I’ve had my pet tortoises MJ and Bubbles for years now. They eat a whole range of different foods and I try to vary their diet as much as I can. I think that their top notch diet is a main factor in making them the healthy characters they are today. I thought I’d share what they eat with you so you can also treat your tortoises to the best food possible. MJ and Bubbles are Hermans Tortoises so their diet is suitable for european species. Please remember that african tortoises have different nutritional requirements and they should be catered for differently.
I get their food from both the supermarket and the garden. I’ll list below what I can get from each.
Curly Kale, Spring Greens, Watercress, Grated Carrot, Peppers, Parsnips, Courgettes, Leafy Salads (not Iceberg Lettuce) & small amounts of Non-Citric Fruit.
Dandelions, Parsley, Corriander, Yarrow, Hedge Bedstraw, Chickweed, Knapweed, Clover & Honeysuckle.
I have found my guys are thriving on this diet. If you are ever unsure whether something is safe for your tortoise to eat, don’t risk it! As my tortoises are still growing I dust all of their food in Nutrobal to ensure they are getting the correct nutritional balance from their diet. For those times when I run low on fresh food, I must admit I do keep a tub of their favourite T-Rex dried food in the cupboard. Whenever I use dry foods I always make sure they are well soaked in water to prevent dehydrating my tortoises.
I never have a water bowl in my vivarium, it makes it far too humid potentially making my pets ill. In the wild tortoises will drink water as they encounter it, usually after rainfall. They will drink fresh water and empty their bladder, effectively swapping the old for the new. Tortoises are incredibly efficient with their water and go for long periods without. I don’t deprive MJ and Bubbles, I give them a tepid bath every other day where they can drink and go to the toilet as much as they like. I do make sure that the water is changed as soon as they have done their business so they don’t drink it!