home Article What can you feed your turtle at home?

What can you feed your turtle at home?


It is important for turtle owners to remember that there is a list of foods that should not be included in the animal’s diet. This is the following food:

  • onion and garlic;
  • poisonous insects;
  • domestic cockroaches, crickets and grasshoppers;
  • eggshell;
  • cherry;
  • medicinal or poisonous plants;
  • potatoes;
  • porridge.

Food for turtles must be balanced, you can not constantly feed the animal the same product.

feed, turtle, home

How to water a turtle

Land animals receive the necessary moisture through the skin, so it should be a good habit for a caring owner to bathe a pet in lukewarm water once a week.

In addition, moisture enters the body of land animals through food, which is why juicy cabbage leaves should be included in the diet as often as possible.

How to please omnivores

Sushi menu

Food for land turtles must be balanced, so you should delight your pet with a variety of foods. Despite the fact that the animal is unpretentious, picky about food, the owner still needs to try and provide him with all the nutrients and vitamins. It is important to remember that these reptiles are herbivores, which is why food for land turtles should include an abundance of greenery and grass.

The plants that this animal can use for food are diverse. These include dandelions, lettuce or pea leaves, aloe, plantain, coltsfoot, sorrel, tradescantia, and rhubarb. Even juicy lawn grass can be fed to the animal. Therefore, in the summertime, the extraction of food for the turtle will not be difficult, and in winter, plants can be grown independently in pots on the window.

The vegetables that terrestrial reptiles are happy to consume are also very diverse: they are radishes, carrots, beets, zucchini, peppers, pumpkin, and cucumber. The latter, however, should be given infrequently and in small amounts. From fruits and berries, plums, apricots, apples, bananas, watermelon, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries can be offered as feed for domestic turtle. It is useful to treat your pet with sunflower seeds, dry seaweed, soybean meal. Juicy vegetables and fruits, in addition to their main task, will help provide the animal with liquid as well.

The importance of choice

Food for the turtle is essential for the normal development of the animal. It must be balanced and contain a complex of minerals, otherwise the pet can get problems with the shell and die. Therefore, the menu for a pet must include foods rich in calcium and vitamins.

Also, among the problems that an animal receives with improper nutrition are diseases of the digestive system, metabolic disorders. The turtle becomes lethargic and inactive.

What to prefer

Food for turtles depends on their type. The table shows the features of the diet of animals, depending on their type.

20%. plant food;
80%. animal elements

Red-eared adults, prickly, coal (red-footed)

Land turtles: flat, spider, greek

five%. animal feed, 95%. herbal ingredients

The type of turtle should become the main one when drawing up a menu for it, this will take into account the natural needs of the animal.

What herbivores love

Most of the food for herbivorous turtles should be fresh greens, it is better to give the animals salads, leaves, herbs. 1/5 of the diet may include vegetables: carrots, zucchini, pumpkin, unsweetened fruits are acceptable in moderation. A small slice of apple or pear once a week will delight your pet and not harm its health.

It is imperative to dilute the diet with specialized feed for turtles, bran, soybean meal, dry yeast. At the same time, you should not give the following products to vegetarians:

  • meat in any form, including minced meat;
  • fish;
  • food for cats or dogs;
  • loaf.

A competent approach to nutrition will allow the animal to remain healthy and active for many years, delight the owner with its funny antics.

How to please a predator

Food for the red-eared turtle, which belongs to the category of predators, must be rich in animal components. Therefore, at home, you should delight your pet with live lean fish or thawed. For young individuals, it is necessary to finely chop the carcass, removing the spine and large bones, small bones and entrails can be left. Adult turtles are allowed to give larger pieces or whole small fish. In addition to fish, red-eared turtles feed on liver (chicken or beef, given no more than once every 7 days), small rodents (such as mice or rat pups), green shrimps.

At the same time, all animal components of the diet should not be boiled, given to the animal exclusively in raw form. Predators gladly eat specialized raw food, insects, slugs, frogs.

At the same time, one should abandon the temptation to feed the following foods to the predator tortoise:

  • meat and semi-finished products (chicken, pork, beef);
  • fatty fish;
  • cheese;
  • fruit;
  • food for cats or dogs;
  • milk;
  • loaf.

With a properly composed menu, reptiles will feel most comfortable, not get sick and delight the owner with activity.

