- By Billy Golding
Bearded Dragon Diet Explained
A bearded dragons diet will be made up of two types of foods. The first will be vegetation and the second will be insects. Below are the main foods you will want to feed to your bearded dragon as staple foods. Staple foods are types of foods that are acceptable to be fed on a daily basis. Everything else that's not on this list is probably not a good choice and should not be fed.
Vegetation: Butternut Squash, Cactus Pads, Collard Greens, Dandelion Greens, Green Acorn Squash, Mustard Greens, Kabocha Squash, Tunip Greens (not the root), and Yuca Root.
Insects: Silkworms, Phoenix worms, Crickets, Roaches, Superworms, and Mealworms.
The most common insect that pet stores sell regularly are waxworms. Waxworms are very high in fat and should not be fed to reptiles. Only feed waxworms on holidays and birthdays as a treat.
The amount to feed your bearded dragon varies depending on the age and size of your beardie. But normally you would want to follow this rule:
Baby/Juvenile: 20% Vegetation and 80% Insects Adult: 80% Vegetation and 20% Insects
The amount of insects to feed should be what your lizard can consume within 15 minutes. After the 15 minutes, take out the insects that your lizard did not eat. And that's all there is to it. If you leave the insects in the enclosure after the 15 minute interval, the odds are the insects will just bother your pet dragon.
Don't forget to gutload and supplement your insects before you feed them to your bearded dragon. Gutloading simply means to feed your insects properly to make sure your bearded dragon is getting all the nutrition it needs through them. A good insect diet can be bought at any pet store. Now, before you feed the insects to your lizard, you should always dust them with supplements.
The rule is:
- Calcium with no D3: once every other day.
- Calcium with D3: 4 times a month.
- Multivitamins: 4 times a month.
If you see that your reptile has not been eating lately, you should check the temperatures to make sure the enclosures temperatures are correct. You want to make sure the basking side is around 105 degrees Fahrenheit with an ambient temperature of 75 - 80 degrees Fahrenheit. The reason why I mention temperature is because temperature plays a huge role in digestion and appetite. Incorrect temperatures can cause a loss of appetite. If you notice that your bearded dragon is still not eating, you may want to schedule an appointment with the vet. Your bearded dragon may have an illness that may be fatal like metabolic bone disease. Another reason for not eating may be because your lizard is going into brumation. Brumation usually only occurs during colder months of the year and is absolutely normal. During this time, expect a loss of appetite and a lot of sleeping.