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What Do Peacocks Eat?

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Peacocks are beautiful birds that you can raise to add beauty to your yard. But you need to feed your peacocks with quality feed to maintain their radiant colors and beautiful wings.

What do peacocks eat? What can you feed them?

Peacocks are omnivorous birds, and they eat a wide range of insects, little animals, and plant products. Peacocks that you raise as pets or farm birds will mostly eat formulated feed as well as other healthy treats.

Why should peacocks in captivity eat mostly formulated feed? What else can you feed your peacock with? Continue reading.

What Do Peacocks Eat?

Here are some recommended foods to feed your peacocks:


1. Formulated Feed

This is surely the number one food of choice that you should think of when feeding your peacocks. Formulated feed for peacocks has the necessary nutrients and also just the right amount of protein. Unless you are an expert in raising peacocks, you do not want to feed your peacocks other types of feed.

You can get formulated feed for your peacocks from a feed mill, and you can even make yours by yourself if you are skilled at feed formulation.

You should consider buying the formulated feed from feed mills because it could be medicated. Your peacocks will appreciate medicated feeds as they can grow healthier and contract fewer diseases.

2. Seeds and Grains

If you want to diversify your peacocks’ diet, the things to consider after formulated feed are seeds and grains. Peacocks love eating grains such as maize, millet, barley, and wheat. They also love seeds such as sunflower seeds, papaya seeds, pumpkin seeds, etc.

Most formulated feeds for peacocks are made of seeds and grains (in addition to other ingredients), so you can feed them to your birds.

Note that you should give your peacocks grains as treats, as grains can be expensive as well as contain too many carbohydrates. Ensure that your peacocks’ regular diet has a lot of proteins so that the birds can grow quickly.

mealworms on a blue table

3. Insects

When thinking about treats for your peacocks, the healthiest and most natural treat we can think of is an insect. Peacocks love insects and other little critters.

You can feed them some insects as treats. Peacocks love larvae such as mealworms, black soldier fly larvae, and housefly larvae.

One cool thing is that you can easily cultivate these insect larvae by yourself, and you do not have to spend a dime to do so. Just remember to rinse off the dirt from the larvae before you feed your peacocks with them.

You can use insect treats to train your peacocks. But it is important that you only give insects to your peacocks as treats so that your birds do not get used to the insects.

4. Fruits and Vegetables

Do you like your fruits and veggies? Well, so do peacocks. Peacocks can eat fruits such as bananas, apples, watermelons, cucumbers, and kiwi fruit.

Fruits are nutritious and delicious. Fruits usually do not contain a lot of proteins but instead have a lot of carbohydrates, so you want to give fruits to your peacocks as treats.

As for vegetables, peacocks can eat veggies such as broccoli, spinach, lettuce, etc.

You can give as many vegetables as you can to your peacocks, but make sure that the birds always have access to quality protein-rich feed such as formulated feed. Always remember that birds need a lot of protein to grow.

barley grains on white background

5. Fermented Grains

Just like you can with chickens, you can feed your peacocks fermented grains. Fermented grains are great for the birds, especially in winter. These grains can make your peacocks healthier as they provide beneficial microbes as well as nutrients.

You can easily make fermented grains by soaking any grain of your choice (usually barley) in water for two or more days.

Before soaking the grains, make sure that you properly rinse them. Also, it helps if you boil the water before using it (wait until it is cool before you soak the grains in it).

Feed the grains to your peacocks immediately, and do not expose the grains for long so that they do not go bad.

6. Bread Crumbs, Kitchen Scraps, and Other Healthy Treats

Well, peacocks are very beautiful birds, but that does not mean that they will not eat bread crumbs and kitchen scraps. If you have any bird-safe kitchen scraps such as bread crumbs, vegetables, and fruits, you can give them to your peacocks.

Please do not feed your peacocks onions, bloody foods, moldy foods, and other unsafe foods so that you do not harm your birds. Do not feed your peacocks foods from waste bins or trash cans. Only feed them food directly from the kitchen. Otherwise, just throw the food away.

pink flower buds on the ground

7. Whatever They Find

Do you have a large yard in which your birds have enough space to walk and search for their food? Excellent. Peacocks love to search for and eat foods such as seeds, insects, lizards, flower buds, and anything that they can find.

Just make sure that you provide access to extra food and water so that if they cannot find enough food, they know where to go to.

What will you be feeding your peacocks? What about baby peacocks? Continue reading to learn what you should feed your baby peacocks.

What Do Baby Peacocks Eat?

Baby peacocks need nutritious food to grow quickly and be in good health. If you have some baby peacocks, here are some recommended foods for them:

1. Formulated Feed

Baby peacocks need formulated feed with 25% or more crude protein. These young birds need as many proteins as they can get for proper wing development and health. Ensure that your baby peacocks always have access to formulated feed. They need as much as they can eat.

