We all want to feed our leopard geckos which is best for them. The main component behind your pet staying healthy is what you feed them on a daily basis.
Leopard Geckos can eat superworms. However, they should only be fed as a treat as they are rich in fat. Feeding too many superworms can lead to obesity, which can later on lead to various health concerns. They might also cause injuries and should be fed safely to your pet.
Superworms serve as the perfect treats you can feed your leopard geckos. In this article, we will discuss their nutritional qualities and how often they can be given.
Nutritional Value of Superworms
The nutritional benefits of superworms depend on different factors. There are different benefits based on what they eat and how they were raised. The best thing is to ask the shop for their nutritional content to get a good idea of their body ratio.
A nutritional superworm should have 55% moisture, 20% protein, 6% fiber, 18% fat, 177 mg Calcium per kg, and 2370 mg phosphorus per kg. Due to superworms’ high-fat content, they should be, given as treats rather than everyday meals. Just like humans get addicted to food with rich fat content, the same happens with the leopard gecko. Leopard geckos will eat all of them at once if you have kept them in sight. You should set limits and make sure they are not getting obese.
You should also know that superworms contain a maximum of 60% moisture in them, which is much lower than the other feeder insects. Leopard geckos get most of their water from their food and thus should be fed enough feeder insects to maintain a healthy diet. Having said all of this they are a great protein source and provide your pet with essential carbohydrates.
How Many Superworms Should You Feed in a Day or a Week?
Even though superworms have nutritional benefits they should only be fed as a treat. This is due to them being high in phosphorus and fat content. Superworms should be kept at a minimum and you should feed your pet with staples like crickets. Practicing this will help your leopard gecko maintain a healthy weight.
You should only give one superworm per week to maintain a rich and healthy diet. If you want to treat your leopard geckos, two or three superworms are also fine but don’t make it a habit. If your leopard gecko starts gaining weight, cut short on the superworms no matter how cute they are looking.
How to Prepare and Feed Superworms to Leopard Geckos?
There are different ways to prepare and feed superworms to your leopard geckos. Preparing superworms might require dusting them with calcium powder or gut-loading them with nutritious bugs. These methods will ensure that your leopard gecko eats healthily and gets a well-balanced diet.
Dusting Superworms with Calcium
Yes, superworms and all your other feeder insects should be dusted with calcium before being consumed by your leopard gecko. As superworms are low in calcium, they can be sprinkled with it generously.
All you need to do is put calcium into a zip-lock bag and put your superworms inside it. After doing so, give the bag a good shake. Now they are ready and can be placed inside the enclosure to be consumed by your pet.
Gut-Loading Them With Insects
Supwerworms should be gut loaded with insects to increase their nutritional value. You can feed your superworms with veggies and grains before you feed them to your loving pet. Oats, carrots, and sweet potatoes are great things to feed your superworms.
To gut-load your superworms place them inside a container with the food and let them consume it for 24 hours. Once this process is done, you can sprinkle them with calcium and feed them to your leopard geckos.
The main reason behind gut-loading is to feed your leopard geckos food that they can not eat. Preparing superworms in this manner will help provide the essential nutrients to your pet. If you are buying your superworms ask your supplier if they have done this already. Although, most of the sellers do not gut-load their superworms.
Feeding Superworms to Your Leopard Geckos
You should have a shallow dish bowl designated for superworms. The dish bowl will keep the food from crawling away and will make it easier for your pet to locate and eat food. Some reptile owners also like to use tweezers to transfer the food into the dish or even hand-feed the pet.
If you are opting to hand-feed your leopard gecko, do not let them bite you by mistake. Lizard bite is a common thing to occur if you are hand-feeding your pet. It is a very painful and uneasy experience if you get a bite from a leopard gecko. So, make sure that you use tweezers while feeding your leopard geckos.
Another feeding habit you should follow is to remove any half-eaten insects from your pet’s enclosure. You should put the uneaten insect back into the food container. Uneaten superworms use their pincers to irritate or injure your pet while sleeping. Hence, should be disposed of or stored inside the container immediately.
