Benefit Of Feeding Opuntia

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Turtulas-Len

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We all have read about the nutritional value of feeding opuntia, but I don't remember seeing it mentioned as being a food that helps to keep the tortoises beaks in shape. I grow my own so I am able to feed the pad size that fits the tortoise, the bigger the tortoise the tougher the pad they can eat, I think this helps in beak growth control. These pics are from pads chewed on by my adult sulcata. When I hand feed him it is easier for him to eat it from a side angle than from the top or bottom of the pad but he still gets the benefit of the tougher fibers in the pad. Opinions please.
 

wellington

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Wow, I didn't know they were that stringy inside the bigger pads. I have read before that natural grazing helps to keep beak trimmed. I always figured that the same would stand for them eating cactus as it has a tuff outer skin. I wouldn't think it would help their beaks when chopped up for them though. Just my thought on it.
 

Terry Allan Hall

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I agree that tough cactus helps, to some extent, in keeping beaks at a easily-managed length. along with cuttle- and beef bones (depending on size of tortoise). Also feeding them on a flat stone.

Probably not as much, if chopped too small...I always give my adult torts cactus in full pads, youngsters get pieces about as large as their shell.
 
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