If they are still in their brooder box, make sure that the light is turned on even at night. The light in brooder boxes may be for temperature regulation, but it is also important so that the birds can continue eating at night.

Give your baby peacocks a lot of formulated feed while everything else can come as treats.

insects on the soil

2. Insect Treats

If you want to give your baby peacocks some treats, make sure that the treats are protein-rich, just like their formulated feed. A natural protein-rich treat for baby peacocks is the larvae of insects.

You can buy insect larvae treats for your baby peacocks in feed mills and other stores.

If you are culturing mealworms and other insect larvae for your baby peacocks, remember to sterilize them before feeding them to your baby peacocks so that you can avoid exposing the young birds to pathogens and harmful microbes.

You do not need to sterilize the insects if your young peacocks have left their brooder box.

3. Whatever They Can Find

If your young peacocks are out of their brooder box and your yard is large enough for the birds to search for food by themselves, you should allow them to. The peacocks will not only add beauty to your yard, but they will also find natural and nutritious items to eat.

If you let your birds forage, install a fence to restrict where the birds can walk so that they do not get lost.

Always remember that so long as you are raising baby peacocks as pets or farm birds, the majority of their diet should be formulated feed. Give them enough protein so that they can grow properly.

Related Questions and Answers

Do you have more questions relating to what peacocks eat? Here are the answers:


1. Can Peacocks Eat Chicken Feed?

Even though they are both omnivorous birds and can eat similar foods, you should not feed your peacocks with feed formulated for chickens. Chicken feed is made specifically for chickens and has the needed nutrients (and medications) for chickens to grow.

Note that chicken feed is not poisonous for peacocks and may be safe for peacocks to eat. The main reason why peacocks should not eat chicken feed is that the nutrients in chicken feed don’t meet the nutritional requirement of peacocks.

You can feed your peacocks and chickens grains, insects, seeds, etc. Just do not feed your peacocks with chicken pellets regularly.

2. What Should Peacocks Not Eat?

You should be careful when feeding your peacocks so that you do not feed them toxic foods. Some examples of foods that peacocks should not eat are:

  • Moldy foods: Bread, pellets, and other foods may be safe for peacocks, but they become unsafe when mold grows on them. Moldy foods are decomposing and are unsafe for your peacocks.
  • Toxic seeds: You should not feed your peacocks with apple seeds and the pits of cherries and avocados. These seeds contain various phytotoxins that can harm peacocks.
  • Sugar-rich foods: Cake, ice cream, etc., are not safe for peacocks as they contain too many sugars for the birds.

Before feeding your peacock with a new type of food, make sure that you check if it is safe for peacocks or not.

peacock eating grains

3. Why Are My Peacocks Losing Their Appetite?

Peacocks losing their appetite may be a cause for concern or not. Here are some reasons why your peacocks may be losing appetite:

  • They are full: When your peacocks have a full stomach, they will stop eating. This is not a cause for alarm.
  • Temperature: You should raise your peacocks’ indoor room temperature. If the temperature is too hot or cold, they might lose their appetite.
  • They are sick: Sick peacocks lose their appetite, so this can be an indication that your peacocks need treatment or attention. Check for other symptoms or call the vet for diagnosis.
  • A new type of feed: You might see the need to switch your peacock feed. If you do not do this properly, your peacocks will stop eating, and this can affect their health. Continue reading to learn how to properly switch your peacock feed.

Make sure that the reason why your peacocks are not eating is that they are full.

4. How Do You Introduce Your Peacocks to a New Type of Feed?

No matter how nutritious or palatable a new feed might be, you may notice that your peacocks are not eating it like they were eating their previous feed. This is mostly because you did not properly introduce the peacocks to their new diet.

Introducing your peacocks to a new type of feed can take 3-5 weeks. Continue feeding the birds with their previous feed and then mix in a little amount of the new type of feed into the trough. Continue to increase the amount of new feed in the trough (i.e., mixed with the previous feed) and reduce the amount of old feed for 3-5 weeks.

By the time you’ve reduced the amount of old feed to zero, they will not notice the difference and will eat the new feed with a full appetite.

blue peacock in the garden

5. Do Peacocks Need Grit?

It depends on what you are feeding the peacocks. You do not need to give your peacocks grit if you are feeding them with formulated feed or if you allow them to walk freely and search for food by themselves.

If you mostly feed your birds with seeds, grains, insects, and other natural feed, you should keep some grit nearby.

Peacocks, just like other birds, digest their food in their gizzard, which is also called a mechanical stomach. Birds use grit and rocks to grind food particles in the gizzard, so grit helps your peacocks’ digestion. If you want your peacocks to digest their food quickly, make sure that they have access to grit.

Have you found the answers to your questions?

Final Thoughts

Peacocks are omnivores, so they are not restricted to eating only plant or animal products. They can eat anything they can catch or anything small enough to pass through their beaks. Make sure that you feed your peacocks with protein-rich formulated feed.


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