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What do Turtles Eat

what do painted turtles eat

Turtles are omnivores beings, which means they eat plants and meat. Their diet consists of common vegetables and fruits, protein-rich meat from fish and insects, and commercial pelleted turtle food.

Turtles may not be cute and cuddly like dogs, but they make fantastic pets. They are fun to care for, mesmerizing to look at, and very low maintenance. Though they don’t require much care, turtles have particular needs like UVB light, an appropriately-sized tank, and a proper diet. Without the right feeding plan, your turtle will get weak, sick, and can even die.


Turtle Diet

Turtles kept as pets are always omnivores, meaning they eat both meat and plants. A typical turtle diet should have;

1.    Commercial pelleted food. Specially-made turtle food is loaded with all the nutrients a turtle need to grow healthy and strong. These pellets are designed to float and not fall apart easily like other pelleted foods. They should make up 25% of the turtle’s diet.

2.    Meat products. When it comes to meat, think high protein meat like goldfish, sardines, trout chow, snails, and gut-loaded insects. It’s okay to give them shredded meat human beings eat, but it won’t be very helpful nutrition-wise.

3.    Plant food. Their favourite plant food sources include dandelion leaves, kale, collard and mustard green. You can also give them some grated carrots, zucchini and squash. For fruits, choose high calcium fruits like figs, berries and apricots.

All these foods should also be supplemented with reptile calcium and vitamin powders. Calcium is extremely important for turtles because it helps keep their shell healthy and strong.

How Much Food Do Turtles Eat

This depends on age and species. For example, young turtles should eat more protein sources because they are growing. At age four and upwards, plant food should take the highest percentage to prevent obesity. The commercial pelleted food can be kept constant at 25% throughout their lives.

As a rule, though, one cup of food is enough, and you can adjust this depending on how healthy they look. If you overfeed a turtle, it can become obese and develop health issues just like humans. You can tell a turtle is obese when they start forming folds on their legs.


How Often Should I Feed the Turtle?

Again, it depends on age. Young turtles should eat twice a day to keep up with their growing needs. When they are bigger, four times a week will suffice. Note that one of the turtle’s cutest characteristics is begging for food. When they see someone coming near the tank, they quickly go to them and open their mouth. However, feed them every other day, even if they look like they want to eat all the time.


General Upkeep of Turtles

Unlike cats and dogs, turtles defecate where they eat and drink. They are also sloppy eaters, and their tank is usually a mess. With that in mind, a turtle’s habitat requires a lot of attention to keep it clean. Change their water regularly, clean out all the left-over food at the end of the day and remove all the mouldy plant debris.

Leaving them in a dirty environment can make the turtle sick, so cleaning out the mess every day is important. Since some turtles carry salmonella bacteria, make sure everyone who touches the turtle or their habitat washes hands with antibacterial soap immediately.

What can I feed my turtle at home

  1. Source Protein: Boiled eggs, mealworms, snails, crickets, earthworms.
  2. Vegetables: Corn, beans, beets, carrots, peas, squash, yams.
  3. Greens: Carrot tops, lettuce, collard greens, kale, spinach

What is turtles favorite thing to eat

Protein: Feed turtles crickets or mealworms or feeder fish on occasion for variety. Turtles love the excitement from a good hunt. Vegetables: Three or four times a week, serve 1 to 2 teaspoons of dark, leafy greens such as kale, collards or mustard greens. Remove any greens they don’t eat within four hours.

What do turtles eat everyday

You should feed your turtle one cup of food every day or every other day. I recommend you feed your turtle a combination of pellets, vegetables, and insects. Generally speaking, younger turtles under the age of 5 should be fed every day, while turtles over the age of 5 should be fed every other day.

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