How to make my superworms grow faster

Hey everyone! So I ordered some super worms online for my chameleon and I got the smallest size available because I assumed they grew fast like every other feeder I have purchased but I was WRONG! They are barely even big enough for Winston to notice so I can't really feed them off yet. Its been a few weeks and they are barely any bigger lol. Does anyone have any tips for how to make super worms grow faster? Ideal temperatures, foods they go crazy for, stuff like that. I have them in a little container with about an inch of plain oatmeal right now with veggies on top for moisture. Any tips would be highly appreciated!
 

Toothless the cham

Established Member
I don't think you can make them grow much faster. I know how to breed superworms but they don't grow much faster than your describing. I think oatmeal would be the best but just to keep them hydrated put bits of carrot or apple in there every now and then. they can survive without water for a long time but without it they will die. Otherwise no more tips sorry.
 

JacksJill

Chameleon Enthusiast
They grow faster if they are kept warmer. Mine grow faster in the summer than they do in the winter. I don't have specific temperatures but I keep them in the garage in southern California so I know they can take a lot of heat. They are a tropical species.
 

Bigsky

Established Member
l raise them in damp peat moss. They go nuts over canned cat food. Large superworms do well on chicken feed, nonmedictged of course.
 

JacksJill

Chameleon Enthusiast
I'm sure the supers love all that but if you are planning on feeding them to chameleons I would keep them on a vegetarian diet. Chameleons do not metabolize meat other than insects very well and the byproducts can build up in their joints and cause gout.
 

jamest0o0

Chameleon Enthusiast
I'm sure the supers love all that but if you are planning on feeding them to chameleons I would keep them on a vegetarian diet. Chameleons do not metabolize meat other than insects very well and the byproducts can build up in their joints and cause gout.
While I agree with most of that, what about larger chameleons that probably eat small mammals, birds, and lizards on a regular basis?

Also I posted something from a guy that studied roaches months back. Most gout cases are probably caused by feeding high protein diet to roaches. Roaches (from my understanding, though I should probably read it again) have the ability to turn any protein(vegan or animal) into uric acid and save it for times of protein shortages. So feeding any type of protein in excess could cause a large build up of uric acid. The guy recommended feeding only 4% of the diet as protein. Personally, I'd still only use vegan sources because meat is probably not great for most chams. This would all make sense considering a cockroach's insane ability to survive.

Sorry went a little off topic!

Heat and good food for growth. They aren't fast growers though like hornworms.
 

JacksJill

Chameleon Enthusiast
I think we basically agree. Roaches will store uric acid in their tissues and are the worst if fed high protein (ie meat protein etc. diet). I know that chameleons in the wild will occasionally grab a small rodent, bird or reptile but the day in day out feeding of these proteins is where we run into problems. If that is in the daily gut load it will be a constant exposure, even the small amount of gut load that comes with super worms.
I think this is more of a problem in the slower metabolism of montane species.
 

jamest0o0

Chameleon Enthusiast
I think we basically agree. Roaches will store uric acid in their tissues and are the worst if fed high protein (ie meat protein etc. diet). I know that chameleons in the wild will occasionally grab a small rodent, bird or reptile but the day in day out feeding of these proteins is where we run into problems. If that is in the daily gut load it will be a constant exposure, even the small amount of gut load that comes with super worms.
I think this is more of a problem in the slower metabolism of montane species.
I should have worded what I said better. Wasn't disagreeing, just interested in hearing your thoughts on the large species that eat vertebrates. I'd think chams such as melleri and parsonii would eat a large amount of small lizards. I've never been to Africa, so I have no idea, just a guess. I wonder if they are more adapted to eating meat. Either way, I wouldn't want to give my feeders meat.

As for the roaches, what I found interesting was that whether fed meat or vegan protein(like seeds), they are still able to transform it into uric acid. So for feeder roaches it might be a good idea to heavily restrict protein intake.
 

JacksJill

Chameleon Enthusiast
Your explanation was better than mine. I was trying to be brief. I do find that fact about high protein of any kind in roaches being a problem interesting. I do use some seeds in my dry gut load. I will be sure to back off a bit in the roach bin now.
 

nightanole

Chameleon Enthusiast
I should have worded what I said better. Wasn't disagreeing, just interested in hearing your thoughts on the large species that eat vertebrates. I'd think chams such as melleri and parsonii would eat a large amount of small lizards. I've never been to Africa, so I have no idea, just a guess. I wonder if they are more adapted to eating meat. Either way, I wouldn't want to give my feeders meat.

As for the roaches, what I found interesting was that whether fed meat or vegan protein(like seeds), they are still able to transform it into uric acid. So for feeder roaches it might be a good idea to heavily restrict protein intake.
My first veiled in the 1990's was fed exclusively pinkies and fuzzys, plus a small amount of veg. He lived 6 years, and the vet always said he was healthy. The beardies/frillies/water(ies) didnt do well on the mostly whole prey diet. They lived 33-50% longer and stopped having kidney issues, once i switched them to mostly crickets, meal worms, supers, and night crawlers from the bait shop.
 

nightanole

Chameleon Enthusiast
Your explanation was better than mine. I was trying to be brief. I do find that fact about high protein of any kind in roaches being a problem interesting. I do use some seeds in my dry gut load. I will be sure to back off a bit in the roach bin now.
Back when cricket crack was still getting formulated, it was high protein and worked great on crickets. Once people stared feeding it to dubias, customers started complaining about die offs. They reformulated it with i believe 1/3 less protein, and its worked great ever since.
 
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