Best Turtle Foods – Reviews And Feeding Guide

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Turtles are known for their long life span, with some even living to 100 years old. However, keeping a turtle is not just for fun- these reptiles also need a proper diet that would keep them healthy and happy. When taken care of properly, turtles have been known to live longer than most other animals in captivity. It’s no wonder that many people are seeking ways to keep these reptiles as pets!

In this article, we will provide you with useful tips on selecting the best food for your pet, as well as a list of our favorite turtle foods. These foods have been selected on the basis of their value and nutritiousness, as we want to help you provide the best care possible for your turtles.

Without further ado, let’s begin!

Comparison Table of The 7 Best Turtle Foods

IMAGE

Tetra ReptoMin Floating Sticks Turtle & Amphibian Food

BRAND

Tetra ReptoMin Floating Sticks Turtle & Amphibian Food

DETAILS

  • Balanced turtle and amphibian formula
  • Floating design
  • Easy to digest
Fluker's Aquatic Turtle Medley Treat Food

BRAND

Fluker’s 5 Star Medley Freeze-Dried Aquatic Turtle Treats

DETAILS

  • Animal protein mix made up of river shrimp, mealworms, and crickets
  • Freeze-dried protein sources are nutrient-dense
Exo Terra Adult Aquatic Turtle Food, Reptile Food

BRAND

Exo Terra Adult Aquatic Turtle Food

DETAILS

  • Made with garramus shrimp
  • Balanced formula for turtles
Zoo Med Zm113 Natural Aquatic Turtle Food

BRAND

Zoo Med Natural Maintenance Formula Aquatic Turtle Food

DETAILS

  • Comes in three pellet sizes: Hatchling, Growth, and Maintenance
  • Hatchling formula is protein-dense while the adult formulas are more balanced
Ultra Fresh - Turtle Nutri Stick

BRAND

Ultra Fresh – Turtle Nutri Stick with Probiotics

DETAILS

  • Contains probiotic additives 
  • Distinctive sword prawn flavor
  • 3:1 Calcium to Phosphorus ratio eliminates the need for supplements
Fluker's Buffet Blend Aquatic Formula Turtle Food

BRAND

Fluker’s Aquatic Turtle Buffet Blend Food

DETAILS

  • Mix of pellets and freeze-dried mealworms and shrimp
  • Pellets are fortified with vitamins and calcium
Mazuri Aquatic Turtle Diet

BRAND

Mazuri Turtle Diet

DETAILS

  • Made with fish as its primary protein source
  • Chicken byproduct as a secondary protein source
  • Contains vitamin E, D, and calcium

How To Select The Best Turtle Food: Feeding Guide

Selecting the right type of food for your turtles is the most important aspect of caring for these lovable reptiles. There’s no one-size-fits-all turtle food out there, so it’s best to identify the right type of food based on your pet’s individual needs. Here are some key things to think about as you decide what type of food is best for your turtles:

Know What Type Of Diet Your Turtle Needs

Most turtles are omnivores, which means they eat both meat and plants. However, different species require different proportions of plant matter and animal-based protein. The key to providing a balanced diet is knowing what type of food your turtle should be eating, as feeding the wrong type of food can lead to health issues.

Most commercial turtle foods contain a mix of animal-based protein and leafy greens, but here’s a list of supplementary greens and protein sources you can opt to feed your turtles for an added nutritional boost:

  • Vegetable Matter: Sweet potatoes, dandelion greens, collard greens, mustard greens, and most types of leafy vegetables (water lettuce, iceberg lettuce, romaine lettuce, etc.)
  • Animal-Based Foods: Minced meat, chicken necks, fish fillet, shrimp (cooked or raw), and various types of insects (such as crickets, mealworms, wax worms)

No matter what type of food you choose to feed your turtle, it’s important that you rotate the types to give your pet a varied and balanced diet. This is especially true when it comes to protein sources, as these foods tend to be high in fat and should only be given in moderation.

