Are looking for the best food for your dragon? If you want the best for your pet? Are super worms good for
Bearded dragons? Are super worms the Best Insects to Feed Your Bearded Dragon? And there are quite a lot
Of options available. Can bearded dragons eat supper worms or earthworms? Can baby bearded dragons eat insects? Let’s find out everything you need to know about bearded dragons.
There are a lot of insects like wax worms, butter worms, earthworms, meal worms…but the one worm in particular that bearded dragons tend to go really crazy for is super worms.
Insects are widely eaten around the globe. About 1,000 species appear on dinner plates of people in Africa, Asia, and Latin America. Apart from traditional diets, cricket pasta & meal worm smoothies have become the latest food trend. Edible insects are promoted as a sustainable alternative to regular protein sources.
Super worms are larvae of species of darkling beetle called Zoo phobias Mario. They are also called King Worms, Mario Worms, or Zoo phobias and are commonly used as food in the reptile pet industry. They should not be confused with giant mealworms which are tenebrous monitor larvae.
Super worm’s larvae resemble 50 to 60 mm long mealworms. However, the ends of their bodies are very dark. They have 6 small legs. Insects are accepted by turtles, lizards, salamanders, frogs, birds, etc. The nutritional value of super worms is similar to those of mealworms.
Super worms are an excellent source of calcium, fat, and fiber for bearded dragons. They can be fed to bearded dragons once or twice a week, depending on the size of your beard. Super worms are also easy to breed at home if you want to save money.
Super worms as a feed of breaded dragon
Super worms are a good treat for adult bearded dragons and juveniles but should not be part of their staple diet because of their high-fat content. These are tasty worms that most bearded dragons love. They are also affordable, widely available, and easy to care for if you want to start breeding them. However, they can bite so make sure you choose smaller ones to feed your dragon and clear them out after feeding. Due to the fat content, phosphorus, exoskeleton, and aggressive nature of super worms, they aren’t suitable as a staple insect for bearded dragons.
Nutritional information for super worms:
- Moisture: 57.9%
- Protein: 19.7%
- Fat: 17.7%
- Ash: 1.0%
- Fiber: 2.7%
- Calcium: 177 mg/kg
- Phosphorus: 2370 mg/kg
Are Super worms good For Bearded Dragons?
Yes, bearded dragons can eat supper worms. They are safe for healthy adult dragons, and as a plus, they tend to be one of the beardies’ favorite treats. However, they aren’t considered a great staple insect, and baby bearded dragons should never eat supper worms, they pose a serious risk of gut impaction.
How Many Super worms To Feed A Bearded Dragon?
It is safe to feed super worms to your adult bearded dragon 2-3 times a week as a treat, with only 1-2 worms per feeding. Super worms are an excellent source of protein, but they are also high in fat. To avoid the risk of choking, do not give super worms to the baby or juvenile bearded dragons.
They’re way too high in fat to be considered a staple insect in your pet’s diet. Super worms are larger than most other insects. For this reason, you may find it difficult to feed them to younger bearded dragons. Remember, you should only feed the reptiles’ food smaller than the space between their eyes.
This is difficult for baby bearded dragons, as super worms are never quite small enough. If you get super worms small enough, they may be fed to juvenile bearded dragons from ages 5-15 months. During this high protein stage, the beard can eat 3-7 supper worms per day throughout 1-3 meals. The higher fat is more OK because the juvenile is still in the fast-growing stage.
As they reach adulthood, the super worms should be scaled back to treat status. Adult bearded dragons need much more greens in their diet, but the juvenile can have more. We recommend 70% protein/30% greens for babies and juveniles, and the opposite for adult bearded dragons. Adult bearded dragons should also be only fed once per day.
For adults, we recommend a 3-Day Cycle.
Day 1 Greens
Day 2 Protein/Insects
Day 3 No food
Use super worms on insect days but stick with 1 or 2.
In my experience, it’s best to put them in the middle or end of the feeding, or your pet may then refuse to eat the other healthier insects. You want them to eat healthier insects like crickets, horn worms, or Dubai roaches.
