"Wilder" glider diet

Posted By: Anonymous

"Wilder" glider diet - 07/07/05 07:57 PM

[:"blue"]This thread is for GCer's who use a diet plan (or any GCers who want to understand the how/what/why of them) that attempts to mimmic WITHIN REASON, in our homes, the diet eaten by Petaurus breviceps in the wild.

I am going to post what I feed, and where I get it, and how I make it, and I hope other "Gliderwilders" will do the same, so as to share our practices.

PLEASE, do not post objections to the idea itself, or using animal science/biology to formulate one's diet, we've discussed that already! We're here to talk about wilder diets in practice, to put out info as to what is being done, not bash using them in the first place.

Disclaimer: Many GCers don't agree with this methodology, and here are some links to recent threads on the topic:
Dr. Johnson-Delany:glider diet shocker!Part 1 Part 2. Protein confusion? Wild vs. captive diets
Please read them before deciding on any dietary changes/methods to use for your <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/littleglider.gif" alt="" />
Posted By: Anonymous

Re: "Wilder" glider diet - 07/19/05 09:39 AM

[:"blue"]Here's a new thread to add to the above list re:the discussion of scientific diets and wild vs. captive nutrition. Wild Glider Pollen Consumption
Posted By: Anonymous

My gliderwilder diet & enrichment - 07/19/05 01:07 PM

I'm going to list the diet at first, and then explain each part and offer suggestions on [:"red"]where to find the components[/] IF anyone wants to.

Per glider, per night:

a) 1 tbs original Leadbeater's Nectar Mix
b) 1 tbs insectivore semi-soft pellet staple
c) 2 insects
d) 1 tsp fruits (dusted)
e) Water
f) Access to flowers & gum branches during tent time
g) Other: 2 foodstuffs I use in addition to my wilder program, but under special circumstances. Ahh, the benefits of "captivation".

Leadbeaters Nectar Mix. (Makes 1 ice tray w/ a 2 tbsp serving frozen in each cube).
2/3 cup warm water
2/3 cup honey
1 hard boiled egg, WITHOUT shell
2 tbs baby cereal
1 tsp Vionate
1/2 tsp Rep-cal w/out Phos or D3

Mix egg until homogenized. Mix water & honey together. While mixing, add slowly to egg: water/honey, then supplement powders, then cereal, blending each addition until smooth.Can be served right away or frozen for up to 1 month in an air tight container. I use tupperware fresh & pure ice trays w/lids. [:"red"](ebay, secondhand stores, tupperware parties, yard sales)[/] Recipe can be increased to feed more gliders or fill more trays, just be sure to multiply ALL ingredients by the same factor. [:"red"]I get all ingredients from the grocery store, except the vit/min, which are available at PetCo/PetSmart and Suncoast and many others online.[/]

b)Pellet:In the cage all the time (I remove fresh stuff in the morning). They mostley eat this during the day or after they eat their nectar, so I can tell they like that better, but they DO eat it.Zookeeper's Secret from [:"red"]Suncoast[/] or Insectivore-fare from [:"red"]Reliable Protein Products[/], they're the same thing. Proper hedgehog diets [:"red"]from many pet stores[/] can also be used if the others are not available but must be softened with water or dilute juice. Hedgehogs are insectivores too.

c) Insects:I use gut-loaded mealies & crickets, and wild caught moths. In the winter I let the mealies morph into "Darth Vader" beetles, to limit saturated fat, and add variety and hard exoskeleton. Bugs are fed during tent time, and gliders "hunt" them <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/evil.gif" alt="" />. I facilitate to make sure everybody gets 2. Can also just be passed directly to gliders through bars of cage when tent time not available but then you have to touch them, or use tweezers. [:"red"]I get the mealies from PetCo, and the moths with my Bugnapper from ZooMed and a butterfly net.[/]

d) Treat:Pretty much any common grocery store fruit (which includes corn, peas, and green beans) and a few vegetables (yams, sweet potatoes, carrots). I use frozen, WASHED fresh, and some baby foods without additives. I limit their citrus, as the acid can cause loose stools. Fruits are fed as treats,and so constitute only 10% of their total dietary intake.Variety is important, but I feed the same kind of fruit mix over each 3 day period, as I've found they won't try new things unless their current favorites are gone for more than a day. Their fruit is alternately dusted with bee pollen and acacia gum powder.[:"red"](available in many health food stores,, and GC user BigErn!)[/] Colonies with pregnant females get Possum Milk Replacer from [:"red"]Wombaroo[/] added as a third "dust".

e) Water:filtered w/a Pur unit, is available at all times, and the bottle is cleaned every other day. They get most of their fluid from their food, but they sometimes need water, my nursing females especially seem to drink more.

f) "Foraging":Where: I have a new "Glidarium' my husband <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/thinkerg.gif" alt="" />built, it's 4' wide on each side and 6' tall, made of pvc and nylon net, hangs from the ceiling, folds up easily for underbed storage, and the supplies cost only $20 (he's a keeper!). It's a lot more roomy than my old kmart tent, and so allows me to set a camp chair in there and watch them hunt & glide for bugs & blossoms. It's also see-through, so people can sit and watch from outside of the tent, which is lots of fun and makes us feel less "cut-off". It's also way less hot in there. I just love it...picture soon.

