What Do Baby Lizards Eat? (You Might Be Shocked)

If you are new to lizard ownership, or even if you are just starting to learn about them, you may be curious about what baby lizards eat. After looking into this I was surprised what I found.

What do baby lizards eat? Baby lizards eat exactly the same as an adult lizard, there is no baby specific food for them. Depending on the type of lizard, they may hatch from an egg or have a live birth. Regardless, they don’t receive much in the way of maternal care and start eating just like their mother.

Quantity of Food

What they eat will, of course, be affected by their size and hunting skills. For example, a baby carnivore may be limited to eating worms and ants until he is older. As he matures he will gain the size and skills to hunt grasshoppers, crickets and other more elusive prey.

Do Baby Lizards have smaller prey?

As discussed, Baby lizards do eat the same foods as their adult counterparts. They are, of course, smaller, so the prey will also need to be smaller as well. For example, there are many different sizes of crickets.

A good pet store will have them sorted by size, which allows you to be sure that your lizard will be able to use the entire batch of crickets you purchase.

In the wild, a baby lizard and adult lizard will have some differences in their diet as well. Although the baby has the same nutritional needs as the adult, he is unlikely to be as effective at hunting and foraging as an adult.

These are skills he will need to develop as he matures. Younger lizards will also spend more of their day on gathering food and eating, just because they aren't as efficient at it as their adult counterparts.

What types of foods do baby lizards eat?

Baby lizards eat the same foods as adults. If the lizard is a herbivore, it will consume plants. If its an omnivore it will consume meat as well as plants. And if it is a  carnivore, it will consume meat, more on each of these types of diets later.

It is that way from birth. A baby lizard is born with all of the digestive tools it needs to eat an adult diet.

If you are caring for a baby lizard, go ahead and offer it the same diet that you would offer an adult. Do not worry that he is too young to handle live prey. It is good for them nutritionally and it provides mental stimulation.

You will want to monitor the feeding sessions and remove any uneaten prey after about 20 minutes. that gives the baby lizard enough time to eat, and removing excess prevents the prey from chewing on him while he is resting and also from soiling the cage.

What do baby lizards drink?

Baby lizards need water, just like adults. Lizards in general, however, are not really drinkers in the conventional sense.

Put it this way, It is unlikely that you will find your pet lizard crouched over its water bowl, lapping water up like a dog.

However, just because they don’t drink much doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t have a constant supply of fresh water available.

Some reptiles also benefit from occasional misting with water. Having live plants and natural substrate in their cage can help keep humidity levels up as well, which they find beneficial.

In fact, most lizards, or at least some types of lizards, obtain water by soaking it into their skin rather than drinking.

Keep an eye on the quality of the water in the cage. Because lizards are such light drinkers, it can be tempting to let the bowl sit between cage cleanings.

It is important that fresh water is available at all times. Your lizard is more likely to drink fresh water rather than water that has been sitting and stagnant water is not a healthy environment. even if the water looks untouched, dump and add fresh water daily.

What do insectivore Baby lizards eat?

An insectivore lizard eats insects, as the name suggests. What type of insects it eats depends on what is available in the wild where it originated and its size.

Some common insects enjoyed by insectivore lizards are crickets, roaches, and other small invertebrates.

Insectivores would technically be considered carnivores because they eat meat. The term insectivore is used to differentiate between lizards that eat small prey, such as insects and larger insects that eat rodents, frogs, and other lizards.

What do Baby carnivorous lizards eat?

A carnivorous lizard eats meat. Depending on the size of the lizard, this may be small, like insects or much larger, like mice, frogs, and other lizards. Carnivorous lizards are typically differentiated from insectivores by the size of what they eat. Even carnivorous lizards, however, will eat insects.

Young carnivores will hone their hunting skills on more manageable small prey, such as insects, while they mature. As they get older, they will be more competent hunting and move up to larger prey. They will probably never give up insects entirely, however, and will eat what is available, depending on hunting conditions.

What do Baby herbivore lizards eat?

Herbivore lizards limit their diets to various types of plants. Exactly what they eat depends on where the lizard lives and its size, but they generally eat foods such as greens, carrots, and apples in captivity, and plants that are native to their location in the wild.

It is important to offer a wide variety of foods to your herbivore lizard. They typically do not have huge appetites, and will definitely have favorite foods. If they aren't offered a good bit of variety in their diet, the chances of developing nutritional deficiencies are greatly increased.

While it is fine to offer your pet his favorite foods on a regular basis, and even special treats, such as fruit baby food, on occasions, overall the diet should include lots of variety.

Related Questions:

Is a Marine Iguana a herbivore?

The marine iguana is considered an herbivore, as it only eats plants, but it actually is even more specific than that. The Marine iguana is unique in that it forages at sea for its food. Its entire diet is made up almost entirely of algae.

The females of the species, along with the smaller males, forage along the intertidal zone at low tide, while larger males dive to feed.

Is a Gila monster a carnivore?

The Gila monster eats a strictly meat-based diet, so it is considered a carnivore. It is rather slow moving, however, which limits its prey. The Gila monster’s diet is mainly made up of reptile and bird eggs. It rounds out its diet with small mammals and reptiles, insects and frogs.

Do lizards like eating crickets

Some varieties of lizards, such as the iguana, are herbivores. They do not eat any meat. For other varieties, both carnivores and omnivores, crickets are often a tasty treat.

Crickets have long been a popular choice for feeding domesticated lizards. They are widely available, affordable, and come in a variety of sizes. While a consistent diet of one type of food is not the best way to feed your pet lizard, some of the drawbacks can be overcome by a process known as gut-loading.

In the past, crickets were often sprinkled with a supplement powder before being placed in the cage with the lizard. When the lizard eats the cricket, he receives his vitamin and mineral supplements as well.

