Can Cockatoos Eat Coconut? Top 4 Facts And 4 Myths Unraveled!

Cockatoos are undoubtedly one of the most beautiful birds that can be domesticated. When you bring a cockatoo home, you’re bringing a lot of humor accompanied by the responsibility of keeping this Lil birdie safe.

It’s nutrition that affects the quality of life for a cockatoo. Your love is important, but so is food. If you’re a cockatoo parent, you should know what’s safe for your bird, and today, we discuss the connection between cockatoos and coconuts. 

We’re delighted to inform you that cockatoos can eat coconut meat and also drink coconut oil and coconut water. It’s one of the healthiest sources of fiber, vitamin A, potassium, magnesium, iron, zinc, and whatnot. 

Can Cockatoos Eat Coconut

Coconut can soothe the gut of cockatoos, keep them hydrated and energetic, and boost their immunity. So, definitely, feeding cockatoos coconut is safe and highly recommended. Besides, cockatoos enjoy the taste of coconuts too.

Care to learn more about coconuts and cockatoos and the do’s and don’ts when feeding coconut to your bird? If yes, take a plunge because we’re not done yet! 

Can Cockatoos Eat Coconut? Is it Safe?

Love seeing your birdie all goofy and talkative? If you want the spree of health and happiness to continue, feed your cockatoo fresh coconut. 

Cockatoos relish the taste of coconuts. In fact, if you wish to give your bird a special treat, you can always count on coconuts. 

That said, don’t ever feed your cockatoo any coconut product that has added salt, sugar, or preservatives. These additives can easily kill your bird. 

Coconut is safe as long as you don’t overfeed it. Yes, it’s loaded with fibers, vitamins, and minerals, but it has fat content too (healthy fat, to be precise). 

If you feed coconut to your cockatoo carefully, the fruit is nothing but an absolute superfood that your bird will be thankful for (both mood-wise and health-wise). 

Top 4 Intriguing Facts About Cockatoos And Coconuts That You Ought To Know 

1.) Coconuts Soothe the gut of Cockatoos

Coconut is very effective in maintaining the digestive health of your little cockatoo bird. When cockatoos eat coconut, after it’s digested, it combines all the food into a solid mass that’s later on passed as feces.  

This helps with stool consistency. You can treat loose stools by feeding coconut meat to cockatoos. 

Besides, coconut can easily soothe the gut by easing inflammation that, in turn, reduces issues like bloating, constipation, and stomach pain in cockatoos.

2.) Coconut Water and Coconut oil are just as safe as Coconut Meat

People prefer giving their birds a variety of food rather than sticking to the same thing. Since coconut meat is very, very safe for cockatoos, many cockatoo parents wonder if coconut water and coconut oil are safe too.

Truth be told, coconut water and coconut oil are safe for cockatoos in moderate amounts, so is coconut meat.

Having said that, you have to make sure that coconut milk, water, and oil are free of preservatives and seasonings. 

3.) Coconut Prevents heart diseases in Cockatoos

Coconut is a superfood that can protect the heart of your cockatoo since it’s power-packed with medium-chain fatty acids. 

Medium-chain fatty acids are regarded so highly because they result in the formation of HDL (good cholesterol) and the reduction of LDL (bad cholesterol).

Here’s the thing with HDL: instead of sticking to the arteries and veins, it converts food into energy as soon as it’s digested.  

Clearly, feeding coconuts is a wonderful way to keep the cardiovascular system of your cockatoo healthy and kicking, isn’t it? 

4.) Coconut is an Ultimate Immunity-Booster for you Lil Bird

Vitamin A is an essential nutrient that can boost the immunity of cockatoos. And coconut is a reservoir of vitamin A.  

Besides, coconut contains antioxidants and medium-chain triglycerides. Both these ingredients boost the bird’s ability to fend off infections and inflammation. 

Did you know that medium-chain triglycerides have antifungal and antiviral properties? 

Can you seriously really think of any other fruit besides coconut that has the power to elongate the life of your cockatoo?