As we said before, you may want to use one super worm as a trick to get your bearded dragon into eating some greens.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Red Wiggler Worms?
Red Worms are also known as the red worm, branding worm, pans fish worm, trout worm, tiger worm, red wiggler worm, and red Californian earth worm. It feeds on decaying organic material rotting vegetation, compost, and manure. They live above the soil’s surface and have groups of bristles on each segment that move in and out to grip nearby surfaces as the worms stretch and contract their muscles to push themselves forward or backward.
Most dragons really like them, and they are considered a good feeder. Bearded dragons can eat earthworms, nightcrawlers, and red worms sparingly. However, bearded dragons should not eat baited worms or earthworms and red worms collected from your garden, as they may carry parasites. Store-bought earthworms, nightcrawlers, and red worms are safe for bearded dragons. These thick “worms” are actually caterpillars, and they are captive-raised, so they are completely safe for a bearded dragon to eat. They contain 6.2% protein and 5% fat.
Are All Earthworms Bad For Bearded Dragons?
Breaded dragons eat insects such as crickets, cockroaches, and different types of worms. Yes, earthworms are safe food options and have a nutritional composition that dragons can use. Bearded dragons can eat earthworms, so long as they are provided in moderation and have been sourced from a reputable retailer. Earthworms from outside may be carrying parasites or chemicals that could cause harm and therefore should be avoided. Not all bearded dragons appear to like earthworms and may leave them if offered.
Bearded dragons live on a diet that primarily consists of insects and plants. They require a wide variety of these to thrive, but also to keep boredom at bay. It’s hugely important as an owner to attempt to mimic the diet of wild bearded dragons. Of course, this is going to be a challenge considering that they are native to the semi-arid interiors of eastern Australia. However, many owners are able to successfully replicate the diet; and do so with the inclusion of what they have available. Generally, a natural diet is best, ensuring that a captive bearded dragon meets their nutritional needs and requirements. Earthworms are widely and readily available, so it would be great if your bearded dragon could consume them.
What Other Worms Can I feed My Bearded Dragons?
When it comes to your dragon’s health and wellbeing there are many things to consider, the different nutritional elements that make up the various options each play a key role in helping your dragon thrive.
As well as the vitamins and minerals that are very important, you also have to consider other factors such as calcium and protein and how much of each goes to make up the various feeders on offer.
Even though you want to try and get your dragon’s diet similar as it is as they would have in the wild, you do need to consider that they are no longer in the wild they are captive pets, as such their environment is not the same, you should never give your dragon wild-caught bugs as they can carry parasites and disease.
See below for more detailed information on insects for your pet bearded dragon.
Meal worms are one of the most popular feeder insects for many animals, including birdies, poultry, fish, birds, amphibians, and even some mammals.
They are more nutritious, have a higher fat content, and it will be no surprise that they’ll instantly become your bearded dragon’s favorite. But don’t feed her too many of them to prevent rapid weight gain. The only exception here is if your pet is underweight.
You should feed them at least 15 to 18 meal worms per week. Younger bearded dragons can eat more meal worms.
But baby bearded dragons may have trouble ingesting the chitin (the outer shell of meal worms). Wait until they’re older before feeding them these worms.
Nutritional information for Mealworms:
- Moisture: 61.9%
- Protein: 18.7%
- Fat: 13.4%
- Ash: 0.9%
- Fiber: 2.5%
- Calcium: 169 mg/kg
- Phosphorus: 2950 mg/kg
Wax worms are small white-colored worms that are an excellent occasional treat insect to offer bearded dragons. These worms should not be a staple food item, because they tend to be high in fat content. Feed an adult bearded dragon no more than five to six wax worms per day. It is perfectly safe to feed bearded dragons wax worms, and many owners do offer them from time to time. This appears to be key. They should only be fed in moderation.
Being the caterpillar larvae of wax moths, they only average between 2.5 cm/1” in total length. They have soft bodies and are relatively small. This makes them suitable for most bearded dragons – irrespective of whether they are a baby or an adult. Before we can understand why wax worms should only be fed in moderation.
We must take a closer look at their nutritional profile:
Nutritional information for Wax worms:
- Moisture: 58.5%
- Protein: 14.1%
- Fat: 24.9%
- Ash: 0.6%
- Fiber: 3.4%
- Calcium: 243 mg/kg
- Phosphorus: 1650 mg/kg
Butterworth is another very small worm (about one inch in length) that offers good amounts of protein and high levels of calcium. This small, nutritious worm is an excellent feeder insect to offer as a supplement to other feeders. Butter worms are the larva of the Chilean moth. They can grow up to 1-1.5 inches in length and are soft and rather plump. They are typically a brighter yellow or yellowish-red color and are fairly active as far as worms go. Their coloring and movement make them appetizer feeders for your bearded dragon.
Store butter worms in your fridge where they can last quite a long time. Never use them as feeders if you see mold growing in their container, but otherwise, if they are alive, feed away. Butter worms are best used for a feeder when you have a picky bearded dragon. Some birdies are very particular about their protein source, and the lively movement, bright color, and fruity smell of butter worms appeal to even the most discerning bearded dragon.
Nutritional information for Butterworts:
- Moisture: 60.2%
- Protein: 15.5%
- Fat: 29.4%
- Ash: 0.8%
- Fiber: 1.4%
- Calcium: 125 mg/kg
- Phosphorus: 2250 mg/kg
Silkworms are the larval, or caterpillar stage, of the Bombay More moth. It originates from China and is an important insect for humans because it produces silk, which is used to form the cocoon of the silkworm when it transforms into a moth. The cocoon is made up of one long silk thread, which varies in length from 300 to 900 meters. Silkworm pupae are considered a delicacy in some areas of Asia. They’re also an excellent form of Bearded Dragon insect food – which is of course why we’re interested in them here. Bearded dragons most certainly can eat Silkworms. They have a good moisture content and good calcium and protein content too. They’re magnificent for baby bearded dragons because they’re small enough to be easily digestible. Furthermore, they’re also good for adults, but being that bit smaller they can be quite expensive for adults as they need quite a lot of them to be satisfied.
Silkworms are only bred in captivity, they no longer exist in the wild. They’re bred purely for their silk-creating capability or as feeder insects for various other creatures, including bearded dragons. They only eat Mulberry leaves, so this can make keeping them for long periods quite awkward – unless you can get your hands on some Mulberry leaves. Of course, if you cannot find Mulberry leaves to feed your silkworms on, they will die eventually. Dead silkworms are of no benefit to the bearded dragons because they begin to lose all their nutrients when they’re dead. And bearded dragons generally don’t eat dead insects willingly anyway.
Mulberry trees and bushes can be grown in temperate environments such as the UK though, and having a few of these in the garden could be enough to allow you to feed silkworms for a few weeks if you wanted to keep them alive longer
Nutritional information for silkworms:
- Moisture: 82.7%
- Protein: 9.3%
- Fat: 1.1%
- Ash: 1.1%
- Fiber: 1.1 %
- Calcium: 177 mg/kg
- Phosphorus: 2370 mg/kg
Hornworms are not a staple for bearded dragons, especially not when they are adults. However, you can feed bearded dragons hornworms every two or three days. Feeding the bearded dragon too many hornworms will lead them to have an imbalanced diet. Hornworms are great feeder insects for virtually any reptiles, amphibians, and invertebrates, including bearded dragons. You will receive these hornworms at a smaller size, which is great for feeding your bearded dragon if it is still a juvenile.
Hornworms tend to grow quickly, which makes them a good feeder for larger bearded dragons as well. Whatever the size of your beardy, you have to use the hornworms before they get too hard for your lizard to handle. Most often, your bearded dragon wants its worms alive, so keep this in mind.
- To give your bearded dragon horn worms, simply add them into their usual diet. Dangle the worm in front of your pet and let him have at it. Most pets love the insect and will snatch it as soon as it is offered. Dead worms aren’t always recognized as food, so live horn worms are the way to go.
- A huge benefit of using these worms in your bearded dragon’s diet is because they are ideal for animals that live in more arid environments. These worms are high in moisture levels, making them a great extra source of water. Of course, this high moisture content is a great way to hydrate your dragon.