Offer Different Foods At Different Life Stages

Because there are differences in nutritional needs between baby turtles and adult turtles, it’s important to feed your pet the right types of food based on its age. This is because many turtle species have very specific diets, which may change as they develop. For example, red-eared sliders start off as mostly carnivorous, so they can be fed a diet of balanced proteins before moving on to more plant matter as they age.

Even if your pet turtle has dietary needs that are consistent over the course of its life, juvenile turtles typically require food of a different size compared to their adult counterparts. This means that brine shrimp, for example, would be a better choice of protein for babies compared to earthworms.

The secret to helping your pet to grow into a healthy turtle is to feed it the right types of food in gradually increasing amounts. You can also check with your vet to learn about the essential nutrients that are needed for your pet’s age group, as well as what type of supplements should be given on a regular basis.

Take Individual Preferences Into Account

Curious aquarium turtle

As turtle owners, we are all well aware that these intelligent creatures have very specific preferences when it comes to food. Certain brands of turtle food are well-loved by one group of turtles but hated by another, so it’s important to take your pet’s individual likes and dislikes into account when you’re deciding on the right type of food.

Many turtles will also have a preference for all-natural ingredients as this most closely approximates their natural diets. However, other turtles may have a stronger affinity for certain processed foods, so it’s best to experiment with different brands and types of food until you find what your pet loves. Just make sure that the nutrition level is within the appropriate range for your pet, particularly if you’re using fresh food as treats.

If you’re having an especially hard time finding figuring out your turtle’s favorite food, consider rotating between different varieties to give your pet a varied diet. Just remember to meet your pet’s need for a balanced nutrition profile, based on the type of turtle it is.  

Variety Is Often Key

We don’t want to say that variety is a must, because there are certain species of turtles that can be fed a single type of food with no problems. However, most pet turtles will greatly benefit from a variety of foods in their diets, and this is particularly true if they don’t seem to like the brand you’re feeding them.

There are several reasons why it’s beneficial to offer your turtle a wide range of foods as part of their regular diet. Many types of turtle foods have a generic mix of proteins and plant matter, making them ideal as a staple diet that meets the basic nutritional needs of your pet. However, different turtle species require different types of nutrients in their diets, so it’s important to feed your pet a mixed diet to ensure that every nutritional need is met.

At the end of the day, turtles appreciate a varied diet as much as you and I do. As such, it’s important to remember which species of turtle your pet belongs to and make sure that their nutritional requirements are met with a variety of different foods on a regular basis. Not only will this help them stay healthy and happy; it will ensure that your wallet doesn’t suffer too badly!

Don’t Forget The Calcium!

Red-eared turtle have dry feed

We all want to see our turtles healthy and happy, so the final tip on our list is to remember to give them a good source of calcium as part of their regular diets. Calcium is crucial for healthy shell growth and strong bones, so a calcium deficiency could likewise spell trouble for our reptilian friend.

In the wild, turtles get their calcium from eating certain plants and from ingesting dirt or sand as they dig around for grubs and earthworms. You can replicate this in captivity by giving your turtle a cuttlebone or supplying it with a variety of plants in its tank, such as romaine lettuce and collard greens.

You can also opt for calcium sticks or a calcium powder supplement if you feel that none of these sources are quite right for your pet. Whatever method you choose, just remember to go with a reputable brand of calcium supplement so that you know exactly what is going into your turtle’s body. This way, your turtle will develop healthy bones and stay strong throughout their lives.

7 Best Turtle Foods – Reviews and Comparisons

Now that you know the ins and outs of choosing turtle food, it’s time to dive into our reviews of available products on the market. We’ve tested several different types of turtle food for this article, looking at the nutritional value of each variety, the ingredients list, and any potential downsides to feeding it to your pet.

After analyzing the nutritional profiles of dozens of different available options, we’ve narrowed down our list to seven varieties of food that are worth considering. Here they are!

