Prickly pear (Opuntia sp.) cactus pads

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GeoTerraTestudo

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A lot of people seem to like feeding their tortoises prickly pear (Opuntia sp.) cactus pads because they are a good source of calcium. However, it is my understanding that Opuntia are also rich in oxalates. As with other plants, I would think this would diminish the quality of cactus pads as a forage item, making them suitable for occasional feeding, but not very often. What do you guys think?
 

dmarcus

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I have never seen any adverse reactions from it and I have been feeding it to Vegas since he was a hatchling and that was almost 6 years ago, so I will continue feed it..
 

Yvonne G

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jaizei said:

Hi Jaizei:

(Did we ever learn your name?)

That's a very interesting article. I have trouble reading scientific stuff, so I'll go over it again when I have more time. Did it ever say whether there was too much oxalates?
 

TortieLuver

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I love the cactus and we have quite a bit here in Arizona. I give it quite often, but I have quite a few tortoises so they all share. I never worry about giving them too much. They graze on grasses daily and that's their main staple. The cactus is natural and great for calcium.
 

ascott

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Dont get me wrong now folks :D (I dont get too many chances to say that these days LOL) I do feed cactus to my guys, just as I feed dandelion flowers/greens which are also high in Oxalates....but the positive benefits out weight the negatives...also I don't feed Cactus every time I give them treats....maybe once a week or so.... :)

Dandelion greens get fed almost every day mixed along with other goodies and my guys free graze as well, so there is a mix going on...
 
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