Red Eared Slider Turtle Diet – All You Need to Know

red eared slider turtle diet

Red-eared slider turtles are aquatic turtles that have long been favored as pets. They are also at ease with humans and easily take food from them. red eared slider turtle diet is not that hard to manage but you still need to have complete information about it.

Red-eared slider turtles eat in the habitat of water plants, small fish, and decaying material such as frogs and dead animals. Primarily, young turtles are carnivorous but as they mature, they evolve more into omnivorous. Red-eared sliders can survive for months without food but only 7 days without water.

Red-eared sliders‘ dietary requirements fluctuate as they age and develop. Whereas all red-eared sliders are omnivorous, young sliders demand increased meat protein for development, while fully grown adults consume more plant stuff to help combat obesity. 

Picture Credit: redearedslider

Mature and young sliders can be served a basic diet of commonly available aquatic turtle pellets or sticks, as well as plant stuff like dark leafy greens.

What do Red-Eared Slider Turtles Eat?

An adult turtle’s diet should consist of 50-60% commercially produced aquatic turtle pellets or sticks, along with vegetable materials. Aquatic plants that are not harmful to living organisms can also be valuable sources of vegetable matter. 

Occasionally, earthworms and bugs, fried chicken bits, and little quantities of fruit can be offered as treats.

What kind of human food can a slider turtle consume?

Turtles can consume shredded carrots, squash, and zucchini, among other things. Eating aquatic plants such as water lettuce, water hyacinth, and seaweed are additional options. 

When it comes to fruits, shredded apples and melons, as well as cut berries, are more nutritious.

Types of raw carrots to feed Turtles

Collard greens, mustard greens, dandelion greens, and kale are examples of leafy greens. Carrots (both the orange veggie and the green top), squash, and green beans are among several vegetables. 

Picture Credit: petmd

Shredded veggies enable them to better consume, which would be extremely advantageous for tiny turtles.

Red-Eared Slider Turtle Feeding Tips

When feeding your red-eared slider, keep the following in mind:

  • Water that is fresh and clean should be accessible at any time.
  • Feed the baby turtles every day. Adults should be provided every day except directed by a veterinarian.
  • Turtles must be fed when submerged in water.
  • Try feeding turtles in a tiny feeding aquarium to help maintain the environment tidy.

Is it necessary to feed Red-Eared Sliders daily?

The feeding schedule is determined by the age and weight of the red-eared slider. Fewer or young turtles will consume a large amount of food nearly every day. Adult turtles could be given a decent piece of meal every 2-3 days as they grow older.

Picture Credit: i0

Baby Red-Eared Slider Diet

Baby sliders consume grass, moths, earthworms, crustaceans, tadpoles, snails, or any tiny creature they may find in the habitat. Because their diet consists of a variety of foods, you must not give them only one type of food. 

A well-balanced diet would be both nutritionally and behaviorally beneficial. It also aids in the absorption of a wide spectrum of vitamins.

Feeding Schedule:

  • 50 percent protein / 50 percent veggies
  • Regularly, eat protein.
  • Regularly, eat veggies.
  • Daily, turtle pellets.

It is common for baby turtles to be hesitant to eat veggies, but you must nevertheless provide them.

Adult Red-Eared Slider Diet

Adult red-eared turtles are herbivores. However, the preferences of red-eared sliders alter as they develop, moving towards a more herbivorous diet when they get older. 

But make sure that turtles of all sizes are served with a vast variety of both animal and plant-related things. To minimize fat and increased waste matter, prevent overfeeding your turtle.

Feeding Schedule

  • 25% protein / 75% veggies.
  • 1-2 times each week, eat a protein meal.
  • Every day, eat vegetables.
  • 2-3 times per week, turtle pellets

How much food should a red-eared slider turtle consume?

A decent principle is to feed your red-eared slider turtle as much as it will ingest in 15 minutes.

A warning indicator that you’re overfeeding your turtle is if you notice abnormal shell development. Yellow-tinged eyes are another typical indicator of overfeeding.

Lethargy, limbs that are swollen, and puking up food are also warning signs to not overfeed your red-eared slider turtle anymore.


Red-eared slider turtles are friendly to humans and like being fed. Red-eared slider turtles consume in water plant habitats. Red-eared slider turtles are largely carnivorous as juveniles, and become more omnivorous as they age. 

Red-eared sliders can go months without meals but only seven days without water. The nutritional needs of red-eared sliders change as they get older. A basic diet comprising frequently available aquatic turtle pellets or sticks, as well as plant material such as dark leafy greens, can be offered to mature and juvenile sliders. 

Sliders may readily devour aquatic vegetation, earthworms, insects, shredded carrots, and fruits.


What should be done while feeding the turtle?

Regardless of how frequently you feed your turtle, keep an eye on their overall health. If skin folds form around a turtle’s legs, particularly when it brings its legs under its shell, they are growing overly fat. In such a scenario, Sliders should be served less food, served food less frequently, or offered food with a lower fatty acid.

What additional vitamins are required in the diet of turtles?

The red-eared slider turtle also needs a reptile multivitamin with calcium and vitamin D3. Give your pet exactly the appropriate number of vitamins and make sure he has all he needs to survive a long, healthy life.

What should you avoid when feeding a Red-Eared Slider?

There are various important items to eliminate from a red-eared slider turtle’s diet, but some of the most critical include feeding fish, crickets, earthworms, crabs, krill, and shrimp.

How long can a hungry red-eared slider go without eating?

An adult red-eared slider turtle may go for many weeks to a few months without eating.  Baby red slider turtles may go for many days to a whole week without food.

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