1. Tetra ReptoMin Floating Sticks Turtle & Amphibian Food

Tetra ReptoMin Floating Sticks Turtle & Amphibian Food
  • Balanced turtle and amphibian formula
  • Floating design
  • Easy to digest

The first entry on our list comes from one of the most established brands in the industry. Tetra has been delivering quality products to aquarists for over 50 years, and they do not disappoint with their Reptomin Floating Sticks. These balanced food sticks make the perfect daily diet for aquatic turtles, and their floating design ensures that they do not become compacted at the bottom of your turtle tank setup.

Formulated with calcium and vitamin C, these food sticks are specially designed to promote healthy shell growth and vivid coloration in your pet. The fact that it has an easy-to-digest formula means that it will provide your pet with a complete diet while also being gentle on its digestive system. If your pet has sensitive skin or digestive problems, then these might just be the perfect food for it.

As far as aquatic turtle diets go, this is one of the best available. However, some enthusiasts might find the formula of the Reptomin a little too general for their liking. It is designed to meet the needs of most turtles and amphibians, so this means that it will do a decent job of covering the basics, but it doesn’t go as far as to provide a specialized diet for any particular species.

PROS

  • A balanced formula that promotes vibrant coloration and healthy shell growth
  • Easy-to-digest food.
  • A reputable brand that has been around for over 50 years
  • Suitable for turtles and amphibians alike

CONS

  • Formulated for multiple species, so not as specific as some might like

2. Fluker’s 5 Star Medley Freeze-Dried Aquatic Turtle Treats

Fluker's Aquatic Turtle Medley Treat Food
  • Animal protein mix made up of river shrimp, mealworms, and crickets
  • Freeze-dried protein sources are nutrient-dense

This next product is a little different from the Tetra ReptoMin, in that it promotes a more natural diet for pet turtles. The Falker’s 5 Star Medley is an all-in-one mix made up of river shrimp, mealworms, and crickets that provide your turtle with a nutritious variety of animal-based protein. This makes it an appetizing food that most turtles will relish as a tasty protein source

The fact that this is a freeze-dried medley of ingredients makes it highly nutrient-dense, meaning that your turtle is getting very concentrated protein levels with every meal. This helps to ensure that they get the nourishment from a wide range of sources, but this can be a problem if you’re not careful with how much of this food you give them each day.

Be that as it may, this prey mix has a lot going for it. It is comprised of natural ingredients, so most turtles will have no problem with digestion. The high nutrient content means that they get an excellent source of energy from this food, and the turtle-specific taste is sure to be a hit with your pet. From beginners to expert turtle enthusiasts, everyone seems to love Fluker’s 5 Star Medley Freeze-Dried Aquatic Turtle Treats.

PROS

  • Freeze-dried prey mix that provides a natural source of protein for your pet
  • Promotes vibrant coloration and healthy shell growth.
  • Highly nutritious, containing an excellent concentration of animal-based protein.

CONS

  • Quality can be inconsistent – some reviewers report receiving a large number of crushed insects and debris in the mix.

3. Exo Terra Adult Aquatic Turtle Food

Exo Terra Adult Aquatic Turtle Food, Reptile Food
  • Made with garramus shrimp
  • Balanced formula for turtles

Looking for a dedicated aquatic turtle food blend that will meet all of your pet’s nutritional needs? Then look no further than the Exo Terra Adult Aquatic Turtle Food. This is balanced turtle food to provide exactly what turtles need as they grow and mature, and with high-quality ingredients such as Garramus shrimp, you can rest assured that this food will meet your turtle’s dietary requirements.

Like most commercially formulated base food, the Exo Terra contains a balanced amount of protein, vitamins, and minerals that provide turtles with all the nourishment they need to grow quickly and stay healthy. Though it is best to supplement your turtle’s diet with an alternative source of food for variety, it is not strictly necessary with the Exo Terra.