What: I bring whole branches into the tent; both natural blooming flowers and branches we've made with gum holes filled with pollen-studded acacia gum for the gliders to attack during tent time. They chew the gummy branches, and tear the flowers apart to get to the nectar & pollen, but they eat very little of the foliage itself. I have my vet's approval to use species in these genera: Eucalyptus, Corymbia, Banksia, Acacia, Melalueca, Callistemon, Hibiscus, Lonicera(honeysuckle), Compositae(daisy), Malva (lavender) and Fuschia. The first 6 are native to Australia, and are [:"red"]available at many nurseries,, and J.L. Hudson, the Seedsman in CA. The others are easy to find at most nurseries (even Walmart & Home Depot)[/], and grow well as house plants for those folks that live places with rough winters.

g)Other: Low fat, vanilla yogurt is used as a licky treat for new glider bonding (joeys, rescues). Raw, unsalted sunflower seed (kernals, NO SHELLS) are added as a treat or as a supplement for underweight/injured gliders, because they contain polyunsaturated plant-based fats are much less damaging than saturated, animal-based fats can be to hearts/health, and contain beneficial Omega fatty acids that aid in healing and cell memebrane health.


Photoperiod: I have a timer to turn the regular lights off after dark and turn on RED fluorescents. They don't notice them (flashlights covered with red plastic are what biologists use to observe them in the wild!) and this allows them to have some semblance of seasonal light/dark cycles.

Temperature: We have a climate similar to coastal NE Australia, and so let the temperatures change somewhat with the seasons as well, of course within safe upper and lower limits (our heater and air conditioner make sure it's never less than 50*F or more than 85*F). Gliders in the wild tolereate a wide range of temps over the year; you can go to these links at the Weather Channel online: Sydney yearly averages , and Melbourne yearly averages and you'll get the idea of what they deal with...they're active at night, when it's NOT hot, and just sleep during the day when it is, and on average it's not more than 80 degrees even in the summer, and goes into the 40's in their winter.

Sound: We always have the radio, tv or CD on, so they get used to background noise and don't startle (like the sounds of birds & animals that go on all day and night in the forest) at human sounds. We also like to play CD's of nightime jungle sounds while we have tent time, but that's just 'cause it's more fun for us humans! <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/roflmao.gif" alt="" />

NOTE: Please read my opening post before responding, so we can stay on the REAL topic here, <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/thanx.gif" alt="" />
Posted By: Anonymous

Re: My gliderwilder diet & enrichment - 07/19/05 02:11 PM

Ok well, my per glider per day is different because some days I toss them some yogurt or avacado or something else good, but it's not on a schedule. But, here's the standard day:

1 T Modified Leadbeaters Mix
1/2 T Egg Mix
1/2 T Fruit puree
1 T Veggie Mix

Modified Leadbeaters Mix:
16oz Honey
16oz Water
1/4 cup Wambaroo High Protien Supplement
1/4 cup Wambaroo Possum Milk Replacer (both my girls are preggo)

Egg Mix (Scrambled):
8 Large eggs
2 T Hemp Hearts (Please search my thread on these)
2 T Bee Pollen
2 T Acacia Gum

Fruit Puree: (Keep in mind that my gliders have constipation issues ao I add citrus)
10 (roughly) frozen raspberries
1/2 cup frozen pineapple
1/2 bag frozen mango
1 Gala apple
3 black plums (pit removed)
1/2 cup water
1/4 can guava nectar
1/4 cup fresh OJ
1/2 Orange
3 T nectar powder (Glideraide or Nekton SG)

Veggie mix is gennerally peas, carrots, corn - then I usally add different things each time I make a new bag - Sometimes I add squash, sweet potato, parsely, asparagus, etc...

Enrichment...Well, they get fresh roses every night that they are in season & they LOVE that, they get fresh Aspen & Box Elder branches regularly, which they just chew to high heaven.

I have separated my 2 pair into 2 separate glider rooms (well, one has my bed in it - but they don't care), and I know most people can't do this, but I've noticed such a difference in mine. Zoe's stress level has gone way down, she's not near as dominant, she's finally letting Fawkes mark her, she doesn't pitbull bite anymore. I just think it was a really great move alltogether. I think maintaining separate territories when possible is a good idea.

