Can Bearded Dragons Eat Ants?

Bearded dragons are fascinating creatures that make great pets for reptile enthusiasts. As with any pet, it’s important to know what they can and cannot eat. One question that often arises is whether bearded dragons can eat ants. In this article, we’ll delve into the world of bearded dragon nutrition and find out if ants are a suitable food for these scaly friends.

Ants are a common sight in many gardens and homes, making them a tempting snack for bearded dragons. However, not all ants are created equal when it comes to nutrition. While some species of ants are safe for bearded dragons to eat, others can be toxic or even deadly. So, can bearded dragons eat ants? Let’s find out!

Can Bearded Dragons Eat Ants?

Can Bearded Dragons Eat Ants?

Bearded dragons are omnivorous reptiles that love to eat a variety of insects, fruits, and vegetables. As an owner, it is essential to provide your bearded dragon with a balanced and nutritious diet that will keep them healthy and happy. Ants are among the many insects that bearded dragons may come across in the wild, but can they eat them? Here’s everything you need to know.

Ants: Are They Safe for Bearded Dragons to Eat?

Ants are a common insect that can be found in the wild and in some bearded dragon’s habitats. However, it is essential to note that not all ants are safe for bearded dragons to eat. Some species of ants can be toxic and may cause harm to your bearded dragon. It is, therefore, crucial to identify the type of ants your bearded dragon may come across and determine whether they are safe to eat.

Most species of ants are not harmful to bearded dragons and can be a great source of protein. However, it is essential to ensure that the ants are not treated with any chemicals or pesticides that may be harmful to your pet. If you are unsure about the type of ants you have in your area, it is best to avoid feeding them to your bearded dragon.

The Benefits of Feeding Ants to Bearded Dragons

Ants are a great source of protein for bearded dragons and can help to supplement their diet. They are also low in fat and high in essential nutrients such as calcium, which is essential for the growth and development of bearded dragons. Feeding your bearded dragon a balanced diet that includes ants can help to keep them healthy and happy.

In addition to being a great source of nutrition, feeding ants to your bearded dragon can also provide them with mental stimulation. Bearded dragons are intelligent animals that enjoy hunting and chasing their prey. Feeding them live ants can help to stimulate their natural hunting instincts and provide them with a fun and engaging activity.

The Risks of Feeding Ants to Bearded Dragons

While most species of ants are safe for bearded dragons to eat, some can be toxic and may cause harm to your pet. Fire ants, for example, are a species of ant that should be avoided as they can be aggressive and deliver painful stings. They also contain a toxin that can be harmful to bearded dragons and other animals.

It is also essential to ensure that the ants you feed your bearded dragon are not treated with any chemicals or pesticides. These substances can be harmful to your pet and may cause health problems.

Other Insects That Bearded Dragons Can Eat

In addition to ants, there are many other insects that bearded dragons can eat. Some of the most popular insects include crickets, mealworms, waxworms, and roaches. These insects are all safe for bearded dragons to eat and can provide them with essential nutrients.

It is essential to ensure that any insects you feed your bearded dragon are gut-loaded. This means that they are fed a nutritious diet before being fed to your pet. Gut-loading insects can help to ensure that your bearded dragon receives all the essential nutrients they need to stay healthy.

The Verdict: Can Bearded Dragons Eat Ants?

In conclusion, bearded dragons can eat ants as long as they are the right species and have not been treated with any chemicals or pesticides. Ants are a great source of protein and can help to supplement your bearded dragon’s diet. However, it is important to be cautious and ensure that the ants you feed your pet are safe.

If you are unsure about the type of ants in your area or are concerned about feeding them to your bearded dragon, it is best to stick to other insects that are known to be safe. By providing your bearded dragon with a balanced and nutritious diet, you can help to keep them healthy and happy for years to come.

