Can Cockatiels Eat Mealworms? (a Great Protein Source!)

Cockatiels can eat mealworms, yes. Mealworms are an excellent source of protein for these birds. Along with other nutritious food such as fruits, vegetables, and pellets, you can count on mealworms to give a well-balanced diet for your cockatiel.

If you’re finding it challenging to look for protein-rich food for your cockatiel, then you just stumbled on a treasure. 

Mealworms are good sources of protein, a nutrient essential for your cockatiel’s muscles and body. If you plan to feed some to your pet, you may want to learn a little more about it. 

Let’s get into it!

Are mealworms good for cockatiels?

Mealworms are good for cockatiels in the sense that they are highly nutritious.

As I said earlier, mealworms are an excellent source of protein. Further, since they are worms, your cockatiel will surely love eating such.

To understand more, take a look at these nutrition facts. According to CarbonTime, a cup (100 grams) of dried mealworms offer the following:

  • 440 calories
  • 19 grams of fat (4 grams of saturated fat)
  • 150mg of cholesterol
  • 180mg of sodium
  • 15 grams of carbs
  • 9 grams of dietary fiber
  • 0 gram of sugar
  • 55 grams of protein

It also has the following vitamins and minerals:

  • Calcium
  • Potassium
  • Iron
  • Magnesium
  • Zinc
  • Copper
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin D
  • Vitamin E
  • Vitamin K
  • B-Vitamins (B1, B2, B3, B5 (Pantothenic Acid), B7 (Biotin), B9 (Folic Acid)
  • Choline

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Can cockatiels eat dried mealworms?

Cockatiels can eat dried mealworms. In fact, it is even an excellent source of protein for these birds.

Dried mealworms are one of the most concentrated sources of nutrition. It is rich in protein and has some vitamins and minerals present in small quantities. 

If your pet bird lacks nutrition, particularly in protein, mealworms can be one of your go-to feeds. 

There is an array of mealworm products available both online and in stores. Thus, you won’t find it challenging to get a bag for your cockatiel.

While cockatiels can eat mealworms, it still shouldn’t be the only food you should offer.

How many mealworms can cockatiels eat?

Despite being nutritious, mealworms aren’t something you should feed in large quantities.

Like all other birds and animals, cockatiels should have a balanced diet of a few things.

Mealworms should only make 30% of their daily food intake, just like vegetables. You can substitute mealworms with your cockatiels’ veggies, but not always. Ideally, you can give mealworms three times a week at max.

The most significant percentage should be pellets, making up a total of 60% of their daily diet.

The rest, which is 10%, should be for treats like seeds and berries.

As always, the key to a good diet is balance. For this reason, you should never feed too many mealworms for a day, and even for a week.

Further, it would be best if you didn’t feed mealworms as the only food. Consider getting a variety of options to give your different pet kinds of nutrition as well.

Having a list of other nutritious food gives your bird balanced nutrition.

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Risks of feeding your cockatiel mealworms

If there are risks that you need to be aware of when feeding mealworms, that would be the sodium and fat contents.

Indeed, sodium and fat aren’t toxic to cockatiels. However, taking in too much of these two can take a toll on their health.

Mealworms are rich in both sodium and fat. For this reason, mealworms aren’t something you can offer in large amounts.

Always make sure to feed mealworms in moderation. Further, it would be best if you provide it only thrice a week, and not daily.

This way, you can ensure your cockatiel isn’t consuming too much fatty and salty food.

Do cockatiels like eating mealworms?


Almost all birds wouldn’t say no to worms, and cockatiels are one of them. Thus, if you feed your pet some mealworms, it will surely love eating such.

Although your pet may like mealworms, it doesn’t mean you can feed it more than the proper amount.

Remember that mealworms are rich in salt and fats, which can be harmful to your pet if you give more than the right amount.

Instead of feeding mealworms in large amounts, you may consider doing the following options.

How to prepare mealworms for your bird?

You can offer mealworms to your cockatiel in a few ways. Of course, it will depend on what works the most, but it is ideal to do it in either of these two ways.

Feeding mealworms separately.

You can feed mealworms in a single bowl and hand it to your cockatiel to eat. By doing so, you can see how your pet reacts after eating the worms. Further, you can also limit it to smaller quantities and prevent overfeeding.

Mix it with fruits or vegetables.

For cockatiels that are picky, mixing mealworms with fruits and vegetables can be quite handy. By combining, you also incorporate the taste with other fruits. If your pet likes veggies and fruits, this technique can be ideal for you.

Can you mix mealworms with bird seed?

If you’re wondering if you can mix mealworms with birdseed, then yes, you can. Mealworms are a popular feed for birds. Thus, mixing it with bird seeds is ideal. 

Moreover, it can even be a great way to give your pet a variety of nutrients in a single bowl.

The only thing you should remember when doing so is always to maintain the proper amount when feeding.

While both bird seeds and mealworms are safe and nutritious, it doesn’t mean you can give your cockatiel both in large amounts.

In general, cockatiels can eat an average of 30-40 grams per day. Thus, if you won’t offer treats and snacks, this is the amount you can give your pet. If you provide more than this amount, it can already lead to overfeeding.

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Cockatiels can eat mealworms, and it is an excellent source of protein for these birds if you feed such properly. If there’s one thing that you should remember, it would be the fact that cockatiels need a balanced diet. While mealworms provide excellent nutrition, it’s not enough for a cockatiel on its own.

For this reason, always make sure you only give appropriate amounts of mealworms. Further, feed it along with other nutritious food such as pellets, vegetables, fruits, seeds, as nuts.

As long as you keep your cockatiel’s diet well-planned and balanced, your pet should have the best nutrients it can get.


CarbonTime’s nutrition facts on dried mealworms

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