Baby box turtles are adorable pets. They can be tamed easily with the right care and treatment. But what do baby box turtles eat? And what is the best food to feed them for them to grow healthy?
In this article, we will talk about what baby box turtle’s need as far as diet goes, what they should not have in their diet, what would be a good idea to give them at home or buy from a store near you – all of it!
- What Do Baby Box Turtles Eat?
- What Do Baby Box Turtles Eat In The Wild?
- What Do Baby Box Turtles Eat In The Home Aquarium?
- What Do Baby Box Turtles Eat In The Ocean?
- What Do Baby Box Turtles Drink?
- What NOT To Feed Baby Box Turtles?
- How Do Baby Box Turtles Eat?
- How To Correctly Feed Baby Box Turtles?
- How Often Do Baby Box Turtles Eat and How Much To Feed Them?
- How To Tell If Your Baby Box Turtle Is Healthy Or Not?
What Do Baby Box Turtles Eat?
You found a baby box turtle from the wild and now you are curious to know what to feed them and what not to feed?
First of all, you should also know that what do they eat in the wild as well as what to feed them at home. This article will help you to do so.
They are omnivores, which means they will feed on both plants and animals.
In general, they mostly eat what is available to them such as snails, slugs, worms, and insects. They also feed on what is found in the ocean such as crabs, worms, and even small fish.
The best thing you can do for them at home is to provide some leafy vegetables or plants like lettuce leaves, sliced squash, and pumpkin pieces which they will enjoy munching on.
You should not give them too many items that contain the following: sugar, salt, oil, and butter.
It is best to feed them what they eat in their natural habitat as much as you can.
Let me list down the foody things your child box turtles will love to eat.
The things you can feed your infant box turtles are:
Vegetables you can feed baby box turtles:
Fruits you can feed your young box turtles:
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Flowers to feed tiny baby box turtles:
Plants tiny box turtles love to eat:
The things you should avoid feeding your baby box turtles are:
Candy, cookies, and most importantly sugar. Even salt is not good for them in excess as it can lead to tears on the shell which will make their skin dry out. Also, avoid oily products like butter.
What Do Baby Box Turtles Eat In The Wild?
In the wild, baby box turtles feed on what they find in the ocean. They are omnivores, which means that box turtles eat will vary depending on where they live and what is available to them.
Their diet mainly consists of invertebrates such as jellyfish and crustaceans like hermit crabs, snails, or shrimp. They also feed on small vertebrates like fish and frogs.
Here is the list of things newborn box turtles eat in the wild:
What Do Baby Box Turtles Eat In The Home Aquarium?
There are some items that you can feed to them as food. You should never give your pet what it would find naturally and what is common for them to eat in their natural habitat.
The best thing about what they will be eating, if this is what you do decide on choosing to feed them what are home and semi-paste items, is that you can also give it some vegetables.
Here is some food you can feed your little box turtle at the aquarium:
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They also love some of what you would eat such as corn, peas, breadcrumbs, and pasta. So if you have any leftovers from what you made for dinner why not give them to your pet.
What Do Baby Box Turtles Eat In The Ocean?
Baby box turtles are what is referred to as semiaquatic turtles and live at least part of their lives in water but they still like to come up for air now and then.
They can be found in a variety of geographical locations such as the eastern coast, central littoral, and western Littoral.
The turtle’s diet consists mainly of various aquatic organisms like crustaceans, snails, shrimp, and crabs that they feed on while swimming about their environment.
They also consume worms, insects, and various types of plants.
In the ocean, they feed on what they can find in the water like shrimp or crabs that are found near a shoreline as well as snails or worms that live at great depths.
Here is the list of food tiny box turtles may find in the ocean to eat:
What Do Baby Box Turtles Drink?
Once a box turtle’s shell has fully developed, it will only drink water from what is around them.
When they are still young and have not finished developing their shells yet, they need to be offered liquids as well but that can include what we find in our kitchen like milk or some diluted fruit juice.
The different types of turtles may also have what is called a specialized diet like the red-eared slider that eats amphibian eggs and larvae, insects, small fish, or tadpoles.
The water intake of box turtles will depend on what they are eating to stay hydrated but as a general rule, most have between 25% – 30% of their body weight in liquid every day.
Note: Now we know what are the things we need to feed baby box turtles in the home aquarium. What they eat in the wild and the ocean.
