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Zephyr refuses fresh food!

Nostromo

Strolling the yard
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7/25/18
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I am starting to run out of ideas for coaxing my Pionus Zephyr to eat her veggies!!! She eats Roudybush maintenance pellets as her base diet, which she absolutely loves. If there are any pellets available to her, she will not even look at a vegetable or fruit, and often even refuses seed in favor of her pellets. As far as Zephyr is concerned, pellets are The Way and The Life. The ONLY fresh food she will eat are sprouted lentils - but those are high in protein, so I can't feed them regularly.

If I don't offer her pellets in the morning, she will eventually resort to eating some vegetables - she eats sugar snap peas and apples, and occasionally a carrot or mango or banana or butternut squash. She would die before touching a leafy green. Her dignity cannot endure eating a pepper. She ate a jalapeno once, and never again. Most of her veggies she has tried - she's nibbled a kale stem, broccoli, peppers etc., so I don't think it's that she doesn't realize they're food. She seems to genuinely not like them.

Any advice?? I've tried offering veggies chopped small, whole, in bird bread, mixed in with her pellets, tried offering them from my own plate. Nada. I've tried putting them in her bowls (obviously), putting them in foraging toys, hanging them from skewers. The only success I've had is with refusing her pellets until she gets so hungry she'll eat her veggies, but I'm worried that she won't be getting enough nutrition.

Help me, Avian Avenue! Any advice welcome!
 

expressmailtome

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Have you tried feeding her any by hand?
 

Nostromo

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@expressmailtome she won't take it from mine or my partner's hand... :sad8: we've only had her for about 3 months though. She did eat some of her bird bread today though!
 

Chris1234

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Hey, that's great she ate some bird bread! It's a start! I feel your pain. My Meyers is SUPER picky and also prefers her pellets. It's taken me a LONG time to get her to try different foods, and even now it's not a huge variety. :bash: Super frustrating!

My Rose Breasted Too never ate greens until I hung a huge leaf of water-soaked kale at the top of his cage. He bathed around in it then tore it to shreds. LOL

I don't think there's anything wrong with offering the fresh stuff first thing in the morning and then later in the day giving her pellets. It may start to instill the habit of eating other foods and she may start to like them. And if you're not restricting how many pellets you give her later in the day, she won't starve. You could also try mixing a bit of her pellets in with the bowl of veggies. Of course it won't last forever as the food begins to spoil, but it might get her picking around the different fresh foods to get at the pellets (especially if you still withhold the pellet bowl until a little later in the day).

Good luck and let us know how she's doing!!
 

Vera

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interesting, i kinda have the same problem with my parrotlet, but she is now on a fortified seedmix that she loves, and it makes her eat the veggies on the skewer too. not much but it is a small bird and it is a start.
when i fed pellets she wouldn't eat anything in her cage all day, she would only eat on the playstand when she was out before and after work. feeding only veggies during the day didn't work for her, and i worry about spoilage.
i am out form 8 am till 5.30pm, so providing only veggies during the day isn't an option. only pellets and some veggies = not eating in the cage
only seeds and some veggies = still not eating much in the cage, and no veggies.
no with the seedmix from Beaphar she eats during the day and eats her veggies. i don't know what it is, it is not my favorite food because it has added sugar, but maybe this makes her curious to try other foods?
 
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