The canaries are beautiful little birds, especially when they are completely healthy and happy. To keep them that way, they need the best canary food. However, how will you know if a certain brand is the “best”? Many different types and brands are out there and it can be confusing to choose just one, especially for beginners.
Worry no more as this article will teach you most of the things that you will need to know on how to care for your canary. Most of the information here will be about choosing the right food for them.
You will learn about the qualities of good canary food that you need to keep an eye out for when shopping. Aside from that, you will receive a couple of recommendations, giving you an idea of what you need to buy.
Best Canary Food Reviews
1. Hagen Canary Staple Vme Seeds
I always like it when birdseed bags do not have that much seed dust at the bottom. I paid good money for every gram of whole seeds, so I often feel cheated when a bag of birdseed has a lot of dust. Hagen canary seeds are quite clean. After emptying the bag into plastic containers for easier portioning, almost no dust settles at the bottom.
This bird seed mix contains just four seeds. These are some of the seeds that canaries love to eat. Unlike other brands of bird seeds that I have tried in the past, this mix does not contain any filler seeds that my birds never wanted to eat. I rarely had to throw out a half-eaten bowl of bird seeds since I switched to this brand.
Another nice thing about this product is that aside from the nutrients already contained in the seeds, Hagen also enhanced it by adding more vitamins and minerals. Your birds can get Vitamins A, D, and E, copper, iodine, and more from this product.
Also, this company only uses fresh and live seeds. If you want, you can sprout a couple of them to see for yourself. The package is vacuum-sealed to keep in the freshness of the seeds. It is always great if the contents smell like grass and are not dry and dusty.
The only issue that I have with this product is that, in my opinion, there are too many rapeseeds in the package. Although it is nutritious, it contains a lot of fat, too. This can be a problem if you feed your canaries with this seed mix exclusively. I suggest that you feed your birds fresh fruits and vegetables occasionally.
- Completely clean and dust-free
- Contains only seeds that canaries love
- Enriched with plenty of vitamins and minerals
- The seeds remain alive and fresh
- There is still a significant amount of chaff in every package
- Too many rapeseeds
This is a good, basic canary bird seed mix. In other words, it is a good foundation for your birds’ diet. Although this seed mix is already fortified with additional vitamins and minerals, you will still need to add fruits and vegetable budgies’ favorite food so that they will receive complete nutrition.
2. Sweet Harvest Canary Alpiste Bird Food
A lot of people I know who are diabetic swear to the effectiveness of using Alpiste seed milk to help get their condition under control. Although this product is mainly for canary consumption, it is more than clean enough for human use as well. I do not personally consume these seeds but I am glad that it is quite clean nonetheless.
Another reason why I like this product is that it is fresh and only consists of live seeds. This means that if you throw these seeds on the ground and give them some water, they will sprout after a day or two. This is not like the other bird seeds that I have tried before that were all dried up and stale.
Even though the packaging states that this product is for canaries, other small bird species love eating these seeds as well. Aside from canaries, I also take care of cockatiels, African lovebirds, and a couple of finches. I noticed that all of them just love these alpiste seeds.
The best thing, in my opinion, about this product is its value for money. For an affordable price, you will be getting a large 5-pound bag. As mentioned earlier, I have quite a menagerie of small birds at home and a five-pound bag can last them for a month or two.
However, I must warn you that you should not feed your birds exclusively with Alpiste seeds. You need to change up their diets occasionally so they can get the proper nutrition they need. In addition, feeding canary seeds exclusively will make them highly prone to fatty liver disease.
- Triple-cleaned to eliminate dust
- Contains fresh and live seeds
- The canaries and other small bird species love it
- Great value for money
- Only contains Alpiste and nothing else
- Very generic packaging – It looks like generic bird seeds
The nice thing about this product is that you can also use it for keeping your weight in check. Many people also use this to create “seed milk”, which is supposedly good for controlling weight gain. On the other hand, this is also a great treat for canaries and other small birds.
3. Birds LOVE Alpiste Non-GMO Canary Seeds
What sets this product apart from most of the other canary seeds in the market is that it is 100% organically grown. You can be sure that this does not contain any silica or any harmful pesticides or herbicides. I believe that you should not feed your pets with any food that would harm you and this product fits the bill perfectly.