In spite of its widespread popularity, this is not a choice of food that is without its critics. A few reviewers have noted that it turns tank water dirty and green upon contact, which could indicate that has a lot of food coloring. In addition, some turtles refuse to eat it and will become underweight and sluggish if fed exclusively on this food alone. However, this has a lot to do with the individual food habit of the turtle, so it is certainly not a reason to avoid this product.

PROS

  • Balanced formula that promotes vibrant coloration and healthy shell growth
  • Contains high-quality ingredients such as Garramus shrimp for increased nutrient content.

CONS

  • May turn fresh water green upon contact indicating lots of artificial coloring.
  • Some turtles refuse to eat it, though this can be attributed to personal preference.

4. Zoo Med Natural Maintenance Formula Aquatic Turtle Food

Zoo Med Zm113 Natural Aquatic Turtle Food
  • Comes in three pellet sizes: Hatchling, Growth, and Maintenance
  • Hatchling formula is protein-dense while the adult formulas are more balanced

The next entry on our list is the Zoo Med Natural Maintenance Formula Aquatic Turtle Food. This one is a little different from the first two products we’ve looked at that come in three different pellet sizes, each with a blend of nutrients designed to give your turtle an appropriate amount of essential minerals as part of a complete meal.

Though most of the basic nutrients are the same across all three food options, there are a few differences. The smallest size is intended for hatchlings and very young turtles and contains a higher protein composition to promote quick growth. Meanwhile, the growth and maintenance options have a more balanced formula that will cater to slightly more mature aquatic turtles.

Being able to select an option with the right balance of minerals for your turtle’s life stage ensures that they will be able to get the correct amount of nourishment when it is needed most. This degree of personalization, coupled with the fact that it contains no artificial colors or preservatives, makes this entry one of the best food for turtles available today.

PROS

  • Comes in three different pellet sizes that are tailored to suit your turtle’s age and size.
  • No artificial colors or preservatives – guaranteed healthy for your aquatic turtle.
  • Contains high-quality ingredients to ensure proper nutrient content.

CONS

  • Pieces of food break apart, requiring a good turtle filter to handle the mess.
  • Eats through much larger amounts of filtration media than other commercial foods, ensuring that the tank needs to be cleaned often when it is fed regularly.

5. Ultra Fresh – Turtle Nutri Stick with Probiotics

Ultra Fresh - Turtle Nutri Stick
  • Contains probiotic additives 
  • Distinctive sword prawn flavor
  • 3:1 Calcium to Phosphorus ratio eliminates the need for supplements

Ever heard of probiotics in the context of aquatic turtles? If not, don’t worry as you’re not alone. Probiotics are types of bacteria that promote nutrient uptake and increased health in human beings and other animals. In addition, probiotics also prevent your tank from getting too dirty. This is just one of the reasons why we’ve included the Ultra Fresh – Turtle Nutri Stick with Probiotics on our list as it is one of the most innovative products in its category.

Probiotic food additives are not new, but they are rare nonetheless. Thus, if your turtle is in need of this kind of diet to promote better nutrient absorption and digestion, you will be pleased with the results that this product delivers. As for how it tastes? This particular kind of turtle food has a distinctive sword prawn flavor, making it one of the more unique options on our list.

Additionally, Ultra Fresh boasts that its calcium and vitamin D composition eliminates the need for extra supplements. The 3:1 calcium to phosphorus ratio will support healthy growth and shell development in aquatic turtles, while the vitamin D3 content will help to reduce stress and prevent diseases like rickets. All of this contributes to your pet’s health and well-being, making it an excellent choice for people who would like to give their turtle the very best staple food on the market.

PROS

  • Promotes healthy shell development and reduces stress in turtles.
  • Unique sword prawn flavor
  • Provides the right balance of nutrients without excess supplementation.

CONS

  • Turtle may not take to it immediately if they aren’t used to this type of food; be patient, though, as most pets adjust within a few days.

