Although waxworms are not part of most reptiles’ diets, waxworms can be a welcome addition to the menu. The waxworm is soft bodied enough for picky eaters and can even be used as a live prey.
Benefits of Waxworms for Reptiles:
1) High nutrition content:
Waxworms are an excellent source of high-quality protein and fat that would boost your pet’s growth and help them maintain their weight. Waxworms are very high in protein (67.9% of dry matter), which is essential for the growth and development of your reptile
2) Suitable feeder insect:
Although waxworms are not part of most reptiles’ diets, they can be a welcome addition to the menu. The waxworm is soft bodied enough for picky eaters and can even be used as a live prey, although this might not be the best idea due to their wax-producing glands that may pass wax worms’ bad taste to your pet reptile.
3) Contains no chitin:
Waxworms have soft bodies that can be easily ingested by your pets and has no chitin which is the part of the insect’s body that is indigestible for reptiles.
4) Can be stored for long periods of time:
Waxworms are very easy to store and can be kept alive for months. If waxworms are refrigerated at about 37°F they become sluggish and hibernate, which means you will have to feed waxworms less often.
5) Contain no pesticide residues:
Due to their natural habitats, waxworms do not contain any pesticide residues as waxworms feed on wax.
Disadvantages of Feeding Waxworms to Reptiles:
1) Can become addictive:
Since waxworms are high in fats, your pet reptile might find waxworms irresistible and they might get addicted to these wax worms if offered waxworms frequently. Overfeeding with waxworms can lead to obesity, waxworm addiction, wax worms’ bad taste.
2) May produce wax:
Excessive waxworms’ consumption can make your reptile lethargic and will also cause wax production, a wax-like substance that might clog your pet’s intestinal tract. This is not a very common issue but should be closely monitored by a reptile veterinarian if it occurs.
In conclusion, waxworms can be a welcome addition to the menu but might not be suitable for all types of pets due to waxworm’s wax glands and wax production. Waxworms should also not be supplemented directly with waxworms’ feeder insects if they are being fed live plants to avoid nutrient deficiencies.