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Sprouted seeds are very useful for parrots because they are very different in composition from unsprouted seeds. Therefore, ungerminated seeds may make up only 5-10% of a parrot’s diet, whereas germinated seeds may make up about half of the diet. Ungerminated seeds are useless for parrots because they are high in fat and low in active substances.

However, germination changes the composition of the seed and makes it highly nutritious. As the seed germinates, the fat in the seed is used for germination, so germinated seed does not fatten parrots. In addition, the germinating seed increases the minerals, vitamins, fibre, protein and antioxidants. Therefore, sprouted seeds can make up 50% of a parrot’s diet (the remaining 30% is made up of pellets, fruit and vegetables). Supplements, ground pellets and vitamins can be sprinkled on the sprouted seeds and will be absorbed efficiently.

Which seeds are suitable for sprouting and swelling?

Cereals (for sprouting, use only the hulls, the others will not germinate) – wheat, rye, barley, oats. Sprouted for 8 hours, germinates in 2-3 days.Other (used whole) – lentils, chickpeas, beans. Beans are the fastest to germinate of all seeds. Legumes should be used sparingly as they are rich in protein.Buckwheat – swollen for only 30min, germinates in 1-2 days.

However, only buckwheat with hulls is suitable.Brown rice (with hulls only). Sprout for 8 hours, germinates in 2 – 3 days.Sunflower – use black, striped or shelled. Favoured by parrots. Swell for 8 hours, germinates in 2-3 days.Bolivian balanda, burnoti seeds.Maize seeds.Almonds – hard to germinate, so swell is sufficient, favoured by parrots.Sesame seeds – swell for 2-4 hours. Use on the same day as they become rancid later.Flaxseeds need to be swelled for 8 hours.

How to germinate seeds?

The first step is to swell the seed:

Rinse the seeds until the water is clear.Pour water over the seeds to cover them by a few centimetres and leave them overnight. Do not leave the seeds for more than 8 hours, as they will begin to turn brown.p Toxins are flushed out, reducing the likelihood of bacterial contamination.

The second stage is seed germination:

Seeds are placed in a colander to drain and rinse, and irrigated with water 3 times a day or more.After 24 hours, the seeds start to germinate. In 24 hours or 24 hours a day, seeds will germinate fully within a few days. The tastiest and most useful seeds are when the seedling appears (up to 1 cm). Overgrown seeds are less appetizing. Once germinated, the seeds should be rinsed and can be given to parrots.The dried germinated seeds can be stored in the fridge for a few days. The seeds must be drained or they will spoil quickly.

I recommend that different seeds are germinated in different containers, as grains germinate within 24 hours and nuts and legumes within a few days. If the germinated seeds have an unpleasant smell or are spoiled, they should not be given to parrots. Sprouted seeds are essential for Eclectus parrots as their digestive tract is not adapted to pellets.

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