Aside from being organically grown, these seeds are also triple-cleaned and polished. This means you will not find any dust or dirt whatsoever on the seeds. You will not see any dirt settled at the bottom of the packaging. It is so clean that it is also safe for human consumption – one example is when making “seed milk”.
Alpiste seeds contain many vitamins and minerals but most noteworthy of all is the large portion of protein and amino acids. Whenever any one of my canaries got sick, injured, or in the process of molting, I feed them this product every day until recovery. The recovery is also quick with the presence of proteins and amino acids.
Another nice thing about this product is that Birds LOVE exerted effort into their packaging to ensure the contents remain fresh and nutritious. Each bag is nitrogen purged to remove all traces of dirt and small pests.
I am also impressed with the vacuum-sealed bags. You can tell just by their smell that these seeds are fresh and still live.
My canaries just love these alpiste seeds from Birds LOVE, but I make it a point to mix these with other grains and seeds. That way, they will get complete nutrition. As healthy as alpiste seeds are, they lack a considerable number of nutrients that your canaries need to stay healthy.
- Organically-grown and does not contain any artificial preservatives
- Triple-cleaned and polished
- Fit for human consumption
- Contains lots of proteins and amino acids
- Nitrogen-purged and vacuum-sealed contents
- Only contains alpiste seeds – You need to add other ingredients when feeding
- Too many seeds in diet will cause liver problems in canaries
Even though my canaries love this product, it is not in their best interest to feed exclusively on just alpiste seeds. The nutrients these seeds contain are just not enough to keep them healthy in the long run.
However, if you have birds that are recovering from injuries or have just laid eggs, the high protein content in these seeds will help them regain their strength quicker.
4. Wild Harvest Daily Blend Nutrition Canary Diet
This seed mix contains four different kinds of seeds and grains. This combination of seeds and grains provides a bulk of the nutritional requirements of canaries. Ever since I started feeding this seed mix to my canaries every day, they have become significantly healthier and livelier.
Unlike some of the other seed mixes that I have bought, the Wild Harvest Daily Blend does not contain any filler ingredients. Back when I was a newbie at taking care of birds, I was always confused why there are so many seeds left over after feeding them with other brands of birdseed. I never had that problem after switching to Wild Harvest.
Another issue I had when I was new at bird keeping is that I did not know that there were different sizes of birdseed. I bought the dusty old, bagged ones available in my local pet shop, and it turned out that they were for bigger bird species. This one contained just the right size of seeds for my canaries and other small bird species.
Looking at the nutritional information on the package, I noticed immediately that this product contained quite a lot of protein. This means that if you have birds that are on the road to recovery (either from injury or sickness), this bird seed mix can help them regain their health.
The only issue that I have with this product is that it has a rather strong orange fragrance. It uses orange oil as a natural preservative, which does a great job at doing so. However, it does give off a strong smell.
While the citrus smell may not bother humans, my canaries did not like it one bit. I had to air out the entire bag to get rid of the smell so my birds would eat the contents.
- Contains 4 different ingredients that provide proper nutrition
- Does not contain filler ingredients
- The seeds are just the right size for canaries
- Contains a lot of protein which is essential for the growth
- Contains artificial colors
- The orange oil smell affects the appetites of birds
The problem with the citrus smell of these seeds when you first open the packaging is an easy fix, though, I think it should not have to be a problem in the first place. However, after airing out the seeds to get rid of the smell, getting my canaries to eat this stuff was not challenging at all.
5. Volkman Avian Science Super Canary Seeds
The ingredient list at the back of the packaging is extensive, to say the least. Unlike other bird seeds that contain just a handful of different seeds and grains, this product contains dozens of individual ingredients. This ensures that your birds can get all the nutrients that they need to stay healthy.
The seeds and grains in this feed mix already contain plenty of nutrients and vitamins. However, to make sure that your feathery friends get all the nutrition they need, Volkman added extra vitamins and minerals into the mix, which is why this is an avian science diet.
