We all accept that oranges are good for us, providing essential vitamin C. We want to give the best to our beloved parakeets and think that a slice of orange would be a good addition to the feed bowl. If you have second thoughts like me, you will suddenly question yourself just as you are about to put the bowl into the cage. Should I feed my parakeet oranges? Is it safe?
Parakeets can eat oranges, and they seem to be partial to the taste of oranges. Oranges contain vitamins and minerals which your parakeet needs. Feed oranges in limited quantities as they are acidic and can cause gastric issues. Orange peel is safe to feed to parakeets but must be washed first.
Parakeet owners are often confused about what fruit is safe for parakeets to eat. Today we will be considering the safety and benefits of feeding oranges to parakeets.
Do Parakeets Like To Eat Oranges?
Parakeets seem to be partial to the taste of oranges, probably due to the high sugar content in citrus fruits. They are also attracted to the bright orange color of the fruit.
Any food that has a bright color attracts the interest of parakeets.
How Often Can I Feed My Parakeet Oranges?
Oranges are highly acidic because they contain large amounts of ascorbic acid. Feeding too many oranges to your parakeet can upset the pH balance in the bird’s stomach resulting in digestive disorders.
Citric fruits have high sugar levels, which can cause a parakeet to become overweight. Overweight birds are prone to serious health disorders that can shorten their lives.
The best option is to only feed your parakeet a portion of orange once or twice a week.
How Should I Prepare Oranges To Feed To My Parakeet?
Oranges can be peeled and served as segments, or you can offer an entire slice of unpeeled orange to your parakeet. You can put the orange into the parakeet’s regular feeding bowl. Another idea is to make a fruit skewer which can include a slice of orange.
Position the skewer close to the bottom of the cage as parakeets naturally eat low to the ground. If the parakeet soils the fruit at this level, suspend it slightly higher off the ground.
Can Parakeets Eat Orange Peel?
You can offer oranges to your parakeet with the skin on or off. Some birds like to nibble on orange skin, which contains beneficial oils. It is essential to wash the orange peel thoroughly.
Farmers use pesticides to deter insects from feasting on fruit. This must be thoroughly cleaned off before it can be fed to your parakeet. As oranges pass through processing and shipping to the shops, many hands will touch them. This can allow bacteria or fungi to be accidentally transferred to the fruit.
Are Oranges Good For Parakeets?
Oranges contain several valuable vitamins and minerals which are beneficial to parakeets. They include:
- Vitamin C
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin B1 Thiamine
- Vitamin B2 Riboflavin
- Vitamin B3 Niacin
- Vitamin B5 Pantothenic acid
- Vitamin B6 Pyridoxine
- Vitamin B9 Folate or folic acid
As you can see, oranges are particularly rich in vitamins and minerals. They are a helpful tool in providing your parakeet with all the nutrients it needs.
Do Parakeets Need Vitamin C?
Most people understand that vitamin C is an essential nutrient for birds, animals, and humans. Interestingly though, many animals and birds can produce their own vitamin C. Their livers have an enzyme that converts glucose into vitamin C. Parakeets are one of the birds that can synthesize vitamin C.
This does not indicate that it will be a problem to feed oranges to your parakeet. Sometimes your parakeet may need an extra boost of vitamin C, which the orange provides. Vitamin C is essential for a fully functioning immune system.
Vitamin C is a water-soluble vitamin. Any excess in vitamin C is easily washed out of the body with no harm done to the parakeet.
My Parakeet has liver disease. Can I Offer Oranges?
Parakeets with liver disease will need vitamin C supplementation as their livers are not functioning efficiently and cannot produce vitamin C. Oranges provide a perfect way to increase your parakeet’s vitamin C intake.
Sadly, liver disease is prevalent in parakeets. It develops when parakeets eat only seeds.
Seeds are very high in fats, and the parakeet quickly becomes obese with fatty deposits in and around the liver. The liver is unable to function correctly with all that excess fat.
Why Does My Parakeet Need Vitamin A?
Vitamin A is a key vitamin in maintaining the health of the parakeet’s retina in the eye. It is also essential in maintaining the mucous membrane which coats the throat, nasal passages, and lungs.
Oranges provide a valuable source of vitamin A.
What Are The Benefits Of The B Vitamins For Parakeets?
B vitamins are crucial for a parakeet’s health. Oranges provide a wide range of B vitamins.
Thiamine (vitamin B1) is essential for cell functioning and particularly cells in the nervous system. Without it, your parakeet could develop neurological issues.
Riboflavin (vitamin B2) allows the body to grow correctly by facilitating the development of cartilage, collagen, and nerve cells. Lack of vitamin B2 is commonly seen in parakeets that eat a seed-only diet.
Niacin (vitamin B3) aids in metabolism, which produces the cellular energy a parakeet needs to carry out basic life functions.
Pantothenic acid (vitamin B5) is necessary for healthy skin in parakeets.
Pyridoxine (vitamin B6) is crucial for nerve development. Parakeets that are deficient in vitamin B6 can have paralysis and seizures.
Folate (vitamin B9) is a vitamin that allows cell division to take place. It is therefore critical in growing parakeets and breeding birds.
Are Calcium And Potassium Important For Parakeets?
Calcium and potassium are needed for heart and muscle function in parakeets. You can read more about the importance of trace minerals in parakeets by reading our article ‘Can Parakeets Eat Bananas?’.
Why Does My Parakeet Have Watery Droppings After Eating Oranges?
Parakeets often have liquid droppings after eating oranges or fruit of any kind. This is a consequence of the high water content in fruit. Parakeets only have one opening for urinating and defecating.
Any excess water is passed out with the feces and will make it look watery.
Check out our post “Can parakeets eat strawberries” to know more about what fruits you can feed your parakeet.
Oranges are beneficial for parakeets, and they generally enjoy eating oranges. Oranges can be served in various ways and can be offered once or twice a week.
Parakeets suffering from the liver disease will benefit from eating oranges as it provides a natural form of vitamin C supplementation.
Veteran Key. Avian Nutrition. https://veteriankey.com/avian-nutrition/