September is National Papaya month, making it a great time to introduce your bird to some papaya if you have not already done so.
Papaya is sometimes also called PawPaw and Tree Melon and although it began in southern Mexico and certain parts of Central America, papayas today are grown throughout tropical regions. Most commonly found in your local grocery store is the Hawaiian variety and usually weighs in at about a pound. When ripe, papaya has a semi-sweet taste not quite like any other fruit.
Papaya is loaded with nutrients and antioxidants, and are rich in vitamins A, C, and E, and some vets believe these 3 nutrients may help birds avoid feather cysts and avian conjunctivitis. Papayas are also rich in potassium, and calcium, and are also known to help calm inflammation and support healthy digestion. Many quality bird seed mixes contain dehydrated papaya bits in their ingredients. This small size bites are a favorite with my conures.
Fresh Papaya is a absolute favorite among my larger parrots. Why not take some time to cut some fresh up for yourself and share it with your bird. Just peel the skin off, remove the seeds (optional), and cut into chunks big or small depending on your bird's size.
Health Note: Choose only ripe papaya for your bird as unripened papaya skin contains more latex which may be an allergen for some birds. If unsure you may want to remove the skin before feeding. Unripened papaya also contains salicylates which can thin the blood.