Feeding rules

Knowing what to feed a marsh turtle at home is not enough, you still need to be able to do it correctly. Experienced breeders have developed several rules, adhering to which the owner can enjoy the company of a reptile for many years:

  • Turtles up to two years of age and pregnant females are fed once a day, and adults. 2-3 times a week.
  • The main food. animal food. Marsh turtles are predators, therefore meat and fish. their main food. You should not feed your turtles with minced meat, it spoils the water.
  • Turtles should be taught to take food from tweezers. They will feed by amusingly pulling their heads out of the water or on land. You should adhere to the feeding schedule, then the turtles get used to the desired regime and recognize the owner.
  • Plant food should be introduced gradually as the turtles grow up. Small fish can sometimes be placed in the terrarium to awaken the hunter’s instincts in pets and entertain them.
  • There is no need to give to the turtles to drink. And once every 7-10 days, it is advisable to arrange a day of ablution. It is necessary to clean the carapace from plaque with a soft cloth.

Calcium must be present in the diet so that there are no fractures of the legs and the carapace is formed correctly.

Turtle Feeding Rates

Despite the fact that reptiles are not picky about food, you need to feed marsh turtles at home correctly, given their age. Small turtles, which are actively developing, are fed once a day, but algae must always be present in the terrarium, suitable for eating. A portion of food consists of two or three pieces of fish measuring 1 cm 3.

When the turtles grow up and their shell reaches a size of 9-13 cm, they are given fish in 1-2 days, the presence of algae is also required. A portion of food consists of two to three pieces of fish measuring 2-3 cm 3.

Mature adults should be fed no more than 2-3 times a week. A single portion is selected individually, depending on the amount of food that the turtle is used to eating.

Do I need a water change

The water in the terrarium must be kept clean at all times. The filter partly copes with this, but the water should be changed regularly to prevent the development of diseases. Complete replacement of water and cleaning of the walls of the terrarium are carried out every 1-1.5 months, and partial. as needed. To ensure long-term cleanliness of the terrarium, you should feed the pet outside of it, and not feed the swamp turtle directly in the water. Standing tap water is suitable for filling the aquarium.

Arrangement of the terrarium

European marsh turtles spend a lot of time in the water, and this must be taken into account when keeping them in the house. A terrarium for a reptile should be spacious, with a volume of at least 100 liters. Breeders claim that the larger the terrarium, the larger the turtle will grow. It is better to take not a tall, but a wide aquarium and equip an island of land in it, which usually occupies a third of the entire area. For these purposes, it is permissible to use a large stone with gentle edges and a beautiful driftwood.

For a comfortable existence in the terrarium, you should install:

  • a lamp for heating the air, which is installed above the island;
  • an ultraviolet lamp, which is needed to maintain health;
  • water purification filters that keep the terrarium clean;
  • special bottom soil, which makes it look like the bottom of the lake;
  • edible seaweed for the turtle to have a snack.

You should not choose algae with an intense growth rate, otherwise they will occupy the entire space of the terrarium.

What shouldn’t be given to turtles

When consulting with the seller about what to feed the marsh turtle, you need to ask what is contraindicated for it. There are foods that are forbidden to feed reptiles, or possibly, but in limited quantities:

The food of amphibian pets can be diluted with some types of products, but in limited quantities:

  • plants containing grin;
  • strumogenic plants, which contribute to iodine deficiency, as a result of which goiter grows;
  • foods with excess m of phosphorus, which prevents calcium from being absorbed;
  • purine and alkaline supplements;
  • insects with thorny legs, fatty foods;
  • nuts.

The prohibited include feeding:

  • poisonous plants;
  • citrus peels, fruit and berry seeds;
  • canned food and dry food for mammals;
  • human food (porridge, cheeses, loaf, baked goods, fermented milk products, thermally processed food).

With the right diet, the European pond turtle will live longer than if it is fed unbalanced and chaotic. The average age of reptiles living in a house is 60-70 years old, but there are also known eighty-year-old specimens.

How to recognize a swamp turtle

The European Marsh Turtle (Emys orbicularis) is often found in temperate countries. The reptile is not threatened with extinction, so it is not in the Red Book. When kept in a terrarium, turtles can fully reproduce. To do this, you need to provide proper care and know what they feed the marsh turtles at different ages.

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The body of the turtle is protected by a dark olive, sometimes almost black carapace (shell). In the European marsh, it is ovoid-oval and slightly flattened. The back of the carapace is more widened than the front. The body is covered with numerous light yellowish specks. The reptile is one of the predators and lives in fresh water. The presence of a long tail makes it easier to move in the water, and with the help of powerful claws on its paws, the turtle tears meat from its prey for food. But reptiles are not constantly in the water, they also need dry land. That is why turtles are classified as amphibians or amphibians.

How to feed a swamp turtle at home?

In the natural environment, the turtle is forced to find food for itself, and in captivity the owner must take care of this. If he knows what to feed the pond turtle, it will not be too difficult. The European marsh turtle often becomes an inhabitant of the home terrarium. How to feed a beauty at home and how to take care of her, you need to ask specialists. It is not necessary to create a special microclimate for her, because the reptile comes from Europe.

