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Simple List of Foods For Your Grey

Simple List of Foods For Your Grey

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Simple List of Foods For Your Grey

I get a lot of questions regarding what to feed my African Grey so I’ve decided to put together a simple list of the kinds of foods we feed our own greys you can use as suggestions and as a guideline.  If the food item is NOT on this list, chances are there’s a reason for that.  Also see our articles on care and feeding your grey.


Cooked chicken, cooked chicken leg bone and occasionally a piece of cooked salmon or other cooked, fresh cold water fish.


Apples, oranges, grapes, lemons, bananas, mango, cantaloupe, pineapple

Veggies (cooked or raw)

Carrots, celery, potato, broccoli, green beans, corn, peas, peppers

Dry Foods

Low or no salt crackers, birdie bread (see our recipe), toasted wheat bread


Cooked rice, barley, oats


Cooked eggs, low fat cheese, peanut butter, cooked beans (such as pintos), african grey kibbles/pellets

Stuff You Probably Shouldn’t Feed But They Love Anyway (only Occasionally)

Pizza crust, french fries, Frito’s, beef stew, spaghetti, enchiladas, grilled cheese sandwich, chicken noodles

Basically we feed our guys generally what we eat ourselves, with discretion of course.  For example, they might get a bite of a french fry or a Frito or a small piece of a grilled cheese sandwich once in a blue moon.

Please also refer to our article on “Foods That Are Deadly To A Grey” and also read the article “WARNING, Toxins And Your Grey”.

And finally, if you have ANY question about these food items or others, it is best to ask your Avian Vet before you feed the item to your bird.  Better safe, then sorry.

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13 Responses to "Simple List of Foods For Your Grey"

  1. lisa says:

    can you feed fig to african greys?

  2. Bob says:

    An occasional fig should be ok, but I wouldn’t feed figs every day. Apparently they are very high in iron.


  3. larry says:

    can I feed an african Grey biltong

  4. Bob says:

    I wouldn’t risk it because of what the meat may be cured with. Better safe, then sorry.

  5. tracy says:

    what is the best age to get a grey . you covered so much but not age only young birds will older bird bond with another person

  6. Bob says:

    Hi Tracy. Yes, older birds will certainly bond with a human (a rescue bird for example), but it can take a lot longer and there may be issues with behavior or health from their previous life, making the bonding process even more difficult. Older birds have also developed a personality, their social skills or lack thereof and some sense of a routine that may or may not fit in with yours. An older bird can make for a fine companion, but it can just take longer for the both of you to develop the bond and trust. Personally, I think the best age to consider would be a young, hand-fed bird who has been weaned onto solid food…usually around a few months old…say under 6 months of age. These birds will handle well, will usually bond very quickly and they will get use to a routine in a very short period of time.

  7. Dee says:

    Hey Bob,
    While young birds are great, having rescued a bird (mine was found in a drug raid in a taped box, almost dead), if you have the patience, and the right enviroment… you will be surprised at how quickly they will bond… or more correctly run you and your household… Our African Grey Skully is at home with me (I run my office out of my house) all day … it did take her a while to adjust, in fact the first six months she (and we are just guessing that she is a she) sat in the back of her cage almost in a constant state of fear… but 4 years later, she sits on her perch in the office, and will fly over on my desk if she does not think I am paying enough attention to her, to “help” me with my workload… the good thing is I never have to buy another shredder…

  8. arif says:

    i have one pair grey africa.there age is like 7 to 9 month.i bought 12days before.they not take food. At night they take few nuts and sunflower.i gave them fruit,love bird food.nut,sunflower..pls advise me how THEY TAKE FOOD REGULARLY.



  9. Bob says:

    Hi Arif,
    Your birds may not be eating well due to their new environment. What were they eating before you got them? Ask the previous owner what foods they were eating and try presenting them with those foods. Make sure you also find a good African Grey specific dry food to offer them. Love bird food will not suffice with African Greys, and chances are they won’t like it. You might also try a scrambled egg or some cooked chicken, or even a cooked chicken leg bone for each of them…Greys love these things. Also choose from some of the other food suggestions in this article.

    Good luck!

  10. tom says:

    Hey Bob,
    Love yr info.2 weeks ago I bought a 3 month old congo & He ? seems to be doing great. Eats well & loves to be with me, ALWAYS. But a pet shop owner just told me 2 things that worry me. 1 parrots need to be hand fed till at least 5 months old. 2 I should NEVER feed him sunflower seeds. Is she right or just wrong. I checked 5 different feeds & sunflower seeds was 3rd-5th ingred listed on all.
    Thanks alot

  11. Bob says:

    Hi Tom and congrats on adding a grey to your family. Since it sounds as if your baby is on solid food, I wouldn’t worry about the weaning part. All grey babies are different and some won’t wean until 4-5 months, others will accept solid food full time a bit earlier. Our guys were 4 months when we brought them home and had been on solid food for about a month…sooo, yours should be fine, as long as he eats a balanced diet each day.

    Sunflower seeds aren’t recommended for greys because they are high in fat, that’s all. A few once in awhile won’t kill them. Most commercial parrot mixes will contain lots of sunflower seeds as you point out, but I wouldn’t feed a grey a commercial parrot mix anyway (a lost sale for your pet store owner lol). Stick with the diet recommendations on our site (and others) and your baby will be fine.

    Enjoy your new friend!

  12. diane hacker says:

    can i feed my african grey cooked bones? i gave him a pork bone one night, and amazingly he chowed down halfg of it. i thought he would just chew on it. is it ok for him to eat cooked bones?

  13. Bob says:

    Hi Diane,
    The only cooked bones I recommend, as we mention in the article, is cooked chicken leg bones (preferably organic chicken). Anything thing else you might want to check with your avian vet. They like the marrow in the bone, so keep that in mind regarding what the animal may have eaten through it’s life.