4 Myths About Coconut And Cockatoos That Can Be Fatal For Your Birdie 

1.) All types of  Coconut are Safe for Cockatoos

The kind of benefits that coconuts have will naturally encourage pet parents to feed them to their birds. What you have to understand is, although coconut meat, coconut water, and coconut oil are safe for cockatoos, every other form isn’t. 

For instance, desiccated coconut is fatal for cockatoos. You just can’t feed dry coconut to your bird. If you do, it will cause the stomach of the cockatoo to inflame and swell, and that is life-threatening for your bird.

Similarly, it’s very harmful to feed processed coconut flakes to cockatoos. Anything that has salt, preservatives, and sugar can dehydrate the bird and cause digestive issues. 

So, stick to fresh coconut meat and water to make sure your cockatoo stays healthy. 

2.) You can feed lots of Coconut Water to Cockatoos during the Summer Time

Hydrating and loaded with essential nutrients, coconut is indeed a champion food for the summer season.

Since coconut water is so hydrating, it’s natural that you would want to feed it to your bird regularly. 

But, this is just a myth. You cannot feed your cockatoo coconut in excess. Whether it’s coconut water, coconut oil, coconut meat, or unprocessed, organic coconut flakes, excess of them is very dangerous.  

Keep coconut as a special-occasion treat for your bird. If your cockatoo has been ill, don’t switch the diet and include coconuts in any form without consulting an avian doctor. 

3.) Coconut can be the main staple in the diet of Cockatoos

Don’t make this assumption since it’s a myth. A balanced diet for a cockatoo has to be much more than coconuts that should actually be given as healthy snacks only.  

4.) Cockatoos can break Coconut 

People see birds eating all sorts of hard nuts by breaking the shells. Did that give you an idea that cockatoos might be able to break the coconut too? If yes, erase this thought. 

Macaws are stronger and they can crack a coconut, but cockatoos can’t do that. They can wound their beaks seriously in the process of trying to crack a coconut.  

See also: Can Cockatoos Eat Figs

Things to keep in mind when buying Coconut for Cockatoos

You know the facts and myths, but there’s so much more that we have to share with you. Here’s an intriguing section on the do’s and don’ts when buying coconut for your cockatoos.

Do’s when buying coconut for Cockatoos 

      • Always check the label of coconut products you’re buying for your bird. You can digest preservatives, but cockatoos can’t. 
      • Do make sure that you buy fresh coconut only. Organic coconut is the best option.

Don’ts when buying coconut for Cockatoos

      • Do not buy desiccated coconut products.
      • Do not get tempted with coconut chips even if they’re organic. They’re dry and that’s dangerous for cockatoos. 

How to Feed Coconut to Cockatoos? Top 3 Ways to Make Things Interesting for Your Bird

They’re just birds, why does it even matter how you feed them coconut, they won’t know the difference anyway – says who?

Yes, they munch on everything that you feed them in whichever way you feed them, but it doesn’t mean they don’t have specific tastes. 

No matter how funny it sounds to you, some cockatoos might like coconut meat more than coconut water, some others might prefer coconut water over coconut oil and coconut meat! 

Unless you try different combinations, you’ll never know for sure what your cockatoo likes the most. 

The best way to find out what they like the most is by feeding them different options. Whichever type they eat quickly ought to be their favorite. Once you know, take cues!

Having said that, let’s help you figure out how to feed coconut to cockatoos. 

1.) Chop the Coconut Meat 

This is the simplest way of feeding coconut to cockatoos. It might sound boring, but if your bird likes it like that, who are we to judge?

      • Just take a fresh coconut, punch a hole in the eye of the fruit, and empty the water.
      • Softy hit the coconut against a hard surface. Continue doing it until the shell cracks and the coconut breaks into two.
      • Take a knife and scoop the coconut meat in a bowl.
      • Wash the coconut meat thoroughly. 
      • Chop it into very fine pieces and let the cockatoo enjoy its treat.  

2.) Mix Coconut Oil with the Bird Mix

If your bird likes coconut oil the best, you can get creative and let your feathery pal enjoy it.

Mix some coconut oil with whichever bird food you give to your cockatoo, that’s all! It’s as simple as that.

3.) Keep Coconut Water or Coconut Milk Inside the Cage

This is probably the simplest thing to do. You can dilute coconut water (or coconut milk) with water first. Then keep little quantities in the cage of the bird and watch it go berserk with the joy of being fed its favorite treat.

