Feeding the Pogona: what insects or plants to feed it?

Beginner terrarists easily choose the pogona (or bearded agame) to start their activity. It is indeed an easy animal to maintain, thanks to a health considered robust, and to the peaceful temperament. It is still necessary to document oneself beforehand in order to offer him good living conditions. This article focuses on the most appropriate diet to ensure good health for your pogona.

What does a pogona eat in its natural environment?

Welcoming and caring for pets requires taking an interest in their natural living conditions because it is important to get as close as possible to them. Animals are in fact the result of a gradual adaptation to the environment in which they evolve, the result of slow evolution. Also, even if an animal, like the pogona, is successful to the point of multiplying in homes and reaching the rank of the New Pets (NAC) in vogue, it is unable to adapt in a single generation. to living conditions different from those he experiences in the wild.

The pogona is a lizard that lives in Australia where 8 different species have been recorded. In the desert areas where the pogona is used to evolving, the temperatures are extremely high. It’s an animal omnivorous which feeds on plants (flowers, fruits and green leaves) and live animals which are hunted on the lookout. These can be small vertebrates (insects, arachnids, worms…), small rodents or other lizards, the size of which is adapted to his. We observe that the protein requirements of the animal gradually decrease with age: young pogonas eat a meat diet in a proportion of 80%, while adults, from the age of 4 years, are vegetarians to 80%.

The bearded agame therefore does not feed in the same way whether it is juvenile or adult. It is essential to respect the evolution of your pogona’s diet, otherwise it may waste away quickly.

What insects can you feed your pogona?

To stay as close as possible to its wild life conditions, it is recommended to place them living in the terrarium. It is indeed important that the pogona can mobilize its hunting instincts and hunt them on the lookout as it could in the wild.

Moreover, if it selects suitable prey in nature, in captivity, it takes what you give it. The size of the preys that you give to your pogona must therefore be chosen with care: you should never offer them insects larger than the gap that separates them. their 2 eyes, otherwise it could injure itself by swallowing its prey. Once a week, the prey can be sprinkled with a little powdered calcium.

For a captive animal, the variety of the diet contributes a lot to its well-being. But the list of insects you can give is not very long:

  • Crickets,
  • Locusts,
  • Grasshoppers,
  • Cockroaches.

Insects can be found in specialty reptile stores or pet stores. It is often stated that you can also give morios, mealworms and beehive moths. But they are very fat and ultimately low in protein. They are therefore to be considered only as sweets, and again. In addition, they are animals that do not require any effort to be consumed. Your pogona may quickly get used to it, and thereby refuse other sources of food which are more profitable for it.

A pogona will always ask for food. Don’t let yourself be impressed and don’t overfeed him. It’s a fact: some people eat more than others. Here are the maximum amounts you can give them depending on their age:

  • From 2 to 6 months, a pogona can eat up to 20 crickets per day,
  • From 6 months to 1 year, he will only eat a maximum of 10 crickets per day,
  • From 10 months, you will start to let a day pass from time to time without insects,
  • From the age of one, a pogona will only consume the equivalent of 3 to 4 crickets, 2 times a week.

What plants can you give to your pogona?

The protein intake is supplemented by plants. Unlike insects, plants are given at will, regardless of the age of the pogona. You should always remove the leftovers from the day before and give fresh vegetables every day. You have more choices than insects.

The list below is a safe list. You must wash the plants carefully and cut them into very small pieces to avoid obstructions in the animal’s digestive system:

  • Alfalfa,
  • Dandelion,
  • Wild chicory,
  • Dried nettle,
  • Rocket,
  • Cress,
  • Fennel,
  • Fig,
  • Turnip tops,
  • Swiss chard,
  • Chewed up,
  • Chervil,
  • Endive.

Foods not to give to a pogona

Below is a list of toxic or problematic foods for pogona digestion. You should therefore never give them:

  • The potato, cooked or raw,
  • The tomato, whether in fruit, leaf or seeds,
  • Red fruits such as strawberries or raspberries,
  • Green beans,
  • Broccoli,
  • Cabbage,
  • Spinach,
  • The lawyer.

You now know the basics of good nutrition for your pogona. With experience, you can enlarge the list of plants, always taking care to find out about their non-toxicity beforehand.