I was emptying the food recycling can the other day, and sitting right at the top of the bag was the two old corn cobs from our steak night the night before.
As I was taking it outside, my cockatiel flew over and started pecking away at the old cobs—it made me feel bad that I hadn’t shared any of it with him while it was fresh!
I wanted to make it up to him and get him some more corn, but it occurred to me I wasn’t totally sure it was safe.
I decided to look into it.
So, can cockatiels eat corn?
Yes, cockatiels love corn and it’s perfectly safe for them. Fresh vegetables are a really important part of your cockatiel’s diet, and corn is one of the great ways to get it to them. That said, moderation is still always important, and you should feed them corn as part of a good, balanced diet.
So, all was well once I went out and got some more corn for my cockatiel to have to himself.
I didn’t realise just how beneficial it would be to his diet, though, so let’s look further into this.
Is corn good for cockatiels?
Yes, corn is great for cockatiels in many ways.
First and foremost, most cockatiels will love the taste and texture of corn.
It’s helpfully broken up by nature into little kernels that are the perfect size for your cockatiel, and they taste great as well.
Not to mention all the healthy nutrition contained within.
For one thing, corn is a great source of fiber.
Fiber is a key cornerstone of any cockatiel’s diet.
It is essential for healthy digestion.
The presence of fiber in corn helps your cockatiel’s whole diet.
Corn is also rich in Vitamin C.
Vitamin C acts as a powerful antioxidant in the body, preventing the oxidisation and eventually break down of the body’s cells.
In other words, corn helps to keep the whole bodily system running smoothly.
It also contains small amounts of vitamins B, E and K, which serve a variety of functions.
Finally, corn is packed with tons of healthy minerals like magnesium and potassium.
These, again, serve a variety of functions, but most importantly contribute to the health of blood and the immune system.
All of this praise is, unfortunately, not without caveats.
Read on to find out more.
Is corn bad for cockatiels?
In essence, no, corn is great for cockatiels.
However, even the healthiest food can become a problem if you give your cockatiel too much.
Moderation is the most important thing, and corn should only really be eaten as part of a well-rounded, balanced diet.
Give them corn once or twice a week, and swap this treat out for other vegetables in the meantime.
The fact that corn is so nutrient rich means that your cockatiel only needs to eat a small amount before it has all the benefits it needs.
Any more, and the corn is liable to sit undigested in the gut, causing pain.
The size of the kernels can be a bit of a cause for a choking concern, too; only a very minor one, but you are probably best keeping an eye on your cockatiel when they eat corn, especially if they are very young.
Can cockatiels eat cooked corn?
They can, but cooked is probably not the best way to get corn to your cockatiel.
The food you give to your cockatiel should be geared towards mimicking their natural diet as closely as you can.
Obviously, they would not have access to cooked food in the wild.
Also, it will heavily depend on how the corn was cooked.
If there were large amounts of oil or spices, these can be harmful to your cockatiel.
Not to mention that they will some of their crunchiness in the cooking process, which cockatiels love.
So, overall, while there are not any specific issues with feeding cooked corn to your cockatiel, it’s really best just not to do so.
Can cockatiels eat raw corn?
Raw corn is certainly the best way to feed your cockatiel corn.
Again, it will not have lost any of the nutrition in the cooking process, and it will be much tastier and crunchier for them.
The good thing about corn is that it can be a bit of an enrichment activity, too; if you give them a bit of a corn cob, they can get a great snack and a bit of a workout breaking it up.
Careful moderation still in mind, raw corn is the best way to feed corn to a cockatiel.
Corn is, without doubt, a great food to incorporate into your cockatiel’s diet.
It’s packed with many benefits, packaged in a tasty food and easy for your cockatiel to get at.
Fresh vegetables are a key part of your bird’s diet, so it’s always important that you’re constantly getting a good variety in with their regular meals.
Balance and moderation are all important, though, and you’ve got to be very careful about exactly how much corn you give them.