Top 10 Best Foraging Toys For Small Parrots (Cockatiels, Budgies)

Published by Joseph Calabrese on

best foraging toys for small parrots

Do you want the best foraging toys for your small parrot?

Since you’re here, I’m guessing you do.

There are many amazing small parrot foraging toys available online, but there are also some really crappy ones.

Some toys contain dangerous parts or materials.

Some toys get delivered broken or dysfunctional.

And some toy brands simply don’t keep their products hygienic, which is a big risk for birds.

Luckily, you won’t need to go through any of that nonsense with the toys I picked out for this list.

Because there is nothing I find more annoying than ordering a seemingly great toy for my cockatiel and then receiving it broken or unsanitary.

It’s happened to me plenty of times, and I don’t want it to happen to you.

For this reason, I’ll be presenting to you my top 10 picks for the best foraging toys for small parrots.

These foraging toys were made for cockatiels, budgies, parrotlets, conures, lovebirds, and other parrots of similar size.

top 10 best parrot foraging toys

But first, I want to briefly discuss what foraging toys are and why parrots need them.

If you just want to view the list of foraging toys, you can skip to the first toy here

Affiliate links are present throughout this article, read the disclosure to learn what this means

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What Are Parrot Foraging Toys?

To put it simply:

Foraging toys are objects that support and encourage your parrot to search through materials in order to find food.

In the wild, most small parrots will spend the majority of their day foraging for food.

Typically, they’ll be grazing through grass, dirt, trees, and bush to find their desired snack.

parrot foraging toys
(Image Credit: Pixabay)

However, pet birds don’t get the same amount of foraging opportunities as their wild counterparts.

It’s important for us to ensure our parrots have enough foraging opportunities.

Why Do Parrots Need Foraging Toys?

As you now know, foraging is a natural behaviour for parrots.

But do they really need to forage?

Spoiler alert: They absolutely need to.

Foraging is arguably the best way to enrich a parrot’s life while keeping them mentally stimulated.

Without proper enrichment and mental stimulation, parrots will become very bored.

A bored parrot is not a happy parrot.

Boredom can cause a large range of behavioural problems including:

  • Excessive screaming
  • Stress
  • And even feather plucking if the bird has absolutely NOTHING to do

For these reasons, providing good foraging toys are absolutely essential.

Enrichment and mental stimulation are just as important for a bird as a healthy diet.

(Image Credit: Pixabay)


Let’s move on to the top 10 list of the best foraging toys for small parrots.

1) Bonka Bird Toys Foraging Heart Parrot Toy


  • Durable
  • Many different materials
  • Can be refilled with paper


  • Quite messy (from the crinkle paper)
  • Reports of zip ties on the toy (remove these if you see them)

Facts About This Foraging Toy:

Brand: Bonka Bird Toys

Size: 6″ High, 5″ Wide

Materials: Cardboard, paper, vine, foam

Thoughts & Opinions:

This Bonka Birds toy has many great areas for parrots to play with.

Firstly, it has a vine heart that can be filled with paper and treats for foraging fun.

There’s also lots of coloured crinkle paper near the bottom of the toy for birds to rip apart.

Lastly, we have some long shredding tubes which I believe are made from cardboard.

I’m not too sure as they haven’t exactly specified what these shred tubes are made from, but they’re used in many different toys and birds seem to love them.

You could place millet spray, seeds, dried fruit within the shred tubs and vine heart on this toy.

All parts except for the crinkle paper near the bottom can be used to promote foraging.

One common complaint buyers have is that there are sharp zip tie cut-offs holding some of the materials in place.

However, some people don’t get these so I’m assuming it’s a manufacturing problem.

If you see these, it’s best to remove them before your parrot begins playing with the toy.

2) Bonka Bird Toys Foraging Star Bird Toy


  • Provides both shredding & foraging opportunities
  • Great price
  • Perfect size for small parrots


  • Includes metal bell (remove this)

Facts About This Foraging Toy:

Brand: Bonka Bird Toys

Dimensions: 6″ High, 6″ Wide

Materials: Coloured paper, cardboard, vine, wood

Thoughts & Opinions:

This toy is very similar to the previous toy in terms of how it’ll be used to encourage foraging.

