Homemade Aquatic Turtle Food Recipe
I prefer to feed my turtles non-commercial food, or at the least, as little as possible. A healthy turtle is an active and happy turtle. Using a blender, fresh foods, and a reptile based gelatin powder, you can create your own concoction. This recipe is more of a guide, as the possibilities and combinations of foods are endless.
The biggest pro of being able to customize your food for your pet turtle, aquatic that is, is that you can introduce foods they may not otherwise try as well as control the portion sizes and the nutrient values. The main goal for many people making their own food for their turtles is to maximize and utilize a variety of foods. My turtles will not eat zucchini, but they do eat zucchini in tuna flavoured cubes, sshhh don't tell.
Because I feed my pet turtles a lot of live foods, I do not overly stress about meat in my concoction, but as you will see, you can easily add protein to your mix or to encourage the younger turtles a little tuna water, bugs or worms can do the trick.
Many recipes you will find say to use beef heart, I am not a fan of that, I try to feed what I call natural foods, I like knowing my turtles are hunting their food and getting the added bonus of exercise. Some recipes will also call for separating the meat and vegetables, I toss it all together, but I never use beef or chicken raw or cooked to feed my turtles. I have seen a few youtube videos calling for red dye ... I don't think so.
Ready? It is really easy, be prepared to blown away.
Ta-da ... The Recipe
What you will need
- Reptile Gelatin, available at most pet stores.
- Fruits of your choice, can use apples, grapes, raspberries and strawberries, many melons are liked and bananas as well.
- Vegetables of your choice, can use any dark leafy green such as bok choy, leaf lettuce, endive and kale, zucchini, broccoli carrots, tomatoes, sometimes squash or pumpkin.
- Meat (or substitute) if using, worms, snails, tuna water,
Using a blender or knife, pulse or chop your chosen fruits and vegetables into very small pieces. I tend to use a lot of greens over fruit. Apples, grapes, cherry tomatoes and strawberries are enjoyed whole by my turtles, so I don't put those in this mix. You can also put water plants like duckweed and grasses in.
Prepare the gelatin mix as instructed on the package. If you need a stronger gelatin, use less liquid. Reptile gelatin has vitamins and nutrients in it, I do not add more.
Mix the chopped vegetables, fruits and choice of 'meat' or tuna water with the gelatin.
Place mixture into ice cube trays, I use the mini sized ones and not the large ones you commonly see. When I first started, I used fish shaped ice cube trays, to add that extra little enticement.
Freeze overnight in the freezer.
Thaw and serve.
When I am introducing new foods, I will entice them with some tuna water, but otherwise, my 'food cubes' are mainly dark leafy greens with broccoli, zucchini, carrot added. I keep live food in their tank, so for me I do not have to include protein or meat.