Merck Manual

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Recommended Nutrient Concentrations for Reptiles

Recommended Nutrient Concentrations for Reptiles

--------------------------Concentrationa--------------------------

Nutrientb

Carnivorous Reptiles

Omnivorous Reptiles

Herbivorous Reptiles

Crude proteinc

30%–50%

20%–25%

18%–22%

Fat

3%–6%

Crude fiber

20%–35%

Arginine

1.0%

1.8%

Isoleucine

0.5%

1.3%

Lysine

0.8%

1.5%

Methionine

0.4%

0.4%

Methionine + cysteine

0.75%

0.75%

Threonine

0.7%

1.0%

Tryptophan

0.15%

0.3%

Linoleic acidd

1.0%

1.0%

Calcium

0.8%–1.1%

1.0%–1.5%

1.4%–2.0%

Phosphorus

0.5%–0.9%

0.6%–0.9%

0.8%–1.0%

Potassium

0.4%–0.6%

0.4%–0.6%

Sodium

0.2%

0.2%

Magnesium

0.04%

0.2%

Manganese

5 ppm

150 ppm

Zinc

50 ppm

130 ppm

Iron

60–80 ppm

200 ppm

Copper

5–8 ppm

15 ppm

Iodine

0.3–0.6 ppm

0.4 ppm

Selenium

0.3 ppm

0.3 ppm

Riboflavin

2–4 ppm

8 ppm

Pantothenic acid

10 ppm

60 ppm

Niacin

10–40 ppm

100 ppm

Vitamin B12

0.020 ppm

0.025 ppm

Choline

1,250–2,400 ppm

3,500 ppm

Biotin

70–100 ppb

400 ppb

Folacin

200–800 ppb

6,000 ppb

Thiaminee

1–5 ppm

5 ppm

Pyridoxine

1–4 ppm

10 ppm

Vitamin Af

5,000–10,000 IU/kg

15,000 IU/kg

Cholecalciferol (vitamin D3)g

500–1,000 IU/kg

500–1,000 IU/kg

Vitamin Eh

200 IU/kg

200 IU/kg

a Nutrient concentrations are recommended minimums for carnivorous reptiles and averages for omnivorous reptiles.

b Nutrient levels expressed on a dry-matter basis.

c Taurine requirements have not been determined for reptiles (the requirement for cats is 400–500 mg of taurine/kg dry diet).

d A dietary source of arachidonic acid at 200 mg/kg dry diet may be necessary.

e Thiamine concentrations should be increased to 10–20 mg/kg if frozen, thawed fish constitute >25% of the diet offered.

f A source of preformed vitamin A may be required because it is not known if reptiles can convert carotenes to retinol (vitamin A), although it is likely that herbivorous reptiles can.

g Requirements for vitamin D may be partially or totally satisfied by exposure to sunlight or appropriate sources of artificial ultraviolet light. These suggested concentrations are not sufficient to prevent signs of vitamin D deficiency in green iguanas.

h 300 IU/kg dry matter is advisable if the diet is high in fat, especially unsaturated fat.