Small-sized species of parrots, parakeets, are great companions and hence, everyone’s favorite pets. They are quite entertaining, but like other pets, they do demand time and care. A pet’s health is always the topmost priority for every owner, and when it comes to feeding them, every owner tries to be as careful as possible.
We understand finding a proper diet full of nutrition for your parakeet can be exhausting sometimes. A good parakeet diet consists of 50% pellets, 15 – 20% seeds, and 30% fruits and vegetables, but what if your pet has dissimilar eating habits such as eating mealworms?
It can be a little confusing, though, so here we bring a complete guide for your parakeet eating mealworms.
Can Parakeets Eat Mealworms?
The first question that appears in your mind after seeing a parakeet feeding mealworms is, can parakeets eat mealworms? Is it safe for them, or are there any side effects of parakeets eating mealworms?
The answer is yes, parakeets can safely eat mealworms. Budgies do eat mealworms, and surprisingly, it is a great source of protein. Even though nuts, fruits, and vegetables are parakeets’ favorite meals, giving them mealworms on rare occasions is not harmful. However, before adding anything new to your pet’s diet, we strongly encourage you to discuss it with a veterinarian.
Many wild birds feed on mealworms in the wild. Parakeets, too, have a diverse diet and enjoy feeding mainly on grains. Mealworms are not toxic or harmful, but it is better to keep them as a rare treat for your feathered pet friend.
Making it a regular meal can result in the following:
- Mealworms, if taken from your garden and not from a proper feed store, may contain bacteria and parasites that can cause severe illness and even lead to death upon transfer to your bird.
- Too many mealworms can cause moisture imbalance that results in diarrhea.
- Mealworms are high in fat content that can cause obesity in parakeets.
Read: What Do Parakeets Eat?
Are Mealworms a Primary Source of Protein in Parakeets?
Mealworms contain high-quality protein, vitamins, and amino acids that play a vital role in building the muscles, feathers, and bones of parakeets. The health benefits of mealworms are as same as meat or fish, though parakeets do not consume mealworms as other birds do.
Budgies primarily feed on protein-rich plants, grains, pellets, and veggies that are enough to fulfill their protein need. Also, parakeets’ protein requirement is lower than other birds, so we can safely say that there is no need to feed them with mealworms too often.
However, a rare treat of mealworms won’t affect the health of your pet but adds to their protein diet.
Do Parakeets Like Eating Insects?
Insects are appealing to birds, making them omnivores in nature. From flying insects to garden pests, Parakeets feed on a variety of insects. Insects have high protein content and provide 9 basic amino acids that a body cannot make on its own. Their nutritional benefits are equivalent to beef, and some insects supply even more.
While parakeets would consume mealworms—and pretty anything worthwhile they can lay their beaks on—in the wild, since pet budgies have grown up on fruits and veggies, they prefer natural greens over mealworms.
How should You Give Mealworms to Your Parakeet?
Many owners claim that they have not observed any harmful side effects in their bird pets after feeding them mealworms. Still, many try to keep their pet away from mealworms as much as possible and believe that it should not be consumed by parakeets. Much depends on the breeding, environment, feeding pattern, and taste of your budgies.
If you are feeding mealworms to your budgie, try to keep the quantity at a minimum. They do not cause any specific harm if taken in small portions. Also, make sure that you’re buying it from a reliable store and in a balanced quantity.
Are Dried Mealworms Safe for Parakeet?
Mealworms are a great supplementary diet for parakeets but should not be considered the best one. Dried mealworms are simple mealworms that have been dried out due to heating or freezing. They are not as beneficial as live ones, but many prefer dried mealworms as it is easy to store and easy to feed.
Dried mealworms can be served to parakeets by mixing them up in birds seed mix, nuts or can be served alone in a bird feeder. It is safe and healthy for your budgies and a high source of protein, enriched oil, and high in nutritional values.
Parakeets do eat mealworms, and it is not specifically harmful to their health, yet excessive consumption may cause health problems in your budgies. Mealworms are a great source of protein and vital amino acids. It is advised that whenever you change your pet’s diet, you should always consult a veterinarian first to ensure good health and to keep them safe from any diseases.