Because this product contains so many different ingredients, the birds receive encouragement to forage through their feed bowls to find the seeds that they like. This will keep their minds and bodies sharp, and not at all lethargic. However, if they are hungry enough, your birds will just go through the entire pile leaving nothing behind.
Another nice thing about having a wide variety of seeds provided by this seed mix is that it gives canaries a variety of food to choose from, which keeps them from getting bored. My canaries are quite picky eaters. Sometimes, they would eat everything in their bowls. There are also times when they leave some, but at least, they are eating enough.
I do have a couple of issues with this product, but probably the biggest one is that due to a large number of ingredients, making the birds switch to eating it is kind of difficult and challenging. It took me more than two months of gradually introducing this food to my birds before they would eat this exclusively.
- Contains a myriad of ingredients
- Has plenty of additional vitamins and minerals
- Promotes the foraging instinct in birds
- Gives canaries a good variety of food choices
- Hard to make birds transition to eating it
- Contains artificial coloring
Even though this product contains a lot of nutritious ingredients, if the birds only eat a couple of the seed types, then they would still not get all the nutrients they need. It will take a while to get canaries to eat most of the seeds and grains contained in this product but investing a bit of time and patience will pay off later.
6. ZuPreem FruitBlend Flavor Pellets Bird Food
These pellets consist of whole grains and seeds, making them provide canaries with the nutrients they need. And just to be sure they receive their required nutrition, these come fortified with additional vitamins and minerals. I have switched from daily seed feedings to this product a couple of months ago and my birds have never been healthier.
The canaries and other small birds use visual cues to figure out what is good to eat in the wild. They are not color blind like cats and dogs. At first, I did not get why bird food like this one had to have bright colors and different shapes, and it turns out that it does make the birds want to eat them. It is like how kids love to eat colorful cereal.
Another nice thing is that these pellets are just the right size for canaries. I have made the mistake of getting bird pellets that were a bit too big for my birds, which resulted in a bowl full of leftovers and lethargic birds. These pellets are much easier to eat, and they apparently taste a lot better because most of the time, the feed bowls come out clean.
I mentioned earlier that this product has additional nutrients, and among them are proteins and amino acids. This is important if you are a breeder because this ensures that the young birds can grow strong and healthy. The high protein content also helps sick or injured birds recover faster.
I do have a rather significant issue with this product – that is it does not state anywhere on the packaging the Best Before date of the contents. You will be taking a bit of a gamble when getting this product. Fortunately, I haven’t received a bad batch yet.
- Contains almost all the nutrients and vitamins that canaries need to keep healthy
- Brightly colored to entice canaries to eat
- Just the right-sized pellets for canaries and other small birds
- Contains a good serving of protein for improved growth
- Contains artificial colors
- The bag does not show the Best Before date
Although you are taking a bit of a risk with this product not having a “Best Before” date, there is no denying that canaries love it. If you are having a hard time getting your small birds to eat fresh fruits and vegetables, this can be a good alternative.
7. Rex Products INC Canary Seeds
This product contains 100% alpiste seeds. It does not have any additional ingredients and fillers. Although it is generally not advisable to feed your small birds with seeds exclusively, it is okay if they are recovering from illness or injuries.
I also feed my breeding pairs with this seed during mating season. I noticed that it makes them produce more eggs it seems.
Lots of people use alpiste seeds to help manage their diabetes and this product is quite safe for human consumption. These canary seeds are all organically-grown and cleaned thoroughly before getting packaged. If you are a diabetic, you can safely use these seeds to make your “seed milk”.
As mentioned earlier, this product underwent thorough cleaning. Before vacuum-sealing the seeds, they become nitrogen purged to ensure that there is no trace of dust or insects inside the bag. Every seed is still alive and can still sprout, which preserves almost all of its nutrients.
Speaking of nutrients, alpiste seeds contain a lot of vitamins and minerals that canaries and other small bird species. These seeds contain quite a lot of protein, which is ideal for creating more muscle mass. If you have young birds, feeding them with these seeds will ensure that they will grow up healthy.
However, even though these canary seeds are nutritious, the nutrients they contain are not enough to maintain proper health. In addition, feeding small birds every day with just seeds is more prone to getting fatty liver disease. I like this product a lot but I also add fresh fruits and vegetables to my birds’ feed bowls every other day.
