One of the biggest factors in raising a healthy terrapin is the terrapin’s diet. Beyond having a clean cage and an excellent source of UV light, a terrapin’s diet is the most important thing. Terrapins are classified as omnivores, which mean they eat other animals as well as plants. In reality a terrapin’s diet can include everything from fish to cheese cubes or even spinach. Some people choose to feed only fresh products, while others prefer a man-made terrapin food, which contains vitamins and supplements.
As a pet owner, it is really up to you what you prefer to include in your terrapin’s diet. Experts rarely agree on which food type is best for your terrapin’s diet. However, with any living animal, if you can provide fresh objects, they are usually eaten quicker and enjoyed more. One issue to consider is that if you do not provide an adequate or healthy diet, your terrapin may begin eating items like small rocks or tree bark pieces.
The amount of food you should include in your terrapin’s diet will depend on the age of the reptile and the size. Large adult terrapins can often be fed every few days in large amounts. However, baby terrapins should be provided with a regular daily diet. Some small terrapins may require more than one feeding a day, as well.
When developing you terrapin’s diet, it can be hard to know how much food to provide. Generally, you should start with more food than you think the reptile can eat. Keep a chart of how much food is left thirty minutes after the feeding. If there is a lot of food left behind after thirty minutes, it should be removed. If you notice a pattern of the food being left behind or disappearing too quickly, you should adjust your terrapin’s diet plan to include more or less food.
If it is at all possible, you might consider feeding your terrapin in a second tank or even a bucket. If you use this option, you will save yourself a few hours of cleaning every month. Make sure the water you use in any feeding tank is warm just like the normal habitat.
If you are providing fresh meat and vegetables, you should cut them in ½ inch to 1 inch squares or slices. This will help your terrapin easily get the food in its mouth without choking. If you provide larger pieces, the terrapin will have to tear the meat apart with its mouth and this can difficult at times.
You may also choose to provide your terrapin with additional vitamins and minerals by using a supplement if you feel it is needed. These powders should be placed in the center of a food rather than coating the outside. In most cases, if you place it on the outside, it can get wet and wash away or your terrapin may refuse to eat the food. With a little trial and error, you should have no problem creating an effective diet for your new terrapin.