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Can Seagulls Eat Bread? (Explained)

Seagulls are a common sight near bodies of water, and they often scavenge for food. One of the most popular foods that seagulls eat is bread. But can seagulls eat bread?

As a general rule, seagulls can eat bread. While seagulls can and do eat bread, they should not be given too much of it as it could pose a health risk if consumed in large amounts.

Seagulls are wild animals and should not be fed too much bread. Bread can provide them with some nutrition, but it is not a complete food source.

It is important to remember that seagulls need a balanced diet of other foods, such as fish, insects, and worms, to stay healthy. 

In this article, we’ll talk about what type of bread they can eat, the health risks associated with feeding them too much bread, and what other food sources they need to stay healthy.

Can you feed seagulls bread?

While it is possible to feed seagulls bread, it is not recommended. Bread does not provide the necessary nutrients for seagulls and can actually be harmful to them if they consume too much.

That said, feeding seagulls can cause them to become aggressive towards humans and dependent on handouts instead of finding their own food. It is best to avoid feeding seagulls altogether.

Giving Bread to seagulls

Giving bread to seagulls can be a fun and rewarding experience. However, it is important to remember that seagulls were not naturally adapted to feed on grain-based products like bread, and so their digestive systems are not suited for digesting this type of food.

Additionally, an overabundance of bread or other grain-based foods can displace access to natural sources of nutrition such as fish, crabs, shrimp, and other aquatic organisms.

Eating too much bread can also lead to malnutrition and stomach problems since the bird’s digestive system cannot process this type of food very efficiently.

Furthermore, regular bread is filled with additives, preservatives, salt, and sugar which can be dangerous to pet birds. Here’s why that is.

  • Salt. Salt is an essential mineral for birds, but too much of it can be harmful. Eating too much salt can lead to electrolyte imbalances in birds, even though seagulls have the gland that helps them regulate salt levels. 
  • Preservatives. Preservatives are used to extend the shelf life of food products, but they can also be dangerous for birds, so it is best to avoid feeding them bread with preservatives.
  • Sugar. We all know bread contains sugar. Therefore it can be dangerous for seagulls since this is a natural food that shouldn’t be in their diet.
  • Fats. The consumption of fats in bread makes seagulls more prone to obesity and other health problems due to the high cholesterol levels in the bread.

So, should you give up feeding seagulls bread?

No, you don’t have to give up feeding seagulls bread altogether. However, it is essential to remember that seagulls need a balanced diet of other foods, such as fish or insects, so if you want to feed them bread in moderation, ensure you give them high-quality bread.

Here are some examples:

Brown bread

Brown bread is a healthier alternative to white bread when it comes to feeding seagulls. It contains more fiber, vitamins, and minerals than white bread. Additionally, brown bread has less sugar and fat than white bread, making it a better option for seagulls.

Brown bread also has fewer preservatives and additives. Therefore, opt for brown bread if you want to feed seagulls bread.

Whole wheat bread

Wheat bread is a popular choice for feeding seagulls, although it isn’t always easy to find. 

Whole wheat bread is a good choice for cockatiels since it is filled with natural whole grains. Since it contains carbohydrates and fibers, it is a great source of energy for seagulls.

The bread you should avoid feeding seagulls

It is important to avoid feeding seagulls certain types of bread, as these can be detrimental to their health. White bread should be avoided, as it contains high sugar and fat.

That said,  let’s consider which types of bread you should avoid feeding them altogether.

Garlic bread

Garlic bread should be avoided when feeding seagulls. Garlic is a member of the onion family and can be toxic to seagulls, as it can cause digestive problems. Additionally, garlic bread contains high levels of fat (due to butter), salt, and sugar which can be dangerous for seagulls. Therefore, it is best to avoid feeding them garlic bread altogether.

Rye Bread

Rye bread is one of the healthiest bread for human consumption. However, it is not suitable for seagulls. Rye bread contains high levels of fiber, which can be difficult for seagulls to digest due to its high density.

Moldy bread

Last but not least, moldy bread should be avoided when feeding seagulls. Moldy bread can contain toxins that can be harmful to seagulls. Even though it is just a minimum amount of mold in the bread, please don’t feed it to seagulls.

Can baby seagulls eat bread?

Baby seagulls should not eat bread, as it can be difficult for them to digest since their digestive system is not yet fully developed. Moreover, bread can be a choking hazard for baby seagulls.


Before we move on to the conclusion, we’ve summarized this article into a short list of key points for you to remember:

  • Seagulls can eat bread, but it should be in moderation and high quality.
  • Brown bread and whole wheat bread are good options for seagulls.
  • Avoid feeding seagulls white bread, garlic bread, rye bread, and moldy bread.
  • Baby seagulls should not eat bread.
  • If feeding bread, ensure to break it into small pieces to make it easier for them to digest.


While seagulls can eat bread in moderation, it is important to ensure that the bread you feed them is of high quality. We all know that it is hard not to feed these birds, and they will probably come to you for food, but it is important to remember that not all types of bread are suitable for them. 

Want to learn more about seagulls?

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