Let me start by saying this “There is no simple or straightforward answer to this question.”
How many parrot treats you give to your parrot should depend on their size, diet and physical activities during the day.
Wild parrots will have to fly miles each day to find their food and they will have to work for it (forage for it). Captive parrots get their food delivered to them by their human companions and in most cases more than they need. Very often the food is delivered in the food bowl and the birds have to make no effort whatsoever to find it or work for it. As a result of this parrots kept in captivity require a lot less food than their wild cousins. In my opinion this should be applied to treats as well.
Nutritional requirements for parrots kept in captivity is a fairly new subject and we’re still learning what is best for our feathered companions. However most of the people I have spoken to, including some avian vets agree that the less fatty the diet the better is for the birds.
A healthy diet consisting of seeds or pellets, fresh fruits and vegetables is the best. Variety is the key.
At Parrot Essentials we only use almonds, cedar nuts, monkey nuts, walnuts and nuts in general for training purposes. On a day-to-day basis I would prefer to use healthy parrot treats such as fresh foods, vegetables, Lafeber Nutriberies, Harrison’s Power Treats, dried fruits, palm nuts, sprouted seeds, etc.
I guess I still need to give you an idea of how many “treats” I would give to our parrots.
For example, if I was training Bobby (African Grey) I would use one almond during the entire training. A training session could last anything from 10 to 30 minutes. I’ll break the almond into small pieces and use just one nut during the entire session.
For the next training session I may use another treat such as Harrisons Power Treats. In this case I would use 3 to 5 pellets, for the entire session. The range of parrot treats is limitless, you just have to find out what your parrot likes and rotate them.
Remember variety is the key and the less fat in the food and treats, the better.