Can Cockatiels Eat Parakeet Food? (What’s the Difference in Diet?)

Cockatiels can eat parakeet food, yes. Cockatiels and parakeets are both medium-sized birds. Further, these two have an almost similar build and dietary needs. Thus, these birds can eat the food meant for the other without causing any issues. At the same time, they can also have the same preference and will eat fruits, veggies, and treats that the other eats.

If you own both birds or are just planning to get one after the other, you shouldn’t worry about the food. Whatever you feed to your parakeet is likely safe for your cockatiel to eat.

Below are some relevant topics and questions you need to know about this matter. I hope you find at least one or two useful for your pets.

Let’s get into it!

Can cockatiels eat the same food as parakeets?

As I said earlier, cockatiels can eat the same food as parakeets. The reason is that they have a pretty similar build. Thus, they also have similar dietary requirements.

For this reason, most foods that are safe for parakeets can also be safe for cockatiels, and vice versa.

Cockatiels are a little bit bigger compared to parakeets. Still, they don’t differ that much when it comes to food intake.

Both cockatiels and parakeets can eat a couple of teaspoons of food per day. That’s approximately 30-40 grams. It can be much less, depending on the size and age of the bird.

When it comes to food, both cockatiels and parakeets can enjoy pellets and other bird seeds.

At the same time, they can also eat vegetables, fruits, and other snacks without having any issues.

Thus, if you have both birds at home, feeding them the same food shouldn’t be that big of a deal. As long as the food is safe to eat, both pet birds can eat it.

If there’s one thing you should be mindful of, that would be about the seeds.

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Can cockatiels eat parakeets treats?

Cockatiels can eat parakeet treats. Both birds have pretty similar dietary requirements. Thus, the goodies you offer for parakeets are also great for cockatiels.

Most of the parakeet treats include seeds, fruits, and nuts. All of these things are safe for cockatiels as well. In fact, these are also the same treats and snacks you can offer.

Still, as I said earlier, feeding seeds have a little bit of difference between these two. In particular, it concerns sunflower seeds.

Since cockatiels are a bit bigger, they also require a step higher for calorie needs.

For this reason, most mixed seeds include more sunflower seeds for cockatiels. Such a mix isn’t recommendable for parakeets.

Moreover, the mixed seeds for parakeets have fewer nutrients for cockatiels if fed.

Nevertheless, the food for both pet birds remains safe and healthy for both.

The difference in the diet of cockatiels and parakeets

parakeet food

As I said earlier, there’s not that much difference between a cockatiel and a parakeet’s diet.

Indeed, cockatiels are a bit larger than parakeets. For this reason, the former may have a step higher in terms of nutritional and caloric needs. 

Moreover, their bodies need higher levels of certain nutrients each day than parakeets.

When it comes to mixed seeds, most ingredients on a parakeet’s food are also present in cockatiels. Thus, both mixed seeds are safe for both pets, even if you interchange it.

The only difference between the two is the number of sunflower seeds in it. Sunflower seeds are more extensive than most sources. For this reason, it’s much more ideal for cockatiels than parakeets.

Still, like any other seeds, the sunflower ones should also get served in moderation.

Sunflower seeds have a high oil content, which means it has a lot more fat than the others. Thus, offering such sources in large amounts can take a toll on your cockatiel’s health.

Cockatiels need a balanced diet of proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. Further, they also need a wide range of vitamins and minerals.

Thus, while a parakeet food may not be unhealthy for these birds, it’s also not that beneficial. The reason is that it lacks the nutrients cockatiels need.

As a general rule of thumb, the best food for cockatiels is the ones designed for them.

Moreover, it should be a balance between pellets, vegetables, and treats from time to time.

This way, you can ensure your pet receives the appropriate amount of nutrients. Further, you can also be confident your pet won’t suffer from nutrient deficiency.

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Can cockatiels live with parakeets?

Cockatiels can live with parakeets. Since both belong to the same family, both can live together.

Still, it’s not something experts would recommend doing. Indeed, they both have pretty similar needs in terms of food and nutrition. However, placing them in the same place isn’t ideal.

In the wild, parakeets and cockatiels live together in flocks. Thus, it makes sense that they can learn to share a cage in your home.

Still, as birds and as animals, both parakeets and cockatiels act on instinct. For this reason, a risk is always there that one or both birds can get hurt.

Such a thing can happen, especially if they share the same food.

If you own both birds, it would be best to keep them in a separate cage. This way, you can ensure they won’t hurt each other.

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Cockatiels can eat parakeet food, and it shouldn’t cause any issues. Both birds come from the same family, and they have a pretty similar diet and build. 

Still, parakeet foods are a little bit insufficient for a cockatiel’s daily diet. If you feed parakeet food and treats once in a while, it should be alright.

However, making it a regular part of a cockatiel’s diet isn’t something I would recommend. 

You can optimize your cockatiel’s health by feeding the food made for them and not for other pets. Although the other mixed seeds are safe, the best will always be the ones made for them.


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