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Birdie Mash Recipe

Birdie Mashby Pauline James
Birdie mash is very popular with most parrots and is a good way to get birds to eat foods they wouldn’t normally touch.  This highly nutrient-rich mix takes a little while to prepare, but if done in bulk, it can then be frozen in portions, so it doesn’t have to be made every week.  It can be served warm in the winter months and be used to supplement their daily diet.
This mash makes a great treat for the evening, to serve when you are sitting down to a meal too.  Eating together gives companion parrots a sense of belonging, and they will anticipate this time of day and their special food, with great joy and enthusiasm.
Making a birdie mash…
A good basis for a mash, and to give it body, is lightly steamed sweet potato and pumpkin (when available), as these contain high levels of vitamin A.  This vitamin is essential for all birds, but it is a vitamin many are deficient in, due to a staple diet of mainly seed, and is why malnourished birds are extra vulnerable to infection and disease and feather-plucking due to the irritation of dry, flaky skin and poor quality plumage.
Mash a good quantity of these two vegetables and then add to it mashed banana with a little added lemon juice to stop it discolouring and a few mashed cold hard-boiled eggs.  Exact quantities are not vital as long as the mash is not over-loaded with fats and proteins.
Cook a quantity of mixed lentils, brown rice, split peas, quinoa and mixed dried beans and when cold add to the sweet potato and pumpkin (if used) mixture.
Next liquidise a good variety of fresh fruits and vegetables not readily eaten in their normal diet and especially those that are nutrient-rich such as mango, figs, papaya, berries, pineapple, grated carrot and beetroot, broccoli, chillies and beans.  Start by liquidising the juiciest fruits first and chop them all into small pieces before adding to the liquidiser – add a little water if necessary.  Stir this into the mix, but make sure the mash retains its body.
Then grind up a mix of different top quality nuts, such as almonds, a few Brazils and walnuts along with the pumpkin seeds and perilla seeds.  Add to this chipped up fresh ginger and a few teaspoons of each turmeric and cinnamon and the freshly grated peel of a few oranges.
Mix thoroughly and divide into portions and freeze.
If all parrots were fed a portion of this every day, it would increase a parrot’s wellbeing and help satisfy their nutritional needs and go a long way to keeping them in good health.
Photo courtesy of Tony Pittman


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