I’ve read various opinions on this, and the general consensus seems to be that pet birds don’t need extra grit in order to digest their food.I’ve been watching my cockatiel explore it’s cage, and it doesn’t seem as capable of tearing stuff up as I first thought. I’m wondering if even breaking into an almond or pumpkin seed is beyond it. (It’s even bit me a couple times because I irritated it, and it was more of a tickle than a “bite”)So I was wondering what you guys thoughts are on it. I have some insoluble granite that I can screen for the smallest pieces, or alternatively, I could get some oyster shell. (If either of those are necessary, of course).I have the granite on hand because I use it as a soil amendment, but it’s meant for chickens, which is why I mentioned it.
Grit has nothing to do with either the strength of a birds jaws or of its beak. The cockatiel doesn’t normally eat almonds in the wild but it does eat small seed which it has no problem with shelling. Grit works in the crop to grind up the hard husks on seeds for birds that swallow the whole seed instead of the birds that shell the husk off and only eat the soft interior of the seed, Feeding grit to these birds that shell their seeds has been shown to cause problems in a percentage of them. There are birds kept as pets which eat the entire seed and for them grit is the way to go, but I don’t see that it serves any purpose in those that don’t eat the whole seed.
Understood. I was mostly wondering if it would help it’s digestion at all, but if it can digest the flesh of the nuts / seeds handily enough, then I’m not going to try and fix what isn’t broken.
Beside, grit is never supposed to be insoluble, my dear. The good grit (used for species that swallow their seeds whole) is always 99% soluble.