Can Crested Geckos Eat Mealworms

Can Crested Geckos Eat Mealworms | A Sticky Situation

Ah, the fascinating world of crested geckos. Those tiny marvels that never cease to captivate us with their intriguing behaviors and distinctive appearances. But amidst the charm and wonder. A question emerges: Can Crested Geckos Eat Mealworms?

I get it – the idea of offering your gecko a squirming mealworm can spark curiosity. But before you rush to introduce these critters to their menu. Let’s take a closer look. Crested geckos follow a specialized diet that contributes to their overall health and contentment. In this exploration, I’ll delve into the details of their dietary preferences to determine whether mealworms can be a safe addition.

By the time we’re done here. You’ll have a clear understanding of whether mealworms align with crested geckos’ dietary needs and well-being. So, stay tuned as I unravel the facts about these geckos and their potential relationship with mealworms.

Can Crested Geckos Eat Mealworms

Yes, crested geckos can eat mealworms. But it’s important to offer them in moderation and as part of a balanced diet. Mealworms can be a good source of protein for crested geckos. Especially for growing juveniles or breeding adults. However, mealworms should not be the sole food source for crested geckos. 

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It’s essential to provide a varied diet that includes other insects. Such as crickets and roaches. As well as fruit-based baby food, and specialized crested gecko diet. When offering mealworms, it’s recommended to choose appropriately sized ones that are smaller than the space between the gecko’s eyes. 

It helps prevent choking and ensures easier digestion. You can offer live or gut-loaded mealworms, meaning they have been fed a nutritious diet before being fed to your gecko. Additionally, dusting the mealworms with a calcium supplement is a good practice. It ensure your gecko’s calcium needs are met.

Remember, offering a well-rounded diet will contribute to the overall health and well-being of your crested gecko. 

What Are Mealworms?

Mealworms are the larvae of darkling beetles. Specifically the species Tenebrio molitor. These larvae are commonly used as a source of nutrition for various animals. Such as reptiles, birds, and small mammals. Mealworms have a distinct appearance, with a cylindrical body and a segmented exoskeleton. They are typically brown or tan in color.

Mealworms go through a life cycle that includes several stages: egg, larva (mealworm), pupa, and adult beetle. The larval stage, or mealworm, is the one that is often used as a feeder insect. During this stage, mealworms consume a diet of grains, bran, and other organic materials. They are easy to raise and breed. It makes them a popular choice for pet owners who want to provide their animals with a live food source.

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As feeder insects, mealworms are prized for their relatively high protein content and nutritional value. They are a convenient way to supplement the diets of insectivorous and omnivorous animals. Offering essential nutrients like protein, fat, and some vitamins and minerals. However, it’s important to ensure that mealworms are properly gut-loaded and dusted with calcium supplements before feeding them to your pets.

Are Mealworms Good For Crested Geckos?

Yes, mealworms can be a beneficial part of a crested gecko’s diet. When offered in moderation. Crested geckos are insectivores, which means they require a source of protein to thrive. However, mealworms can provide a good protein and fat content. It’s important to ensure that mealworms are not the sole food source for your crested gecko.

Mealworms should be considered as a supplement to their diet. Alongside other feeder insects like crickets, roaches, and fruit flies. Variety is crucial for providing a balanced nutritional intake. Additionally, gut-loading the mealworms by feeding them nutritious foods before offering them to your gecko helps enhance their nutritional value. Dusting mealworms with calcium and vitamin supplements further ensures that your crested gecko’s dietary needs are met.

Keep in mind that while mealworms can be a valuable protein source. They should not replace the fruits and other insects that are also essential for a crested gecko’s overall health. Observing your gecko’s behavior, growth, and overall well-being will help you determine the right balance of foods to provide for their specific needs. 

Can Baby Crested Geckos Eat Mealworms?

Yes, baby crested geckos can eat mealworms. But it’s important to take some precautions and considerations before offering them as part of their diet. Mealworms can be a good source of protein and fat for growing crested geckos. But they should be fed in moderation and as part of a varied diet.

When feeding mealworms to baby crested geckos. It’s essential to ensure that the mealworms are appropriately sized for their tiny mouths. The size of the mealworms should be manageable for the geckos. It prevent any potential choking hazards.

It’s also crucial to gut-load the mealworms before offering them to baby crested geckos. Gut-loading involves feeding the mealworms nutritious foods before they are given to the geckos. It enhances the nutritional value of the insects. Finally, it ensures that the geckos receive essential nutrients.

In addition to mealworms. Baby crested geckos should be offered a variety of other small feeder insects. Such as appropriately sized crickets, fruit flies, and pinhead roaches. However, providing a diverse diet helps ensure that the geckos receive a well-rounded nutritional intake.

What Can Crested Geckos Eat?

Crested geckos have a varied and omnivorous diet that consists of both insects and fruits. In the wild, they primarily feed on a combination of insects, nectar, and ripe fruits. When kept in captivity. It’s important to replicate this balanced diet to ensure their overall health and well-being.

