How Many Pellets Should I Feed My Turtle?

Depending on the species, turtles are herbivorous, carnivorous, or omnivorous. Pet stores offer a range of turtle food products in pellets, chunks, sticks for different turtles, providing balanced nutrition with vitamins and minerals.

As a turtle owner, you need to offer a widely varied, balanced diet to keep your pet turtle happy and healthy. A pet turtle can live a long and healthy life by feeding the turtle well, including pet store supplements to ensure vitamin and minerals intake.

You must be worried about the amount of commercial food which needs to be fed to your turtle. Also, many turtle owners who feed pellets to their turtles wonder how much to feed them? In this article, we will discuss everything in detail. 

Related Article: Do Turtles Eat Worms?

How many pellets should I feed my turtle?

There is no concrete answer to this question. However, experts suggest two different approaches for this. The first approach is to give them pellets as much as can fit in their head if empty. Another approach is to let them eat as much as they can in 15 min. 

Turtles love eating pellets, and they usually keep begging for it from you unless you point them out and show them the pellets you just dropped inside the water. Even If your turtle likes eating pellets very much, do not overfeed them.

Here are some of the food pellets which you can purchase for your turtle.

Image Product Price   Purchase Link
Tetrafauna-turtle-food Tetra Tetrafauna Pro ReptoMin Turtle Food $16.99 Buy on Amazon
Grub-Bag-Turtle-Treat Fluker’s Grub Bag Turtle Treat – River Shrimp $10.99 Buy on Amazon
Fluker's-Freeze-Treats Fluker’s Freeze Treats $5.95 Buy on Amazon
Fluker's-Aquatic-Turtle-Medley-Treat-Food Fluker’s Aquatic Turtle Medley Treat Food $4.48 Buy on Amazon

1. Tetra Tetrafauna Pro ReptoMin Turtle Food

These are specially made pellets for turtles. There are different packets available for baby, juvenile, and adult turtles. Each pellet consists of a well-balanced portion of vitamins and essential minerals required for the turtle. These pellets are prepared with an odor-blocking formula that blocks the odors associated with turtle waste.

2. Fluker’s Grub Bag Turtle Treat – River Shrimp

Pellets like shrimp are natural prey for many different aquatic turtles because they provide a high source of protein. Grub bag shrimp treat(pellet) is a convenient way to offer this high-protein treat without the hassle of dealing with live prey. It can be used in combination with other foods to provide a well-rounded diet for your pet turtle.

3. Fluker’s Freeze Treats

Freeze Dried Shrimp(pellets) are natural prey for turtles and aquatic amphibians because they provide protein and essential amino acids. It is perfect for aquatic turtles.

4. Fluker’s Aquatic Turtle Medley Treat Food

Aquatic turtle medley treats food is a freeze-dried blend of river shrimp, mealworms, and crickets. It provides essential proteins, fats, vitamins, and minerals.

How many pellets should I feed my baby turtle?

Like adult turtles, baby turtles should also be fed pellets as much as the size of their head. Baby turtles should be fed more often because they require more energy to grow strong and healthy. To grow faster, they need to be fed every day.

Baby turtles grow faster than juvenile turtles. So, they need to be fed quite often. You can feed your adult turtle every two days, but baby turtles need to be fed every day. You need to make a schedule for feeding your baby turtles so that you do not miss out on them.

How many pellets should I feed my red-eared slider?

The red-eared slider turtle is omnivorous and needs to be fed the pellets as much as the size of its head. They need both animal protein and plant matter. Worms, small fish, pellets, crickets are good choices for protein.

Serve your adult red-eared slider turtle a pellet portion every other day. The quantity of food varies based on its age and growth. You can take a portion of pellets into your hand and make sure it’s slightly smaller than your turtlehead, not including its neck. If your turtle is leaving a lot of pellets leftovers after everyday feeding, reduce the number of pellets the next time.

If it is not eating pellets, provide them with plants and proteins. You can provide vegetables and fruits in that case. The baby red-eared slider turtle needs to be fed protein and pellets daily until they are grown. You can feed your baby red-eared slider turtle a portion of pellets once a day, along with 1 or 2 guppies or worms. You can feed it live fish every once in a while. Chasing and catching its food provides mental stimulation and exercise in your turtle.

Since red-eared slider turtles are aquatic turtles, they eat and swallow with their heads underwater. You can gently drop your turtle’s food into the tank. They love to eat inside the water and happily chase the food. 

You can provide large pellets to adult turtles and small pellets to baby turtles. Pellets come in a variety of sizes, from small to large. Usually, small pellets sink to the bottom of your tank and work well for small turtles. Larger pellets float at the top of your tank and attract the larger turtles.

How to feed your turtle?

Some turtle species change their eating habits as they grow. For example, breeds such as red-eared sliders and green sea turtles start as mostly carnivorous and transition to a more plant-based diet. While other turtles remain carnivorous or omnivorous throughout their life. 

First, you need to check which species of turtle you have. If you bought your turtle from a pet store and have no idea about your turtle’s species or what kind of food it likes, then you can show it to an experienced veterinarian, and he will help you identify the turtle.

If your turtle is carnivorous, then feed them pellets, mealworms, crayfish, earthworms, snails, wax worms, plugs, etc. These can be purchased from pet stores. If your turtle is herbivorous, then you can feed them veggies, fruits, lettuce, carrots, strawberries, melon, and so on. If your turtle is omnivorous, you can give them a combination of both.

You can make your turtle feed in a separate container to make less mess in the tank they live in. Turtles prefer to eat in water, so fill the container with water, and you can drop some pellets in the water. For herbivorous turtles, provide fresh fruits in a separate dish. 

Turtles should be fed for around 15 to 20 minutes time period.

Avoid feeding your turtle with your hand as there are chances of them biting you. If you are feeding a baby turtle, the pellets should be broken into fourth as a baby turtle’s mouth is smaller, and you certainly don’t want it to choke. Fruits also should be mashed or cut while giving to baby turtles.

When the turtle is first introduced to a tank, it might hesitate to eat. With time it will start eating, so you need to have patience. You need to set the correct water and air temperature for them to feel comfortable in the environment they live in.

If everything is proper and your turtle is still not interested in eating pellets, mealworms, or live crickets, you should consider consulting a veterinarian.


Turtles should be fed pellets as much as the size of their head, excluding the neck part. Turtles should be fed for 15-20 minutes. Baby turtles grow faster than juvenile turtles; hence need to be fed more, which helps them grow and get stronger. The turtle’s eating habits depend on the species. You need to keep the turtle in a separate container while feeding them. Avoid feeding them with your hands as there are chances that it might bite you. The red-eared slider is omnivorous and needs to be fed vegetables and meat.