Leopard geckos, unlike other reptiles, do not eat fruits or vegetables but prefer insects. However, many pet owners are unaware of what leopard geckos can eat other than mealworms and crickets. This has resulted in most owners asking if and how many superworms can a leopard gecko eat?
It would be best if you did not feed your leopard geckos superworms more than 4 times a month. Instead, feeding geckos superworms once every 5 days might be a good routine. Consider feeding your reptile one worm for every inch of length.
Leopard geckos can consume super worms, but only in small amounts and infrequently. Superworms are heavy in fat, so giving them to your gecko daily might harm its health. When you regularly feed your leopard gecko a super worm diet, it will gain a lot of weight. It’s a better option to give your leopard gecko super worms as a reward.
Superworms nutritional value
The nutritional value of superworms varies depending on several factors. If you don’t have a superworm colony, ask your feeder insect provider for this information. Obtaining this information from the superworms’ source ensures you get updated and correct information on their nutritional advantages.
As an example, check out the nutritional advantages of superworms from a colony in a pet store we frequent.
Based on these values alone, you can understand why keeping these insects as a special treat is essential. Fat makes up about a quarter of their bodies!
Most owners have described accounts of leopard geckos being easily hooked to worms, much as people might become addicted to highly palatable meals. If left to their own devices, leopard geckos might consume them in droves. Set limitations to practice excellent keeping.
Unlike spiders which can bite, with some being poisonous, superworms are safe for consumption.
How many superworms to feed a leopard gecko?
How many super worms you can feed your leopard depends on you as the owner. However, these worms should be fed sparingly due to their high fat and phosphorus content.
It would be best if you did not feed your leopard geckos superworms more than 4 times a month. Instead, feeding geckos superworms once every 5 days might be a good routine.
Consider feeding your reptile one worm for every inch of length. So, if your leopard gecko is 4 inches long, feed it 4 superworms every 5 days. You can modify the superworm feeding plan if your leopard gecko is acquiring too much weight.
Ensure that the superworms are appropriately sized for your reptile, ⅜” for babies, ¼” for juveniles, with adult-sized worms for mature leopard geckos.
You can see why you need to ration the values of their average nutritional value: nearly a fifth of their body is made up of fat. Even more serious is the fact that leopard geckos can easily become addicted to highly palatable foods like super worms and need restrictions.
Do I need to gut-load superworms for leopard geckos?
You need to gut load superworms for your geckos. Gut-loading insects is a common lizard-keeping technique for providing good nutritious foods and supplements for your pet. Since rats also eat insects, the same procedure can be used in relation to them.
Place some food and a water supply, such as a slice of juicy fruit, in a separate container, and give them to the superworms.
Allow 48 hours for them to consume adequate food. When the superworms are fed to the leopard geckos, the minerals and vitamins are also passed to them.
How to gut load superworms for leopard geckos
The whole process is pretty straightforward since you only need a separate container, some food, and a water source.
- The first step is to separate their food source, such as slices of oranges or carrots, at the bottom of the container.
- You then have to ensure that they have a water source. Superworms are not picky eaters. However, they do not take well to direct water. So instead, you should give them juicy fruits with loads of moisture.
- The last and final step is giving them about 48 hours to devour the food as much as possible. While they may not consume all the food, this should be enough time to get the job done.
Your superworms are ready to be snacked on by leopard geckos who will not delay.
Are superworms good for leopard geckos?
As a leopard gecko owner looking into superworms for your reptile, you will probably hear about how high their fat content is and should be fed at a minimum. While this is true, superworms can be an excellent treat for your reptile, especially when given occasionally.
They also come in handy, especially when your reptile is ready to lay eggs. They ease the much-dreaded process by ensuring it has fat and good protein content.
Below are some of the advantages of feeding your reptile superworms.
Superworms have loads of meat with less chitin which makes digesting them easier than other feeder insects.
2. High-fat content
This is ideal for geckos who require or can use extra fat storage. In addition, female breeders recovering from illness and geckos who don’t eat well can significantly benefit from increased fat-content feeders in the breeding season.
3. Easy to breed
If anything, the ease of breeding and gut-loading superworms is presumably why most owners prefer them.
4. Easily available
Superworms are available widely and can be found online and at most pet stores and specialty reptile/exotic animal retailers. In addition, you can inquire from your vet or local breeder where to find healthy super worms and other feeder insects well-bred, gut-loaded, and free of parasites.
Superworms are more active, making it pleasurable for your leopard gecko to hunt them.
6. A good treat
Since leopard geckos are picky eaters, they have the option of a healthy treat with superworms.
Super worms have been proven to be a good source of calcium, fat, and fiber for your developing reptile. They can also be gut-loaded, ensuring your leopard gecko gets as many nutrients as possible.
Below are some of the disadvantages that come with feeding superworms to a leopard gecko:
1. High-fat content
A higher fat content is beneficial for leopard geckos that can benefit from the increased fat storage, but not all leopard geckos require it. If you have an adult leopard gecko with a fat tail still eating like a pig, superworms are not the best feeder for it.
Obesity may lead to various health problems, including fatty liver disease, which appears to be particularly frequent in overfed leopard geckos.
To know if the gecko is getting fat, watch for a fattening tail and keep an eye on its weight. They store excess fats in their tails.
They have potent mandibles that can and have been known to injure your gecko externally, as they can bend around to bite a gecko’s eye. They can also hurt it internally when the gecko eats a superworm without chomping on its head.
Luckily, unlike insects with yellow stripes, most of which sting, superworms won’t sting your pet lizard.
In conclusion, Leopard geckos love superworms because they feel like they’re getting a treat. They are a great way to add variety to your leopard gecko’s diet. However, they should only be served once a week or every two weeks. Exceptions can be made for females about to lay eggs and require additional nourishment.
The key to a healthy gecko is variety, be sure to diversify your diet with other types of insects and worms. Then, enjoy giving this treat to your reptile!
California State University. A Manual for Using Lizards to Support the Classroom Environment of Middle School Students with Disabilities.
Louisiana State University. Assessing the Nutritional Value of Black Soldier Fly Larvae (Hermetia illucens) Used for Reptile Foods.