Can Turtles Eat Papaya?

Can Turtles Eat Papaya

This guide provides you with an in-depth look at Can turtles eat papayas? Papayas are a fruit that is very nutritious and tasty. You can feed them to turtles if they are ripe and free of seeds. Before feeding your pet turtle papaya, you must carefully consider the risks associated with eating papayas by the species of turtle you’re keeping a pet.

Can turtles eat papayas? The answer depends on the species of turtle you’re keeping as a pet. While some species like the Box Turtles and the Yellow-bellied Turtles can safely eat papayas in moderation, other aquatic turtle species cannot. Even if your pet turtle can eat papayas, you should not feed them the skin or seeds of these fruits.

Also referred to as “Pawpaws,” papayas are a tropical fruit with a surprising number of health benefits for us. Not only are they delicious, but they are also rich in antioxidants, have anti-inflammatory properties, promote wound healing, prevent infections, asthma, cancer, and many other diseases.

Are you wondering why papaya skins are unsafe for turtles? Or are you curious about the health benefits of these fruits for your turtles? If you keep reading ahead, you will find the answers to all your questions about feeding papayas to turtles.


Will turtles eat papaya?

We’ve mentioned above that papayas can be healthy treats for turtles. But will your pet turtle like the taste of their new treat?

It is natural for the pet owners to worry if their pet wants what is being fed to them. However, if you have a turtle at home, this should not bother you.

As far as pets go, turtles are the least picky about their diet and happily eat whatever you feed them.

There are many things that a turtle would say no to, and papayas are not one of them. Thus, you have no reason to worry.


Is papaya healthy for turtles?

To learn whether or not are papayas healthy for your little pets, let’s take a look at the nutritional composition of these fruits:

Vitamin A950 IU
Vitamin B1 (Thiamin)0.023 mg
Vitamin B2 (Riboflavin)0.027 mg
Vitamin B3 (Niacin)0.038 mg
Vitamin B5 (Pantothenic acid)0.218 mg
Vitamin B9 (Folates)37 mcg
Vitamin C60.9 mg
Vitamin E0.30
Vitamin K2.6 mcg
Calcium20 mg
Phosphorus10 mg
Iron0.25 mg
Magnesium21 mg
Sodium8 mg
Potassium182 mg
Zinc0.08 mg
Carbohydrates10.82 g
Protein0.47 g
Fat0.26 g
Dietary fibers1.7 g
Calories43 kcal

Serving size: 100 grams

Now, let’s talk about how these fruits can benefit a turtle’s health:

  • Turtles are dependent on two main vitamins to keep them healthy: Vitamin D, which they can get from sunlight, and Vitamin A, which boosts their eyesight, reproductive health, and immune system. Papaya has Vitamin A in abundance.
  • Calcium and Phosphorus are the two most vital minerals in a turtle’s diet, and both of them are present in papayas.
  • Moreover, papayas are also rich in antioxidants and have anti-inflammatory properties that your little pet friends can benefit from.

It would be safe to assume that papayas can be very healthy for turtles in moderation in light of the aforementioned points. Note that we’re mentioning “moderation” here, which means that if you feed them too many of these fruits, their sugar content can negatively impact your pet’s health.


Can turtles eat papaya skin?

While we’ve established that papayas can safely be used as a healthy treat for turtles, what about their skin? Are they edible to turtles as well?

The papayas’ outer skin is not tough like that of watermelons, which is why they are easy to chew and digest, both for our pet turtles and for us. But the whole point of eating the rind, skin, or peel of a fruit is because it adds more nutrients to our health.

With the papaya skin, that’s not the case.

They are nutritionally empty and do not appeal to our taste buds either. Moreover, there’s always the risk of them being sprayed with pesticides, insecticides, wax, or other chemicals to make them look fresh, making these lethal to our turtles.

Therefore, we recommend you peel off the outer skin of papayas before feeding them to your pets.


Is it safe for turtles to eat papaya seeds?

Papaya seeds have been used in traditional medicine for centuries. These seeds have antibacterial properties, protect our kidneys, detoxify our liver, and eradicate all our intestinal parasites.

Therefore, many people eat these seeds, or the powder, to stay healthy. However, all the health benefits of papaya seeds can only be extracted if chewed properly. Otherwise, they can create digestive issues for us.

As far as our pet turtles are concerned, we wouldn’t say that feeding papaya seeds to them is a good idea. It is because there is little data about the effect of these seeds on their health. Moreover, they’re big enough to pose a choking threat for your little pets. Therefore, not feeding them these seeds is in their best interest.


Can baby turtles eat papaya?

While papayas are safe for adult turtles to eat in moderation, feeding these fruits to baby turtles is not a good idea. You must remember that you’re feeding the adults papayas as a treat, and baby turtles do not need any treats.

The earlier stage of their lives is the most defining phase; what they eat during these years impacts their growth and development, even their longevity. Therefore, it is essential that you strictly feed them their specialized feed, and nothing else, in these years.


Papaya and different turtle species

If you believe that all turtles have the same diet, you’re mistaken. Most turtle species are omnivores when they are young and can grow up to be either carnivores or herbivores. Thus, all of them have varied diets, and it would be impossible for papayas to fit into all of them.

Below, we will take a look at some of the most popular turtle species and learn whether or not can they eat papayas:


Can Box Turtles eat papaya?

Out of all the turtle species that are kept as pets, the Box Turtles have the most diverse diet and can eat almost all the fruits and vegetables. Their diet in the wild consists mainly of fruits and small insects like crickets, mealworms, earthworms, etc. Papayas and berries are their favorite fruits, so they love eating them and can also do so safely.


Can Desert Turtles eat papaya?

Desert Turtles are one of the turtle species whose lifespan depends very much on their diet. Although these turtles are pure herbivores, grasses make up a large portion of their diet, with 15% of it consisting of fruits and vegetables. Thus, while papayas can be fed to them, you must be extra careful about moderation.


Can Green Sea Turtles eat papaya?

The Green Sea Turtles are aquatic turtle species, spending their whole lives in the ocean. Although they’re vegetarians, they only feed on aquatic vegetation. Thus, feeding them papayas wouldn’t be wise.


Can Red-eared Sliders eat papaya?

The Red-eared Sliders should not be fed papayas. While these turtles are only semi-aquatic, their entire diet consists of aquatic vegetation and fish. Thus, adding papayas to their diet would be unnatural and could hurt their health.


Can Yellow-bellied Turtles eat papaya?

Yellow-bellied Turtles are omnivore turtles that mainly feed on leafy greens. However, there is room for fruits in their diet. So, yes, you can feed them papayas occasionally as a treat.


Conclusion: Can Turtles Eat Papaya?

To wrap it up, let’s recapitulate what we’ve learned above.

Papayas are a storehouse of many vitamins and minerals, making them one of the healthiest fruits for us. While not all turtle species can eat these fruits, most of the turtles commonly kept as pets can, in moderation.

When you’re feeding papayas to your pet friends, peel them off and remove all the seeds carefully. Lastly, you can easily cut them into smaller, bite-sized pieces for your shelled pets.

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