Turtles are lovers of fresh fruits and they won’t stop eating them when it is made available to them besides the diet composition of a turtle is not complete without fruits and watermelon has proved to be one of the safest and healthy fruits for turtles to feed on.
I know you know the health benefit of watermelon to humans but you keep wondering if these health benefits are the same when it comes to turtles feeding on watermelon. Worry less as this article will provide you with information surrounding what you need to know about your turtle consumption of watermelon.
Can Turtles Eat Watermelon?
Yes, they can, they even enjoy eating but when you give it to them, it must be in the right proportion. An old proverb says “ excess of everything is bad” so it is , when you supply watermelon to your turtle’s diet as fresh fruit shouldn’t be more than 15% of their daily diet.
Generally, fruits are not bad for turtles as they are a natural part of a turtle’s diet. However, fruits are high in sugar, which is what your turtle loves, but this will create an imbalance in their hormone and digestive system if the sugar is in excess. Moreover, the turtle’s love for sugary things might cause it to dislike other foods that are meant to give it nutrients as fruits can not supply all the nutrients it will be needing to survive.
Can Baby Turtles eat Watermelon?
Turtles’ diet composition depends on their age, specie, health status, and nutritional requirements. Baby turtles eat more animal-based food than fruits and vegetables at a young age as they need more protein at that stage. However, you can treat your baby turtle with a bit of watermelon to make them excited once in a while.
What Are The Benefits of Watermelon To Turtles?
The USDA estimates that watermelon contains around 92 percent water, so giving your turtle a snack of watermelon can help them stay hydrated on a hot day. Watermelon contains vitamin A: which helps in correcting deficiencies such as swollen eyelids, mouth infections, swollen eyelids and loss of appetite) B1 and B6:which help them to become energetic throughout the day, and C: which helps in the maintenance and development of the bones, calcium, and phosphorus( though not abundant) which help to boost the immune system of turtle pets.
Watermelon is easier to swallow than dry pellets and it helps to keep the skin moist and drain out toxins in the body, Besides, turtles love fruit more than vegetables.
Watermelon has a large amount of sugar, it’s preferable to only eat it sometimes as a tasty treat. When the weather is particularly warm, you can even freeze a few slices to give your turtles a refreshing treat.
It also helps with the digestive health of the turtle
How Much Nutrient Does A Cup of Watermelon Contain?
According to the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), a 1-cup serving of diced watermelon contains 46 calories with the following nutrients.
- Total fat: 0.2 gram (g)
- Carbohydrates: 12 g
- Dietary fiber: 0.6 g
- Protein: 1 g
- Sugars: 9.4 g
- Water content: 139 g (92%)
- Calcium: 11 milligrams (mg)
- Iron: 0.4 mg
- Magnesium: 15 mg
- Potassium: 170 mg
- Vitamin C: 12 mg
- Vitamin A: 43 micrograms (mcg)
How to Feed your Turtle Watermelon?
Wash the watermelon thoroughly, dice, and slowly introduce the red fleshy part free of the green outer layer and seed bit by bit to your turtle to study how their stomach will respond to the fruit Once you have confirmed that there is no negative effect, then you can fully introduce it to their diet in the right proportion.
On the other hand, if your turtle initially rejects the watermelon and then eventually accepts it after a few weeks, do not force it; it likely simply does not enjoy it. Instead, introduce other fruits or combine the watermelon with the other fruits.
Watermelons should not be given more than once a week.
What You Should Not Do While Feeding Your Turtle Watermelon?
There are certain things you should not do when you add watermelon to the diet of your turtle which includes:
- Turtles are omnivore animals and they can eat animals and plant-based food so when you give turtles watermelon, do not make it the largest percentage of their diet, they should be given animal-based food.
- Different species of turtle should not consume the same diet.
- After feeding them, wash your hands well to remove any bacteria that may have gotten on your hands from their skin.
- Turtles might develop long-term health issues as a result of too much sugar when you feed them excessively with watermelon.
- Do not overlook any warning signals. Withdraw the watermelon and introduce other fruits once you notice any abnormal changes in the turtle.
What Are The Effects Of Overfeeding Of Watermelon?
Earlier in this article, I referred to an old proverb that says “ excess of everything is bad” and overfeeding watermelon to your turtle can bring about negative repercussions such as
- Obesity and liver damage in turtles.
- A low level of calcium brings about bone issues.
- Irritation of the digestive tract.
Can Turtles Eat Watermelon Rind?
Yes, they can besides the outer part has its benefits too though it has to be thoroughly washed and diced as they can choke on it if swallowed in big sizes. To be on the safer side feed it with the red juicy part alone except if you want to correct an abnormal condition that has to be treated with a lot of fiber which the rind contains. Rinds are full of nutrients and can be used to treat constipation among other things.
What Are The Other Fruit Turtles Feed On?
The fruits in the diet composition of the turtle should not be more than 15%. However, not all fruits are safe for the consumption of your turtles and it is of utmost importance for you to know which fruit is safe for your pets.
Here are the safe and healthy fruits for your turtle.
- Unpeeled Banana.
- Star Fruits
Fruits To Avoid
The fruits that should be avoided for turtles are the fruits of the citrus order such as oranges, limes, and other citrus as they can alter the Ph of their digestive system, kill off a large number of their natural gut bacteria that is needed for optimal gut health or even lead to toxic shock.
Although turtles enjoy eating watermelon, which is an extraordinarily healthy fruit, it should be fed to them in moderation based on their age, species, and nutritional needs to ensure that they grow into healthy-appearing turtles.
The information in this article should be all you need to know about the watermelon eating of your pet turtles. Turtles are household pets that need you for care and feeding.