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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
my cockatiel is screaming really loud and i'm pretty sure it's because he wants seeds. i want to give him pellets as his main meal and seeds occasionally. i've tried training him that if he wants to get a seed, he should climb onto my finger. i've only gotten bit and when i stop to sit and ignore him, he just keeps screaming excessively. help me out here if you can, thanks! :)
 

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Have you taken the seed away from his food dish completely? Is he eating the pellets at all? This is a bad idea because if he refuses the pellets he will starve and that is probably why he is screaming at you and showing aggression.

Cockatiels are grainivores by nature and seed is an important part of their diet. Vets say that they don't need to eat seed (it's unhealthy, it's fattening, etc) but have a look at the ingredients of the pellets they are pushing you to buy, and the first ingredients? Seeds and grains. The first ingredient in Harrison's pellets is millet and I've had a vet tell me millet is a terrible food for birds, and they sold me Harrison's. Quite the opposite: millet is not a seed, it's a grain and actually high in protein. All-seed diets are not good, but seed as part of a varied diet (along with pellets and fresh foods) is ideal.

You need to transition him onto pellets gradually if he isn't fond of them. Get a couple of different brands and see which one he prefers, or mix them together so it's like foraging to him. You still need to give him his seed mix every day. Sometimes it's better to keep the pellets in a separate bowl to the seed, because if they are in the same bowl your 'tiel will just pick out the seed and leave the pellets.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
hmm... so when i put in the seeds, he refuses to eat the pellets. when i take them out, he starts eating pellets and he does scream a little. i’ve put in less seeds than usual to try and transition him to the pellets. he has eaten some pellets and he does enjoy them now. i feed him seeds and millet from my hand instead. should having both the bowls in the cage be a good idea? he’d most likely just eat from the seeds and not touch the pellets at all.
 

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That's great! He's taken to the pellets well. It has taken months with a couple of my 'tiels to get them accustomed to eating pellets so that's excellent. He should be one of those birds that warms up to new foods quickly so you shouldn't have to wait long before he starts eating vegetables regularly as well.
 
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