Mealworms are the larval stage of the Darkling beetle (Tenebrio molitor). Like all holometabolic insects, they go through four life stages – egg, larva, pupa and adult. All the mealworm stages make great food for pet Leopard geckos.
Feeding mealworms to Leopard geckos
Mealworm larvae contains high amounts of fat (ca. 12 – 13%), relatively low amounts protein (ca. 20.3%) and has a Ca:P ratio of about 1:18.
Because of their fats tails, Leopard geckos can eat high volumes of mealworms without problems. Whereas the high fat levels cause obesity and other problems in most other pet lizards, Leopard geckos tend to store this fat in their tails, mainly utilizing the proteins for growth and body function.
Mealworms can be fed in a shallow, escape proof dish with calcium supplementation to stimulate its intake. They should always be fresh. Uneaten mealworms should be removed and replaced every day. Although mealworms are a relative good food source for Leopard geckos, it is important not to feed them as the only protein source. Other higher protein feeder insects such as crickets and/or cockroaches should make out the bulk of a pet Leopard gecko’s food.
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