I was reading this answer and saw this comment, I have not heard about this before:

Non-stick cookware must absolutely not be used as the fumes emitted are fatal to birds.

How or why does non-stick cookware harm birds?

Is any non-stick cookware bird-safe? What do I look for in bird-safe cookware?

2 Answers 2


By googling "PTFE toxicity to birds" you will get a good number of hits. There seems to be a consensus about the lethality. As in, get those PTFE coated pans out of your house if you love your birds!

PTFE toxicity

When PTFE is heated, or worse, over heated, it will produce toxic fumes. It seems the higher the heat, the more and worse the fumes. The reason for this toxicity for birds have an high efficiency of their respiratory systems. That also means they are more susceptible to airborne toxins. This does not mean it does not impact humans; it does, just not as much.

In people, the disease has flu-like symptoms and is known as "polymer fume fever."

The best piece I could find on PTFE toxicity was this report on Polytetrafluoroethylene Toxicosis in Recently Hatched Chickens.

What is bird safe cooking ware?

Remove all Teflon / Non-stick Coating! Period.

Stay with stainless steel and cast iron stuff. Do research on your food prep setup. Find out what that non-sticky layer is made of.


From https://www.beautyofbirds.com/topbirdkillers.html

Teflon / Non-stick Coating: Non-stick cookware and other household items possessing a non-stick surface made from polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) are toxic to birds. The gas released is extremely dangerous to birds and can result in death within minutes. It does not have to be overheated either, even with normal usage, some fumes may also be released and you will never smell anything. Anything with a PTFE coating should never be used around birds period. Remember virtually "ALL" non-stick cookware, indoor cooking grills, drip pans, self-cleaning ovens, clothes dryers, new hair dryers, space heaters, irons, ironing board covers, waffle irons, deep fryers, heat lamps and other small appliances or their components may be coated with PTFE. If anything says “non-stick” be aware and leery. Unless the manufacturer can verify, in writing, that the product in question does not contain PTFE producing elements, assume it has them.

  • Good to know ; we have had 2 parrots in the kitchen for 25 years where we cook with Teflon coated pot and pans every day. Commented May 24, 2018 at 1:50

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