Do you want to know what baby birds eat? Birds are cute, but at the same time they are very fragile. We need to know what baby birds eat if we want to protect them better. In this blog, we will discuss the different types of food that baby birds can eat and provide tips on how to feed them properly.

Baby Birds
1. Altricial VS Precocial Baby Birds: Know the Differences 

The most fundamental difference in baby bird feeding program is between altricial and precocial birds. Altricial birds can move around immediately, and once they have eaten their yolk, they can forage for food on their own. This means that they start eating the adult bird's food from day one. Parents of pheasants, chickens and quail will guide their chicks to foraging sites, but will not actively feed them. In precocial birds, chicks hatch completely helpless and require weeks or even months of parental feeding before they become mature enough to find their own lunch. Some birds offer food directly in its original shape, others offer pre-digested, regurgitated food. Here comes the question, what can you nurture a baby bird? The following part can help you get the answer.

2. What to Feed Baby Birds

People often feed baby birds soft insects, such as caterpillars, ants, and yellow mealworms. Insects offer the protein and fat needed for baby bird's rapid growth. Some birds, especially those feeding in aquatic environments, may consume soft-bodied invertebrates such as larvae, worms, and aquatic insects.
The seeds that have been partially digested by adult birds were a common food source for baby grain-eating birds such as finches and pigeons. These seeds provide a mixture of carbohydrates, fats, and essential nutrients. Birdfy Organic Bird Seed would be a great choice. Birdfy organic bird seed deeply committed to the health and high-quality nutrition of birds, is proud to announce its partnership with Flying Colors, offering the healthiest bird seed on the market!

Birdfy Organic Bird Seed
Carnivorous baby birds can be fed small pieces of meat such as lean chicken or fish. Meat provides a good amount of protein and fat that promotes muscle development in baby birds and helps them thrive.
Soft, ripe fruits provide natural sugars, vitamins and minerals for omnivorous baby birds. Fruits such as berries, chopped grapes or melons are suitable for omnivorous baby birds.
Nectar-eating birds such as hummingbirds and long-tailed lorikeets can be fed a specialized nectar solution containing vitamins and minerals. Nectar provides high energy for these active baby birds.
Some birds, especially larger birds such as eagles, can be fed boiled eggs for protein. In addition, eggs provide them with amino acids that are vital for growth.

3. What not to Feed Baby Birds

Milk and Bread
Baby birds are sensitive to all types of foods that are not suitable for them. Do not feed milk and bread to baby birds! Many people may take it for granted that they can choose foods suitable for human babies to feed to baby birds. However, they are not humans and they cannot digest milk and bread. These kind of food can cause life-threatening diseases in birds.

Milk and Bread

Human Foods
Avoid giving baby birds cooked human foods such as soup, snacks and candy. Because their nutritional needs are different from ours, high levels of salt, sugar and artificial additives could kill baby birds.
Raw Meat
Although some birds will eat live things like insects and small animals in the wild, without proper preparation, it can introduce harmful bacteria and parasites.
Large Seeds
Baby birds may have difficulty swallowing large seeds or nuts. Improper feeding may cause large seeds to become lodged in the baby bird's throat and cause choking. If seeds are part of a bird's natural diet, make sure they are cut to the proper size!
Avocados contain a substance called persicin, and it can be toxic to birds, avoiding feeding any part of an avocado to baby birds.
Caffeine and Alcohol
Like humans, caffeine and alcohol can be harmful to birds. Do not feed your baby bird food containing alcohol and caffeine.

4. Dietary Variances Among Bird Species

After having the basic knowledge of the type of food that baby birds can eat, then you have to choose the specific type. Different birds have their own dietary preference. Understanding these dietary differences is critical to baby bird conservation because it reflects their ecological roles, preferred habitats, and relationships with other species.
Carnivorous birds
Carnivorous birds, such as hawks, eagles, and falcons, consume primarily animal flesh. Their diet is rich in protein and fat, which are necessary to provide energy, promote muscle development, and maintain strong, sharp beaks and talons.
Herbivorous birds
Herbivorous birds, such as parrots and pigeons, feed primarily on plants, including seeds, fruits, and vegetation. Herbivorous birds usually have specialized beaks that effectively crack seeds or extract nectar from flowers. These foods are rich in carbohydrates, fiber, and essential vitamins, and the calcium in the food is vital to maintaining healthy bones in herbivorous birds.


Omnivorous birds
Omnivorous birds, such as crows and pigeons, have a more varied diet that includes both plant and animal foods. Omnivorous birds require a balance of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. And they are highly adaptable to their food.

5. Tips for feeding baby birds

Knowing what to feed a baby bird, the next step should be how you can feef them appropriateky? Feeding baby birds requires careful attention to their needs. Here are some tips to help you better feed a baby bird.
Identify the Species
You have to have a basic understanding of the type of baby bird. After identifying bird species, you can know what diet would be suitable and provide appropriate species-specific foods.
Contact Wildlife Experts
If you find an injured baby bird, contact your local wildlife rehabilitation center or avian veterinarian for help. They can provide specific and effective advice based on the different needs of the bird.
Use of suitable tools
Choose appropriate feeding tools such as syringes, straws, or specialized bird feeding tubes to imitate the natural feeding process and help ease baby birds' nervousness or fear. Birdfy provides cozy and comfortable Birdfy Nest for baby birds.

Bird Nest

Hygiene is essential
Clean feeding tools thoroughly before each use to prevent contamination. Besides, wash your hands before handling the baby bird and the feeding equipment.

6. Conclusion

This blog discuss a variety of foods suitable for different baby birds, including insects, seeds, meats, fruits, nectar, and eggs. Following part analyzes the differences in the diets of carnivorous, herbivorous, and omnivorous birds, emphasizing the critical role of appropriate feeding foods for their healthy development. It concludes with tips for feeding baby birds, including identifying the species, contacting a wildlife expert, using the right tools and maintaining hygiene to ensure the health of these fragile creatures.
March 10, 2024 — Stella Huang

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