Treats can be placed inside the vine ball in the middle, as well as some paper and other foraging materials of your choice.

Surrounding the vine ball are 4 coloured wooden stars which small parrots will enjoy shredding.

Both sides of this toy include some crinkle paper which is also great for shredding.

The most notable downside to this toy is the metal bell.

Whenever I’m discussing toys with my vet, she always suggests removing the bells in case it has some toxic metal.

Although I trust bonker bird toys to use safe metals, I trust my vet even more.

And besides, it’s always better to be safe than sorry, especially when it comes to our beloved parrots.

3) SunGrow Small Parrot Foraging Wall


  • Easy to hide treats in
  • Can be set up vertically or horizontally
  • Parrots can climb this toy
  • Long-lasting


  • Plastic clips aren’t strong
  • Large size might scare skittish birds

Facts About This Foraging Toy:

Brand: SunGrow

Dimensions: 13.75″ Wide, 12.6″ High

Materials: Plastic, wood, seagrass

Thoughts & Opinions:

This seagrass mat is excellent for small parrots who love climbing, foraging, and shredding.

Don’t let the product image fool you, this toy is much larger than it seems.

The longest part of the toy is measured at 13.75″, which is slightly longer than the average budgies wingspan.

Some might argue that it’s too big, but I believe the large size will keep parrots engaged and interested for longer.

You can also hide more treats evenly throughout the mat.

It’s quite easy to hide seeds and small treats within the folds of the seagrass.

Two plastic hooks are attached to both ends of the mat, which allows you to connect it vertically or horizontally.

I’ve seen an image of someone using this seagrass mat as a bridge between two budgie cages.

I thought that was an epic idea!

4) Bonka Bird Toys Helix Parrot Toy


  • Supports both foraging and shredding behaviours
  • Good price
  • Colourful and interesting


  • Not very durable

Facts About This Foraging Toy:

Brand: Bonka Bird Toys

Dimensions: 10″ High, 5″ Wide

Materials: cardboard, vine, plastic, foam

Thoughts & Opinions:

Wow, another bonka birds toy?

I’m sorry, but they’re just too good of a bird toy brand to ignore.

That being said, this toy is yet another great foraging toy for small parrots.

Pretty much all areas of this toy can encourage foraging behaviour.

The ladder/DNA-looking shape in the middle is the perfect place to hide some sunflower seeds or some millet balls.

But you can also hide things within the shredding tubes.

The colours and interesting shapes of this toy will surely spark the curiosity of even the fussiest of parrots.

Although it’s not very durable, it heavily supports both foraging and shredding opportunities while also selling for a good price.

5) EBaokuup 2Pack Bird Foraging/Shredding Balls


  • Great value for money
  • Can be refilled with foraging material
  • Lots of different materials
  • Supports both shredding and foraging behaviours


  • Short lasting
  • Includes metal bell (remove this)

Facts About This Foraging Toy:

Brand: EBaokuup

Dimensions: 9″ High

Materials: Rattan, wood, crinkle paper

Thoughts & Opinions:

This is one of my favourite foraging toys on amazon.

It’s a pretty simple yet engaging foraging toy that will keep your parrot busy for hours.

The main foraging part of the toy is the paper-filled ball, which is made from rattan and wood, two natural materials.

You can easily hide sunflower seeds, millet, and other foods within the ball.

The materials are great for gnawing on, but they won’t last long with an active chewer.

It only took a cockatiel 3 days to completely destroy this toy, and it took an African grey parrot only a few hours.

Luckily, they’ve added a second one to the package, doubling the amount of playtime.

If your parrot doesn’t completely destroy the ball, it can be refilled with paper and used for more foraging fun.

One downside is the metal bell at the bottom.

But that can be easily removed.

Overall, it’s a pretty solid toy that supports both foraging and shredding behaviours, even if it doesn’t last too long.

