This list is NOT inclusive of all foods feather destroyers should not be fed, but does include some of the top foods that will most likely trigger feather destruction.
- Almost all herbs and spices. These foods are extremely high in salicylates and histamines.
- These foods are usually very high in salicylates.
- Most fruits except tropical fruits. Fruit, especially domestic fruits are high in salicylates and histamines.
- Many vegetables are high in salicylates.
- These are high in glutens and omega 6s. Due to the high amount in most commercial bird foods our birds are now suffering “avian leaky gut syndrome.” This is what has led to malabsorption of nutrients, overall malnutrition and now feather destruction. The gut flora of exotic birds is now suffering and thus the neurotransmitters of the brain are not properly produced. Any grains fed should be fed only to those species where grains are indigenous to their wild regions. Grains should be sprouted and fed fresh or sprouted and then gently dehydrated under 115 degrees F, not fed cooked or dried out and dead. Millet is a grain that can be fed in very limited amounts to feather destroyers as a sprouted grain.
- These are high in omega 6s and lectins. The high amount used by many in mash recipes has unfortunately contributed to “avian leaky gut syndrome” and also like grain has contributed to malabsorption of nutrients and overall malnutrition. Like grains, legumes should only be fed sprouted and fresh or gently dehydrated at our under 115 degrees F, never cooked, and only in limited amounts due to the high omega 6s and lectins they contain. Mung beans are probably the safest legume to feed to feather destroyers.
- Dietary Oils. Plant-based dietary oils are high in salicylates. For that reason alone feather destroyers should not consume most dietary oils. Finding dietary oils feather destroyers can consume is an ongoing research project. Animal-based dietary oils are best for feather destroying birds in very limited amounts.
- All nuts, except for cashews are extremely high in salicylates. Unfortunately cashews are high in histamines. For this reason nuts of all varieties cannot be fed to feather destroying birds.
- Almost all seed are high in salicylates and/or histamines. There are but a few seeds that can be fed to feather destroying birds. Quinoa is a seed that can be fed sprouted in a very limited amount. However, for other reasons quinoa should be fed in very limited amounts only. Even though sunflower seed is low in salicylates and histamines it is a “histamine liberator” and should not be fed in high amounts to feather destroyers.
Even though you are now armed with this information, please keep in mind that feather destroyers require very specific, balanced diets of specific ingredients to correct their feather destruction tendencies and engagement. Feather destruction cannot be reduced or stopped overnight. Usually a complete detox of the digestive tract must take place and a complete replenishment of the gut flora is required before true cessation of feather destruction can be achieved. Even then a bird may not completely stop feather destruction, may experience certain triggers from time to time, or may not grow feathers back due to possible feather follicle damage.
I encourage you to continue to learn more about feather destruction through reading our blog here and/or joining our “Mutilation Syndrome Program” designed specifically for feather destroyers by Machelle who has 15 years of research and clinical studies experience specifically in the field of exotic bird feather destruction.
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