Q: I have an African grey and was telling some friends what I feed her. One of them asked me what they eat in the wild, and I could not tell them. What do they eat in the wild, and should I incorporate any of it into my grey’s diet?
Jean Pattison, also known as “The African Queen,” explains:
Little is really known about what wild African greys eat. Some studies have shown that palm fruit from the African oil palm is relished by greys, and some ground roots of plants are eaten. Since our birds are in our homes, and not subjected to the rigors of wild survival, their metabolism is quite different from the wild African greys. Nothing about their life style is the same as a wild grey. In light of this, and the little knowledge we have about their natural diet, there is no need to try to duplicate the wild diet. There are vendors that sell palm oil specifically for greys made from the natural fruit they eat. Small amounts of this would be fine to supplement an African grey’s diet.