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What Are The Elements Of The Best Tortoise Food?

June 12, 2012 | Comments: 0 | Views: 163

What is the best tortoise food and how can you provide this? An understanding of the different elements to good nutrition will help you to provide this and ensure the health and growth of your tortoise.

This depends quite significantly on which kind of tortoise you choose to care for and will determine the best tortoise food to provide. Most chelonians are herbivores which means they eat a mixture of vegetation and sometimes fruit but it is important to understand what good nutrition is and how essential it is to maintain a happy and healthy tortoise.

Good nutrition is the building block of good and long lasting health for your pet tortoise and there are 8 basic elements to consider. Each has its own purposes and function and each part is dependent on the other. These elements include, water, enzymes, protein, carbohydrates, fats, fiber, vitamins and minerals.

Water is so important to all life forms and you will need to provide clean fresh water daily to ensure your tortoise remains hydrated. They do absorb certain amounts of water from the food they eat but they also need to have fresh water always available too.

Enzymes, have a number of functions for a tortoise but they break down specific parts of their food and without these they will very quickly become ill. Part of the reason they require a heat and light source in specific quantities is because this helps the enzymes to actually work.

Protein is essential for growth and development. The proteins help to repair damaged body tissue, sexual maturation and metabolism. They are also essential parts of the blood, digestive system, immune system, hormone production, plus numerous other functions.

Carbohydrates are found in plant matter and one of their most important functions is to provide energy for both the tortoise and the bodily functions such as digestion.

Fats or lipids are not soluble in water and have a number of functions in the body essential for health. They are necessary for growth, healthy blood chemistry, normal kidney functions as well as a fantastic source of energy.

Vitamins found in plants and animals are also essential for the ongoing good health of your tortoise as they work to metabolize food, ensure healthy growth, successful reproduction and cellular reproduction. These are essential and you may need to provide vitamin supplements even though many tortoise food manufacturers claim they add vitamins to their commercially produced food.

Minerals originate in the earth and pass through the plants and are then eaten by animals. They are essential and work with vitamins, enzymes and work best in conjunction with partners. Minerals are naturally present in tissue but again you may need to provide supplements in your tortoise food.

You need to consider all of these elements in order to provide the best tortoise food appropriate for your particular species of tortoise. It is not just lettuce and carrots that they need but a variety of food groups. This short article is just to highlight how good nutrition requires an understanding of how each part works with each other in order to process food successfully. Your captive tortoise is not able to find his own food, it is up to you to provide this and ensure they do not suffer from problems such as shell growth, respiratory diseases etc

Ellie Bear is a tortoise enthusiast and has been keeping tortoises for many years. If you are interested to find out more about these amazing creatures go to TortoiseTips

Source: EzineArticles
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