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Attempted Worm Feeding for Tiger

sammy4tbts

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My Tiger is about four years old and has only wanted to eat crickets. I'm on this thread after getting advice on the Tiger Nutrition thread where worms were suggested. I've tried to feed worms a couple times in the past with no luck and they ended up in the garden. A friend has worms (that doesn't sound right, does it) and he brought a few over today. They look like regular earthworms, nothing special like some of the pictures I've seen on this site. Anyway, he pulled one apart somehow (I didn't watch) because I told him I couldn't cut up living things. He then offered it to my Tiger, who kinda looked at it quizzically, and then the worm dropped into the coconut fiber and disappeared. I have a few more worms to try, but I'm wondering if the worm in the tank will bother my Tiger. Will the half-worm stay alive? Will my Tiger find and eat it on his own? Should I search for the worm segment and remove it?
:confused:
Please help!!
 

Lasher

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I cant see it bothing him, as far as staying alive goes it depends how much of it is left and which end it was(cutting a worm in half and getting two worms is just an urban myth - the head end can survive if there enough of the body left, that depends on the size of the worm).
I'd leave it for your tiger to play with!
 

sammy4tbts

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Thanks, Lasher. I won't worry about it then. Don't know which end is in the tank; the other end is still in the cup. Does anyone put worms in their tank on purpose for a more natural environment? I did think of that myth from childhood today. Must be a widespread rumor. Do you believe that report about worms not feeling pain?
 

pete

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So, I feed my tigers mainly earthworms. I've lost several in the tiger's soil. I've even had them reproduce in my tiger tank. They won't cause any trouble for your tiger. It's quite likely that if you leave a worm in the tank the salamander will find it. Nightcrawlers "crawl at night" and most likely your tiger does, too. Although, there is some personal comfort in seeing the worms get eaten.

You can try feeding him on a none dirt surface at first so he has time to investigate the new food before it buries. Most tiger's aren't picky eaters, but I had one that I had to initially let it chase worms around my kitchen sink for about 10 minutes before he'd eat them.
 

Lasher

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Do you believe that report about worms not feeling pain?

I dont know enough enough about there physiology, but I dont let it bother me. At my 'rents place the lawn is always a mass of starlings, sparrows and black birds ripping the things to pieces in the morning - a pair of scissors and swiftly down a newts throat cant be any more traumatic than what they have to put up with in the wild!
 

sammy4tbts

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Pete, do you have coco fiber in your tank? lol about the kitchen sink. I may have to try that or something else because another attempt this morning failed.

Lasher, good point! I just don't like to kill or cause death to anything except mosquitoes. Oh, or the fire ants years ago when I temporarily lived in Mississippi. I had a real hard time at first sending the crickets to their deaths. I sure wish Tigers would eat dead stuff.
 

Lasher

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Lasher, good point! I just don't like to kill or cause death to anything except mosquitoes. Oh, or the fire ants years ago when I temporarily lived in Mississippi. I had a real hard time at first sending the crickets to their deaths. I sure wish Tigers would eat dead stuff.

Try keeping a juvenile Bearded Dragon, also known as 'bug disposal units', really de-sensitises you to instect cruelty!
 

pete

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Pete, do you have coco fiber in your tank? lol about the kitchen sink. I may have to try that or something else because another attempt this morning failed.

I have a organic soil substrate. Unfortunately, I couldn't find coco fiber when I initiated the tank. Does your salamander at least show interest in the worm (looks at it while it wiggles)? If so, then I'm sure he'll figure it out eventually.
 

Lasher

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Unfortunately, I couldn't find coco fiber when I initiated the tank.

Dunno about the states but over here cheap pot/hanging basket liners are made out of it and readily available. About a quid for a 18 inch circle which can easily cover twice that area - bargain!

Even if your tiger doesnt eat it, it can only improve the health of your tank(disposing of plant waste and keep the substrate loose and aireated).
 

sammy4tbts

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Pete, when I held the worm in front in him, he looked at it, made no advances toward it, and then started backing away. Like :eek:. I'll try again maybe tomorrow.

I'm wondering if worms will be happy in the coconut fiber instead of soil, as you have. Petsmart carries the fiber, maybe Petco. Don't know what stores are in your area. I'm over an hour from those stores so I order it from Fluker Farms (online or toll free #) where I get my crickets.

Speaking of FF, I was looking at their catalog today and am thinking of ordering wax worms. I read here that they are more nutritious than earthworms or meal worms (which my Tiger wouldn't eat either). The old price list I have shows them at $5 for 50, choice of small, medium, or large. I don't know how big these are, but I'm guessing medium.
 

Lasher

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If memory serves wax worms are quite fatty, I dont think they would be a suitable staple diet.
Feel free to correct me if I'm thinking of something else!
 

sammy4tbts

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Lasher, crickets are the main diet and all he's wanted to eat in 4 years so I'm trying to boost his nutrition. Maybe wax worms are not the thing to try? Should the supplement powder for dusting crickets be Calcium:phosphorus 2:1? Maybe that's all I should get and be done with it. I did start the "Tiger Nutrition" thread the other day looking for advice. Worms and dusting crickets seemed to be the answer, so I'm trying the worms, unsuccessfully so far.
 

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Sounds like he might be a little fussy, but it's great that he's investigating it. I'd suggest putting him in a large container (or kitchen sink) tossing a worm in there with him and giving him 15 minutes alone with it, maybe watching from a distance. If he's used to hunting crickets, hand feeding a worm might be a little bit awkward for him right now. Crickets are easy and bite size, but worms are long and can move from both ends so this can be confusing for the little guy. I'm sure with patience he'll get the worm.

You could try feeding him dusted crickets, or shaking things up by giving him wax worms every now and them. You could also try feeding them pillbugs from outside (If you have pill bugs in NM). If he likes those, I think you can culture them, and they're supposed to be high in calcium.

As for a worm in coco fiber, I don't see why a worm wouldn't thrive in coco fiber.
 
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    yeah, im heading over tomorrow morning to move him to this house and feed him. Thanks for the help!
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