Pros Cons
Ants are a great source of protein and essential nutrients Some species of ants can be toxic and may cause harm to your pet
Feeding ants to your bearded dragon can provide them with mental stimulation Ants may be treated with chemicals or pesticides that can be harmful to your pet
Ants are low in fat and can help to supplement your bearded dragon’s diet Feeding your bearded dragon the wrong species of ants can be harmful

Frequently Asked Questions

Bearded dragons are omnivorous animals and can eat a wide range of insects, fruits, and vegetables. However, not all foods are safe for them to consume. Here are some frequently asked questions about whether bearded dragons can eat ants.

Can bearded dragons eat ants?

Yes, bearded dragons can eat ants, but it’s not recommended to include them in their regular diet. Ants don’t provide enough nutritional value for your pet. Plus, some ants can sting or bite your bearded dragon, which can cause serious health problems. If you want to offer ants to your bearded dragon, make sure they are not fire ants or carpenter ants, which are more likely to bite or sting.

Additionally, you should avoid feeding your bearded dragon ants from your backyard or any other place that may have been exposed to pesticides or chemicals. These can be harmful to your pet. If you want to offer ants as a treat, purchase them from a reputable pet store or raise them yourself using organic methods.

Can bearded dragons eat black ants?

Black ants are not toxic to bearded dragons and can be consumed in small amounts. However, you should avoid feeding your pet ants from outside sources as they may have been exposed to pesticides or other harmful chemicals. If you want to feed your bearded dragon black ants, you can purchase them from a pet store or raise them yourself using organic methods.

Remember that ants should not make up a large portion of your bearded dragon’s diet. They should be offered as a treat or occasional snack. Always provide fresh water and a balanced diet of insects, fruits, and vegetables to ensure your pet’s health and wellbeing.

Can bearded dragons eat red ants?

Red ants are not recommended for bearded dragons to eat. They can be aggressive and may sting or bite your pet, causing serious health problems. Additionally, red ants don’t provide enough nutritional value for your bearded dragon and can upset their stomach if consumed in large quantities.

If you want to offer your bearded dragon ants, it’s best to stick with black ants or other non-toxic ants that are not likely to bite or sting. Always make sure to purchase ants from a reputable pet store or raise them yourself using organic methods to ensure their safety.

Do ants offer any nutritional value to bearded dragons?

While ants are a good source of protein, they don’t offer much nutritional value to bearded dragons. They are low in essential vitamins and minerals that your pet needs to thrive. Additionally, some ants can be toxic or dangerous to your bearded dragon if consumed in large quantities.

If you want to offer your bearded dragon insects as a source of protein, consider feeding them crickets, mealworms, or roaches instead. These insects are higher in nutritional value and are less likely to harm your pet.

How often can bearded dragons eat ants?

Ants should not make up a large portion of your bearded dragon’s diet. They should be offered as a treat or occasional snack. It’s best to limit your bearded dragon’s consumption of ants to once or twice a week, depending on their size and nutritional needs.

Remember to always provide fresh water and a balanced diet of insects, fruits, and vegetables to ensure your pet’s health and wellbeing. Consult with a veterinarian or reptile specialist if you have any concerns about your bearded dragon’s diet or health.

Can Bearded Dragons Eat Ants? 2

What to Avoid Feeding Your Bearded Dragon


In conclusion, while bearded dragons can technically eat ants, it is not recommended as a staple part of their diet. Ants may contain harmful chemicals and toxins, as well as being difficult for bearded dragons to digest. It is important to provide a balanced diet that includes a variety of insects and vegetables to ensure the health and well-being of your pet.

If you do decide to offer ants as a treat to your bearded dragon, make sure they are from a safe and pesticide-free source. Always supervise your pet while they are eating and remove any uneaten insects to prevent the risk of bacterial growth.

Overall, while ants may seem like a convenient and easy option for feeding bearded dragons, it is best to stick to a varied and nutritious diet to ensure their long-term health. With proper care and attention, your bearded dragon can thrive and live a happy, healthy life.