- Contains 100% canary seeds and does not have any fillers
- Very clean and fresh
- Organically grown – It is also safe for humans to consume
- Contains a lot of the nutrients that canaries need
- The content is limited to canary seeds only
- Excessive consumption of only canary seeds may lead to fatty liver disease
These alpiste seeds are great for making picky birds eat their food. However, it is not a good idea to feed your birds with just this product. You will still need to mix this with other grains and seeds to provide your canaries with the nutrients that they need.
8. Kaytee Supreme Canaries Bird Food
If you are thinking of getting this brand, I need to remind you that you will be receiving a 25-pound bag of bird seeds. If you just have one or two pairs of canaries, this product might last for a couple of months, as long as you store it properly. If you breed canaries or other small birds, you might get a lot of use from this product.
A nice thing about this brand is that my canaries love it a lot. Unlike the other bird seeds that I have used in the past, this brand does not create a lot of leftovers. It is also a good thing that these come loaded with nutrients because I would rarely need to provide my birds with supplements at the rate they eat.
Another thing I appreciate about this product is that it is completely organic, and it does not contain any artificial colors and preservatives. This product uses only natural ingredients, like citrus essential oils, to keep the contents of the packaging fresh for months.
One of the biggest reasons why I like using this product is that a lot of veterinarians recommended it, including my own. Even though you will be getting a lot of bird seeds in this 25-lb package, you will also be receiving plenty of benefits from every ounce.
You might want to feed your birds with this product every day, but that is not advisable. Not only will your birds not be getting all the vitamins and minerals they need, but they will also be at risk of liver disease. You will need to supplement your birds’ diet with vitamin supplements or feed them real fruits and vegetables if you can.
- Comes in a huge 25-lb bag full of seeds
- The canaries and other small birds love it
- Does not contain any artificial colors or preservatives
- Recommended by a lot of veterinarians
- Only ideal for breeders or those who have a lot of birds
- Still needs supplementation with fruits and vegetables
Unless you have a dozen pairs of canaries, or if you are a professional breeder of small birds, then this 25-pound bag of bird seeds might be too much for you. Nutrient-wise, this product contains a substantial amount, but you will still need to supplement to ensure that your birds are getting all the vitamins and minerals they need.
9. Quiko Classic Egg Food Daily Supplement
Young canaries would benefit a lot from this product because this contains a lot of proteins and amino acids – all of which are vital for proper muscle development. These are also great for birds who are recovering from illnesses or injuries.
This product contained real dehydrated eggs, so you can be sure that your birds are getting organic protein and amino acids. Unlike other artificial sources of protein, these are easier to absorb. This makes it ideal for young birds and those that are molting.
I also found that this bird food is great for increasing the number of eggs female canaries lay during the breeding season. This nestling food for canaries also increases the chances of the eggs hatching successfully. I have been breeding canaries for a couple of years, and this food helped increase the yearly yield quite a lot.
It can be hard to make your birds eat this food at first, especially when you are transitioning them from seeds. However, it is nice that you can serve this in several ways to make the switch easier.
Since this is a powder, I would sprinkle a bit of it in the birds’ usual food, and then gradually increase the amount until they are used to it. You can also turn it into a paste by adding water. Some birds like eating it that way.
The only issue I have is that this product goes bad rather quickly. After opening the package, you will need to finish the contents in a week or so, or else it will get spoiled. You can extend the shelf life a bit by putting the contents in a plastic container and storing it in the fridge.
- Provides a lot of protein and amino acids
- Ideal for birds that are sick or molting
- Contains real dehydrated eggs
- Can be served in several ways
- Kind of hard to make birds eat it
- This product goes bad rather quickly
If you do not have the time to boil eggs for your canaries, this product is a great alternative. Although you will need to use up the product as fast as you can because it does spoil quickly, it still provides quite a lot of nutrients needed by your canaries.
10. Higgins Vita Canary Seeds
The nice thing about this product is that it also looks after your feathery friends’ gut health. It contains live microorganisms, like lactobacillus and others, that will help keep your birds healthy and resistant to many kinds of illnesses.
