhibiting the adverse effects of salt.
Normalized Water Balance
Water retention is not a solely human issue. Your parrot may suffer from it as well.
And here comes potassium as well! When it’s compared with low sodium levels, you can expect an improved balance of electrolytes in your parrot. It also helps to flush away excess water and flush some toxins.
Are Dried Grapes Harmful to Parrots?
If you buy regular dried grapes without added harmful ingredients, they are safe for your pet! They are basically the same grapes.
However, one crucial detail to notice is that raisins contain higher percentages of sugar and bring more calories, which should be controlled with parrots!
Can You Give Grapes to Young Parrots?
Baby parrots cannot have grapes as of yet! Their digestive system is too young and vulnerable still. But young chicks are very limited in food overall.
As your bird grows up a bit and you start introducing various kinds of fruit to their diet, you can include grapes.
Though, be sure to cut thoroughly—both the pulp, skin, and seeds. The chunks should be small enough to be eaten easily. Introduce fruit bits by bits and in small chunks.
Can Parrots Die From Grapes?
When you see organic grapes at a farmer’s market, you can buy the treat for your bird without consequences. Though the regulations are not unanimous yet, many farmers grow clean grapes.
However, when you buy grapes at a mall or a shop, be sure to check where they’ve been grown. The best solution is to buy grapes at a trusted vendor where you get your fruit and veggies.
Pesticides are a common problem for people and animals alike. Unfortunately, identical amounts of pesticides can have different consequences for people and small birds. Given high numbers of pesticides, a parrot can die. But that is a severe case that is rarely found “on the market.”
Does Washing Grapes Reduce Pesticides?
As I’ve mentioned above, up to 70% of pesticides can be washed off. You can use a specialized fruit wash solution to make sure that you leave grapes as clean as they can be. Mosty, this is enough to ensure that the grapes are clean and not harmful to your bird.
Also, if you prefer natural solutions, you can substitute the chemical wash with an organic substitute vinegar or baking soda with water in the ratio of 1:3.
I hope these answers paint you the complete picture of how grapes may affect your beloved parrot.