With the festive season around the corner, I’ve been stocking up on one of my seasonal favorites: walnuts.
I’ve always loved walnuts but I only tend to eat them around this time of year—I think it keeps them more special this way.
In any case, this year will be the first time we are joined for Christmas by my cockatiels.
With some walnuts lying in a bag on the kitchen counter the other day, the cockatiel seemed very intrigued, so I decided to find out if he could eat them.
So, can cockatiels eat walnuts?
Yes, cockatiels love walnuts! Walnuts are packed with all sorts of nutrients and your cockatiel will love breaking them up and eating them. The fact that they are so nutrient rich, however, means that you do need to be careful about how much they get. Moderation is important.
So, in short, walnuts are great for cockatiels.
However, they still should only make a up a small part of their diet, and be seen as a treat or snack.
They will get all the nutrients they need out of it in small amounts, anyway.
Let’s look further into this.
Are walnuts good for cockatiels?
Yes, walnuts are very healthy for cockatiels in a lot of ways.
For one thing, they are simply pure energy.
Nuts are a great source of protein and in a form that your cockatiel can easily break down, since it would often eat nuts in the wild.
They are also a great source of fiber, which helps your cockatiel’s overall digestion.
Fiber is an essential part of a strong diet, so any amount from any source will be good for your cockatiel.
Walnuts are rich in fiber.
They are also a good source of many healthy vitamins, which prevent disease, aid in blood sugar levels and promote heart health.
Powerful antioxidants present in walnuts present the formation of free radicals, too, which damage you cockatiel’s cells.
Not to mention, of course, that your cockatiel will love them!
They will love the taste and the texture and, as much as anything else, they will enjoy cracking open the seed to get at the nut.
Walnuts are a great source of nutrients but they’re also a source of enrichment.
So, walnuts are packed with countless nutritional benefits and are very nutritionally rich.
It is important to look at a few caveats, too.
Are walnuts bad for cockatiels?
Walnuts are not inherently bad for cockatiels, but the thing to remember is moderation.
As I’ve just said, walnuts are very nutrient dense.
For a small animal like a cockatiel, then, they really only need a very small amount before they’ve gotten the full breadth of nutrients they need.
Once or twice a week, in small amounts, is more than enough walnut for your cockatiel.
Change it out with other snacks throughout the week.
This will give them the best range of nutrients.
Walnuts are also quite high in fat and calories, compared with other nuts.
So, again, in small amounts this is beneficial. But it needs to kept to a low amount.
Beyond that, walnuts are not inherently bad for your cockatiel.
But how to prepare them?
Can cockatiels eat raw walnuts?
Raw is definitely the best way to give your cockatiels walnuts.
As I said, for one thing, they will have great fun breaking the shell open.
This is a form of enrichment that mimics their natural environment in a fun way.
Raw will taste and feel better to them, as well.
They will want the crunchiness, a lot of which is lost in the cooking process.
Your cockatiel’s diet should do its best to mimic its natural diet, and obviously, raw is better than cooked in this sense.
Can cockatiels eat cooked walnuts?
That said, a small number of cooked walnuts wouldn’t really be a problem for your cockatiel.
However, there’s just no specific advantage to doing so.
A lot of the nutrition and texture is lost in the cooking process, and that will be what your cockatiel enjoys.
Furthermore, usually, cooked nuts are going to be cooked in some kind of oil or other substance which is probably not much good for your cockatiel.
Raw is definitely the best way to give your cockatiels walnuts, though they can have one or two from the dinner table if you really wish.
So, raw walnuts are a great snack for your cockatiel that are packed with all sorts of rich nutrients.
Indeed, nuts are a mainstay of most parrot’s diet, so it’s no surprise that walnuts will go down so well with cockatiels.
Nevertheless, you need to be careful about how much they get of any one thing.
As long as you keep moderation in mind, walnuts are a fantastic, healthy snack that your cockatiel will love.