How To Feed Your Bearded Dragon

On: 1 June 2022 

Supercharge your bearded dragon's nutritional intake for a happy healthy pet.

Benefits of Feeding Crickets 

Live crickets are a popular feeding option for bearded dragons of all ages. Crickets are widely available, affordable and make up a large portion of reptile food in the wild. Live crickets also provide a great source of stimulation for your pet as it activates their instinct to chase and hunt their food.  

Many reptile owners feed crickets as part of their pet's diet for the duration of their lives. The recommended amount to feed will depend on their age, activity level and other unique nutritional needs.  


Supercharge Your Crickets 

Crickets also gut load very effectively. Gut loading is when you feed your crickets nutrient boosting foods or a supplement like Wombaroo's Insect Booster to increase the nutritional value of the crickets. You then wait for the crickets to absorb the vitamins they've consumed before feeding the nutrient-boosted crickets to your pet.

This is an easy way to provide your bearded dragon with essential nutrients and vitamins such as calcium and vitamin D3. 


Age Affects How You Should Feed 

Young bearded dragons are primarily insectivorous which means that their diets can consist mostly of insect protein. Crickets have a good nutritional content of iron, protein and calcium. This makes them a great option for young bearded dragons as these nutrients assist with their development. A baby bearded dragon's diet can consist of up to 70% protein and 30% vegetables/pellet food. Bearded dragons will typically grow until they are 18 months old.  

Keep in mind that you'll want to purchase the size of cricket appropriate for your pet. Smaller beardies may not have developed their bite yet, so a smaller cricket will assist with digestion.  

As bearded dragons mature, their metabolism slows down - hence the need to transition to a more varied diet, rich in fibre and moisture. Vegetables and greens are a great source of nutrients for your adult dragon and they'll enjoy a juicy salad every 1-2 days. For an adult bearded dragon you can aim for a balance of around 30% protein and 70% veggies/pellet food to keep your beardy happy and healthy. 

Vegetables and greens that are great for adult bearded dragons include: acorn squash, alfalfa sprouts (cut up), butternut squash, turnip greens, yellow squash. Veggies like broccoli, cucumber and carrot can be provided less frequently. Fruits like mango, watermelon and banana can be introduced as a rare treat only. 


A Balanced Diet Is Key 

The below table outlines a rough guide to feeding as your bearded dragon grows. When the time comes to wean your dragon off a mostly cricket-based diet (around 8 months old), you'll want to gradually introduce a varied diet including more greens. A gradual transition is essential to avoid upsetting your dragon's digestion. 



Feeding frequency of crickets 

Crickets per feeding 

Rough number of crickets per day 

Additional food requirements

Baby bearded dragons (under 8 months old)

2 times a day 

As many as they eat in a 5-minute session 

24 extra small crickets

(70% of diet)

Provide mixture of vegetables and pellet food daily

(30% of diet)

Transition stage

(8 months old) 

1 time a day  

As many as they eat in a 5-minute session

10 small crickets

Provide mixture of vegetables and pellet food daily

Adult bearded dragons (over 18 months old)

2-3 times a week 

10 large crickets per feeding session

10 large crickets per feeding session

(30% of diet)

Provide mixture of vegetables and pellet food every other day (70% of diet)



The above information is provided as a guide only and you should consult with your vet if you have any questions or concerns regarding your reptile’s diet and unique needs.