What Makes Superworms Good for Leopard Geckos?
Superworms have many nutritional benefits to them. Yes, they should be fed as a treat and with moderation. But they can serve as a great protein source for your leopard gecko. Besides, sometimes gaining a few extra pounds might also come in handy. Having a bit of extra fat makes it easier for the leopard gecko to lay eggs.
Superworms will also provide the extra nutrients required while giving birth. They also are a great protein source and are rich in phosphorus content. Protein is especially great for babies as it will provide them with healthy muscles and organs. Superworms can also help your leopard gecko to consume food that they are not able to eat directly. You can gut-fill your superworms before feeding them to your pets.
If your leopard gecko is facing a loss in appetite feeding superworms might help them maintain their weight. Superworms will provide them with the required nourishment and enrich their diet with proteins. You can also sprinkle calcium on them to ensure their safe recovery.
Why Superworms are Bad for Leopard Geckos?
Superworms can hurt or injure leopard geckos in various ways. To ensure your pet’s safety, you should follow various feeding techniques.
Superworms are five times bigger than mealworms and they surely know how to put up a fight. They have more shells and chitin than your feeder insects. Superworms also have mandibles on their body which might hurt your gecko when they try to consume them. It is also common knowledge that superworms are prone to bite while handling them.
If your leopard gecko does not chomp off the mandible on the first go, it can get bitten on the insides of its mouth. Mouth bites can later on lead to infections and serious injuries. However, your leopard gecko will easily solve the problem after a few more chomps.
Some mouth bites can also lead to infections such as mouth rot so stay cautious about them. Notice your pet’s eating habits and look out for any possible swelling. Doing so will help you seek treatment as soon as possible.
Causing Internal Pain
Some studies show undigested superworms eating the insides of leopard geckos. So stay cautious and turn on their heat lamp when they consume their superworms. Heating lamps will help your pet maintain the temperature to digest them properly.
Also, clean the half-eaten superworms, as they might attack your pet when they are asleep. There have been cases where they cause bite marks or injury to leopard geckos when they sleep or rest.
Superworms VS Mealworms
Superworms and mealworms might look the same but have crucial differences when fed to leopard geckos.
|Very large in size||Small in size|
|Tough to eat||Easier to eat|
|Can injure your leopard gecko||Harmless|
|Are low in calcium and fiber||Relatively higher calcium and fiber|
|High in fat content||Less in fat content|
|Medium in protein value||High in protein value|
|One per week||Six to seven per week|
|Stored at room temperature||Stored in refrigerator|
Superworms are five times the size of a mealworm. Superworms also have a rich and fibrous exoskeleton which is quite beneficial for your leopard gecko. Also, the risk of impaction or black spot on belly is much lower in the cases of superworms unless you feed your pet with them every day.
Superworms are rich in fat and should be consumed once every week. Whereas, mealworms can become a part of a staple diet as they can be given six to seven times a week. You should also store mealworms in the refrigerator while superworms have to be stored at room temperature.
The good thing is that you can gut-load both of them to ensure a nutritious diet for your leopard gecko. You can also coat them in calcium as they both are pretty low in calcium and protein compared to other feeder insects.
Leopard geckos also have a high phosphorus content as compared to mealworms. You should feed your leopard gecko with other insects apart from mealworms and superworms as they are both low in moisture. Leopard geckos get most of their water from food. And should be fed a balanced meal to ensure their health.
When can leopard geckos eat superworms?
A leopard gecko can eat superworms in moderate amounts. Once every week should be fine to promote a rich and nutritious diet. Anything above it can lead to obesity and various other health concerns. Superworms are great for adults but should be avoided for young leopard geckos.
Do superworm bite?
Yes, superworms have mandibles and love to put on a fight when fed to leopard geckos. They can also cause injuries if they are left half-eaten. Thus, need to be disposed of immediately after your pet is done eating.
Superworms are a great way of enriching your leopard gecko’s diet. They are not only rich in protein but have a high phosphorus content. You should also not forget that they should only be given as a treat once per week, as they are high in fat. Hope, this article was insightful to you and will help you take the best care of your pet.