On a slightly different turn from the previous discussion of live food:

Something I've always been curious about but never done. I wonder if you can put a small flat in the bottom of the canary's cage with seed sprout growing in it. I don't mean growing on towels, but in actual soil, like potting mix you get from the store, and the canary would ... well, sort of mow it. I don't know if there are any risks and I know next to nothing about growing plants, but it seems the situation could be quite nourishing for him and rather aesthetic unless he took to throwing out the dirt.

Anyone done anything like this? Is the idea totally off the wall? Is there risk to my Handel I should look out for?
- pianoharp
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I love your nickname; my mother was a harpist and I'm a pianist...speaking of Handel, I could play or listen to Arrival of the Queen of Sheba 24/7 for a week and not tire of it...
Anyway, yes it's been done. Some have concerns about molds growing in the soil. See also http://www.beakappetit.com/grasscafe.html .

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I buy the Cosmic kitty herbs and grow them for my budgies. They're just oat groats and a sterile growing medium. I also grow out the budgie seed mixes (the cheap ones that don't have the added bits of dried fruit and pellets..those things just end up rotting). I only offer the greens when I'm there to supervise, so they (the birds) don't get into the soil. I don't think putting it in the cage bottom is wise, as the droppings and stray food will quickly foul it.