10 Animals That Eat Coffee Beans

Animals That Eat Coffee Beans
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Have you ever wondered why animals eat coffee beans? You may be surprised to learn that many are the animals that eat coffee beans around the world, both domesticated and wild, enjoy snacking on coffee beans.

From cats to cows, a variety of creatures will happily munch on a coffee bean. 

This blog post will explore unusual animals that eat coffee beans and why they love them so much.

So, if you’ve ever been curious about the strange critters who enjoy a caffeinated snack, read on to find out more!

1. Birds

Smartest Birds & Most Intelligent Birds
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One of the most surprising animals that eat coffee beans is birds.

Though it may seem strange for these small creatures to consume such a large bean, some species have developed a taste for the caffeine-filled snack.

Among the birds that are known to have a fondness for coffee beans are common grackles, house finches, and California quail.

In addition to enjoying the flavor, birds also benefit from the caffeine in coffee beans.

Caffeine helps them stay alert and focused so they can better find food and escape predators.

As a result, coffee beans can be an ideal supplement to a bird’s diet.

However, you should not feed them too many as they can become dependent on it and suffer from withdrawal if they don’t get enough.

2. Squirrels

Different Types of Squirrels
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Squirrels are small animals that are naturally curious and like to explore new things.

They are also known to be quite adventurous when it comes to trying out new food sources. Surprisingly, Squirrels are animals that eat coffee beans.

Squirrels love to feast on the sweet and bitter taste of the beans and can easily devour them in no time.

You can find them munching away at coffee beans in the wild, but it’s best to avoid feeding them coffee beans in captivity as it can be dangerous for their health.

3. Deers

Deers - Animals That Eat Acorns
by watts_photos is licensed under CC BY 2.0

The whitetail deer is one of the most curious creatures out there, and it can actually be seen nibbling on coffee beans in the wild.

Deer are browsers, meaning they like to nibble on various plants and fruits, so coffee beans are right up their alley!

Deer have been known to feed on the coffee plant’s fruit, also known as the coffee cherry. 

The fruit itself contains sugar and caffeine and provides a great energy boost for the deer.

Although coffee beans are not a primary source of nutrition for deer, they can help supplement their diet when other food sources are scarce.

For this reason, deer are animals that eat coffee beans when the need arises.

4. Goats

Kiko Goat
Image credit: backyardgoats.iamcountryside.com

Goats are often considered some of the most versatile animals, with their diets comprising a wide range of different plants.

Surprisingly, goats are animals that eat coffee beans. Goats have been observed eating coffee beans in their natural habitat, either alone or combined with other plants. 

They seem to enjoy the flavor and texture of the beans, and they often lick them up just like they would with any other type of food.

Coffee beans can provide a good source of protein and energy for goats, making them a great snack when other food sources are unavailable.

Coffee beans can also help to keep goats from getting bored and from eating items that could be potentially harmful.

5. Elephants

Elephants - Animals With Tusks 
by jdnx is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Elephants are surprisingly one of the animals that eat coffee beans! They have been observed foraging for and then eating ripe coffee berries in areas where coffee trees grow.

When elephants eat coffee beans, they do not process them like humans. Instead, they consume the entire berry, including the bean inside. 

This means that their digestive systems are able to break down and process the caffeine within the bean more effectively than we can.

Elephants aren’t just animals that eat coffee beans; they also consume them as part of a larger diet that includes grasses, leaves, and other fruits.

Coffee berries comprise only a small portion of an elephant’s overall diet. Still, it is fascinating to think that these large animals have adapted to ingesting this powerful stimulant.

6. Camels

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Camels are one of the few animals that can actually enjoy a cup of coffee! While they don’t drink brewed coffee as we do, camels have been known to be one of the animals that eat coffee beans.

In the wild, camels often forage for food in the deserts where Arabica coffee beans are grown, making them a source of sustenance.

When camels consume coffee beans, they don’t process caffeine in the same way humans do and, instead, benefit from the nutritional properties of the bean itself.

It’s also believed that eating coffee beans can boost energy and alert camels, allowing them to cope with long journeys across the desert.

7. Lions

Lions - Animals That Eat Carrion
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Lions are not usually thought of as coffee lovers, but there have been reports of them consuming coffee beans in some parts of the world.

They are the largest of cats. They typically prefer to feed on antelope, zebras, and wildebeests, but one of the animals that eats coffee beans.

Most of the time, lions consume coffee beans accidentally while eating other vegetation or even prey.

For instance, they may come across a bush of coffee beans while hunting and consume some in their hunt for sustenance.

Coffee beans can also be consumed as part of an animal carcass that has been scavenged.

Despite their large size, lions are able to digest coffee beans relatively easily. In fact, lions have been observed consuming coffee beans with no adverse effects.

Although coffee contains caffeine, it does not affect lions like humans. Therefore, it is safe for lions to consume coffee beans in small amounts.

8. Rhinos

Photo by si_kor on Pixabay

Rhinos are considered one of the most unusual animals that eat coffee beans.

Though it is not their usual diet, rhinos have been observed eating coffee beans in some parts of the world.

This could be due to the fact that they are large and strong enough to break open the hard shells of the beans, which gives them access to the soft and sweet insides. 

It has been reported that rhinos will eat coffee beans when other food sources are scarce or when they are searching for an energy boost.

However, if you plan on feeding your rhino coffee beans, it is important to ensure they are not over-consuming, as caffeine can be toxic for them.

9. Horses

by robsettantasei is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Horses are surprisingly common animals that eat coffee beans.

While this behavior isn’t particularly widespread among horse populations, it is not unheard of for horses to eat coffee beans.

Horses can actually benefit from the caffeine in the beans, as it gives them increased alertness and energy.

However, like all things, it is important to ensure that your horse does not consume too much caffeine, as this could potentially lead to health issues.

The best way to ensure that your horse does not consume too much caffeine is to feed them small amounts of coffee beans on a regular basis, as this will provide them with the energy they need without overdoing it.

10. Giraffes


Giraffes are one of the few animals known to eat coffee beans. They have been observed eating both unroasted and roasted beans.

This is an interesting phenomenon, as giraffes are usually herbivores, which means they usually only eat plant matter.

Giraffes usually is an animal that eats coffee beans as a way to supplement their diet with extra protein.

Coffee beans contain a fair amount of protein, so it makes sense that these animals would seek them out for a nutritional boost.

Coffee beans also contain other nutrients that can benefit a giraffe’s health, such as magnesium and potassium.

It is thought that giraffes typically find coffee beans when they are scavenging for food or when they come across a fallen branch or tree with ripe coffee cherries.

Once they have found the beans, they will often use their long necks to reach up and grab them.

It is worth noting that while eating coffee beans may be beneficial for giraffes in certain circumstances, it should not be relied upon as a staple of their diet.

It is important to remember that wild animals should not be fed human foods and that other natural sources of nutrition should be sought out first.


Coffee beans may be a part of the daily routine for many humans, but they can also provide an unexpected snack for some animals.

From birds to lions, there are many unusual animals that eat coffee beans.

Although this type of treatment is not recommended for all species, the ones listed here have been known to sample the tasty legume with great enthusiasm.

If you ever find yourself in a situation where you have to feed any of these creatures, consider giving them a special treat by offering them a few coffee beans!

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