- Horn worms have a lower percentage of protein content than many other insects, but they offer other nutritional benefits as well. Mix up your beard’s menu to make sure you are offering a well-rounded diet.
Nutritional information for Hornworms:
- Moisture: 85%
- Protein: 9%
- Fat: 3.07%
- Ash: n/a
- Fiber: n/a
- Calcium: 464 mg/kg
- Phosphorus: 1394 mg/kg
Insects to Include in Birdies Diets
There are some reasons that may get you to rethink using crickets as live feeders for your bearded dragon, but these are certainly not dealbreakers. For your bearded dragon, crickets are not as nutritionally dense as Dubai roaches and are also smaller. This means that your dragon will have to eat more crickets to get the equivalent nutritional value of one Dubai roach. This really isn’t a problem unless you have an extremely picky bearded dragon or one that has lost its appetite for some reason. Crickets, like any other live feeder insects, can harbor parasites that can affect your bearded dragon. This is why it’s very important to get your crickets from a very reputable source. Also, never feed your dragon any insect you catch from the wild for the same reason.
Crickets can also attack smaller bearded dragons if left in the enclosure for too long, and this can stress your bearded dragon out. Make sure you clear out all uneaten food from your dragon’s tank after feeding sessions. Crickets can be quite noisy and can develop a foul odor. They can also quickly escape and jump away. The noise can also affect reptiles, so make sure your cricket bin is far from your pet’s enclosure. Feed your baby bearded dragon as many crickets as it will eat in a span of 5-10 minutes. With the recommended feeding frequency of 5 times a day, this roughly translates to almost 60-80 crickets per day.
Nutritional information for crickets:
Calcium: 275 mg/kg
Phosphorus: 2520 mg/kg
Feeder roaches for bearded dragons are quickly becoming the status quo. There are many reasons why switching to a roach diet may be the perfect solution for you.
- Dubai’s roaches cannot bite or fight back, like crickets can, so your precious pet will be safe, even without your supervision. Their legs are surprisingly powerful when gripping your finger, but not strong enough to harm even the smallest of your reptiles.
- These feeder insects cannot jump or climb smooth surfaces, and while they have wings, they cannot fly. So, assuming you keep your enclosure properly secured and sealed, no escape is possible. Can Dubai roaches infest your house? No, so even if your feeders escape into the night, you will not need to worry about waking up to a house full of roaches.
- Adult Dubai roaches are quite large, so instead of worrying about wrangling a handful of crickets, you can just drop in a couple of large roaches for easy bearded dragon food.
- They can survive without any special care. While they will not breed, they can live at room temperature and average humidity, so unless you live in a dry or cold area, you can easily keep them. A great strategy would be to buy a month supply of feeder roaches, put them in a basic Dubai roach enclosure, and simply order more after you’ve run out. This way you do not need to provide breeding conditions nor wait for them to do the deed.
- Last but not least, Dubai roaches are energy packed cockroaches for bearded dragons. They are 23.4% protein vs the 15.4% protein of crickets. Additionally, they are much meatier than the fibrous exoskeletons of crickets. More protein for your pets means healthier bodies and higher energy, so they will thrive during a long, happy life. You can even boost the naturally occurring nutritional values through a method called gut loading
Nutritional content of Dubia Roaches:
- Extra small Dubia Roaches:
- Moisture: 71.5%
- Protein: 21.4%
- Fat: 3.1%
- Ash: 1.3%
- Fiber: 2.6%
- Calcium: 700 mg/kg
- Phosphorus: 2600 mg/kg
Super worms are a good treat for adult bearded dragons and juveniles but should not be part of their staple diet because of their high-fat content. These are tasty worms that most bearded dragons love. They are also affordable, widely available, and easy to care for if you want to start breeding them. They should be used as a treat and eaten only in smaller amounts. Juvenile bearded dragons can eat 3-7 per day on occasion. Adults should stick to 1-2, twice per week only. Baby bearded dragons could eat them if you found one small enough to feed them to. The larger insects are usually too big for the smaller bearded dragons. However, they can bite so make sure you choose smaller ones to feed your dragon and clear them out after feeding.
To read about: