Articles, Blog

Blue Tongue Skink Food – Brief Basics #3


What does a blue tongue skink eat in captivity? You are watching Reptile Mountain TV’s Brief
Basics Series: because facts matter. Welcome to my channel I’m TC Houston and
this video is sponsored by Kages Custom Reptile Enclosures, this company is my favorite when
it comes to PVC enclosures. Check their link in the description. What is a good staple diet for a blue tongue
skink? To answer this question we first have to start
by asking the question, “what is the function of food?” Foods are the substances that are consumed
by biological organisms that contain nutrients which are elements essential for biological
activity. Most vertebrates function off the same types
of nutrients in different levels and in different ways. The method in which vertebrates acquire these
nutrients is directly related to their natural history aka their life and behavior in the
wild. Simply put nutrition and diets it a lot like
a childrens” shape sorting toy. The goal it to put the correct shaped block
into the correct shaped hole. There isn’t a ton of published information
on blue tongue skink diets in the wild and since their geographic range is so incredibly
vast each species and subspecies even local populations will likely have variability in
what shaped holes they need filled and how much of each. So based on what we know of their natural
history we understand that blue tongues are opportunistic, omnivore, generalists. Aka a garbage disposal. They will eat almost anything they find appealing. That’s about where the peer reviewed answers
stop and we now have to go to the historical generalized anecdotal experiences of keepers. It is important to understand that the vast
majority of herpetocultural knowledge is specifically derived from such accounts making them highly
valid and essential to contemporary husbandry. What we’ve learned over the past 50 years
is that blue tongues do indeed respond well physiologically to an omnivore diet which
is a mix of animal proteins and vegetation. Over the past 10 to 15 years the increase
in communication between keepers around the globe has brought more anecdotal reports than
ever before. You might be a bit skeptical of what I’m
about to say next and to be truthful initially so was I. Yet, after really taking a deep dive into
those anecdotal accounts and my own personal experiences of over 30 years keeping reptiles
I can say with steadfast confidence that feeding canned wet dog food as a staple has consistently
demonstrated to exhibit the most positive result over any other form of diet. So like I just said if you are skeptical,
you are not alone. I was there with you. I know what I’m saying can sound offensive
and even repugnant. Yet, time and time again animals fed dog food
as a staple are more robust, more vigorous, breed more readily, have larger and more sizeable
litters, and even here is the big one live longer. Now to say the primary causative factor in
longevity is dog food is going too far. However, we know that all the observable traits
I just mentioned are consistently associated with animals fed dog food as major portion
of their diet. We also know that nutrition is associated
with health and health with longevity and the oldest reported blue tongues were fed
a diet of primarily dog food. Undeniably in most cases these dog food based
diets produce animals that are outliving their counterparts fed a homebrew aka homemade diet. Still, there is much more to a blue tongues
diet than just grabbing a can of wet dog chow from the grocery store. I recommend adding vegetation to an adults
food as well as rotating other omnivore foods such as Omni gold or bluey buffet. Do you have to? No. There are many breeders doing great using
just wet dog food. As for my stats, I average 8-10 babies per
litter, I’ve only have one still born ever, zero deformities, and this past season I had
100% fertility and live births among my Northerns. Could that be sheer luck, absolutely, could
that be my small sample size meaning I haven’t bred enough long enough, absolutely, sure
could. Or could it be husbandry differences including
diet? Who knows??? Food for thought I guess… Anyway as for added veg I highly recommend
Healthy Herp Instant Meals as the fastest, easiest, and fully nutritional solution. A keeper can simply mix a 3:1 by volume dog
food to healthy herp product so as to provide a lean nutrition packed meal. To find out more about skink diets please
please go check out this video here (keep in mind this was filmed before the release
of the healthy herp product so it isn’t mentioned) , also can you help me out by avoiding
repetitive questions simply by watching this video FIRST then hit me up with questions. Thank you for watching! Thanks to my subscribers! If you’re not one yet you should become
one so Hit that button and that bell! A huge thank you to my Patrons you are amazing. Remember opinion is not fact.!

14 Comments

  1. Lisa M Author

    I'm wondering if skinks could also eat the frozen raw dog food diets like instinct and others? In rotation with regular canned is what I had in mind but the ingredients seem similar besides one being raw.

    Reply
  2. keoni adolpho Author

    I was skeptical about feeding dog food at first but after my vet recommended a reputable brand and advised I started I've had nothing but great experiences with it. Highly recommended wet dog food.

    Reply
  3. Tina Leighton Author

    Great video. I would emphasize, in case it gets lost in the details, the fact that the canned dog or cat food should be grain free and a very good quality.

    Reply
  4. Melissa B Author

    I feed my 4 month old bts high quality grain free cat food …in the video you said it's ok to give additional vegetation to Adult BTS ….is it ok to add some veggies or healthy herp to my little ones diet as a treat every now and then or is it best to wait untill she's an adult ? …the slab of slate zip tied to the hide is genius!

    Reply

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *