What Fruits Do Lizards Eat? (You may be surprised!)
Lizards are typically herbivores (Vegetarians) or insectivores (meat-eaters). But, you may be keen to understand if they eat fruits. And, if they do eat fruits what types of fruits are acceptable. Let me explain…
What fruits do lizards eat? In general, for those species that eat fruit (more on this later), they can consume apples, strawberries, grapes, and Melons. However, with literally thousands of different Lizard species, this is quite a general statement. Why? Because some lizards cannot eat fruits at all.
Now you know some of the fruits that these lizards eat, let me explain some of the qualities of these fruits and why they will be beneficial to some lizards. Also, the different types of lizards that actually eat these fruits, and much more. Keep reading.
Why these Fruits are Lizard Friendly
In this section, I am going to explain some detail about the fruits that some lizards consume. I will explain what’s great about the fruit as well as explaining how thye should be prepared, before handing them to your lizard.
Apples are typically quite big for the average-sized lizard. So, its good practice to cut up the apple into bite-sized pieces. Also, it is important to remove the seeds before you feed them the apple. Why? This apple seeds can be quite toxic for lizards.
There are many types of Melons available. For Lizards, honeydew melons are usually best. Like apples, they are big fruits. So you need to prepare them by cutting them up and removing the core and melon seeds inside.
Strawberries have some good qualities, such as being high in oxalates (Oxalic Acid, arguably a good thing). However, as the other fruits mentioned, these need to be prepped first. This includes removing the top of the strawberry (the green bit), as well as the stem.
This is great, mainly for their antioxidants (this basically means it has the ability to remove damaging oxidizing agents). Even so, they need to be moderated. Basically, don’t go crazy with these.
Like strawberries, this is high in Oxalates. To prepare these, you can either crush them or chop them up into smaller portions. I understand they are small as they are, but it is still necessary to do this.
What lizards eat fruits?
Now that you understand a selection of fruits that some lizards can consume. Let me explain which lizards are known to actually consume Fruits. Some Lizards will eat only insects, while others do not (Click here to see which lizards do not need Live insects).
There are many different species of Iguana. But, more specifically, the following Iguanas are known to consume fruits:
- Rhinoceros Iguana.
- Desert Iguana.
I summary, these lizards are not ideal for beginners for a number of reasons. They typically eat vegetables, fruits. For example, Bananas and Apples.
Argentine Black and White Tegu
These Tegus (How Often Should a Tegu Eat? Click here to see) are big fans of insects and fruits. In fact if you are not careful they will overeat. So it is important to watch their eating habits to avoid obesity.
The Chuckwallas (Learn more about their feeding habits here) mainly eat fruits and vegetation. They also rely on their food intake to cater to their water consumption (Meaning they get their water from their food). They can be difficult to keep, mainly because of their need for quite high temperatures in their basking area.
The Blue-Tongue Skink is quite a popular one amongst lizard keepers, mainly because they have reasonable demands for their enclosures (Can a Blue Tongue Skink Live in a 40 Gallon Tank? (Click here to see)). They are also fruit fans, as well as consuming insects as well.
Is it a good idea to feed your lizard Fruit?
If you are wondering if it’s a good idea to feed your lizard fruit, I am going to explain why you may want to hold back a bit. Also, I am going to let you know of something you should be careful of before you feed any fruit to your lizard as well.
Just because it’s tasty, doesn’t mean its good!
I remember munching on a delicious burger (I won’t mention the brand name, but I think you can guess) and the melted cheese squeezing out. At that moment, I couldn’t think of anything better.
Unfortunately, roll forward 3 months later, when I needed to cut weight for summer, I remembered that day, for some reason it wasn’t as good thinking back on it, not that I had to get rid of the burden it left behind.
My point is, yes, Lizards may well eat fruits. But, that does not mean it is a great nutritious meal for them, are you with me?
Some lizards, like the Beardie, will happily eat fruits, but digesting it is another thing. Basically, by all means serve some fruit if your lizard is into it. But keep it in moderation, are you with me?
Can all lizards eat the same fruits?
No. Talking about lizards as a collective is quite a dangerous thing in general. Especially when we discuss their diet. Why? Because there are so many different species, there is really not a one-size-fits-all.
The reality is, each lizard species have their own preferences and nuances. Therefore, depending on your particular lizard, do your research first, to ensure you can eat the fruit.
Fruits to avoid
If you have a long list of available fruits, its a good practice to read this section first. Because I will be explaining some fruits that need to be avoided. I will also explain why they should be avoided to enrich your understanding.
In general, the following types should be avoided:
- High Water content fruits.
- Fruit Seeds & rinds.
Citrus fruits, such as Oranges, Lime and Grapefruit should be avoided. As tempting as it may be, or even if you feel that your lizard seems to like it, steer clear. Why?
Simple, these fruits are quite acidic. They can upset your lizard’s stomach. Also, other issues such as diarrhea or even vomit. So, for these reasons its a good idea to avoid them.
High Water content Fruits
Some fruits (and veg) have high water content. For us, they may seem refreshing, but for lizards, they can cause problems. For e.g. Tomatoes (yes, they are fruits).
These fruits offer little to no nutritional value and due to their high water content, they can cause diarrhea issues for your lizard. As a general rule, you should avoid high water content veg, such as cucumbers as well.
Fruit Seeds & rinds.
With any fruit that qualifies as “ok”, you still need to take precaution. Why? Because, even though the actual meat of the fruit is ok, the seeds or rinds are not.
An example of this is apples. Yes, some lizards are fine with these. But, the apple core and seeds is not lizard friendly. So, make sure you chop them up, remove the core and seeds before serving them up.
Can lizards also eat vegetables?
With all this talk about fruits. You may be wondering if they can also eat veg. So, for that reason in this section, I will explain a bit more about this.
The short answer is Yes. There are some lizards that love veg, and in fact, some primarily eat veg. An example of these are the following:
- Uromastyx (Click here for more detail on this Uromastyx ).
- Bearded Dragons.
- Blue-tongued Skinks.
The general rule for veg & fruit
While there are some lizards that eat veg, the key thing is variety. If your lizard will eat turnips, for example, doesn’t mean you need him turnips every day, are you with me?
Mix it up and offer a variety of veg. Why? Because each vegetable has different nutritional benefits, and the variety provides a balanced diet.