Have you ever wondered what the bird food you are feeding tastes like? I suppose I have but I've never really given it much further thought. Howeverr, recently someone on my parrot forum was asking about the smell of a certain pellet. So I took up the challenge and even went a bit further and sampled each of the three brands of pellets that I feed my parrots. Ultimately my goal is to select the best one and consolidate both parrots to eat the same pellet.
Kili was originally weened onto a Purina Chow pellet. It doesn't have added sugar or coloration so I had no problem continuing to feed her this since I got her. Truman on the other hand came weened on Pretty Bird so I wanted to switch him to a color free pellet up front. In the course of just over 2 weeks I switched him to Roudybush. Kili took it up on the first try and seems to prefer it to the Purina but Truman was a bit more work cause he preferred the Pretty Bird.
First I sampled the Roudybush. It is definitely quite smelly with the scent most closely resembling vitamin pills. The shape and look of the Roudybush further resembles the "all natural" kinds of Vitamin pills as well. The pellets are compact and shatter when chewed rather than being crunchy. For the most part this pellet is pretty tasteless but once again the taste most closely resembles a vitamin pill. The smell is definitely more unpleasant than the taste. Eventually I gagged and had to spit the pellet out but I don't think it was because of the taste itself but either the smell or texture. The pellet definitely doesn't have any sweetener or coloring additives.
Next I tried the Pretty Bird pellets. They most resemble a fruity children's cereal. The pellets come in an assortment of colors and shapes and the smell is sweet and fruity. The taste is actually surprisingly bland and for the most part the scent is misleading. The pellet is nowhere near as sweet as it smells. It is more crunchy, once again like a cereal, and it leaves a slightly sweet after taste. So it makes me guess that it isn't loaded like sugar like it may seem from appearance, however, I'm sure that the absence of extra sugar, scent chemicals, and colors can only benefit the parrot.
Finally I tried Kili's Purina pellets. These are small brown pellets approximately the size of millet seeds. These had the weakest smell of the three which was a bit salty. They also were the most tasteless out of the pellets sampled as well. This may just be because they are so small that it's hard to pick up a taste on them though. I just now that Kili prefers the Roudybush to the Purina but Truman prefers Pretty Bird.
It seems to me that the Roudybush are most natural and that less effort is put into hiding the natural smell of it. The Pretty Bird pellets are probably the best alternative to a bird that strictly refuses to eat uncolored ones because it's more about appearance than taste. However, it makes sense now why transitioning Truman from Pretty Bird to Roudybush wasn't too hard. It was more about getting him used to the appearance rather than taste of the new pellet. For the sake of convenience and economy I'm getting both parrots onto a single pellet. Once I feed off the remaining other ones, I will stay with the medium sized Roudybush for both Kili and Truman.
I have considered tasting their pellets, but just never got around to it.
Michael, can you get the Pretty Bird Gold there in the US? I've seen the rainbow colored stuff, but I mix some Pretty Bird Gold in with their Hagen Tropimix Low Fat Bean Mix. I've experimented with different pellets. I tried the Pretty Bird colored pellets, but both Lucy and Jessie can't stand colored pellets ... they refuse to eat and just throw them around. At least they both eat the Tropimix pellets and it does have dried fruits and beans included, which they really seem to appreciate as a treat. I mix in the Pretty Bird Gold from recommendations from several people in the local parrot club. It has Palm Oil in it and its very good for their feathers.
If I get a chance tonight, I will try both pellets and report back on my thoughts on taste/smell.
lol, I guess we're strange, but the first thing my boyfriend and I did was taste Sadie's pellets. They are Zupreem, not the fruity kind, just a plain beige color. They don't really smell like anything and the smell is very faint. They tasted bland and gritty. Not much to it. The texture reminded me of cereal.
Way to take one for the team!
I'd like to know what you'd think of Harrisons.[/quote:1fw5zrq9]
I have some left over in the fridge so I'll give it a try tonight. Lucy and Jessie don't really care for it and it looks/smells pretty bland to me. But I'll let you know.
Well ... I followed your suit Michael. I've always been curious what their pellets taste like.
Hagen Tropimix Low Fat Bean Mix - has a natural smell - not sweet smelling. Almost smells like cereal. As for taste, it tastes like a very bland plain cereal. But not an awful taste. This food is almost mixed with fruit and legumes.
Pretty Bird Gold - has a very sweet smell and taste. Taste's better than Tropimix. Tastes like a bland slightly sweetened cereal.
Harrison's - almost odorless and tasteless. It may be a premium pellet, but I can't see parrots really enjoying it.
I'll keep feeding the Tropimix pellets as their primary pellet and add a bit of Pretty Bird Gold - It has Palm Oil and is good for their feathers. But knowing that it has a sweeter taste, I think I'll mix in a smaller amount than I have been.
I'm half tempted to try the colored Zupreem pellets when I pick them up for Tobi (he is on them currently but I'll be weaning him onto Roudybush) just to add my 2 cents & the brand to the list of pellets "tasted" by us owners
Thanks for taking one for the team!
I have been curious at this but not enough to actually do that!
Good video and nicely presented
One important point though, is that parrot's taste buds are different to ours... Like chillis... Parrots react to capsicum (the chemical that stings your tongue), so it is possible that other tastes too would be different.
And God forbid you get a cat or a dog, I can't imagine those foods tasting nice to humans
I had to try the Harrisons when I got it home. I thought it would be the easiest way to get Mojo really interested in trying them. I agree with lvzer, they're almost oderless and tasteless. But Mojo seems to really like them! The Zupreem Natural Diet really isn't any different, but I do like the smell of the Harrison's more, it smells a little more organic, I don't really know how to explain it though!