African Grey Parrots Need Vitamin D & Calcium
The African Grey Parrot is the second most commonly traded psittacine bird in the world pet trade, and its popularity continues to increase.
Of all the parrot species, the African Grey is the specie most likely to suffer from hypocalcemia, or in laymen’s terms, low calcium and vitamin D. Two factors contribute to this vitamin deficiency, many parrots are feed entirely bird seed diets that are lacking in vitamin D and calcium, and most pet birds are not exposed to enough sunlight to help with the absorption of vitamin D.
One of the best ways to mitigate this risk of health problems associated with this vitamin defieciency is to switch your African Grey to a diet high in vitamin D and calcium such as Harrison’s Bird Food High Potency. A secondary way to improve the vitamin levels of your bird is to be sure he gets natural sunlight on a daily basis, or his environmental lighting is supplemented with artificial lighting that simulates the sun.
A 3 year study completed in August 2005 by the Royal College Of Veterinary Surgeons concluded:
- African Grey parrots with vitamin D and calcium deficiencies benefited greatly soon after switching to a High Potency Harrison’s Bird Food Diet. This study also involved supplementing the parrot’s lighting with artificial UV lighting.
If you have an African Grey that eats only or mostly a bird seed diet, you would be well served, and his health will be better, if you convert him to a formulated bird food diet rich in vitamin D and calcium, such as a diet of Harrison’s Bird Food.
Additionally it pays to provide artificial UV lighting that simulates the sun to aid in that vitamin D absorption.