6) EBaokuup 3Pack Bird Chewing & Foraging Toys

parrot foraging toy
parrot foraging toy


  • 3 Pack (lots of value)
  • Good size for small parrots
  • Easy to hide treats in


  • Includes metal bell (remove these)
  • Reports of strange odour from toys (will fade when aired out)

Facts About This Foraging Toy:

Brand: EBaokuup

Dimensions: All 3 toys are around 23cm in length

Materials: Rattan, wood, crinkle paper

Thoughts & Opinions:

This bundle contains 3 foraging toys.

You’ll get 1 long burrito-style toy that seems to be woven with rattan, and you’ll get two toys that have 3 rattan balls filled with crinkle paper.

Those two toys are the exact same, except they might be in different colours.

The burrito-style toy seems to be the sturdiest of the bundle, which is why there is only one.

You can easily hide treats between the weaves and through the crinkle paper in the burrito toy.

With the other two toys, you can hide treats inside any of the 3 rattan balls.

I’d also watch out for the bells on the two toys.

Not only for potential metal poisoning, but the bells have little holes on them and look very different from the product picture.

One buyer said that their conure almost got injured by getting their toenail stuck inside the hole.

It’s always best to just remove the bells anyways.

Overall, this bundle is good value for money and the toys are pretty high quality.

7) Super Bird Creations SB747 Mini Flying Trapeze

parrot foraging toy
parrot foraging toy


  • Can be used as a resting spot
  • Easy to hide treats in the seagrass weaves
  • Lots of colours


  • Will likely get pooped on
  • Not very durable

Facts About This Foraging Toy:

Brand: Super Bird Creations

Dimensions: 7″ Wide, 9″ High

Materials: Seagrass, plastic

Thoughts & Opinions:

This foraging toy also works well as a cozy resting spot for small parrots such as cockatiels, budgies, parrotlets, and conures.

However, if they choose to rest in the toy, they’ll likely poop all over it.

When that happens, you’ll need to break off the part that got pooped on or try to clean it with toilet paper.

Besides that little potential problem, this is a great foraging toy for small parrots.

Although it’s small, you can easily hide a few tasty treats throughout the seagrass mat.

Not only will your birds be searching for treats, but they can also shred the seagrass and play with the plastic chains.

There are also various toys attached to the plastic chains for extra fun!

The bright colours are attention-grabbing, but they can also be a little scary to skittish birds.

It’s best to clip this toy to the ceiling rather than the sides to keep it balanced and not tilted.

Especially if you’re encouraging your bird to rest in it.

8) Planet Pleasures Octopus Piñata Parrot Toy

foraging toys for small parrots
parrot foraging toy


  • Lots of folds for treat hiding
  • Good price
  • Encourages both shredding and foraging


  • Not very durable
  • Does not include cage connectors

Facts About This Foraging Toy:

Brand: Planet Pleasures

Dimensions: 9″ High, 3.5″ Wide

Materials: Palm leaf, paper

Thoughts & Opinions:

I absolutely love planet pleasure toys and this one is no exception.

This small and compact toy is the perfect size for cockatiels, budgies, and lovebirds.

The octopus piñata has many folds and creases that you can easily hide treats in.

Your bird can completely shred the octo-legs and body to pieces as well.

Although it’ll be fun for the bird to destroy, it won’t last long due to how small the toy is.

An African grey parrot went through this toy in less than an hour according to a buyer.

It should take a smaller parrot a little longer to destroy.

The extremely low price of this toy makes up for its lack of strength and durability.

One thing I find really annoying is that it doesn’t include a quick link connector for easy cage installation.

It’s pretty rare for a bird toy to not have a quick link connector, so I don’t know why they didn’t just add one for our convenience.

It only has a loop at the top for you to add your own connector.

Apart from that, the octopus piñata is a compact toy that greatly supports shredding and foraging.

