Can Birds Eat Papaya Seeds? Health Benefits Explained!

When you hear exotic fruit, the first thing that comes to mind is Papaya. Originating from South America and Mexico, papayas may sound intimidating as they’re often known as an ‘exotic fruit.’

However, the soft and decadent flesh of papayas, accompanied by their sweetness, is the perfect treat for you and your beloved avians!

Birds enjoy them raw or ripe; they’re good either way. However, raw papaya may cause constipation and blood thinning; hence it’s not the safest option.

Don’t fret about feeding papayas to birds because of their sweetness; the subtle sweetness doesn’t increase blood sugar levels yet makes up for the perfect enjoyable snack.

How Is Papaya Perfect for Birds?

The oh-so-many benefits of papayas make it perfect.

Papayas are jam-packed with fat-soluble antioxidants: Vitamins E, C, and A. All three aid in nourishing organs to avoid diseases like feather cysts and avian conjunctivitis.

Additionally, diets high in antioxidants regulate LDL-cholesterol levels enabling a lower risk of cardiovascular diseases.

Two slices of ripe papayas with seeds and leaves

Of course, they also boost the immune system, making birds less prone to infectious diseases.

Not to mention, the high fiber content of papayas, along with two of its proteolytic enzymes (papain and chymopapain), keep digestive issues and inflammation at bay. 

Even so, can the same be said for papaya seeds? Let’s find out!

Do Birds Enjoy Papaya Seeds?

Birds enjoy a variety of seeds like sunflowers, pumpkins, fennel, sesame and safflower seeds. Millets and seeds are the foundation of creating most bird foods.

However, remember to refrain from restricting only to seeds and millets in your bird feeder as it can increase the risks of obesity.

Now, are papaya seeds just as enjoyable as sunflower seeds? The answer to this is yes! Papaya seeds are palatable to birds, fresh from papayas or dried. 

Birds can delight in the succulent taste of papaya seeds, as they are packed with essential nutrients! For a delectable treat, serve them dry and mix them with seed mix or bird chops.

Birds are the polar opposite of picky eaters. It’s inevitable for them not to enjoy papaya seeds.

If you’re looking for a refreshing summer snack for your birds, papayas with seeds will be right up your alley.

A beautiful bulbul perched on a branch feeding on papaya

There are recipes aplenty where you can incorporate papaya seeds with complete ease. Recipes range from easy to intermediate, which birds will certainly relish (we’ll discuss them briefly).

Their crunch makes it a lekker texture for birds to explore with their beaks. Papaya seeds also have a pleasant acidity similar to peppers. If you’re a bird enthusiast, you ought to know birds have a bee in their bonnet when it comes to peppers.

More than that, papaya seeds are exceptionally filling. It makes them ideal for adding to your bird feeder during migration and mating seasons.

For this reason, it allows wild birds to keep up their energy to focus on other physical activities instead of scavenging for food.

However, like many foods; your birds enjoy, not all are safe. Thus, it’s a necessity to evaluate whether papaya seeds are safe for our feathered friends or not.

Are Papaya Seeds Safe for Birds?

It’s known by now that papayas are safe for birds to consume. Nonetheless, the safety of papaya seeds is yet up for debate.

Let’s put that debate to rest.

Papaya seeds are just as safe as their flesh. They are even a common addition to most mass-produced bird food.

Once dried, papaya seeds hold great benefits and versatility. It’s safe to say papaya seeds remain safe in any form, dried or straight from the fruit.

The benefits of papaya seeds are enhanced once dried.

Dried papaya seeds

Although, a minor setback of papaya seeds is when they’re from raw papayas.

As I previously mentioned, raw papayas are not ideally safe for birds. The same notion stands for seeds extracted from raw papayas.

To begin with, likely it’s that the texture itself of raw papaya seeds will tick your bird off. Raw papaya seeds tend to have a spongy texture. They are the oysters to birds.

If you think the texture is all, hear me out when I say raw papaya seeds also contain the same chemical that gives the bitter taste in olives (learn more about feeding olives here). It immediately averts birds.

Apart from the unpleasantness of raw papaya seeds, they also contain salicylates that thin blood and can result in excessive bleeding if wounded.

When providing papaya seeds to bird feeders, ensure to add the dry ones only as the moisture from the ones straight from the fruit can incubate microbes.

Other than that, papaya seeds are perfectly safe for bird consumption. 

What Are the Benefits of Papaya Seeds?

By now, we’re all assured about papaya seeds being safe. Without further ado, let’s explore the innumerable benefits papaya seeds offer. 

