What Fruits Can Baby Turtles Eat?

Green turtles with yellow and black head and neck floating in a piece of wood in the lake eating banana

The information is current and up-to-date in accordance with the latest veterinarian research.

I always provide fresh fruits like watermelon, kiwi, mangoes, etc., as treats to my turtles. However, many turtle owners believe that baby turtles can eat all types of fruits. But that’s not the case at all. So, what fruits can baby turtles eat?

Baby turtles can eat apples, berries, mangoes, watermelons, bananas, kiwis, papayas, and other fruits. On the contrary, you should avoid feeding highly acidic fruits like lemons, avocados, etc., to baby turtles.

read all our guides on baby turtle feeding!

Key Takeaways

  • Baby turtles love to munch down on sweet fruits.
  • Fruits shouldn’t replace vegetables or protein sources in a baby turtle’s diet.
  • Bite-sized pieces are preferable for baby turtles to avoid choking hazards.
  • Baby turtles can’t efficiently digest banana peels or fruit skins.

Can Baby Turtles Eat Fruits?

Baby turtles can eat fruits but in moderation. A balanced diet for baby turtles should include fruits sparingly to strengthen their immunity system. The vitamins can help with shell and bone growth during the developmental stage.

[Read More: How Often Do Baby Turtles Eat?]

Fruits are a great source of vitamins A, B, D, E, and K for baby turtles. Insufficient Vitamin A and E can lead to shell deformity and premature cracking.

Again, lack of Vitamin D can lead to shell discoloration in baby turtles. Baby turtles can get vitamin D from both fruits and UV light.

Hence, besides fruits, ensuring your baby turtles have been adequately basking is also essential. Again, if the baby turtles lack the energy to move or hunt live food, they likely need more vitamin B in their diet as it helps to store energy.

Suitable Fruits For Baby Turtles

Here’s a list of some suitable fruits for baby turtles alongside their benefits –

BananaGreat source of vitamin B-complex.
WatermelonGreat for hydration.
MangoProvides vitamin C and E to baby turtles. Good for antioxidants, too.
PapayaEasy and soft to eat, helps to boost immunity power in baby turtles.
AppleGreat source of antioxidants. Favorite treat of red-eared sliders.
CantaloupeHelps to include fiber, phosphorus, calcium, etc., in the diet.
BlueberryHelps to battle bacterial infections and improves blood quality.
RaspberryTasty and sweet – helps baby turtles to be more interested in fruits.
KiwiGood source of fiber in a turtle’s diet and improves metabolic strength.
PearIncreases blood circulation, helps to strengthen bone and carapace.
StrawberryFull of antioxidants and vitamin C.

Fruits are a great way to convince your baby turtles to try different food groups. If the babies still seem uninterested in food, check out – Why Is My Baby Turtle Not Eating?

How To Safely Give Fruits To Baby Turtles?

It’s reckless to give fruits to baby turtles without preparing them first. They can choke or injure themselves badly if you give them small or spiky fruits.

Again, baby turtles can dislike fruits with skin as they can’t digest roughage as quickly as adult turtles early on.

Here are a few tips you can follow to give fruits safely to baby turtles –

Wash The Fruits Properly

Wash the dirt off the fruits first so that the baby turtles don’t ingest any insecticides by mistake. Always provide fresh and clean fruits as treats to baby and adult turtles.

[Read More: What Do Baby Turtles Eat In The Wild?]

Peel The Fruits

Before giving them to baby turtles, peel fruits like mangoes, cantaloupes, bananas, watermelons, etc. They don’t have sufficient jaw power yet to puncture through the skin like adult turtles.

Again, their stomach can’t digest the skin properly either. So, it’s best to avoid fruit skins altogether.

Chop The Fruits Into Bite-Sized Pieces

Baby turtles can’t break down whole fruits easily. Smaller fruits like grapes are significant choking hazards for baby turtles. So, after washing and peeling the fruits, chop them into bite-sized pieces so the turtle can eat them comfortably without risking any injuries.

Avoid Acidic Fruits

Avoid giving your baby turtles lemons, pineapples, etc., as they’re highly acidic. Avocados aren’t good for turtles, either.

While vitamin C is vital to boost immunity in baby turtles, too much can derail their metabolic rate. They can experience stomach aches and diarrhea as well.

Remove The Seeds

If you’re giving mangoes or sweet oranges to the baby turtles, remove the seeds first so they don’t choke. Again, if the seeds are too small, like dragon fruit seeds, there shouldn’t be any problem.

Juice The Fruits

If your baby turtles refuse to eat fruits, you can juice them to ensure they still get the vitamins. My personal favorite trick is to soak some pellets with fruit juice so that the nutritional value stays intact throughout the meal.

Before You Go

Turtles love to munch on fruits! As such, it’s only natural for pet owners to know which fruits suit baby turtles. However, make sure to give fruits in moderation, as too much citric acid can mess with the metabolism rate of baby turtles.

To know more about the feeding habits of baby turtles, go over – What Do Newborn Turtles Eat?

About Author

Muntaseer Rahman started keeping pet turtles back in 2013. He also owns the largest Turtle & Tortoise Facebook community in Bangladesh. These days he is mostly active on Facebook.


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