Top 10 Plants That Are Poisonous to Birds

Plants That Are Poisonous to Birds
Photo by Julia Craice

It may be surprising that there are a few plants that are poisonous to birds. A significant portion of the diets of many species of birds typically consists of plant matter.

Because they are naturally curious or because they are playing, certain birds will sometimes chew on plants and may even swallow them.

Birds let out of their cages without supervision have a good chance of contacting the plants inside and outside the home.

The owners of the property need to be aware of the plants that are poisonous to birds. Not many genuine studies are available on the topic of plant toxicity and birds. Many poisonous plants will make birds sick if ingested, but certain ones have the potential to kill them.

Extrapolations are frequently drawn from information about other species, particularly humans, as very few studies have been published on the safety of many plant species when birds consume them.

Because of their naturally inquisitive and playful nature, birds are frequently put in danger by their owners, even when those owners have the best of intentions.

This can happen due to the owners’ efforts to provide their birds with a more “natural” diet, which may include foods like avocados that are harmless to humans but harmful to birds.

The majority of birds, fortunately, do not eat the plants with which they come into touch; instead, they shred and otherwise play with the plants.

Therefore, the majority of plant poisonings in birds only result in moderate symptoms (such as strong tongue irritation from the Dieffenbachia plant)

Yet, some plants can be lethal to birds even if they only consume a small quantity. When in doubt, place all plants out of the birds’ reach.

What Are the Plants That Are Poisonous to Birds?

The following list of indoor and outdoor plants includes a significant number of plants that have the potential to be poisonous to birds.

Bear in mind that this list could not contain everything there is to include.

1. Amaryllis

Cultivating amaryllis from bulb to flower can be an enjoyable activity for those who enjoy indoor gardening. Still, you should know that doing so could put your pet bird in danger. The entire plant, including the bulb, is poisonous to birds and other animals around it.

Ingestion can cause various unpleasant side effects, including nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, loss of appetite, and excessive salivation.

2. Daffodil

Although daffodils are well-liked and bright spring flowers, they are among the plants that are poisonous to birds. Lycorine, found in these flowers, is a chemical that can be extremely dangerous or even fatal, depending on how much of it is consumed.

Birds and other animals, including humans, are susceptible to suffering from severe gastrointestinal disorders and convulsions due to this substance.

3. Mistletoe

Mistletoe, another common holiday shrub, is prone to fatal poisoning in birds kept as pets. Birds consume any portion of the plant and risk experiencing mild to moderate gastrointestinal distress, which may manifest as nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, weakness/depression, and anorexia.

4. Morning Glory

Although the well-known vine’s lovely flowers are pleasing to the eye, you should be aware that the plant offers a significant risk to the well-being of your pet bird.

When purchasing morning glory seeds for planting, exercise extreme caution because the seeds contain a potentially lethal substance related to LSD.

5. Philodendron

Philodendrons are ubiquitous houseplants whose foliage can lend the appearance of a tropical rainforest to your home; nevertheless, birds should not be allowed to eat them.

Every component of the plant is poisonous, and ingesting any portion of it can lead to severe mouth irritation, trouble swallowing and breathing, and vomiting, among other unpleasant side effects.

Ingestion of excessive quantities can result in unconsciousness and death if the dose is high enough.

6. Poinsettia

During the holidays, these lovely plants frequently serve as the focal point of the festivities. On the other hand, they are quite harmful and make our list of poisonous plants to birds, and if you have birds in your home, you should probably choose a less hazardous decoration.

Not only are poinsettias toxic to birds, which can result in gastrointestinal disorders, blistering, excessive salivation, and skin irritation, but they also have the potential to make other animals and people sick. Poinsettias are often associated with the holiday season.

7. Shamrock

You could believe that keeping a shamrock plant in your home will bring you some good fortune, but this is not the case for your pet bird.

These common houseplants are highly hazardous to the health of birds and other animals such as cats and dogs. In addition to other health problems, they also cause tremors and an increase in salivation.

8. Holly

Holly makes an excellent ornament for holiday celebrations; however, the leaves and berries of this plant are toxic to birds.

Choose artificial holly for your holiday decorations rather than real holly because the berries could look like a tasty snack to many different types of birds. This will help keep your pet healthy and safe.

9. Ivy

Many people like to decorate their houses with full and lush ivy, and Ivy is a lovely addition to any space. Still, specific varieties of ivy, especially the popular English variety, pose a significant risk to the health of any birds you keep as pets and in your home.

It is also possible for it to produce an increase in saliva production along with gastrointestinal symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, and abdominal pain.

10. Lilies

There are many kinds of lilies, each stunning and widely used in floral arrangements. However, bird owners should take care to remove all lilies, particularly peace lilies, from the environments in which their feathered friends spend their time because these plants are among plants that are poisonous to birds.

Lilies can cause significant irritation to a bird’s mouth, as well as excessive salivation and gastrointestinal symptoms such as vomiting.

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