A 2015 Study of the free-roaming bearded dragons in Central Australia revealed that beardies are opportunistic predators that exploit the seasonal availability of prey. The study also observed that their protein intake is supplemented with leafy vegetables and fruits, rich in n3 FA’s that resemble the expected natural diet of P. vitticeps or Pogona Henrylawsoni.
But can they eat all fruits including grapes?
First, what are grapes?
Grapes are a type of fruit that grows on a vine. They are typically oval or round in shape and have smooth, green, yellow, or purple skin. The flesh of the grape is sweet or tart and contains small seeds.
It is important to note the following parts of a grape as they’ll be important later as I explain what parts of a grape your bearded dragon can eat.
Grape Skin: The skin of the grape is thin and edible. It contains tannins, which can give the grape a slightly astringent taste.
Grape Flesh: The flesh of the grape is the sweet or tart part that surrounds the seeds.
Grape Seeds: Grape seeds are small and hard. They contain a bitter compound called amygdalin.
Now that we know what grapes are, let’s discuss if bearded dragons can eat them. Before that, let’s first understand what beardie like to eat.
What does Beardie eat?
Bearded dragons are omnivores, which means that they eat both plants and animals. In the wild, their diet consists of about 50% insects and 50% vegetables.
The following are the food composition of bearded dragons at different ages;
Young Beardie: (80% protein and 20% vegetables)
Adult Beardie: (50% protein and 50% vegetables)
Elderly Beardie: (20% protein and 80% vegetables)
Now that we know the different food compositions for beardies at different stages of their life, let’s find out if grapes are a good fit for them.
Vegetables vs Fruits: Which ones do Beardies like more?
Bearded dragons generally prefer eating fruits over vegetables as they are sweet and tasty compared to veggies. You should, however, note that most fruits have high sugar content and should only be fed to your bearded dragon in moderation.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Grapes?
Bearded dragons can eat grapes but only in moderation. Grapes contain high levels of oxalates, sugar, and imbalanced calcium to phosphorus proportions, which can all be detrimental to your dragon’s health. It is important to cut the grapes into small pieces in order to reduce the risk of choking your pet and to remove all the seeds which can be poisonous.
What’s the problem with Calcium to Phosphorus imbalance?
One of the most important things you need to know about feeding your bearded dragon is the calcium to phosphorus (Ca:P) ratio. This is because phosphorus can bind with calcium and prevent absorption, which can lead to metabolic bone disease. The ideal Ca:P ratio for a bearded dragon is 1.5:1 to 2:1.
Grapes have a Ca:P ratio of 1:5, which means that they contain more phosphorus than calcium. This makes them an unhealthy food choice for bearded dragons.
In addition to the Ca:P ratio, grapes also contain oxalates and high sugar content. Oxalates are compounds that bind with calcium and prevent absorption. This can further lead to metabolic bone disease.
The high sugar content in grapes can also cause health problems for bearded dragons. When ingested, sugar is converted into glucose and stored as fat. This can lead to obesity and other health problems such as diabetes.
The skin, flesh, and seeds of grapes are all safe for bearded dragons to eat. However, the stems and leaves of grapes contain high levels of oxalates and should be avoided.
The high sugar content in grapes can also lead to tooth decay, diabetes, and obesity in bearded dragons.
The nutritional profile of Grapes:
Grapes are a good source of vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. They are also low in calories and contain no fat or cholesterol.
The following is the nutritional profile of grapes per 100 grams:
Protein: 0.72 grams
Carbs: 18 grams
Fiber: 1.4 grams
Sugar: 15 grams
Fat: 0.16 grams
Vitamin C: 9% of the Reference Daily Intake (RDI)
Vitamin B6: 5% of the RDI
Potassium: 3% of the RDI
Beneficial nutrients in grapes:
The following are some of the benefits of the nutrients found in grapes:
Vitamin C: Vitamin C is an important nutrient that helps boost the immune system. It is also an antioxidant that helps protect cells from damage. Beardies rely on Vitamin C to stay healthy and fight off infections.
Vitamin B6: Vitamin B6 is important for the metabolism of proteins. It also helps the body to break down fats and carbs. This vitamin is essential for the proper growth and development of beardies.
Potassium: Potassium is an electrolyte that helps to regulate fluid balance in the body. It is also important for muscle contraction and nerve function. Potassium can be found in high amounts in grapes.
Antioxidants: The antioxidants in grapes help protect cells from damage. They also have anti-inflammatory properties that can help to reduce swelling and inflammation.
Other Safe Fruits that Beardies can eat:
- Apples: They are good for beardies as they contain vitamins A and C, as well as fiber.
- Bananas: Bananas are a good source of potassium, vitamin C, and fiber. They can be a part of a healthy diet for beardies.
- Blueberries: Blueberries are rich in antioxidants and vitamins C and K. They are a healthy option for bearded dragons.
- Cantaloupe: Cantaloupe is a good source of vitamins A and C. It is also a good source of potassium.
- Watermelon: Watermelon is a good source of vitamins A, B6, and C. It is also a good source of lycopene, an antioxidant.
- Pears: Pears are a good source of vitamins C and K. They also contain fiber.
- Peaches: Peaches are a good source of vitamins A and C. They also contain fiber.
- Raspberries: Raspberries are a good source of fiber, vitamin C, and manganese.
- Strawberries: Strawberries are a good source of vitamin C and fiber.
When feeding fruits to your bearded dragon, it is important to wash them thoroughly to remove any pesticides or chemicals. Fruits should also be cut into small pieces to avoid choking. Bearded dragons should only eat a small amount of fruit per day as part of a balanced diet.
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Hi there! My name is Ben Domb, an owner of two pets and I am one of the co-founders of OurPets HQ. I have several years of experience as a pet care professional in the New England region having spent time in various roles including a stint at a veterinary hospital in Upstate New York, Syracuse area. I am a certified pet care professional and mostly spend my time researching pet nutrition and sharing my thoughts in various blogs and columns. With quarantine and COVID restrictions, I have been spending a lot of time a lot with my dogs and cat and loving it! I also run a small consulting business providing advice to parents on pet nutrition, and especially safe homemade options to try. You can reach me at email@example.com