Fruits make up 20-25% of the bird’s daily nutrition. Birds ingest different fruits in different conditions. It is believed that all the fruits that are consumed by humans are nutritious for birds as well. But, do birds eat apples?
Do birds eat apples?
Birds eat apples and many other fruits as they are highly nutritious and an excellent source of energy. They prefer eating fresh apples from the bare branches of trees.
Apples provide vitamin A, vitamin C, and magnesium to birds which help in maintaining their feather growth and overall health. Birds eat fruits, including apples, because of the nutrition requirement in their daily diet.
So, can you feed apples to your birds? You can feed apples to your birds either by cutting their slices or by hanging the whole apple. But it is important to make sure that you remove the core and seed part from them.
Apples and some other fruits that contain seeds shouldn’t be fed to birds without removing the seeds because of the small amount of cyanide compound present in those seeds. The cyanide compound is toxic for birds and is often a cause of their death.
Birds that feed on apples are:
- Gray catbird
- American robin
- Brown thrasher
- Eastern bluebird
- Crested barbet
- Pine grosbeak
- Northern flicker
- House finch
- Tufted titmouse
- Red-bellied woodpecker
- Cedar waxwing
- Scarlet tanager
Other birds such as sparrows, warblers, and thrushes may eat apples depending on their eating habits. In specific climates, toucans, cassowaries, and hornbills also intake fruits in their diet.
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Do birds eat fresh apples or dried apples?
Birds tend to enjoy both fresh and dried apples. When cut in slices or small chunks, birds feed on them easily and enjoy the treat. Dried fruits form a great source of their nutrition, especially when the food sources are in scarcity.
Older or overripe apples are avoided by humans but make a perfect meal for birds. Local markets and stores may provide good discounts on such apples which you can buy to feed your birds.
Depending on their individual’s choice, birds may either eat whole fresh apples or sip the apple juice. They may peck at the soft flesh of the apples until they are full.
Whereas, dried apples can be prepared by different methods to feed birds. Cut the apple slices very thin and then use the dehydrator or oven for drying. Sun Drying is another way for drying apples; however, it may take a few days.
Hanging the dried apple slices, covered with corn syrup and bird seeds, is a creative way to attract birds.
Do birds eat applesauce?
Apple-eating birds feed on applesauce and apple juice. They enjoy eating when the applesauce is offered to them with the birdy bread. However, it is healthier to give them unsweetened and organic applesauce.
Regular or sweetened applesauce contains a large amount of sugar and other preservatives which is not so healthy for them. Homemade applesauce can be the best substitute to feed birds.
Small and delicate birds, such as robins, blue tits, and martins, usually do not eat large apple slices or whole apples but easily feed on the applesauce and apple juice. They are more comfortable eating the applesauce than the whole apple.
How to hang apples for birds?
There are many ways to hang apples for birds in your backyard or garden to attract them. The traditional way is to simply hang the whole apple outside. The other ways include stuffing the apples with the bird seeds.
One creative way to hang apples for your birds requires the following steps to be done:
- Rinse off the apples and cut them into halves.
- Remove or scoop out the core and seed part of the apple, making it hollow from inside.
- Boil water on the other side and add gelatine to it.
- When the gelatine completely gets dissolved, mix the bird seeds into it.
- Fill up the hollow apples with the seed mixture.
- Set all the prepared apples on a pan and put them in the fridge to make apples firm for 2-3 hours.
- Poke a nail or screw into each apple and tie them with the piece of jute thread or twine.
- Hang the apples outside to feed birds.
Another way of hanging apples for your birds is by assembling the whole apples and embedding seeds in them. To make such an arrangement, follow the steps:
- Remove the core part of the apple using a corer or a knife.
- Embed the seeds into the top half of the apple. Make sure to not push them completely inside.
- Push a stick into the bottom part of the apple to make perch for birds.
- Tie the string through the hollow part of the apple. Make sure to tie around the stick as well.
- Tie the apple outside onto the branch of a tree or at the right spot.
Fresh or dried apples can also be covered with other ingredients that your birds enjoy. The stuffing can be replaced according to the preference of birds you are feeding.
Hanging the apples at the right spot is necessary to keep them away from other animals. A high site can be a great spot for feeding birds. Make sure that the apples are tied properly.
Related Read: Can You Feed Birds Bread? | Will Birds Eat Bread?
Do birds eat apple peels?
Birds may eat apple peels, depending on their dietary habits. They can eat whole apples including the skin. Birds do not avoid eating peels, but some may like to just peck the soft flesh of the apples.
Birds enjoy a variety of food products, including fruits. Apple is one of the most loved fruits that several bird species eat. They not only enjoy eating dried and fresh apples but also like to sip the apple juice and sauce.
People who love feeding birds in their backyard or garden, hang apples in different ways to attract their feathered guests. You can feed apples to birds but make sure to follow hygiene measures, including washing feeders and refilling fresh food on time.