Papaya seeds are more nutritional than papayas themselves. Why, might you ask?

Raw papaya seeds in a yellow spoon

Papaya seeds contain the paramount of papain and oleic acid between raw or ripe papayas. Apart from that, they also have concentrated amounts of Vitamins A, K, and C.

Their exceptional amount of fiber and carbohydrates make them filling for birds while delivering essential nutrients.

Now, you must be wondering: How do these nutrients benefit birds? Here’s an in-detailed list of how these nutrients are beneficial:

  • Vitamin C – It is an essential fat-soluble vitamin that prevents skin infection in birds by boosting their immune system.
  • Potassium – A high potassium-concentrated diet is more crucial for birds than you think. The high potassium levels in papaya seeds help prevent egg-binding. 
  • Vitamin A – It is another fat-soluble vitamin that, similar to potassium, also aids reproduction issues and renal disease.  However, its primary function is to regulate healthy eyesight to ensure birds can scavenge for food.
  • Oleic Acid – It is a vital omega-3 fatty acid that protects birds from severe skin diseases like Feather Cysts and Feather Plucking.
  • Papain – Papain is an antioxidant proteolytic enzyme that helps grow muscles and prevent infections. 
  • Fiber and Carbohydrates – They allow for efficient energy storage. Fiber also keeps gut bacteria healthy, which also aids in gut health.

All in all, papaya seeds have been proven to be a superfood, and; that says it all.

If served in the right conditions, papaya seeds are the perfect addition to bird feeders.

How Can You Incorporate Papaya Seed Into a Bird’s Diet?

If you’re planning on adding papaya seeds to a bird’s diet or the bird feeder, they’ll most likely go untouched. 

Wild birds are hesitant to try out foods that aren’t native to their region.

The best way to introduce new foods into a bird’s diet is to incorporate them into the food they enjoy.

Bird seed mix contains various healthy seeds

Here is a few examples of the plethora of recipes you can incorporate them:

  • Seed Mix – It is a great way to add papaya seeds to a bird’s diet. Birds love spray millets and sunflower seeds; it will mask the texture and taste of papaya seeds.
  • Popcorn Kernels – Pairing them with papaya seeds will disguise the taste as birds enjoy pecking down popcorn kernels.
  • Bird Chop – It is a beloved and versatile treat for birds. Adding papaya seeds will give a crowd favorite treat for birds a boost of nutrients.

These recipes will look mere once you start exploring the abundance of recipes out there. Yet, these recipes are sure to be a crowd pleaser.

Try them and see them for yourself!

Frequently Asked Questions

Here I’ll answer the FAQs about feeding papaya seeds to birds.

Can Wild Birds Eat Papaya Seeds?

Wild birds can eat papaya seeds if they are fresh from the papaya or dried. However, undried papaya seeds can incubate pathogen growth, which can later cause infectious diseases.

Can Birds Eat Dried Papaya Seeds?

Dried papaya seeds are the best option if you want to add papaya seeds to your bird’s diet. 

It eliminates the risk of pathogen growth due to lack of moisture, making it a perfect addition to your bird feeders.

Final Remarks

Papaya seeds are the ultimate way to take a bird’s nutrition intake up a notch. What can be more nutritional than a superfood itself?

Of course, moderation is key to papaya seeds consumption. Following the correct procedure for consumption also remains vital.

Photo of author

Written and Fact-checked by David Neff

Author at BirdBonica

David is an expert birder and bird parent with in-depth knowledge of birds. He has years of experience observing birds in their natural habitats, studying their diets, behavior, and more. (Learn more about David here...)

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BirdBonica.com. "Can Birds Eat Papaya Seeds? Health Benefits Explained!." Webpage, June 17, 2023, accessed April 5, 2024, https://birdbonica.com/can-birds-eat/papaya-seeds/.

BirdBonica.com (2024). Can Birds Eat Papaya Seeds? Health Benefits Explained!. Retrieved from https://birdbonica.com/can-birds-eat/papaya-seeds/ on April 5, 2024.

BirdBonica.com. "Can Birds Eat Papaya Seeds? Health Benefits Explained!." Webpage, June 17, 2023, https://birdbonica.com/can-birds-eat/papaya-seeds/, accessed April 5, 2024.

1 thought on “Can Birds Eat Papaya Seeds? Health Benefits Explained!”

  1. I have several tropical birds from zebra finches to Hiaasen macaws, and I buy Papaya, and give it to them in halves. Seed and all. After reading your comments or your message I feel I’m doing the right thing I don’t feed him papaya once a month what is good for the digestive system? Thank you very much.

    Reply

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