What can swamp turtles eat?

When purchasing a pet, you need to ask the seller what you need to feed the marsh turtle, because the health and well-being of the amphibian depends on it.

Turtles are fed raw food, the temperature of which should be close to the temperature of the water and air in the terrarium.

Reptile food is conventionally divided into main and additional.

The main food. This includes animal products. Turtles are happy to feast on:

  • meat of lean fish (haddock, cod, gobies, perch, pollock); moreover, the fish is given live or frozen and not peeled (it is preferable to give small fish whole to young specimens, and chopped up in large pieces or whole fish to adults);
  • liver components: liver and heart of a chicken or calf;
  • crustaceans and arthropods: daphnia crustaceans, worms, bugs with previously torn off legs;
  • marine life;
  • small mammals and amphibians.

Complementary food, which includes dry and plant foods. Enough administration once every seven days:

  • dry food for water turtles;
  • vegetable feed, which consists of algae (water hyacinths, duckweed, pistia, hornwort), thinly chopped vegetables (carrots), wildflowers (clover, dandelion, daisies).

Vitamin complexes should only be given as directed by a veterinarian.

What to feed a land turtle at home?

In natural conditions, turtles take care of themselves by choosing the right food. If they need to, they eat protein foods, as well as minerals, which are necessary for the formation of the shell. If the turtle becomes a pet, then it completely falls on people, and the owner is engaged in its nutrition.

Three groups of turtles

Omnivorous turtles

The diet of this group of turtles should consist of 50 percent animal food and 50 percent vegetable. Omnivorous turtles include semi-aquatic and adult aquatic turtles, some species of land turtles: prickly, cuors, adult red-eared, Spengler, red-footed (coal), etc.

Their menu is half animal food, see the list above, and half vegetable, list below. Aquatic turtles are pampered with fish and seafood (as animal food), and land turtles are given mice.

  • Plants that grow in water conditions are plant food for aquatic species.,
  • Land plants are given plants that live on the land, fruits and vegetables are added to them.

Common mistakes when feeding turtles

  • Land herbivores are given animal food, while predators are fed only plant food.
  • Fed too little or too often, leading to obesity and malformed torso and carapace, or wasting and death.
  • Vitamins and calcium are not added to food, which ends with the development of a crooked shell, vitamin deficiency, and also leads to limb fractures.
  • Marsh turtles are fed only with bloodworms, gammarus and other similar foods that are not the main food for turtles.

Now let’s take a closer look at the home-based diet of a land turtle.


Food for carnivorous turtles should consist of 80% animal food and 20% vegetable. This group includes almost all types of aquatic and all young aquatic, such as young red-eared, cayman, trionyx, marsh, musk, etc.

The main food for them is:

  • lean fish, live or thawed, with entrails and small bones. For young turtles, the fish should be finely chopped (spine, excluding ribs) with bones, for adults. whole or in large pieces. Large bones can be cut over or finely chopped.
  • beef or chicken liver is given once a week;
  • seafood such as green (not pink) shrimp, seafood cocktail;
  • mammals (small): naked mice, rats, runners.

All seafood, as well as fish, the turtle can only eat raw, do not give thermally processed food;

Complementary feed, which must be given once a week, is:

  • Dry food for freshwater turtles, for example, in the form of sticks, tablets, flakes, granules, capsules, firms “Tetra”, “Sera”, etc.
  • Insects: moth, forage cockroaches, grasshoppers, bloodworms, crickets, earthworms, gammarus and so on;
  • Molluscs, amphibians, invertebrates: slugs, frogs, small snails with shells, tadpoles and similar marsh.

It is forbidden to give to predatory turtles:

  • meat (beef, chicken, pork, lamb, sausages, sausage, any kind of minced meat, etc.), as well as fatty fish, milk, cheese, loaf, fruit, dog or cat food, etc.

What to feed a land turtle?

These animals are among the most unpretentious. Turtles eat little, do not require special care. they are not difficult to keep at home. All land turtles are herbivorous reptiles. As mentioned above, their diet is 95% plant-based and 5% animal. Feeding inappropriate food for this group, such as meat, is fraught with disease.

What the turtle likes?

Turtles’ favorite foods are lettuce and dandelion leaves. they can even be dried for the winter. She is also partial to vegetables and fruits. The main food consists of almost all plants, vegetables, fruits, berries that are not poisonous for turtles. Can be fed with field herbs and houseplants such as: aloe, pea stems and leaves, tradescantia, alfalfa, timothy grass, lawn grass, plantain, rhubarb, rhubarb, sprouted oats, barley, thistle, sorrel, coltsfoot.

The vegetable menu consists of peppers, beans, pumpkin, carrots, zucchini, radishes, beets, artichokes, this list will be supplemented by cucumber and horseradish, which should not be given in large quantities.

