Irrespective of the type of pet, everyone feels the same emotional excitement when he brings the pet home, especially first time owners. However, this excitement lasts for a few hours, and it suddenly subsides when you realize that your new friend is hungry and you don’t know what to feed, how to feed, and how much to feed. As far as bearded dragons are concerned, they belong to an exotic environment (arid Australian deserts), so their care, maintenance and feeding requirements are a bit different from other pets (like dogs, cats, etc.).
This article is for you if you are also a first-time beardie owner, wondering and looking to find the answers to questions like “How Much Should I Feed My Bearded Dragon Daily, “what I should feed my bearded dragons” “How Much Should I Feed My Bearded Dragon Daily” etc. We have covered every aspect related to the bearded dragon’s diet, including the change in the feeding requirements and schedule, with the age of beardies.
How Much/Often Should I Feed My Bearded Dragon Daily
Table below shows feeding requirements and the number of daily meals for different age groups of bearded dragons.
|Bearded Dragon’s Age (In Months)||Quantity & Types of Food||Number of Daily Meals|
|Up to 3 months||20% veggies + 80% insects||5|
|3-6 months||30% veggies + 70% insects||3|
|6-12 months||50% veggies + 50% insects||3|
|12-18 months||50% veggies + 50% insects||1|
|Adult (18+ months)||70% veggies + 30% insects||Rotation|
1st day vegetable salad,
2nd day insect,
3rd day nothing
Feeding Requirements Of Baby Bearded Dragons
Just like human babies, baby beardies need a more nutritious diet for optimum growth, increase in length, build muscles and develop fat reserves. For this, they need more protein; as mentioned in the table, 80% of baby beardie’s meal must consist of insects. Since baby beardies are small, they can’t eat too much at a time, so they need to eat more often daily to meet the requirements of their rapid metabolism and growth. So you must feed 70 to 80 insects to your baby beardie divided into five meals daily. At this point, most first time owners ignore 20% vegetable portion. Yes, feeding small amounts of vegetables/greens and fruits is equally crucial to balance the diet for beardie. Don’t forget to cut the veggies into small pieces that a baby beardie can eat easily and don’t get choked.
Feeding Requirements Of Juvenile Bearded Dragons
When baby bearded dragons enter fourth month of their life, they are considered juvenile, and their feeding requirements are a bit different from baby beardies. The juvenile stage is generally divided into three phases 3-6 months, 6-12 months and 12-18 months. The recommended insect to vegetable ratio for the first phase is 70:30 and 50:50 for the 2nd and 3rd phases, and 30-80 insects should be fed daily, equally divided into 3-4 meals.
During juvenile phases, beardies should be fed 3-4 times daily; however, after 12 months of age, you can reduce the feeding frequency to once daily.
Feeding Requirements Of Adult Bearded Dragons
Eighteen months old bearded dragon is considered as mature or adult. You may be surprised to see the insect to vegetable ratio in the table is 30:70 (inverse of what is recommended for baby beardies). But it’s true. Because at this stage and for the rest of their life, beardies do not grow rapidly, so they need a little protein (to maintain their muscles). In addition, adult bearded dragons are fed on a rotation basis, which means you should feed them insects on day 1, vegetables on day 2, and nothing on day three and repeat the cycle.
Since the major portion of an adult bearded dragon’s diet consists of vegetables,it’s crucial to feed vegetables to baby and juvenile beardies; otherwise, bearded dragons will be addicted to insects, and it will be difficult to develop a liking for plants in adult beardies.
What Do Bearded Dragons Can & Can’t Eat
Until now, we have discussed how much and how often we should feed our bearded dragons. However, another crucial aspect related to this topic is “what should we feed our bearded dragons.”
Related article Do bearded dragons prefer live food?
We have discussed that bearded dragons need insects and vegetables in a particular ratio, meaning bearded dragons are omnivores. In the wild, beardies eat various vegetables, flowers, greens, insects, and fruits (sometimes small rodents or lizards also). So in captivity, bearded dragons need variety in their feed; they get bored and may refuse to eat if you feed them the same diet daily. Therefore it’s crucial for every beardie owner to know what insects, vegetables, and fruits are safe for beardies and what insects, vegetables, and fruits should be avoided.
Continue reading to learn what delectable options are available to your bearded friend.
What Insects You Can Feed To Your Bearded Dragon
|Staple Insects||Dubai Roaches, Crickets, Horn Worms Or Goliath Worms|
|Occassion Insects||Butter Worms, Earthworms (rinsed), Mealworms, Wax Worms, Silkworms, Super Worms, Phoenix Worms|
|Not To Feed Insects||Boxelder Bugs, Fireflies (lightning bugs), Wild-caught Insects|
What Plant/Vegetables You Can Feed To Your Bearded Dragon
|Staple Veggies & Greens||Dandelion Greens, Escarole, Endive, Collards, Mustard Greens, Acorn Squash, Parsnips, Snap Peas, Sweet Potato, Yellow Squash, Turnip Greens, Green Beans, Butternut Squash, Okra|
|Occasional Veggies & Greens||Carrot Tops, Cilantro, Kale, Basil, Bok Choy, Celery Leaves, Kohlrabi Leaves, Swiss Chard, Beets, Bell Peppers, Celery Stalks, Broccoli, Parsley, Zucchini, Green Peas, Cauliflower, Asparagus, Carrots, Pumpkin|
|Not To Feed Veggies & Greens||Avocados, Tomatoes, Rhubarb|
What Fruits You Can Feed To Your Bearded Dragon
|Staple Fruits||Mango, Prickly Pear, Papaya|
|Occasional Fruits||Blueberries, Cantaloupe, Kiwi, Honeydew Melon, Pears, Strawberries, Raspberries, Banana, Apples, Blackberries, Grapes, Peaches, Watermelon|
Here I would like you to understand what the terms in the first column mean.
- Staple Food: The food item (insects, veggies, or fruits) that you can feed to your beardie regularly.
- Occasional Food: The food item (insects, veggies, or fruits) that you can feed once or twice weekly.
- Not To Feed: The food item (insects, veggies, or fruits) that can be harmful to your beardie, so should not be fed at all.
The Last Lines:
We hope you enjoyed reading the article and got all you wanted regarding the bearded dragon’s feeding. Knowing the right food and how much you should feed them will undoubtedly help you to keep your bearded friend healthy and happy.