Advice for feeding young rankins

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Advice for feeding young rankins

Postby kevinade » Sat Mar 07, 2020 6:24 pm

Hi, we are new owners of a lovely Rankins (Chomp) - about 3 months old, and although everything seems to be going well, I haven't found as much advice online about how much and what to feed a young rankins and I'm always afraid we are doing something wrong. We chop up fresh salad (collard greens, carrot, squash) every day but we've only seen her take a bit of the greens once, otherwise nothing. We are feeding her crickets (dusted) twice a day; at the beginning we were only feeding 3-5 per feeding but then I read about feeding her "as many as she'll eat in 5 minutes", which an be around 9 or 10. So, now she's getting about 20 crickets a day and she's definitely looking chubby! We haven't found many insects at our local pet stores besides crickets that seem to be the right size for her; we got some Calci-worms but they were old and mostly dead; so her diet isn't very varied. Lastly, we always ask for "small crickets' but definitely some of the ones we get are not small and at least 1/2 inch, maybe 3/4. So, some questions... How many crickets should she eat a day? Will she overeat if we leave crickets in there? Will a few medium size crickets per day hurt her digestion? And, how critical is varying the type of insects? Any advice on these or other questions specific to young rankins is welcome, to make sure we are doing what's best for Chomp!! Thanks very much!
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Re: Advice for feeding young rankins

Postby MrSpectrum » Sun Mar 08, 2020 7:24 am

kevinade wrote:Hi, we are new owners of a lovely Rankins (Chomp) - about 3 months old, and although everything seems to be going well, I haven't found as much advice online about how much and what to feed a young rankins and I'm always afraid we are doing something wrong.

Congratulations!

In general, care is not that much different than for Central Dragons (P. vitticeps)

FWIW, there is a forum here specifically for Rankins, but posting here is probably fine too.

We chop up fresh salad (collard greens, carrot, squash) every day but we've only seen her take a bit of the greens once, otherwise nothing. We are feeding her crickets (dusted) twice a day; at the beginning we were only feeding 3-5 per feeding but then I read about feeding her "as many as she'll eat in 5 minutes", which an be around 9 or 10. So, now she's getting about 20 crickets a day and she's definitely looking chubby! We haven't found many insects at our local pet stores besides crickets that seem to be the right size for her; we got some Calci-worms but they were old and mostly dead; so her diet isn't very varied. Lastly, we always ask for "small crickets' but definitely some of the ones we get are not small and at least 1/2 inch, maybe 3/4. So, some questions... How many crickets should she eat a day? Will she overeat if we leave crickets in there? Will a few medium size crickets per day hurt her digestion? And, how critical is varying the type of insects? Any advice on these or other questions specific to young rankins is welcome, to make sure we are doing what's best for Chomp!! Thanks very much!

The crickets are fine, but it's best not to leave any uneaten crickets in the enclosure--they can nibble on/harm your Rankin, and you don't want that. :wink:

He's a little young to be a real greens fan, but no worries--just keep offering fresh salads & veggies every day, and he'll develop a taste.

If legal where you are, you might consider adding dubia roaches to his diet in lieu of crickets. They don't bite, can't fly or crawl up slick surfaces, don't smell or chirp, and are quite nutritious as a staple feeder. :wink:
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Re: Advice for feeding young rankins

Postby McBeck » Sun Mar 08, 2020 7:46 am

Couldn't agree more about the roaches. Crickets stink, didn't know this until after buying :roll: 200 ofcourse.
My dragons seem to prefer them and I think they're much easier to handle...
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Re: Advice for feeding young rankins

Postby AHBD » Mon Mar 09, 2020 8:56 am

Hi there, at 3 monhs old how big is he ? He's probably not going to be able to eat medium sized crickets yet, if too large they can cause impaction. Some people mistakenly think that it's a choking hazard that you're trying to avoid [ which it can be ] but the main problem is that the tiny dragons can't digest them and along with impaction it can cause pressure on the spine and hind leg paralysis at times. Can you post pics of Chomp as well as the crickets you have next to a coin to show what size they are ? Here's how to post pics :

https://www.beardeddragon.org/useruploads/ Then use the XIMG to upload them
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Re: Advice for feeding young rankins

Postby kevinade » Mon Mar 09, 2020 11:01 am

Thanks MrSpectrum, McBeck and AHBD for your responses!
It's reassuring to know that it's normal that she doesn't eat many veggies yet.
Chomp is about 6 inches long. Two pics attached.[Click image to enlarge]
[Click image to enlarge]

Two days ago we were worried we weren't feeding her enough (about 3-4 crickets twice a day), so we gave her as many crickets as she wanted which was like 9-10 each feeding for two feedings, so around 20 in a day! Then she didn't eat at all yesterday and or this morning! We'd never seen her let a cricket run by and not eat them before! So, of course, now I'm worried we overfed her! Some of those crickets are 1/2" to almost 3/4" (see pic of a bigger one, almost the size of a penny). [Click image to enlarge]

So, we were a bit worried she might have gotten impacted but she did a small poop yesterday and a huge one today! [Click image to enlarge]

We got some BSFL and roaches in case she just over-gorged on crickets and was sick of them, and she did eat one BSFL and one cricket today but didn't eat any more. (Didn't feed her the roaches yet as they looked a bit big to me.) Hopefully our worries are just new-parent hysteria!
-> So, if we order "small crickets" but get some medium ones bigger than 1/4", should we just throw them away?
Thanks for any other advice!
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Re: Advice for feeding young rankins

Postby AHBD » Mon Mar 09, 2020 11:23 am

Aw, he's super cute ! Did you actually measure him by chance ? But yeah, those larger cricks did affect him but he ended up being able to digest them thankfully. Those aren't TOO big, but you might just scale back the number per feeding or you can pinch the head off to make them smaller. Try that with the largest ones, do that with one crick + set it near him to see if he'll go for it even though it's not moving. Or you can pull the back legs off as well, those are pretty big for a small dragon and the barbed legs can be a problem. That's just to be on the safe side.
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Re: Advice for feeding young rankins

Postby kevinade » Mon Mar 09, 2020 12:25 pm

Thanks AHBD! Yes, we did measure him. So, do you think we should be aiming for around 6 bugs of 1/4" per feeding, twice per day?
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Re: Advice for feeding young rankins

Postby AHBD » Mon Mar 09, 2020 1:18 pm

With the 1/4" you can feed him more than that. I meant feeding less of the larger sized cricks that you had there. Sounds like he's doing pretty well, just be careful with the larger bugs, always feed a lesser amount and/or pull off the head + legs. But you don't have to be careful at all with the 1/4" bugs. :)
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Re: Advice for feeding young rankins

Postby McBeck » Mon Mar 09, 2020 2:02 pm

That's going to be a very attractive Dragon
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Re: Advice for feeding young rankins

Postby AHBD » Mon Mar 09, 2020 2:08 pm

If you don't mind me asking, where did you get Chomp from ?
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Re: Advice for feeding young rankins

Postby TinyBlue » Thu May 28, 2020 3:08 am

Hi there,

I'm new in this section of the forum. I also have a little Rankin's called Siobhan, but we think he's actually a male. S/He is over a year old, probably about 18-24 mo. I don't know because I got it from a guy who could not look after it anymore. We got it in Decvember nd he slept until mid February. He eats regularly but not always every day, we usully let him eat his fill and then the next day he may not eat much or even nothing at all. But we keep him in an outdoor enclosure with safe plants, so he might be getting the odd beastie when we're not looking. I would like to get him some company but they are really rare!
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