Can Birds Eat Bread?

Birds can eat bread. However, it is not the best food for them. In terms of food, you can liken birds to humans. While there are several foods for people to eat, some people do not like some foods, while some foods may not be the best for some people.


Birds have their foods like seeds, nuts, nectar, fruits, etc., which they like. Knowing what foods birds want is essential to keeping them well and feeding safely. If you keep birds, you will understand how vital it is to feed them with the right food.

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Why Bread Is Not the Best Food for Birds?

Due to some reasons, bread may not be the best food for birds. First of all, bread has no nutritional value for birds, at least not in the needed amount. Bread lacks the fat and proteins that, ideally, should be in birds’ food. Also, bread is like a filler to the birds. Unlike other foods that are satisfying and nourishing to the birds, bread only fills them up.

Furthermore, if birds consume bread in large quantities, they will not be able to eat other foods. With this situation, the bread denies them of other foods that would have been better than the bread. Moreover, birds can starve or fall sick if they depend on only bread or consume bread in consistently large quantities. It will be health-wise to reduce their bread intake or avoid for long periods, if possible.

Seeing that bread is not the best food for birds, what then so birds eat?

Foods for Birds

There are specific foods that are better for birds than bread is. These are foods birds are known to eat. These foods keep them healthy and nourished. Some of these foods are:


Seeds are a viable source of fat for birds. While their nutritional value is not so high, they contain the necessary quantity of oil birds need. One of the favorite seeds for birds is the sunflower. Birds also like safflower, corn (shelled and cracked), nyjer or thistle, etc.


Birds are known to like nuts. Nuts are also good sources of fats for birds. While birds will eat just about any nut, they like peanuts, walnuts, beechnuts, pine nuts, Brazil nuts, pecans, and lots more. Nuts are particularly essential for birds during the winter season. They can endure long storage and hold on to their nutrients during this season. 

can birds eat bread

Some birds are known to eat specific types of nuts to meet their dietary supplies and balance their nutrition. The shape of their bill and the geographical location where they are located will determine the kinds of nuts specific birds will eat.


Birds can make do with any kind of fruit. However, they may have preferences. Fruits like bananas, apples, mangos, and a whole lot of others are good for birds.  Birds also like dried fruits like currants and raisins.  Fruits provide birds with the necessary vitamins, sugar, and minerals they need. Fruits are also viable sources of carbohydrates for them.


Beans provide good nutritional value for birds. They are viable sources of vegetable protein for them. Beans also help birds’ digestive systems because of the fiber it provides them.



Birds like various kinds of vegetables. Wild birds and companion birds cherish vegetables alike. While they feed on a variety of vegetables, some birds may prefer some kinds of vegetables. This may be due to what is obtainable in their natural habitat or what works best for them. Vegetables like greens, squash, peas, kale, broccoli, root vegetables, carrots, etc. are good for birds.


Potatoes are another kind of food that birds like to eat. You can prepare potatoes in a variety of ways, except chips, for your little friend. Potatoes are real nutritional delights of birds. The potatoes can be mashed, baked, roasted, or boiled. The delicacy can be mixed with real fat.


Pastry is another delicious food for birds. If it is mixed with real fat, it will be better. Birds cherish this delicious meal in whatever state, whether cooked or not. 


Birds, especially wrens, blackbirds, and robins like cheese. Prepare in a mildly grated state and you are good to go.


Fat, especially suet, is a good delicacy for birds. During the winter season, duets are very great foods for woodpeckers, jays, and other suet lovers.

Grains or Cereals

Grains are one of the best foods for birds. If you are a farmer and birds visit your field, you can bet that a lot have left your field. Grains are nourishing to birds, providing them with carbohydrates and protein. Quinoa and oats add great nutritional value to birds’ foods.


Most people cannot stand pepper. But this is not so with birds. They are good with peppers and have them in good quantity. Banana pepper, chili pepper, and other kinds of peppers are good for birds.

can birds eat bread

Having known what kinds of foods birds eat, it is essential to know what kinds of foods they do not eat. Knowing both foods is essential to feeding them well.

Foods Your Birds Should Not Eat

Aside from bread, which is not exactly poisonous to them but is not the best for them, there are other foods you should avoid giving to birds. Some of these foods are:


While birds eat seeds, it is not all kinds of seeds. Seeds from fruit belonging to the rose family are not the best food for birds. Therefore, these seeds have cyanides and are not the best choice of foods for your winged friend.

Seeds of fruits like peanuts, apples, apricot, are not good for birds. If you must give these fruits to your birds, then you have to.rir them of their seeds. You do this by cutting it open and removing the seeds before chopping them into bits for the birds. It is advisable to wash the fruits, say apples, thoroughly before letting your birds eat them. 


Chocolate is not the kind of food birds want to eat. It is poisonous to them and causes their death. If birds take in chocolates, it will put their digestive system and nervous system in jeopardy. If birds take in chocolates, before long, they will show symptoms like seizures that will tell you they have taken in chocolates. If the situation is severe, it can lead to their death.


Mushrooms are known to be some people’s favorite! But not birds. Mushrooms are detrimental to the health and wellbeing of birds. It negatively impacts the liver and digestive systems.


Onions are not so good for birds. If they consume it in large quantities, it can impact their digestive system negatively. Birds have been known to tolerate minimal onions in their foods but react negatively to onions in large amounts.  If they take in onions in large quantities for a long time, it aggravates the situation, BV affecting their respiratory system and causing death eventually.

can birds eat bread

This is why it is advisable to avoid exposing your birds to onions. If they must take it, it should be in minute quantity. For instance, you can have little onions in their foods, just to make the ingredients complete. The same goes for garlic.


Salt has been known to grace almost every meal people take. For birds, having salt in their food is not bad on its own. However, if birds take in salt in large quantities, they will react negatively to it. 

People are usually advised against taking in a large amount of salt. The same goes for birds. Too much salt intake can lead to dehydration. With time, their kidneys can become weak and dysfunctional, and they may eventually die. The best thing to do is to monitor the quality of salt that goes into making your bird’s food. You can alternate foods with salt with those without salt. 


Some people are wont to feed their birds with drinks. While this is not bad on its own, it might be doing your birds harm. This is because the kind of drink your bird takes matters. If you give them vegetable or fruit juice, you have done no harm.

However, giving your birds caffeinated drinks is inviting them to their death. Birds have been known to have a rapid heartbeat, cardiac arrest, and other heart-related issues from taking caffeine.  Some birds can become restless and hyperactive if they consume caffeinated drinks. So, if you want your birds to have a drink, pick safely.


Bread can become dangerous to birds when it is given to them regularly. Stale bread is also dangerous.

Avoid giving your birds bread regularly. Also, do not give them moldy bread.

Yes. Foods like mushrooms, chocolate, onions, and salt are not good for birds.


Birds can eat bread, but it is not the best food for them because it lacks the nutritional value that other foods have. Other foods which would be better for them than bread include seed, nuts, vegetables, fruits, fat, potatoes, etc. These foods meet the nutritional needs of the birds.

There are some foods which you have to avoid giving to your birds—such foods as caffeinated drinks, mushrooms, onions, chocolate, etc. You would be putting your birds’ health in jeopardy if you exposed them to these foods.

Author Profile

Gabriel Tackett
Double major in Engineering and Geology at the University of Minnesota. Experienced shooter & hunter for over 15 years. Certified NRA officer for over 10 years working as a writer at .

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