As part of their insect diet, crested geckos can eat a range of small feeder insects. Such as crickets, roaches, fruit flies, and small mealworms. These insects provide essential protein and nutrients. These are vital for their growth and development.

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In addition to insects, crested geckos can also consume a variety of fruits. Some of the fruits they can eat include mashed bananas, apples, pears, peaches, and melons. These fruits can be offered in small, manageable portions. It provide natural sugars and hydration.

One unique aspect of their diet is their affinity for commercially prepared crested gecko diets. Which are nutritionally balanced and designed to meet their specific needs. These diets are often available in powdered form and can be mixed with water. Therefore, it creates a paste-like consistency that the geckos can lick off surfaces.

It’s important to note that while crested geckos can eat a range of fruits. Like banana, etc. They should be provided in moderation. As with any pet, closely monitoring their diet. You can also consult with a reptile veterinarian for guidance. As a result, it can contribute to their well-being.

How Many Mealworms To Feed a Crested Gecko

The number of mealworms to feed a crested gecko depends on several factors. Such as including the age, size, and individual dietary preferences of the gecko. Mealworms can be a suitable part of a crested gecko’s diet. It provide valuable protein and nutrients. However, moderation is key. As mealworms should not be the sole food source.

For adult crested geckos, mealworms can be offered as an occasional treat rather than a staple. A good guideline is to offer 2-3 appropriately sized mealworms a couple of times a week. In addition to a variety of other insects and fruits. It ensures that the gecko receives a balanced diet and does not become overly reliant on mealworms.

Baby crested geckos, on the other hand, may benefit from slightly more frequent feedings. But the same principle of moderation applies. It’s essential to monitor their intake and observe their behavior. It will determine their appetite and adjust feeding amounts accordingly.

Remember that variety is crucial in a crested gecko’s diet. Insects like crickets, roaches, and fruit flies. As well as a variety of fruits and commercially prepared gecko diets. These should be included to provide a well-rounded and nutritious feeding regimen. 

How To Feed Mealworms To Your Crested Gecko

Feeding mealworms to your crested gecko can be a beneficial part of their diet. But it’s important to do it correctly to ensure their health and well-being. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to feed mealworms to your crested gecko.

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  1. Choose High-Quality Mealworms

Start by selecting healthy and appropriately sized mealworms. Avoid using wild-caught insects as they may carry parasites or pesticides. You can opt for gut-loaded mealworms that have been raised on a nutritious diet before feeding them to your gecko.

  1. Prepare a Feeding Dish

Use a shallow and clean feeding dish that is easy for your crested gecko to access. Make sure the dish is securely placed in the enclosure. As a result, it prevent it from tipping over.

  1. Place a Few Mealworms

Add a small number of mealworms to the feeding dish. The quantity can vary based on your gecko’s size and dietary needs. A general guideline is to start with 2-3 mealworms for adult geckos and adjust as needed.

  1. Remove Uneaten Mealworms

Leave the mealworms in the enclosure for a specific feeding period. Usually around 15-20 minutes. It gives your gecko ample time to locate and consume the mealworms. After this time, remove any uneaten mealworms. It prevent them from wandering around the enclosure and potentially bothering your gecko.

  1. Offer Mealworms as Treats

While mealworms can provide valuable nutrients. They should be offered as occasional treats rather than a primary food source. Crested geckos require a diverse diet. Such as insects, fruits, and commercially formulated gecko diets. Rotate mealworms with other insects to ensure a balanced and nutritious diet.

  1. Hydration

Ensure your crested gecko has access to clean and fresh water at all times. Proper hydration is essential for their overall health and digestion. Even if they consume moisture-rich insects like mealworms.

  1. Observe Your Gecko

Pay attention to your crested gecko’s eating habits and behavior. If they show enthusiasm for mealworms and consume them readily. You can continue to include them in their diet. If your gecko consistently ignores mealworms or shows disinterest. Consider offering different insect options.

Remember that variety is key when feeding crested geckos. In addition to mealworms, offer a range of insects like crickets, roaches, and fruit flies. As well as a variety of fruits and gecko-specific diets. It ensure your pet receives a balanced and nutritious diet.

Can Crested Geckos Eat Dried Mealworms

While dried mealworms may seem like a convenient option for feeding your crested gecko. They are not the most suitable choice when it comes to their diet. Crested geckos are insectivores and require a diverse and nutritious diet to thrive. Dried mealworms lack the essential moisture content that live insects provide. However, they may also be less palatable to your gecko.

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Live insects offer important benefits beyond their nutritional value. They provide hydration due to their high moisture content. Which is crucial for maintaining your crested gecko’s overall health and proper digestion. Dried mealworms, on the other hand, can be dehydrated and less appealing to your gecko. It potentially leads to a decreased appetite.

Feeding live insects also encourages natural hunting and foraging behaviors in crested geckos. It provides mental stimulation and physical activity. It is an important aspect of their well-being that dried mealworms cannot replicate.

