Best insects for bearded dragons and why

Discussion in 'Bearded Dragons' started by CheriS, Dec 2, 2005.

  1. Drache613

    Drache613 Well-Known Member



    No worries! :D Locusts are perfectly fine as a staple. I would say they are basically equivalent to crickets as staples here in the US. So, no, they are not discounted. If that is what you have access to, then, that is fine.


    JEFFREH Administrator

  3. dragongonekrazy36

    dragongonekrazy36 Member

    RE: Hello

    yup yup what tracie said! we just aren't allowed locusts here in the US so no worries!

    JEFFREH Administrator

  5. geckoguy133

    geckoguy133 New Member

    Mine is about 5 inches long, hes not a hatchling though, could i feed him mealies, the pet store said I could and the mealies were cheaper, so they weren't trying to scam me or anything

    JEFFREH Administrator

  7. kephy

    kephy Moderator

    Pet stores are often notorious for giving incorrect information. Mealworms may be fine for some reptiles, but for young bearded dragons specifically they pose a high impaction risk. Read CheriS's original post again, she talks about why mealworms are bad feeders for young beardies. Even when beardies are old enough to pass them in small amounts, they aren't really nutritious feeders compared to crickets, silkworms, superworms, roaches, etc.

    JEFFREH Administrator

  9. ace9916

    ace9916 New Member

    Someone in another site was asking the same question. I found the site to late though by the time I found it. He had posted a new post that his beardie was sick and not eating anymore or going (poop). He said he was told to give his baby meal worms as well. I told him its probably impacted from the meal worms, thats all he was giving him and vegies. Supers are a little cheaper and better then mealies. But still for older dragons not babies.

    JEFFREH Administrator

  11. FP_4LC4PON3

    FP_4LC4PON3 New Member

    I have a ? here. where I live there are 4 Places to get food for My Dragon. The thing is tho all they sell are MealWorms and Crickets. I am feeding him fresh greens and fruit daily going by that "Nutrition Content" link i was given. Should i feed him crickets everyday and if so how many would a 3 year old dragon eat. (18 and a half inches long).
  12. TáriStar

    TáriStar Well-Known Member

    superworms are not earthworms, do a google search and you can find out some more informaton. Just a note, earthworms or worms from a tacklestore are no good for feeders!

    and FP, at three my beardie will eat 50crickets every day to every other day. but it varies from beardie to beardie but thats about normal.
  13. dociledragns

    dociledragns Embryo

    phoenix worms and breeding pair

    I was hoping you know the health content of the phoenix worms. Also what is the best insect to feeding gravid females? thanks
  14. dociledragns

    dociledragns Embryo

    what about phoenix worms?

    do anybody know anything about feeding your dragon phoenix worms. or the best food to feed your preg female.?
  15. Jasper

    Jasper Embryo

    so i have 2 maled beardies and one of them wont eat and he is the bigger one of them wat can i do?? and i will put crickets in there and they will be the small ones and they wont eat them... :(
  16. artpac2004

    artpac2004 New Member

    hi, its been a while since my last post, but got a prob with feeders. i work at petco, and we got a new manager, and he oticed i wasnt feedin the beardies mealworms, and asked me to feed them and i told him no, well he didnt like that answer ad corp says we need to feed them mealworms so i have to, i still refused. well he said i have to but i can e mail the regional animal guy and maybe talk to the corps vet and try tellin him my side and gettin the policy changed, then and only then i wont have to feed mealworms. so im here for help...... i kow some of the reasons y not to. and our husbandry isnt right, can only get a basking of maybe 92. i turn here for all my info, and know u all know what ur talkin about. so what im asking for is maybe some contact info like emails and names and experience with beardies so i could reference u in the email i send. i will try to finds the name of the store vet, maybe someone knows him, im sure he is based from cali. please help me, if i can talk some sense into them this will change the policy nationwide, and possibly save thousands of lil baby beardies. thanks in advance. u can e-mail me ur info if u dont want it displayed on here.

    ps, they tried before with sand being used and they didnt change that, but they let the associate talk to a breeder of leopard gecko ad he raised 1000s a month and only once had a problem with impaction, my thought on it was he only kept them for a short period, so before he realized the affects they were already shipped off to a store.

    And my manager said we use mealworms for the ones that dont get enough crickets cuz the others in the cage are gettin them first. which is an ok reason if mealworms were good for beardies, i said y take the risk, just feed them crickets, they do fine with them, and he just said the smaller ones may not get to them fast enough, which i feed them 3 times a day. and they will be more territorial with a bowl of worms than loose crickets running around.

    Thanks again,

    Artur niebieszczanski

    tulsa, ok
  17. Drache613

    Drache613 Well-Known Member

    Hello Art,

    I will be glad to look over your thread for you. There are not all that many things that you can do other than print documentation that is pertinent to your cause, call the Corporate office & get the mailing address of the CEO or the person responsible for looking at your case.
    Things can be done, but, it will take some time. Basically you need to make your case, & put it at an angle to him that he will appreciate. Such as, let him know that the dragons will be much healthier in the store & once they are sold they will not go home with a new owner that is impacted.
    That alone, will actually save the company money as well as lives of the reptiles. The reason is that they will not have to honor their 30 day policy of returns of sick or deceased dragons due to negligence on their part by sending home a sick or impacted dragon. So they will make more money from not having so many of the dying once they leave the petstore.
    Usually when you talk about monetary gains, they will be more apt to listen instead of going off on a tangent as to reasons why the mealies are bad, etc.
    I hope that helps. If I think of anything else, I will let you know.
    Or, you can PM me again, if you wish.

