Box turtles are known to be picky eaters. This is not only a matter of them being partial to certain foods, but more that they are very particular about their living conditions. If a box turtle is unhappy with his captive surroundings, he is likely to stop eating. Most box turtles would rather die of starvation than live in a situation that is not appealing to them. Therefore, it is very important for an owner to carefully observe the eating habits of the box turtle and to consider adjusting more than the food offered if he is not eating.
They can also be rather picky about the foods they accept. Thankfully, there is a wide variety of foods that are suitable for box turtles. If your turtle seems comfortable in his surroundings but still ignores the food your offer him, try a different type of food. Keep trying until you find one that he thoroughly enjoys.
Earthworms are a popular food choice for most turtles. Of all the foods offered in captivity, earthworms are probably the one most often accepted. They are usually one of the first foods a turtle is fed, and they can jumpstart a turtle’s appetite for other foods. You can catch your own earthworms or purchase them from a pet store or bait shop.
Many insects are also suitable for feeding to your box turtle. Crickets, flies, grasshoppers, and spiders are just some examples of insects that he will eagerly consume. Crickets can be purchased at any pet store that sells herps, while most other insects are difficult to find for sale and will likely have to be caught.
Box turtles are mainly herbivorous and will generally accept a variety of fruits and vegetables. Some popular choices are apples, cantelope, strawberries, bananas, cucumbers, carrots, and beets. Some turtles will only accept one or two fruits or vegetables, but most will enjoy a variety. Some box turtle owners will even make a fruit salad for their pet, storing it in the refrigerator and spooning out just a helping now and then.