9) Planet Pleasures Foraging Pillow Parrot Toy

budgie foraging toy
budgie foraging toy


  • Easy to add seeds to
  • Durable
  • Available in 4 sizes


  • Doesn’t include a quick link connector

Facts About This Foraging Toy:

Brand: Planet Pleasures

Dimensions: 11″ High, 4″ Wide (large size)

Materials: Palm leaf, paper, other natural materials

Thoughts & Opinions:

This planet pleasures toy is very similar to the previous, except it’s a bit more suitable for foraging.

It’s more suitable because it has more hiding holes for treats than the previous toy.

The previous toy had more folds, which are still good for treat hiding, but I personally believe parrots will have more fun foraging through the holes on this toy.

It’s also a lot more durable than the previous toy due to its slightly larger size.

Although the materials for this toy aren’t specified, it looks similar to the previous toy, so I assume the same materials were used.

Those materials were paper and palm leaf, which are both safe for parrots.

Unfortunately, this toy shares the same problem as the previous toy:

There is no quick link connector for personal convenience.

You’ll need to find your own connectors, which you could probably find from any others toys that you’ve bought.

If not, you should be able to find them at your local pet shop or online.

Overall, this is a durable foraging toy that is easy to fill with seeds or treats of your choice.

10) Deloky 7Pack Parrot Swing & Chewing Toys

foraging toys cockatiels
parrot foraging toys


  • Great value for money
  • Most toys can hide many treats
  • All natural materials
  • Encourages both shredding and foraging


  • Most toys have a bell (remove these)
  • The rope toy isn’t that good

Facts About These Foraging Toys:

Brand: Deloky

Dimensions: All 7 toys are between 15cm – 30cm in height

Materials: Wood and other natural materials (unspecified)

Thoughts & Opinions:

I personally believe this is the most valuable pack of parrot toys on amazon.

Inside the pack you get 7 different toys:

1) A stack of 4 wooden balls with 3 wooden star spacers (remove the bell)

2) 3 circles of unspecified white natural material with attached wooden balls

3) A simple stack of wooden blocks (remove the bell)

4) 3 woven “O” shaped materials with coloured plastic spacers (remove the bell)

5) Large stack of the same woven material (remove the bell)

6) A rope toy with wooden block spacers

7) Ladder swing perch with 5 metal bells (remove the bells)

All of these toys (except for the 7th and 6th toys) are great for shredding and foraging.

The 6th toy is made from rope, which if ingested by birds, can cause crop problems.

Most birds won’t ingest the rope and will simply play with it, however, other birds might like to eat the rope fibre.

For this reason, I would personally avoid using it.

The swing toy (7th) is alright for budgies and parrotlets as they can fit inside, but cockatiels and conures might not.

The 1st, 2nd, 4th, and 5th toys are great for stuffing seeds into.

The 3rd toy is just something your bird can chew or push around.

Overall, I like how each toy has its own unique play style, making this bundle much more valuable.

Tip: When the toys get ruined or become boring to your bird, you can use the material for a DIY foraging tray for extra fun!

Making DIY Foraging Toys For Parrots

Homemade foraging toys can be just as fun and interesting for your parrot as store-bought toys.

Here’s my cockatiel searching for some seeds in a DIY foraging box I made:

small parrot foraging toys

I simply used an empty cereal box and added some foraging material (paper, wood, seagrass).

Foraging trays are the simplest things to make for small parrots.

Anything else that encourages your bird to search for treats is also great for their enrichment!

I’ve written an article on 7 easy-to-make DIY paper toys for birds.

Check that out if you’re stumped for toy ideas.

When making homemade toys, you must ensure that everything you use is bird safe.

This might seem like common sense, but to some, it’s not.

Here’s a list of some bird-safe materials:

  • Bird-safe wood (balsa, bamboo, birch)
  • Paper
  • Cardboard
  • Seagrass
  • Palm leaf
  • Pine

Not only are these materials safe, but they seem to be favourites among smaller parrots.

Definitely use a few of them when making toys.

For more DIY foraging toy ideas, read the 20 Creative DIY Foraging Toys For Smal Parrots



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