The other day I was in the pet store, just browsing, because I tend to do that. Going to the pet store is hardly ever a quick trip for me. I get distracted with all the new pet products and foods, and the animals themselves of course. Anyway, I was looking at bird food. I do not own a bird personally, but I wanted to make an outside bird feeder and needed the right food. While there, I noticed lots of dried fruit for parrots, which got me thinking about making my own. “It can’t be that hard to dry fruit” I thought. And guess what, it isn’t. Plus you get the benefit of knowing that there are no extra sugars or additives in your bird’s food.
I love homemaking treats and goodies for my pets; it’s a great way to supplement the pellet diet and often to encourage natural behaviors such as foraging. Fruit is such an easy thing to get a hold of and parrots LOVE it. But for me the biggest problem with fruit is that it never last as long as I need it to. If you’re looking for a new way to preserve all that fruit, or just a new way of serving it to your bird you should really try drying it. I’ll be honest this process requires you to be home for most of the day, as you’re oven will be on for six to eight hours, but your actual work load is only about five minutes.
- Whatever fruit you want to use – I used apple, banana, and orange (I bought strawberries too, but forgot about them)
- Some other great fruits to dry are: pineapple, pears, cherries, papaya, grapes, and plums
Cut your fruit into small pieces, for oranges I left them in slices, and place them in a single layer on a baking sheet
Bake your fruit at 170o for six – eight hours. I recommend starting at four hours and then checking your fruit every two hours after that.
Place your fruit in an air tight container to store.
What kind of treats does your bird enjoy?