Do Birds Eat Salt?

do birds eat salt1

Do birds really need salt? In the wild, birds consume very little sodium chloride, or table salt. They get the minerals they need from eating rocks and soil.

However, when birds are kept in captivity, their diet is often lacking in these essential nutrients. This is where supplemental salt can come in handy. While it’s not necessary to add salt to your bird’s diet on a regular basis, doing so occasionally can help keep them healthy and happy.

If you’ve ever seen a bird eating at a salt lick, you might wonder if they really need the salt. After all, we don’t usually see them eating other salty foods. Do birds eat salt?

The answer is yes, birds do consume salt. In fact, they need it to maintain their electrolyte balance and for proper nerve and muscle function. Birds get most of the salt they need from their natural diet of insects and seed.

However, when they are in captivity or in areas where there is not enough natural salt available, they will seek out sources of salt, like a salt lick or even table scraps with high levels of sodium. So, if you see a bird nibbling on a salt lick or your leftover french fries, don’t be alarmed. They’re just getting the salty goodness that they need!

Do Birds Eat Salt

Birds consume a variety of different foods depending on the species, but they generally don’t eat salt. Salt is not a necessary part of a bird’s diet and can actually be harmful to them in large quantities. Some birds may consume small amounts of salt if it’s present in their environment (e.g., when bathing in salty water), but they typically don’t seek it out or actively eat it.

What Types of Salt Do Birds Eat

There are many different types of salt that birds can eat, including table salt, sea salt, and rock salt. Each type of salt has its own unique benefits for birds. Table salt is a good source of sodium and chloride, which are both essential nutrients for birds.

Sea salt is also a good source of these two minerals, but it also contains other trace minerals that can be beneficial for birds. Rock salt is not as commonly eaten by birds, but it can provide them with a good source of calcium.

How Does Salt Affect a Bird’S Health

While a little salt is essential for birds, too much can lead to health problems. Excess salt can cause dehydration and electrolyte imbalance, and can also damage the kidneys and other organs. It’s important to provide fresh water for your bird, and to avoid adding extra salt to their diet.

If you’re using a commercial bird food, check the ingredients to make sure it doesn’t contain too much salt.

What Happens If a Bird Ingests Too Much Salt

If a bird ingests too much salt, it can lead to health problems such as dehydration, electrolyte imbalance, and even death. Too much salt can also cause gastrointestinal distress and bloating. It is important to make sure that your bird has access to fresh water at all times, and that you do not add any extra salt to their diet.

If you think your bird has ingested too much salt, contact your veterinarian immediately.


Yes, birds eat salt! They need it for their feathers and to keep their bodies healthy. Salt is also a good source of energy for them.

Birds will usually find salt near the ocean or in salty lakes.

Adrian Hopper

Welcome to! I created The Birds Beast to share my passion for all things birds with the rest of the world. I also belong to a professional group devoted to birds, and as a means of outreach, I use this blog to help as many people as I possibly can. Birds are some of the least treated pets in the United States. It is my fervent desire to change this, and I hope my blogging will motivate meaningful actions and allow individuals to safely handle their birds.

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