To ensure the health of your crested gecko. It’s best to prioritize live insects as a staple in their diet. You can offer a variety of appropriately sized insects. Such as crickets, roaches, and fruit flies, to provide a balanced and engaging feeding experience.

Can Crested Geckos Eat Mealworm Beetles

Crested geckos are primarily insectivores. Their diet should consist of a variety of live insects. It ensures their optimal health and nutrition. While mealworms are a commonly offered insect. It’s important to consider the different life stages of these insects when feeding them to your crested gecko. 

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Mealworm beetles are the adult form of mealworms. They are not as suitable for your gecko’s diet as the larvae (worms) themselves. Mealworm beetles have a harder exoskeleton. It can be less digestible for crested geckos compared to the softer-bodied mealworm larvae. Additionally, the nutritional composition of mealworm beetles may differ from that of the larvae. It potentially affect the overall balance of nutrients your gecko needs.

It’s recommended to primarily offer mealworm larvae to your crested gecko. These larvae are rich in protein and have a higher moisture content. It is beneficial for hydration. They are also easier for your gecko to consume and digest.

If you have mealworm beetles as a result of breeding mealworms. It’s best to separate the beetles from the larvae and prioritize feeding the larvae to your crested gecko. However, offering an occasional mealworm beetle as a treat is unlikely to cause harm.

Can You Feed Your Crested Gecko Worms Instead of Crickets?

Yes, you can feed your crested gecko worms as an alternative to crickets. Worms. Such as mealworms and phoenix worms (also known as black soldier fly larvae). It can be a suitable option to diversify your gecko’s diet. These worms offer a different texture and nutritional profile compared to crickets. It can be appealing to some crested geckos.

When offering worms as a food source. It’s important to ensure that they are appropriately sized for your gecko. The worms should be small enough for your gecko to easily consume without causing any choking hazards. Additionally, worms should be gut-loaded and dusted with calcium and other essential supplements before feeding to your gecko. Just like with crickets.

Remember that variety is key to providing a balanced diet for your crested gecko. While worms can be a beneficial addition to their diet. It’s still recommended to offer a mix of other feeder insects and occasionally fruit-based options. It ensures your gecko receives a well-rounded and nutritious diet. 

As with any changes to your pet’s diet. It’s a good practice to consult with a reptile veterinarian. It ensures you’re making the best choices for your crested gecko’s health and well-being.

Alternatives to Mealworms For Crested Geckos

If you’re looking for alternatives to mealworms to diversify your crested gecko’s diet. There are several options that can provide a well-rounded nutritional profile. Crickets are a popular choice, offering a good balance of protein and nutrients. They can be easily gut-loaded to enhance their nutritional value. Dubia roaches are another option known for their high calcium content and digestibility.

Can I feed my crested gecko worms instead of crickets?

Phoenix worms, also known as black soldier fly larvae, are rich in calcium and have a unique wiggling motion. It can stimulate your gecko’s natural hunting behavior. Silkworms are soft-bodied and easy to digest. It provides a different texture for your gecko to enjoy. Hornworms are moisture-rich and offer hydration along with nutrients.

If you prefer a commercial option. Pangea Fruit Mix is formulated specifically for crested geckos. While not insects, it can provide balanced nutrition and convenience. Introducing a variety of these alternatives can help prevent dietary monotony. It ensures your crested gecko receives the nutrients it needs for optimal health. 

In a Nutshell

To sum it up, the question of whether crested geckos can feast on mealworms requires a thoughtful approach. While mealworms offer protein, their high fat content and potential digestive challenges warrant caution. Opting for a balanced diet of fruits, specialized crested gecko foods, and suitable insects is key. 

Remember, moderation is vital. It ensures your gecko’s well-being and vitality. By making informed dietary choices. You can foster a healthy, thriving companion for years to come.


What bugs can crested geckos eat?

Crested geckos can consume a variety of insects, including crickets, roaches, and silkworms, alongside their main diet of fruit and specialized crested gecko foods. It’s important to offer a diverse range of insects to ensure a balanced diet.

Can crested geckos eat superworms?

Superworms can be fed to crested geckos, but they should be used in moderation. These worms have a tough exoskeleton, which may pose a challenge for digestion. Ensure they are appropriately sized and provide other insect options for variety.

Can crested geckos eat crickets?

Yes, crested geckos can eat crickets. Crickets are a commonly offered insect and a good source of protein. Always ensure the crickets are appropriately sized for your gecko and gut-loaded to enhance their nutritional value.

Will mealworms bite my gecko?

Mealworms are not known to bite crested geckos. However, their hard exoskeleton can be difficult to digest and may lead to impaction, especially if fed in excess. It’s recommended to offer mealworms in moderation and as part of a varied diet.

What is safe to feed a crested gecko?

A safe and balanced diet for a crested gecko includes a base of specialized crested gecko powdered diets. Supplement this with gut-loaded insects like crickets, roaches, and silkworms. Offer a variety of fruits, such as mashed banana or pureed baby food, as well as occasional treats like waxworms or small amounts of other insects. Always ensure proper sizing and moderation to maintain your gecko’s health.

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