6. Fluker’s Aquatic Turtle Buffet Blend Food

Fluker's Buffet Blend Aquatic Formula Turtle Food
  • Mix of pellets and freeze-dried mealworms and shrimp
  • Pellets are fortified with vitamins and calcium

The Fluker’s Aquatic Turtle Buffet Blend Food is a good option for aquatic turtle owners who are looking for a little bit of everything. This unique blend of pellets, mealworms, and shrimp allows you to feed your turtles a good mix of commercially produced food and animal-derived protein without needing to purchase a bunch of different types of turtle food from the pet store.

In addition to this, there are a few other advantages that turtles will enjoy when you feed them with this product. You can use it as a staple diet or mix it into other foods for added flavor and taste; it’s up to you. The pellets are fortified with vitamins and calcium to ensure proper bone development and shell strength. Meanwhile, the freeze-dried shrimp and mealworms serve as yummy high-protein foods that will nourish your tummy and your soul.

Price-wise, Fluker’s Buffet Blend allows you to feed your pets a balanced diet without burning a hole in your wallet. It’s a little cheaper than Fluker’s 5-Star Medley as it contains pellets mixed with a wide variety of yummy treats such as shrimp and mealworms, but it’s still a decent choice if you have variances in the number of aquarium inhabitants that you need to feed. In fact, many aquarists appreciate the convenience that this product offers!

PROS

  • Contains freeze-dried shrimp and mealworms for added protein and flavor
  • Comes at an affordable price point
  • Great staple diet or mix-in for added taste

CONS

  • Some turtles don’t like the pellets mixed with shrimp and mealworms; this can be remedied by soaking them in some fish juice, though
  • Pellets turn the water cloudy when they disintegrate

7. Mazuri Turtle Diet

Mazuri Aquatic Turtle Diet
  • Made with fish as its primary protein source
  • Chicken byproduct as a secondary protein source
  • Contains vitamin E, D, and calcium

The Mazuri Turtle Diet is a classic example of a product that underpromises but over-delivers. At first glance, it looks like any other run-of-the-mill turtle food product because the pellet shape is similar to others in its category. However, when you read the label and follow its feeding instructions, you’ll find that it’s actually much more than your average reptile food!

For example, this particular product contains natural vitamin E for superior antioxidant support. It’s also packed with calcium and vitamins D3 and A for better shell and bone development, as well as improved immune system functionality. All of these benefits contribute to a turtle that is more active and agile, which then leads to healthier growth, appearance, and life span.

In addition, the main ingredient of this Mazuri Diet is fish meal, which means that it also serves as a great source of animal-derived protein. This means that you’ll be able to cut down on the number of different foods that you need to feed your turtles, making it an excellent choice for pet owners that are looking for something convenient.

PROS

  • Highly nutritious and balanced for complete health
  • Supports natural vitamin E antioxidant support
  • Comes in pellet form; easy to feed your turtles with less mess

CONS

  • Some turtles may not like the fish meal taste
  • Many reviewers prefer not to feed their turtles with poultry, but the Mezuri contains chicken by-product

Conclusion

We hope this list of the best turtle foods has been useful to you. At the end of the day, there’s no one-size-fits-all solution when it comes to keeping your turtles healthy and happy. We encourage you to take advantage of the information compiled in this guide and experiment with different products to come up with a diet regimen that works best for your pets.

What do you think? Did we miss anything? What are some of your favorite turtle foods, and why? Let us know in the comments! And if you know someone who’s looking to purchase turtle food, share this with them! Thank you as always for reading, and happy feeding!

Wanda is a second-generation aquarist from the sunny tropics of Malaysia. She has been helping her father with his freshwater tanks since she was a toddler, and has fallen in love with the hobby ever since. A perpetual nomad, Wanda does her best to integrate fish-keeping with her lifestyle, and has taken care of fish in three different continents. She loves how it provides a nice break from the hustle and bustle of life.

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