What Do Parakeets Eat in the Wild and as Pets?


Parakeets (also known as budgies in some places) are among the most popular types of pets on the planet. They are easy to acquire, relatively easy to care for, and perfect for kids and adults alike. These little birds are lively, sociable, and fun to interact with. They eat various things both in the wild and as pets. Here is what you should know about what parakeets eat.

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In the Wild

Parakeets fend for themselves in the wild and will eat a wide variety of different foods to maintain their good health as time goes on. Depending on where they happen to be at the time, parakeets might eat seeds from grasses, trees, and plants, freshly ripe fruits, grass, and vegetation that is easily digestible to them. They are not picky about exactly what they eat, and they make it a point to enjoy different foods for enjoyment and good health.

These types of birds eat what is available to them depending on the time of year. So, they eat seeds more than anything else during the fall and winter months, and they eat vegetation, fruits, and veggies during the spring and summer months. Exactly what is eaten depends on where a parakeet lives. Some subsist mostly on seeds, while others enjoy fruits and veggies for most of their meals. Certain parakeets eat a varied diet because they live within an optimal tropical environment.

Knowing what a parakeet eats in the wild can help owners understand what their pets require for optimal health and long, happy life when all is said and done. However, it is important to understand that no owner can exactly replicate the diet that a parakeet would receive in the wild. Still, we must do our best as parakeet parents to make sure that our pets get the best nutrition possible while living in captivity.

african ring necked parakeet
Image Credit: sac_9977, Pixabay

In Captivity

Parakeets should follow a diet that they would get in the wild as much as possible. This means feeding commercial parakeet food to pet parakeets to ensure that all nutrients necessary for good health are consumed daily. In addition to commercial parakeet food, pet parakeets should be offered various fruits throughout the week for extra enjoyment and nutrition.

Parakeets happen to enjoy melons, papaya, bananas, mangoes, apples, and pears. They also like small servings of cucumber, tomato, celery, squash, pumpkin, sweet potato, beet, and carrot, among other types of veggies. It is important to make sure that any fresh fruits or veggies that are offered to a parakeet are cut into small pieces or slices so that they can bite and swallow them.

Related Read: 10 Best Parakeet Foods; Reviews & Top Picks

Rose Ringed Parakeet on the hand
Image Credit: TheOtherKev, Pixabay

Tips and Tricks for Owners

If your parakeet is not into fresh fruits and vegetables when you first bring them home, it may be because they have not ever been offered such foods since birth. Once weaned from their parents, a parakeet relies solely on the breeder or human caretake for nutrients. If the caretaker only offers commercial feed, the parakeets that they raise might not be receptive to fresh fruits and vegetables from their new owners until trust has been established.

Keep offering fresh fruits and vegetables until your parakeet starts accepting them. You may find that your parakeet enjoys certain fruits and veggies over others. If this is the case, you can vary their diet accordingly. If you are ever in doubt, you should consult your veterinarian to ensure that the dietary choices that you make for your parakeet are sound.

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Parakeets are unique, beautiful birds that deserve the best foods possible for good health and happy life. Luckily, it is not hard to take good care of a parakeet. Buy commercial food once a month or so, and offer a few fruit and veggies scraps from the kitchen when they are available. Knowing that parakeets require a wide variety of fruits and veggies for good health may even inspire you to eat well to have leftovers for your bird!


Featured Image Credit: olilynch, Pixabay



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