Satisfying Your Pet Reptile’s Needs with Live Foods by Post
Many species of reptiles are insectivorous. When they are in the wild, they have easy access to a diverse prey thereby ensuring a balanced diet. Captive reptiles have the same requirement. Pet owners should make it a point to simulate their natural diet by employing a variety of live foods by post. This will stimulate their diet and keep them healthy.
A variety of insect species can make up for the balanced diet the reptiles need. These come in different sizes depending on the size of the reptile. The rule of thumb is: the bigger the reptile, the bigger its prey.
Mealworms are perfect for any kind of reptile. As live foods by post, however, they do not provide complete nutrients for your pet as they lack in calcium that is important to promote growth. Mealworms’ exoskeletons are also hard that small reptiles may find it difficult to digest.
They are best fed to large lizards as substitute to their regular diets. They are quite useful in making lizards and turtles tame. Lizards and turtles like them a lot so you can feed them from the hand as soon as your pet get used to eating them. For starters, you may want to use a ceramic dish when feeding.
Crickets are more versatile compared to other live foods because they are available in various sizes and subspecies. In fact, most professional reptile breeders feed with crickets.
Species that are often used as live foods include the following:
1. House crickets
2. Banded crickets
3. Black crickets
4. Brown house crickets
The most commonly used among these are brown house crickets. They grow up to 25 mm long. They are perfect for captive reptiles because they are not too aggressive. They are also easy to transport during cold weather.
For small reptiles, banded crickets are often used, as they are relatively smaller. They usually grow as big as 20 mm. They are a bit more aggressive compared to brown house crickets but they are easy to store and less costly. They, however, do not last long when transporting during cold weather.
On the other hand, black crickets are larger than banded and brown house crickets. They grow as big as 30 mm. They are easy to store and to transport in cold weather but just like banded crickets, they are also quite aggressive.
Crickets are perfect for any kind of reptile. They are a bit more expensive compared to other live foods by post but they are perfect for the larger lizards. To cut on cost, it is best if you could order them in bulk to feed your pet for at least two weeks.
Next to crickets, locusts are the best live food to use for large reptiles. Commonly fed are the matured ones but young locusts, also known as hoppers, are also fed occasionally to diversify your pet’s diet.
Locusts are advantageous as they are not as aggressive as crickets and other live foods by post. They are best fed to reptiles that are slow eaters and those that may find it difficult to catch prey. Locusts have the tendency to climb up the cage making them more suitable to arborial reptiles such as chameleons.
Here is a link to our recommended supplier of Live Foods by Post in the UK.