Precautions to Follow When Feeding Cockatoos Coconut 

1.) Make sure that you chop the coconut meat into very small and thin cubes. It will ensure that the bird doesn’t choke on coconut. 

2.) Make sure you wash coconut meat after scooping it out. It’s a necessary step since it’s the only way to get rid of coconut hair or dirt that might have come in contact with the flesh while you were scooping it out. 

3.) Make sure to discard uneaten cubes of coconut. The same goes for coconut oil and coconut water. Spoilt coconut can harbor germs and fungus that can be deadly for your bird. 

4.) Make sure you never overfeed coconut to cockatoos. It can kill your bird.

See also: Can Yogurt Be Eaten by Cockatoos?

How Much Coconut is too much Coconut?

It’s a very wrong practice to use coconut (in any form) as a daily treat for your bird. Yes, coconut is healthy, but it’s fatty too. So, don’t go overboard. 

Ideally, the amount you feed depends on the age and health status of your bird. Only an avian expert will be able to tell you the exact quantity. 

As for the frequency, it shouldn’t be more than twice a week. 

How to Identify the Signs of Overfeeding?

Overfeeding coconut to cockatoos is fatal and the bird can even die. But, how do you find out if you’re overfeeding your bird? 

Well, it’s not that hard if you pay attention! Here are the signs and symptoms to watch out for:

1.) Your cockatoo bloats every time you feed it any form of coconut.

2.) Has the bird started gaining weight? Has it gone inactive? These could be indications of coconut inflammation. 

3.) Has the bird stopped pooping? Or does it have uncontrollable diarrhea? If yes, and you’ve recently added coconut to its diet, the bird is definitely suffering. Visit a doctor immediately in such cases.

4.) Lethargy and aversion to food are other signs that you’ve overfed coconut. 

The strongest indications are those that start happening only after you’ve recently introduced coconut in your bird’s diet.  


Is Coconut Safe for Cockatoos?

Yes. Fresh coconut meat, coconut water, and coconut oil are very safe for cockatoos. 

Coconut is packed with vitamin A, fibers, zinc, potassium, and many other essential vitamins and minerals. So, cockatoos can eat coconut.  

You have to make sure that whichever form you’re feeding coconut in should be preservative-free, salt-free, and sugar-free.

Do Cockatoos like Coconut?

Although all birds aren’t alike and they have different food preferences, in general, most cockatoos really like the taste of coconut. 

You just have to figure out what they like the most: coconut meat or coconut water or coconut oil.

Can Cockatoos Break Coconut?

No, they can’t. Cockatoos don’t have strong breaks like their stronger siblings, macaws.

They can injure, even break, their beaks if they try to break the coconut. So, take pity on that little cute bird and dice the coconut already!

Can Cockatoos Choke on Coconut?

There have been cases where even humans have choked on coconut. Cockatoo is only but a sweet little bird! 

So, yes, cockatoos can choke on coconut. And that’s why you should give them very small, finely-chopped pieces of coconut. 

Can Cockatoos Eat Desiccated Coconut?

Not at all. Desiccated coconut will inflame the stomach of your bird in no time. It will make the stomach swell. So, desiccated coconut is not safe for cockatoos. 

What are the Health Benefits of Feeding Coconut to Cockatoos?

Coconut has the following benefits when carefully fed to cockatoos, and in moderation:

      • It strengthens the immunity of the bird.
      • It protects the heart of cockatoos. 
      • It elongates life by making the bird stronger. 
      • It is very good for digestion.

Concluding Thoughts

We hope you have all the information you wanted about feeding coconut to your cockatoo. 

Although coconut is very safe for cockatoos, you can’t feed the bird desiccated coconut or coconut that has salt, sugar, or preservatives. 

As long as you keep all the info encapsulated in this guide in your mind, you’ll be the best parent to your cockatoo!

Susan R Elliston

I have over 11 years of experience as a vet working with a wonderful variety of species of innocent and lovely animals. Whilst I still work two days a week for a local practice, I realized that I could help more people by sharing my knowledge and experience with my readers.

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