In addition to the nutrients that your birds will be getting from the ingredients themselves, this birdseed mix also comes fortified with Omega-3 and 6 fatty acids. These are the nutrients that promote healthy heart functions while also boosting your birds’ immune systems.
Speaking of ingredients, this birdseed mix contains more than a dozen different grains, seeds, and vegetables. So, even if your birds are picky eaters, they will still find stuff that they would want to eat in this seed mix. My canaries are not so picky, but they do have seeds that they prefer and I am lucky that most of them are in this seed mix.
At first, I thought that this birdseed mix contained artificially colored ingredients, but when I looked closely, I found that they were the natural colors of the seeds. I have no issues with artificial colors, but not having them is, of course, much better for the birds.
Even though I like this product quite a lot, I have a couple of complaints – one of which is the amount of dust collected at the bottom of the bag. This seed mix contains ground-up grains and corn, which is the reason for the dust. However, I paid for the entire weight of the contents, including the dust, which I could not feed to my canaries.
- Contains live beneficial microorganisms
- Has additional probiotics and Omega-3 and 6 fatty acids
- Does not contain artificial colors
- Contains more than a dozen ingredients, none of which are filler
- The bag contains a lot of dust because of the ground grains
- Contains natural fruit flavors, but no dried fruits
This canary seed diet has a couple of issues, but that does not mean I don’t like it, quite the opposite really. Although this bird food mix has more than a dozen different ingredients, my canaries would eat all of them, often not leaving any other than seed chaff in their feed bowls.
What to Look For When Buying a Canary Food
Now, let’s move on to the different factors that should help you in your decision when searching for good canary food. Here are some of the factors you ought to consider when shopping for new bird seeds for your canaries.
This is the first thing you will need to check when you are checking out the bird seeds in your local pet supplies store. Check the Nutrition Facts at the back of the packaging.
If the packaging does not have this information, you can check the manufacturer’s website. The best food for canaries should contain a lot of protein for muscle growth and recovery. It should also have lots of other vitamins and minerals.
The food you get for your pet birds should be the right size for them. The canaries are small birds, so you should give them seeds, grains, or pellets that are the right size for their tiny beaks. If the seeds or pellets are too big, they might not eat them. They may even choke on them if they tried.
If you are adamant about not giving your birds anything that is artificially colored, you need to find naturally colorful birdseed mixes. The canaries and other small birds are visual feeders, meaning they use colors to figure out what foods are good to eat.
You will find lots of bird pellets that have lots of colors and resemble kids’ breakfast cereal. Most canaries love that stuff.
No Filler Ingredients
Be wary of bird food for canaries that seem too cheap. They might be full of filler seeds and grains. Usually, filler ingredients come in the form of ground-up corn and milo seeds. Milo grass seeds are the worst. All my birds refuse to eat them unless they are really hungry and there is nothing else available to them.
Price and Amount
As much as you love your birds, you will need to stick to your budget when you are buying bird seeds. Some brands can be quite expensive, and if your birds get used to eating them, it might be hard to get them to eat a more reasonably priced fare.
In addition, although you might save a lot more when buying in bulk, keep in mind that canaries are small birds. They will usually only need two teaspoons of birdseed per day, so it might not be a good idea to buy a 25-lb bag for just one pair of canaries.
Frequently Asked Questions
What Fruit and Veg can you Give Canaries?
The canary food list is quite long as they tend to eat almost all kinds of fruits and vegetables. Among those that are safe and healthy for your canaries to eat in the fruit and veggie category are carrots, green beans, cabbage, corn, peas, apples, melons, grapes, oranges, and bananas.
What not to Feed Canaries?
Aside from avocados, canaries can eat almost all fruits, provided you remove their seeds and pits first as they contain toxic compounds. You should also not feed canaries, and all birds in general, onions and garlic. Onions can irritate the birds’ mouths and throats, and garlic can make them anemic.
Obviously, you love your birds, which is why you are looking for the best canary food for them. However, do take note that just because a product is expensive, that does not mean it is the most trustworthy canary food brand. For instance, a product that contains all bird seeds is not enough to provide all the nutrition that your birds need.
Check the nutrients contained in all the products you are considering. Choose the one that provides all the required nutrients that your birds need and more.