Now let’s move forward and discuss what NOT to feed them and what are dangerous food must not be fed to baby box turtles.
Here is a video of a baby box turtle drinking water from a syringe.
What NOT To Feed Baby Box Turtles?
Do not feed baby box turtles what we find in our kitchen like milk or some diluted fruit juice.
Do not feed them small fish, tadpoles, insects, and amphibian eggs because they may contain parasites that can harm the turtle’s health.
Avoid feeding baby box turtles with what is found in a typical dog food bag like what is found in a typical dog food bag because it may contain preservatives, artificial colors, or flavors that are not good for baby box turtles.
Do not feed the plants that can cause intestinal obstruction and lead to death.
Do not feed with what is found in the kitchen such as canned products or what you can buy on grocery store shelves like processed foods or food items that are rich in preservatives, artificial colors, or flavors that may be harmful to baby box turtles.
Now, we know that what to feed and what not to feed box turtles. Let us now discuss, how do baby box turtles eat their foods.
How Do Baby Box Turtles Eat?
Baby box turtles will put what is in their mouth into what they use to chew with and they swallow what is chewed.
They have a very short tongue that can barely be seen sticking out of the end of their mouth when eating.
They have what is called a long esophagus which helps them to swallow what they eat.
Baby box turtles will chew on what they can find in the wild, feed on fruits and vegetables naturally grown around us at home, or if they are lucky enough to be living with us as pets then we can offer what we get from the grocery store.
Baby box turtles will chew what they find in their natural habitat, what is naturally grown at home, or what we get from the supermarket, and swallow what has been chewed.
Here is a cute video of baby box turtles eating frenzy, have a look.
How To Correctly Feed Baby Box Turtles?
Here in this section, we will be discussing the right way to feed food to your baby box turtles.
First of all, observe how much food your baby box turtle has eaten and make a note of it for future reference.
Make sure that what we feed them does not contain preservatives, artificial colors, flavors that are not good for the health of baby box turtles.
Give what they want to eat in small portions and what is what they will ask you for next time if possible.
Offer what they like to eat, which are fruits and vegetables or what we get from our fridge or supermarket.
Observe how much food your turtle has eaten and make a note of what he or she wanted next time.
Be sure to give them what is natural, what they ask for, in small portions (if possible) without preservatives so as not to harm their health.
Read my friend’s post: How to take care of baby box turtles!
How Often Do Baby Box Turtles Eat and How Much To Feed Them?
Baby box turtles will eat what they want as long as what is given to them does not contain preservatives, artificial colors, or flavors that are bad for their health.
Wait until your turtle has finished eating before feeding him or her again and make sure what you feed them next contains no colorings of any kind so it doesn’t harm what is in their stomach.
Feed baby box turtles every day but only give them a small portion of what they like so what was eaten will not be harmed by what you feed them next.
Make sure what is given to the next does not contain any colorings or artificial flavors that are not good for their health.
How To Tell If Your Baby Box Turtle Is Healthy Or Not?
There are many factors that can help you to identify your young box turtle’s health.
The most common way to check for a healthy turtle is by looking at what they eat.
If the box turtle has not eaten in 24 hours, it may be due to illness or stress. If you notice your hatchling spends more time than usual hiding during feeding times and does not have an interest in food when provided with a dish of fresh greens or vegetables, it is possible that they have a respiratory infection.
If the box turtle’s shell does not appear to be hard or pliable and there are shallow scratches on the surface, this could indicate dehydration.
If your baby box turtle has abnormal growth in its abdomen region for more than two weeks, what do baby box turtles eat to help them recover?
If the turtle has excessive watery diarrhea, what do baby box turtles drink in their natural habitat is not recommended for use.
Excessive salivation or drooling can be a sign of a respiratory infection and that means your baby box turtle may require veterinary care.
It’s important to feed your baby box turtles a varied diet of vegetables, fruit, and flowers. But what about when they’re just babies? Baby box turtles eat in the aquarium!
In order for them to grow up big and strong with healthy shells, it is essential that you supplement their diet with vitamins like calcium or vitamin D3 by feeding them live plants from an aquarium store or garden center.
You can also offer food supplements such as dried fruits (raisins) mixed with honey water to help increase their lifespans if necessary.
Remember that while these tips are helpful for all kinds of turtles, they are especially important for those who were rescued after being abandoned on roadsides because they may not have grown up eating nutritious foods.
What do you feed your baby box turtles? Let us know in the comment section.