It is allowed to feed land turtles with a variety of fruits and berries: apples, apricots, plums, peaches, mangoes, bananas, oranges, tangerines, watermelon, raspberries, strawberries, blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, blueberries. Additional complementary foods are: mushrooms, dry commercial food, dry sea cabbage, young sunflower seeds, soybean meal, bran.


In the diet of an aquatic turtle, protein must be present. It is vital for your pet’s health, so keeping a predatory aquatic turtle on a plant-based diet is unacceptable. Experts recommend this proportion of animal and plant foods:

  • 70-90% of the diet should be food of animal origin, preference should be given to fish and seafood, but with great pleasure the reptile will also eat meat, for example, young mice and rat pups, while rat pups are preferable.
  • Food of plant origin can be present in the diet up to 20%. You can feed the aquatic turtle with lettuce, plantain, clover, seaweed, carrot tops and wheat germ.
  • No more than 10% of the food can be dry specialized food containing vitamin D3 and other essential trace elements and vitamins.

Now let’s take a closer look at how to feed a water turtle at home and make a list of suitable products.

What to feed an aquatic turtle

Aquatic turtles are predators, unlike their land-based counterparts, so you need to feed the aquatic turtle accordingly, most of them with animal products. Thanks to this diet, these turtles have a higher metabolism than land species. Therefore, the approach to the diet of an aquatic turtle should be somewhat different than to a land turtle.

Prohibited foods

Foods that should not be fed to a sea turtle include:

  • fatty fish and meat, as well as fatty minced meat;
  • dairy products (cheeses, milk, cottage cheese);
  • eggs and eggshells in any form;
  • crab sticks and other preservatives;
  • salty, peppery food.

Fish and seafood

The basis of the diet should be food that is a habit for the reptile, i.e. the kind that your pet eats in its natural habitat, mostly fish and seafood.

The fish should not be fatty, and small in size. Ideally, the turtle can swallow the fish whole with bones and head. It is not necessary to give live food to the turtle, but experts recommend occasionally releasing live fish into the aquarium (or a special feeder) to maintain the predator’s instinct. It is better to cut the large fish into pieces and remove the scales. The following types of fish are suitable for feeding:

  • crucian carp,
  • perch,
  • hake,
  • cod,
  • goby,
  • blue whiting.

Fish caviar can also be offered to a turtle.

Fatty fish, before giving to the reptile, should be cut into pieces and poured over with boiling water, and then held in hot water for a while. It is better to refrain from feeding the turtle with these fish:

  • Tulle,
  • sprat,
  • herring,
  • mullet,
  • pink salmon,
  • capelin.

Meat and insects

Insects can be used as additional food; you should feed the aquatic turtle with insects no more than once a week. For individuals under the age of two, it is worth refraining from feeding on insects. Insects can be stored in the refrigerator and offered to reptiles after thawing. Dry, live and stunned insects are also suitable. In any case, you should observe your pet’s reaction to such food.

The following types of insects are suitable for a turtle’s diet:

From meat products, you can offer the turtle chicken or other lean poultry meat. Beef can be given occasionally. Chicken or beef liver will also please your turtle. Fatty meats such as lamb or pork should be avoided.

Vegetable feed

You should feed the sea turtle at home with vegetable food no more than two to three times a month. Only adults who have reached the age of two should be offered food of plant origin.

This is due to the fact that with age, turtles accumulate the required amount of protein and do not require as intensive growth as young individuals. It is also worth understanding that your turtle may refuse vegetable food, for example, Trionix will treat such food with contempt, and most likely will leave it untouched.

As a plant food, you can offer your pet plants that are suitable for feeding land turtles:

  • Young leaves of dandelion, plantain, nettle.
  • Sprouted wheat, young shoots of carrots.
  • Young cabbage leaf or salad.
  • Various seaweed, dry seaweed.
  • Cucumbers, tomatoes, pumpkin.
  • Apples, banana, pear.

Where to feed and how often

When asked how much to feed domestic aquatic turtles, the answer is the same as in the case of their land counterparts. For young individuals, it will be enough once a day, preferably in the morning. For reptiles that have reached the age of two, food can be offered two or three times a week, adults are also best fed in the morning, although this is not as important for sea turtles as for land turtles. If your turtle loves to eat at night, do not deny her this pleasure.

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It is best to feed your aquatic turtle at home in a separate container. This is due, first of all, to the fact that the remains of fish and other food of animal origin will remain in the aquarium, thereby polluting it. If you do not put the turtle in a separate container, you will have to change the water in the reptile’s aquarium two or even three times a week. To avoid an unpleasant smell and possible pet illness, the easiest way is to purchase a small aquarium for feeding the turtle, or another container where to place the turtle during a meal. After the turtle has eaten, return it to the aquarium.