Gut loading takes this process one step further. When you gut load crickets, you feed them a particularly nutritious diet. Then, when the lizard has his meal of crickets, he gets the benefits of the nutrition the crickets have enjoyed.

Do lizards eat ants?

Many types of lizards will eat ants, including fence lizards and many types of horned lizards. Ants are a particularly popular food for desert lizards. Lizards will often lie in wait near the anthill and get his prey as they enter or exit their home.

Omnivore lizards will often round out their diets by eating specific plants that grow around the anthills. This is an efficient method of feeding, as it minimizes the amount of energy that is spent on feeding.

What fruit and vegetables do lizards eat?

The main consideration when planning a diet for a lizard is that it includes variety. Lizards will consume many different types of fruits and vegetables, but it is important that they are given that option. 

They may seem to love a particular food, but if that is all they eat, they will be much more likely to develop nutritional deficiencies. A variety of foods helps ensure they get all of the vitamins and minerals they need.

Greens are rich in nutrition, so dark green lettuce, such as romaine and Boston, spinach, collard greens, and kale are all good choices. Other good sources of nutrition include zucchini, squash, carrots, sweet potatoes, okra, beans, broccoli, bell peppers, and even frozen mixed vegetables.

If you have access to flowers that have not been treated with pesticides, many types make an excellent treat for lizards. They enjoy hibiscus, rose and other flower petals.

The majority of an herbivore’s diet should be made up of vegetables, but some fruit is fine. They often enjoy grapes, blueberries, kiwi, strawberries, plums, apples, peaches, figs, and tomatoes.

Any fruits, vegetables or plants that you plan to feed your lizard should be washed thoroughly before feeding. Wash with a mild dish soap or a little produce wash and rinse well immediately before eating.

Be particularly careful of flowers and plants gathered from lawns that may have been treated with pesticides or even chemical ferilizers.

What do wild lizards eat?

The diet of a wild lizard depends on what type of lizard it is. Lizards are either carnivores, meaning they only eat meat, herbivores, meaning they only eat vegetables, or omnivores, meaning they eat some combination of both.

Aside from what the lizard requires nutritionally, the decision over what he eats is dictated by what he can find. Smaller lizards typically eat insects, while larger lizards can eat small mammals, frogs, and other reptiles. Their speed is also a factor, for example, the Gila monster is large, but slow, so is limited in what type of prey he eats.

What do pet (captive) lizards eat?

Pet lizards often eat a diet of commercially prepared food. While this is fine to a point, it is important to supplement this commercial food with fresh additions. 

Depending on the type of lizard, this may mean fruits and vegetables, insects, or a combination. Even the highest quality commercial diet needs supplementation to help pet lizards remain healthy and happy.

Regardless of the type of foods your pet lizard eats, it is important that he is fed in a way that helps keep him happy in his home. Commercial foods, fruits, and vegetables should be fed in a low sided bowl which he can easily access. 

Don't put the food directly on the substrate. If you do this, it will break down and work its way into the substrate, making the cage dirty and creating an odor. Live prey that isn't consumed at mealtime should be removed for hygiene reasons as well.

If feeding live prey, it is important that the food is itself healthy. Purchase from a reputable source and don't feed any crickets or other prey that are already dead, seem lethargic, or smell odd.

Just as gut loading allows you to improve your lizard's health, feeding your pet prey that is diseased, malnourished or is infested with parasites can have a negative effect on his health.

What about desert lizards, what do they eat?

It is hard to argue that the desert provides tough living conditions. Lizards that live in this environment are used to spending a great deal of their time hunting and gathering meals. When conditions are very tough, lizards have a way of coping.

When the temperature gets extremely high, lizards go underground, where it is cooler, and undergo estivation, which is similar to hibernation. Their heart rate and breathing rate drops and they do not require as much food and water to function as they normally would.

The diet of desert lizards often includes crickets, ants, grasshoppers, and other invertebrates. They often conceal themselves under the sand, with only their head exposed. They then wait motionlessly for their prey to wander too close.

In general, how often do lizards eat?

How often a lizard eats depends on a variety of things, including its size, the type of lizard it is, and how active it is.

Whether you feed a lizard twice a day or every other day, it is important to go back after 20 minutes or so and clean out any remaining food. Fruit and vegetables will quickly go rancid and soil the cage, while live food that isn’t eaten may attack your lizard while he is resting.

As a general rule, a younger lizard will eat more often than an older lizard, and a more active lizard will eat more than a less active one. If all of the food you offer is cleaned up after 15 or 20 minutes, you should either offer more food at each feeding or feed more often.


It is very important that your lizard get enough of the right type of food. Without it, his health will suffer and you may not realize it immediately. Because lizards are cold blooded you may not notice sedentary behavior, slowed respiration or other signs he may not be feeling his best.

Making sure you offer good quality food, a wide variety, and enough of it are all ways to ensure his health over the long term.

Lizards make amazing pets, but it is important to learn how to properly care for them. One type of lizard is not exactly like another. They all have vast differences in what they require to maintain their health and well-being. Knowing what to feed your lizard can help it remain a healthy and happy part of your family for years to come.

I hope you found this article informative. I enjoyed sharing this information with you and hope you learned something from it. Lizards are fascinating creatures, and there are so many varieties that it is interesting to learn about the wide range of nutritional needs each one has.

Was this article beneficial to you? I hope you’ll let me know in the comments what you liked about the article and any other information you think should have been included or questions you may still have. If you felt like this article was beneficial, I hope you will share it.


Hi, this is me with my daughter and my Lizard friend. I hope you enjoy my research. Please feel free to check out my "About Me" page to find out more about me.

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