Bearded Dragons are found in the southeastern arid, semi-arid parts of Australia. They often find it hard to get a variety of foods because of scarcity. That makes them pretty easy to handle pets when it comes to feeding.
Bearded Dragons are omnivorous, meaning they can easily consume both plant and animal-based foods. Because of their habitat, they can accept a wide variety of foods, including insects, and provide you with ample options for feeding.
So, as bearded dragon owners, you should focus on feeding your bearded dragon food from a variety of sources as per their age. It is highly important for you to keep changing a bearded dragon’s diet following its development stages, i.e., Baby>Juvenile>Adult.
And If you are a First-time beardie Owner, you might find it difficult to adjust to their feeding routine, and it can look very complex at first glance.
But worry not, we have covered everything related to bearded dragons’ diet and how you can easily master their nutrition. That’s not all. You will also get a complete chart explaining what your pet bearded dragons need at a certain stage and what should be fed to keep them healthy.
What Do Bearded Dragons Eat?
Pet Bearded Dragons that are kept in captivity as a pet should eat a variety of food as per their age and nutrition requirements. They are not very picky and can eat from live food to vegetables to fruits and small vertebrates.
- In live food, you can feed them, Crickets, Ants, Beetles, and some roaches.
- In vegetables, they can eat, Spinach, Sweet Potato, and a few peppers
- In Fruits, you can feed them, Grapes, Apples, Bananas, Watermelon, Berries, and melons.
- And Lastly, In Green, they should be fed, Kale, Parsley, and Dandelion Green.
If we talk in general, Beardies are not picky eaters. You can tame and train them on what they should eat. But before making a general diet chart, consider this.
Wild Bearded dragons live a very agile lifestyle, and they are mostly found in the arid parts of South Australia, where food can be scarce. So, they mostly rely on eating insects and crickets, but in later stages of their life as adults, they require a high amount of greens for metabolism, but they still stay fit because of their high agility.
On the other hand, bearded dragons living as a pet in captivity doesn’t enjoy the liberty of going in the wild and praying. That’s why you need to feed them a certain percentage of all food types, be it live, green, or fruits, for their health.
And in order to keep them strong and grow healthy, you can add calcium and some other supplements to their diet to strengthen their bones and make their neurological system sharp.
Similarly, as an exotic animal lover or first-time beardie owner, it is important for you to know how their development works and what should be fed to them in different stages of growth.
Baby and Juvenile bearded dragons grow at a very rapid pace, and they require a high amount of protein and vitamins to continue this growth. That’s why they should be fed more live food, including different worms and insects, to keep their protein intake fulfilled.
And as they grow, you can start adding more plants to their food so that their metabolism keeps working properly and they are healthy. More protein intake in the Adult stage can cause different issues like Overweight and dullness. So, refrain from feeding them too many insects at this life and add a variety of foods in their daily feeding.
All of these feeding routines and different foods can seem a bit overwhelming at first, but a little experience and the use of a diet chart can solve this issue quickly once and for all, and you can prove to be a really good breaded dragon parent.
Diet of a Bearded Dragon
As we have explained earlier, bearded dragons are not very picky in food choices; that’s why their correct food list should include a mixture of Live Food, Vegetables, Greens, Fruits, and Small Vertebrates. You should always try and emulate what they will be eating in the wild with minor adjustments according to their routine to keep them healthy and fit.
They are wild reptiles, and here’s what a beardie’s normal diet should look like:
- Crickets, Insects, Earthworms, and Roaches
- Grapes, Kale, Dandelion Greens, and blueberries.
Also, keep in mind that the beardies are not used to living as a pet for long. People have developed a fondness for pet lizards or wild reptiles in the last two decades.
That’s why you have to keep their diet close to what they are used to eating naturally to keep them happy and fit.
Baby and Juvenile Bearded Dragon Feeding Routine
Baby and Juvenile at both stages Bearded Dragons grow very rapidly and their body needs a lot of protein for this growth. That’s why it is important for you to keep a different diet plan for Hatchlings, Juvenile, and Adult Bearded Dragons.
To keep their protein intake and growth intact, you should feed them in a 75 to 25 ratio of Live Food and Greens, Veggies, Fruits.
Their each-day diet should include 75% Insects or Crickets and 25% Plant Materials.
In addition, you can also use calcium, or other supplements sprinkled food 2 – 3 times a week for the young bearded dragons.
Here is a Diet Chart that you can follow to feed your Baby and Juvenile Bearded Dragons for their Healthy growth.
|Time||Fruits||Protein||Greens and Vegetables|
|Day 1||1x peach slices.||10x dubia roaches.||2x small collard green pieces, 1 small squash piece.|
|Day 1||1x blackberry.||8x crickets.||2x small kale leaves, 1x small pumpkin piece.|
|Day 1||1x blueberry.||10x dubia roaches.||2x small dandelion green pieces, 1x pepper slice bell.|
|Day 2||1x strawberry.||8x crickets.||2x small kale leaves, 1x small pumpkin piece.|
|Day 2||1x blueberry.||10x dubia roaches.||2x small dandelion green pieces, 1x pepper slice bell.|
|Day 2||1x peach slices.||8x crickets.||2x small collard green pieces, 1 small squash piece.|
For the first six months, it is very important for you to keep feeding a high amount of protein to your bearded dragon as they grow very quickly in these stages of life.
Also, make sure to slice and cut their diet into short pieces as they cannot digest bigger ones at the early stages of life and can suffer gastrointestinal infections.
Beardies usually reach adulthood after 18 months, and their growth completes by that time. So, you can continue to feed them an excessive amount of protein till that stage, and once they reach their full size, you can make a transition in their diet and add more plants as they become less active and don’t require very high protein.
Adult Bearded Dragon Feeding Routine
Adult beardies become less active and spend most of their time sleeping or just lying. You should feed them a 75 to 25 ratio in the reverse form at this stage.
Their diet should include 75% Plant material and 25% Live Food.
Plants are a highly important part of Adult Bearded Dragons’ food for metabolism. Also, you should add a lot more variety to their food now, so they stay interested and remain healthy.
In the adult stage, they only require feeding once a day, and here’s what their feeding chart should look like:
|Time||Fruits||Vegetables and Greens|
|Day 1||1x strawberry, 2x blueberries,||Dandelion greens, Bok choy, 2x baby carrots, 2x pumpkin pieces.||5x superworms, 5x Crickets.|
|Day 2||3x peach slices.||Kale, collard greens, 2x sweet potato pieces, 2x bell pepper slices.||5x superworms, 5X Dubia roaches|
|Day 3||4x blueberries, 1x strawberry.||Kale, collard greens, 2x sweet potato pieces, 2x bell pepper slices.||5x Crickets, 5x Roaches|
|Day 4||2x peach slices.||Dandelion greens, Bok choy, 2x baby carrots, 2x pumpkin pieces.||5x superworms, 3x earthworms.|
Adults like to eat, and they are fierce eaters. So, if you observe any change in their eating behavior, don’t let it pass by either changing their food routine or taking them to the nearest vet, as this can be a sign of an illness or an inside injury.
Apart from that, like babies, adult beardies are also not so good at digestion that’s why always try and serve them chopped vegetables and fruits so that they remain fit and eat healthily.
Bearded Dragons Feeding Preferences
Bearded Dragons are omnivores, and they are okay with eating all types of food, be it animals or plants. Their daily feeding routine should consist of these basics food parts Insects, Fruits, and Vegetables in certain percentages to aid their growth and metabolism.
What fruit can bearded dragons eat?
Yes, fruits are a great source of vitamins and other important nutrients that are not readily available, and Bearded Dragons can eat them daily. So, can bearded dragons eat grapes? Of course.
However, your bearded dragon should not exceed 10 percent of their diet as most fruits are sugary, and they can cause several issues in bearded dragons like obesity. You should also avoid feeding them citrus fruits like orange and Kiwi as they can cause teeth problems, raise their yeast level, or upset their digestion.
Here’s a detailed list of Favorable Fruits that you can feed your bearded dragon
Can Your Bearded Dragon Eat Vegetables?
Yes, just like fruits, bearded dragons can eat a variety of vegetables daily as part of their diet. Unlike fruits, you should serve a major portion of vegetables to beardies as their daily diet.
Veggies are useful for metabolism, and adult bearded dragons should consume at least 50% vegetables daily to remain fit and healthy.
Here’s our complete list of Favorable Vegetables your Beardie can eat daily
- Sweet Potato
- Bell Pepper
- Yellow Squash
- Green Beans
- Dandelion Green
- Swiss Chard
- Turnip Greens
- Spring Greens
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Meat?
Again like fruits and vegetables, bearded dragons can eat a wide variety of meat in the form of insects and small vertebra or Live Food.
Insects or Live Food is an important part of their diet, and they should consume from 75 percent to 25 percent of them in their daily diet as per the required protein intake and development stage.
Here’s our list of Favorable Meat Bearded Dragons can enjoy for their protein intake.
- King worms
- Dubia Roaches
- Butter worms
- Super worms
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Vitamin and Mineral Supplements?
Dietary Calcium is an integral part of a beardies diet, especially when it is in the early growth stages and develops bones.
Generally, you should be feeding your bearded dragon different vitamins and calcium 2 – 3 times a week. But the amount should be kept at a minimum, and you can only feed it to them by sprinkling it over other foods like different veggies and fruits.
Before making a supplement plan consult with a veterinarian and get a custom plan for your pet beardie’s diet.
Then you can continue to feed them calcium powder with and without Vitamin D3 2 – 3 times a week and other mineral supplements commonly used for reptiles once or twice a week.
Common foods to avoid while Feeding your Beardie
Just like they can enjoy eating a handful of foods, there is a long list which you always avoid feeding your bearded dragon as they can cause certain abnormalities and toxicities.
Most beardies do not remain very active in captivity; hence any food with a lot of fat can cause obesity and should be avoided.
Any food that can create toxicities should be kept away from them. And lastly, insects that have some poison should never be fed to them; otherwise, it can lead to serious impacts.
For example, a little firefly can kill an adult beardie easily because of the cardiotoxins it can produce.
Here’s a list of foods you should always avoid feeding your bearded dragon.
- Iceberg lettuce
Bearded Dragons are highly versatile and most commonly known pet reptiles.
Due to their adaptable feeding nature, it is easy for anyone to get accustomed to it pretty effortlessly, be it a first-time pet owner or a trained exotic pet lover.
Baby and Juvenile Bearded Dragons require foods that are rich in protein, and as they grow older, more and more plant food becomes its normal routine.
To ensure their healthy and fit life keep feeding them a variety of foods containing veggies and insects and sometimes treat them with either fruits or greens.
Following a diet chart, can help you a great deal in getting used to what they eat and how you can keep them healthy and fit for the rest of their lives.
And always remember, a happy pet is your guarantee to a happy companion and an even better life.