Now you know what to feed your domestic aquatic turtles, and we hope that this information will help your pet to stay healthy for many years.

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Pieces of boletus, mushrooms, russula are recommended to be given to animals no more than 1 time per week.

Human food is not suitable for turtles! They will also enjoy eating food intended for other animals, but it will not benefit the turtles. It is forbidden to feed with peel from citrus fruits, give berries with seeds.

Feeding turtles with food for cats and dogs. “Pros and cons”

Combined feeds are very popular with “redheads”, but they are intended for feeding warm-blooded animals and turtles are not suitable. The food contains a completely different set of substances that are good for cats and dogs, but completely useless for turtles.

What to feed a red-eared turtle

Before buying a new exotic pet, you need to study more information about it in order to know how to properly care for the animal and how to feed it. The red-eared turtle is omnivorous. She needs animal and plant food. To raise a healthy turtle, you need to monitor the variety of the diet. What to feed a red-eared turtle?


Animals love plantain, clover, vetch, dandelion and rhubarb leaves. In addition, they can be given lawn grass, coltsfoot, sprouted barley and oats.

Plant feed

Vegetable foods are essential for all turtles, but they make up a large part of the diet as they age.

Aquarium plants

It is preferable to plant duckweed, spirogyra, aquatic watercress, pond algae. Turtles do not even allow plants to grow a little. they are eaten in an instant. You should refrain from planting elodea! The plant produces poisonous sap and poses a danger to animals.


The diet should contain bell peppers, cucumbers, tomatoes, zucchini, eggplants. Pumpkins, radishes, legumes, carrots and beets are indispensable. Broccoli, celery, dry seaweed are given as an additional feed.

Homemade food for red-eared turtles

If commercial artificial food is not suitable, you can make your own treat for turtles.

  • cabbage. 50 gr.;
  • carrots. 70 gr.;
  • non-fatty fish. 145 gr.;
  • apples. 50 gr.;
  • squid meat. 100 gr.

Cooking method. All ingredients should be passed through a meat grinder, add 2 eggs, gelatin diluted in hot water (150 ml. 30 g) and milk in a volume of 150 g. Mix thoroughly, allow to cool and add 20 drops of Tetravita. The shelf life of feed in the refrigerator is 1 week. Before feeding, the mixture is cut into pieces and given to the turtle.

The prepared food is enough for 10 feedings, per 1 turtle with a shell length of 15 cm. If the animal is sick, a medicine can be added to the food. Agar agar can be substituted for gelatin. This will prevent the cubes from melting quickly in the water.

Treats for turtles

When considering what to feed the turtles at home, do not forget to pamper them. It is advisable, in addition to the necessary, but somewhat boring food, to offer the turtles various delicacies. Usually, any species of turtles, including Trionix, are very fond of special live food: bloodworms, earthworms, carriage, tubipes. Young turtles are especially partial to such supplements, for which they are also necessary and useful, especially after a long fast caused by hibernation or illness. Indeed, depending on the size of the individual, the turtle can sleep at least 10 weeks, and maximum. 5 months.

Turtles are very fond of shrimp and squid meat, and raw liver not only suits their taste, but is also very useful. But the liver should not be the main food, but can be used about once a week as a supplement, replacing vitamins completely.

How to train your turtle to eat on land?

To create a “happy” and comfortable life for her, a domestic turtle must be fed correctly, while paying attention not only to the diet itself, but also to the peculiarities of the feeding technique.

Inexperienced owners should find out in advance how to care for a turtle at home so as not to harm the animal. The difficulty lies in the fact that it needs to be taught to eat on land, the turtle must understand that it needs to get out of the water in order to get its food. To do this, you need to learn how to lure her to the shore. First, the food is placed near the water’s edge on an inclined bank. Then the food slightly diluted with water is placed in a small saucer, which is placed further and further from the water’s edge each time, so that the animal begins to understand that in order to eat it, it will have to temporarily leave the water.

You can also feed the turtle on the shore in a different way. by placing it in a shallow container of water. Then it will be more convenient to add powders of vitamins and calcium salts to the feed for successful growth.

All owners of these animals know that their pets prefer to eat in the water and in the aquarium, which is their home, however, this method of feeding has a number of serious disadvantages. In water, food (especially animal) deteriorates instantly, quickly destroying biofilters and clogging the water.

If the turtle still cannot be taught to eat outside the aquarium, then the rule should be strictly observed. in half an hour after feeding, all food debris should be removed from the water, since this time should be enough for the animal to get enough.

DIY turtle food

There is one common treat for turtles that the most conscientious owners of them are ready to make with their own hands. This is a healthy and tasty food mixture for turtles, which is made on the basis of vegetable agar-agar or edible gelatin of animal origin. Such a delicacy not only completely solves the issue of nutrition for turtles, but also allows you to diversify their menu with nutritious and healthy ingredients, including mineral supplements and vitamins. Treats for turtles:

  • 50 g of cabbage;
  • 50 g apples;
  • 70 g carrots;
  • 145 g of fish;
  • 2 raw eggs
  • 100 g raw squid;
  • 150 ml milk.

30 g of gelatin is dissolved in 150 g of water, obtaining a base to which all of the listed ingredients are added, as well as 10 tablets of calcium glycerophosphate and 20 drops of “tetravit”. This must be done in a certain sequence:

  • warm water is poured into gelatin, where it first swells, and then dissolves in steam;
  • all of the listed components are ground in a meat grinder and mixed;
  • crushed tablets with calcium and vitamins are added to the mixture cooled to 25-30 degrees, and it is mixed again;
  • the mixture is placed in the refrigerator.

Before feeding, the finished treat is cut into small cubes and warmed to room temperature. This amount of food for an adult turtle is enough for 10 “meals”. In case of illness of the ward, crushed medicines can be added to such a mixture.

Important tips for turtles feeding

The older the turtle becomes, the more it begins to eat plant food, which must be taken into account by turtle owners. Algae planted in an aquarium will not survive for a long time. turtles will quickly destroy them. Therefore, as a permanent food, they will have to constantly increase the proportion of plant food (duckweed and algae from natural reservoirs, edogonium, elodea, aquatic watercress, young cabbage and lettuce).

It is important not only to choose the right diet, but also to choose the right amount of meals:

  • young animals up to two years old need to be fed every day;
  • it is enough to feed adults only once every three days, but it is plentiful (however, this is also true for “young people”), since turtles are well-known gourmets and gluttons who love to eat densely and tasty food.

Once again, we draw your attention to the fact that for the turtle, a balanced and proper diet is the most important factor for a long and healthy life. Only high-quality and fresh products can be used to feed turtles.

Remember that turtles will refuse food directly from the refrigerator, because, being cold-blooded, they avoid eating cold, so before feeding them, the food must be taken out of the refrigerator in advance and brought to room temperature (you can warm it up slightly).

How to feed turtles at home?

Unfortunately, many people do not take turtles seriously enough, not like other domestic animals, they know little about the peculiarities of their maintenance and care, and most importantly, they are not very interested in the question of what to feed the turtles. But these crumbs also require a balanced diet, various nutritional supplements for active growth and good health.

Food contraindicated for turtles

As reptiles, turtles are unable to digest dairy products because they lack the enzymes that break down lactose. Therefore, there is no place in their diet for products such as yogurt, milk, cottage cheese or cheese. You can not feed them with products obtained from industrial processing, which have a dubious composition, and canned food.

In their natural habitat, turtles can even eat some poisonous seeds. But since we know little about their natural diet, we should not risk offering your pet plants such as rhubarb or avocado.

What to feed domestic turtles?

When choosing a diet for land turtles, the most important factor is that they get enough calcium. For this purpose, lean small fish should be added to their food right with the bones, periodically fed to them aquarium or land snails. Due to their relatively small size, turtles can swallow whole, for example, guppies or other small aquarium fish. To further increase calcium in the diet, many often defrost large fish and cut them into pieces. For this, fish of the perch family are better suited, but it is undesirable to use mackerel and herring. Large bones must be removed from large fish, and fillets and vertebral bones must be chopped and added to other food. If the fish is too fat (sprat, capelin, herring, sprat), then before feeding it you need to hold it in very hot (80 degrees) water for a couple of minutes.

Experienced owners of these amphibians know how to feed domestic turtles, and each of them will say that meat is the most unsuitable food for these pets. With a meat diet in turtles, the risk of developing hypovitaminosis and rickets increases. Meat can only be used as a small additive to the “correct” feed and only in individuals raised on pelleted feed, since some of its types do not contain enough protein. In addition, there is another danger in meat. if you teach a turtle to it, then it will refuse other food, which will negatively affect its health.

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How to feed your turtle at home

At home, turtles can live a long life, but on condition that the owner can provide proper care. The health of a pet directly depends on how well the diet is selected. What and how to feed land turtles? let’s figure it out.

  • Animal feed. For carnivorous species of turtles, they make up 70% of the diet. Turtles are very fond of fish (they cut it in pieces, after removing large bones), it is better to choose low-fat varieties of sea fish. You can also give raw seafood. green shrimp, pieces of squid, octopus, or the so-called “sea cocktail”. ” Pieces of poultry, lean beef, rabbit meat, small mice are given. Pork and lamb should not be given. they have a large percentage of fat content. Suitable for feeding and offal: liver, heart, navels and others. Animals and insects eat well: grasshoppers, caterpillars, bugs, bloodworms, forage cockroaches, flour and earthworms, sometimes they give snail meat and eggs;
  • Dry food. Manufacturers produce food for aquatic and land turtles in various forms: capsules, flakes, granules, tablets, and so on. The most famous products are JBL, BioRept, Wardley, Sera, Tetra and so on. It is not recommended to constantly feed only with the mixture, it is given 1-2 times a week;

What to Feed your Turtle

  • Grass. Turtles can be given plantain, coltsfoot, clover, tradescantia, alfalfa, lawn grass, vetch, chinay, sprouted barley, oats, dandelions, rhubarb leaves, petunia, riccia, duckweed;
  • Vegetables. They are cut into pieces or rubbed on a coarse grater. Tomatoes, cucumbers, beets, bell peppers, carrots, lettuce, pumpkin, zucchini, radishes, eggplants, beans are allowed. Sometimes they give cabbage, celery, broccoli, parsley, asparagus, dry seaweed;
  • Fruits and berries. Pieces of apples, peaches, plums, pears, banana, mango, melon, apricot, tangerine, orange. From berries allowed strawberries, blueberries, wild strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, blackberries;
  • Mushrooms. You can give pieces of mushrooms, but not more often than once a week. champignons, boletus, russula.

Turtles should not be given human food, canned and dry food for other animals, citrus peels, seeds of berries and fruits. Additionally, vitamin and mineral supplements are mixed into food.

How to feed your turtle?

You cannot feed your pet with only one type of food; the diet should be varied. There should always be a shallow bowl of fresh fresh water in the terrarium. Do not overfeed your turtle: give it half an hour for food, and then remove the remains of the food. Adults are given food every 2-3 days, young and pregnant females are fed every day.

You can give food from tweezers, leave it in the trough or on the sushi island in the aquarium. If you wish, you can teach the animal to eat from the hands. Turtles do not eat cold food, so the food should be at room temperature. It is best to give food during the day, when the pet is most active. The size of one piece should be three times smaller than the turtle’s head. Aquatic turtles have sharp claws with which they can slice apart large pieces. One serving for feeding is not more than half of the tortoise shell. Observe the pet, the amount of food that he can eat in half an hour, and will be a guide.

Turtle nutritional features

Depending on the type of diet, there are three main subgroups of domesticated turtles:

  • carnivorous species in most cases feed on meat, but about 10% of the diet must necessarily be a variety of plant foods. These species include many aquatic turtles, as well as young red-eared and marsh turtles;
  • herbivorous species need food from plants and vegetables, as well as fruits, but occasionally they use a small amount of lean meat products for food. Such exotics include terrestrial Central Asian and Mediterranean species;
  • omnivorous species consume the same amount of meat products and staple crops. This group is represented by red-eared, marsh and red-footed turtles.

It is necessary to feed domestic turtles correctly, since with an incorrectly prepared diet, metabolism is noticeably disrupted. The quality of life of the exotic is deteriorating, and various diseases associated with the digestive system occur.

Feeding land turtles

Terrestrial species of turtles feed, as a rule, on food of plant origin:

  • cabbage;
  • dandelion leaves and lettuce;
  • fresh carrots;
  • beets;
  • fresh apples and pears;
  • cucumbers and tomatoes.

Periodically, it is imperative to supplement the diet of a land turtle with boiled chicken or quail eggs. Among other things, special calcium and vitamin supplements should be given to such exotics every day. Feed these pets in moderation to completely eliminate the risk of overfeeding.

It is recommended to feed young and actively growing individuals a couple of times a day, and an adult land turtle. once a day. About once a week, it is advisable to arrange a fasting day for a home exotic.

It is interesting! Terrestrial turtles willingly eat meat, which must be doused with boiling water and cut into relatively small pieces.

Meat that has not undergone sufficient heat treatment is capable of provoking the defeat of the exotic by salmonellosis. A young turtle must be taught to take food from tweezers.

DIY turtle food

A very common and affordable, in terms of self-production, a delicacy for domestic turtles is a feed mixture, the basis of which is vegetable agar-agar or edible gelatin of animal origin.

Such food is able not only to completely solve the issue of full-fledged feeding of the turtle, but also allows you to make the pet’s diet as varied, nutritious and useful as possible.

For cooking, you need to purchase the main ingredients presented:

  • cabbage. 50g;
  • apples. 50g;
  • carrots. 50g;
  • sea ​​fish. 145g;
  • a couple of raw eggs;
  • raw squid. 100g;
  • dry milk. 150g;
  • gelatin. 30g;
  • clean drinking water. 150ml;
  • “Tetravit”. 20 drops;
  • “Calcium glycerophosphate”. 10 tablets.

Gelatin should be dissolved in water, which will make it possible to obtain the basis for the nutritional mixture, to which it is necessary to add all of the above ingredients, as well as crushed tablets “Calcium Glycerophosphate” and “Tetravit”.

Important! pre-grind all components in a meat grinder or blender, then mix thoroughly.

The prepared formula must be kept in the refrigerator. Before giving to the animal, such food is cut into small cubes and warmed at room temperature. This amount of ingredients is designed to make ten full servings to feed an adult.

Predatory turtles

The main daily diet of a predatory turtle includes low-fat varieties of river and sea fish, including pollock, hake, cod, navaga and perch species, as well as fresh beef or chicken liver.

Such products are given to home exotics about once a week. Adult pets eat fish slices with the addition of finely crushed ridge. Young individuals need to cut food into small enough pieces.

In addition to the main diet of a predatory turtle, there are products presented:

  • raw seafood, including shell shrimp, squid, octopus tentacles, mussels and oysters;
  • crab meat, frogs, forage hairless mice or laboratory rats;
  • land snails, large pond snails, ampullaria and coils;
  • some insects, including bugs, forage cockroaches, earthworms and mealworms, hairless caterpillars, bloodworms, tubifex, and wood lice.

Vegetable components in the form of aquatic plants, fruits and vegetables, some types of cabbage are also necessary for domestic turtles for full development.

It is strictly forbidden to feed a domestic predatory turtle with the following products:

  • fatty beef meat;
  • pork meat;
  • lamb meat;
  • sausage;
  • pate;
  • cheeses of any kind;
  • dairy and fermented milk products;
  • loaf of bakery products.

It is interesting! A very good result is obtained by using special industrial rations for feeding, which can be loose, granular, in the form of tablets or capsules, as well as flakes or fortified sticks.

What, how and when to feed your turtle

It is recommended to feed a domestic turtle during the daytime when the exotic pet is most active. It is also allowed to give food at nightfall, but always a few hours before bedtime.

It is interesting! Despite the fact that house turtles are pets that are quite capable of doing without food for several days, and sometimes several weeks, to maintain health, they need to be fed not only correctly, but also regularly.

A hungry pet constantly and very actively inspects the bottom of the terrarium or aquarium. If the turtle refuses feed for too long, then it is very important to show the exotic to a qualified veterinarian.

Among other things, loss of appetite is observed in animals recently acquired or adapting to unusual conditions of keeping animals.

It is important to remember that the transfer of exotic foods from one type of diet to another must be done gradually, at least over a couple of weeks.

If several individuals of different ages are kept in one terrarium or aquarium at once, then it is imperative to control the feeding process so that all animals receive a sufficient amount of food.

Omnivorous turtles

The main daily diet of the omnivorous turtle includes plant foods and animal products, given in equal amounts. Terrestrial omnivorous turtles need to be fed animal food in the form of forage mice, rats and frogs, insects, snails and slugs, and aquatic ones. fish menu and seafood.

Plant food for terrestrial exotics includes terrestrial plants, vegetables, some fruits and vegetables, and aquatic species prefer algae and any other non-poisonous aquatic plants.

Herbivorous turtles

The main daily diet of the herbivorous turtle includes lettuce and cabbage leaves, as well as dandelion leaves and herbs, the amount of which should be about 80% of the total diet.

Also, the main products can be attributed to vegetable crops, represented by zucchini, cucumbers, carrots and tomatoes, the amount of which can reach 15% of the daily menu. The remaining 5-6% should be bananas, pears and apples, berry crops.

Supplements to the main diet of herbivorous turtles are the products presented:

  • champignons and other easily digestible types of edible mushrooms;
  • plant crops in the form of sorrel, plantain, coltsfoot, lawn grass, thistle leaves, aerial parts of clover, peas and timothy, sprouted oats and Veronica;
  • fruits and berries in the form of orange, tangerine, mango, plum, apricot, peach and melon;
  • vegetables in the form of bell peppers, beets, onion feathers, carrot tops, squash and pumpkin, artichoke and horseradish, as well as basic legumes;
  • berries in the form of watermelon, strawberries and wild strawberries, raspberries and blackberries.

HOW TO FEED TURTLES. The Basics | Turtle 101

You also need to supplement the daily diet with bran, raw sunflower seeds, dry yeast and dry seaweed.

Important! Veterinarians and experienced turtle owners recommend the use of special dry rations intended for feeding terrestrial breeds, produced under the well-established brands Wardley, Tetra and Sera.

Once a week, it is imperative to give home exotic a hard-boiled egg, and once every four weeks. garden snails and slugs, or rather large insects.