  18. justkev

    justkev Hi :) Staff Member


    as someone who has bred/kept/raised bearded dragons since the early 90's... i can tell you based on experience.. that you can feed mealworms without a problem.

    should they be a staple diet? NO.
    can you mix them with other insects? Of course.

    Feed a variety.. just like we would eat.

    For me.. i have never seen a dragon impacted on mealworms.. but i also know how to take care of them. so take that for what its worth.

    Petco and most other large pet chains.. buy their animals from businesses that specialize in breeding reptiles. they are located in the US and they KNOW what they are doing... animals dont breed if you dont know what you are doing.

    as for leos on sand.. keep a few hundred leos on sand.. then tell me what works..
  19. kephy

    kephy Moderator

    my problem with this is, they then sell beardies to people who DON'T know how to take care of them. New owners see Petco feeding them mealworms, think it's okay, but don't have the right husbandry. And the dragons DO get impacted from the mealworms. Not every time, but enough for it to be such a problem that we now tell people to just avoid mealworms altogether.

    If you want to feed mealworms to the dragons you are selling, and tell the owners that it's okay, then you NEED to educate the owners on GOOD husbandry. Petco and the like aren't known for doing that. More often than not they send the new owner home with a "full spectrum" light, stick on thermometer, and a bag of calcium sand and call it a day. This is setting up the owner for failure, not success. That's why I don't like the argument that impaction can be avoided with the right husbandry. Not everyone knows good husbandry. If someone has to ask me if it's okay to feed mealworms, I'm going to assume they don't have years of experience behind them that would provide the ideal husbandry conditions for safely digesting mealworms. This is why I have spent years on these forums educating owners on better care, undoing the stuff they learned at the pet stores, and yes I have met a good deal of people who've had their beardies become impacted on mealworms, loose substrate, etc.

    Beardies can still be fed a huge variety of foods and never eat a mealworm in their life. Mealworms are not a necessity. They aren't as nutritious as so many other insects, so why bother at all if you don't have to?

    Art, if your manager insists on making you feed them mealworms, then the next best thing you can do is educate each and every customer on good husbandry and the risks that go along with feeding mealworms if their husbandry isn't perfect.
  20. iboy11

    iboy11 Embryo

    Sorrey to but in


    Can u just take worms and criks from ur backyard to feed bds????
  21. Nessi

    Nessi Member

    Great question. It's not a good idea to do that because bugs in the back yard could have pesticides on them. Even a little bit can kill a beardie. The ones that are raised specifically as feeders are the only ones that are safe. You can raise your own, but you have to start with ones that you buy from someone who raises them as feeders.
    Beardy75 likes this.
  22. cornishrexrules

    cornishrexrules Embryo

    Hi there,

    I have recently (June) inherited a healthy though over weight female beaded dragon. She is 44cm and 628grams at her last health check end of July, done by a reptile specialist. He gave her a perfect but obese bill of health.

    My questions are as follows;

    1 She will not eat greens of almost any description. I might catch her eating some once a week if I am lucky. I put greens in daily as well as bearded dragon dry kibbles with lots of available water. In fact her whole set up is correct.

    2 As an adult dragon how many adult crickets should she be eating per week and how often. I have an idea on the silkies which she just loves but I struggle to get.

    I printed off the list of edible greens that I found on this web site and she is getting the correct ones.
  23. Crazy4Herps

    Crazy4Herps Hooked on Reptiles

    THANK YOU!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    This is exactly what I need!! Caresheets and books barely skim over the pros/cons of different feeders, which I think is one of the most important topics (next to heating/lighting) to know about when getting a Beardie.

    Again, thanks a million, this is sooooo helpful! I'm printing it out now to read, since my eyes are getting sore from reading so much on the computer.
  24. teiryklav

    teiryklav Member

    wew, i've never had a beardie but i want one (and when i get onto my new house i'll probably get one,,
    few question,
    should we remove the crickets "jumping leg" before feeding our beardie?

    and although beardies are semi-vegetarian, how much food should i offer every day? insect how much % of all food?

  25. MimC

    MimC Moderator

    You may want to start a new topic for this - you are likely to get better responses.

    Anyway - i have never removed the legs from the crickets for my long as you feed the appropriate sized crickets (no larger than the space between their eyes) then it should be fine. By the time they are eating the larger crickets with the big legs they should be well large enough to chomp them down.

    The amount they eat depends on the age...

    Babies should have a dish of veggies every day (although they are unlikely to eat it - it should be offered anyway) they should be fed insects three times a day, as many as they want to eat in a 10-20 minute period. When they are done, remove any uneaten insects from the tank.

    They should be fed several times a day until they are 5 to 6 months old, at which point they can be fed 1-2x a day. They will be more inclined to eat veggies at this point. Over the next few months they will gradually start eating more and more veggies, and will slowly slack off on the crickets.

    Adults should be offered veggies daily, and insects a couple times a week.

    Thats just a general guideline - every beardie is different. As a rule of thumb - they start by eating 90% insects and 10% the time they are full grown they eat more like 70-80% veggies, 20-30% insects
    Beardy75 likes this.

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