I don't think all natural or all synthetic is the right way. I think you need a combination of both to make the kiddos happy. I try to add both elements in the cages.

Right now I'm not feeding bugs, but that's just because my mealies aren't big enough yet and all four of my critters absolutely refuse to eat aliens or beetles. When the mealies are of size to be fed I'll omit the eggs (moving the hemp hearts, gum, & pollen to the fruit puree). I also intend on incorporating a few different buggies here in the future - just haven't made my choices yet. Trying to decide how I feel about moths in the house. LOL

If I think of anything I forgot, I'll come add it later.
Posted By: Anonymous

Re: My gliderwilder diet & enrichment - 07/19/05 02:46 PM

[:"blue"]I know what you mean about the moths; my brother's girlfriend is so phobic she used to leave the room, but she loves the gliders so much, and watching the moths be eaten, that when they glider-sit for us she even catches some! I'm so proud of her!
Posted By: Anonymous

Re: My gliderwilder diet & enrichment - 07/19/05 04:36 PM

Okay.... my last post was all detailed but I tried to add some links and the forum died on me so I lost it....

Anyhoo, I'm going to try again only this one will probably be shorter....gotta make sure it's not going to act up on me again if this post is not complete yet than I am busy editing it....give me just a few minutes <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/wave.gif" alt="" />

I feed the Original Leadbeaters as well, trying to follow the Dr. JD diet fairly close, but it's not exact. I feed pretty similar to Marla....

1. Original Leadbeaters - I added extra chicken to mine to make up for the fact that I wasn't using high protien baby cereal or the wombaroo suppliment, though I'd like to try the suppliment sometime, haven't got the funds to go buy a supply yet
2. I use The Pet Glider Vitamins and calcium covered crickets
I can't say enough about Pricilla's vitamins. Here's a post about how much I love them, really I think they've made a HUGE difference for my furkids. Link to Post about Pricilla's Vits
3. I use Happy Glider because my guys hated Zookeepers, I tried and tried to get them to eat it, doctored it up every way I could think of and they just wouldn't touch it.
4. I use crickets, about 3-4 a night, hand fed, and calcium covered.
5. Have used bee pollen from the local organic grocer but am currently waiting on an prder from Ernie on both pollen and acacia gum
I also use Jumex Nectar, they love it. It's a great thing to soak the happy glider pellets in.
6. Flowers.... well, haven't gotten any yet. I was looking for someone with organically grown ones but even the natural markets here in COS don't carry them often and there isn't room in our apartment to grow our own, though my mom has a few we might try, she lives way outside of town away from any smoge and no crop field nearby.

And another thing I did, as someone else just said, I moved my gliders into their own room and that has seems to make a huge difference in their stress level. They were in the livingroom about 20 feet from the rat cage and I think that smell stressed them out. I think less "house" noise has helped too, it's not nearly as hectic in our house as it was before.

Hm, think I covered it all... I'll post more if I think of it. I think the thread will be great. Thanks for getting it started Marla!

We can't duplicate gliders wild diets, but I think we can come closer to it than some of the current diets are doing. I think it's essential we listen to the researchers and vets because we simply do not know enough about their dietary needs all on our own.

I CAN say that my vet recommends something closer to the Dr. JD diet, though their website is not highly detailed, they have almost the exact thing on their site for gliders as Dr. JD recommends. Here's my vets website: I've directed my vet to this website and she's so very willing to learn and add to their knowledge that it's awesome. We LOVE Dr. Brooks! <img src="/ubbthreads/images/graemlins/hug2.gif" alt="" />
Posted By: Anonymous

Re: My gliderwilder diet & enrichment - 07/20/05 01:09 AM

[:"blue"]For those interested, here is a link to another thread about possible photoperiod effects on mammal health... Ferret adrenal disease
Posted By: Anonymous

Exotic vet glider diet PDF - 07/20/05 05:34 AM

[:"blue"]I've attached a 1-sheet handout given by my local vet. It's a good intro to wilder glider diets; a good start.

It makes mention of gum & pollen in the natural diet, but does not say how much to feed. My vet suggested the "rotation dusting" of fruit that I use, so as to keep these items as treat portions.

"Shelled egg" means NO SHELL. Like "shelled peanuts"; they're removed from their shells before being packaged for sale. Peanuts w/shells are sold as "peanuts in shell".

The recipe assumes a multivite w/ Ca, so I asked and if you seperate them (as in Vionate and Rep-cal) then the amount of Ca is 1/2 tsp per batch, if you're ALSO gut loading insects, 1 tsp if not.

I converted the measurements to cups/tsps/tbsp for ease of preparation in kitchens.

Attached File
Posted By: USMom

Re: Exotic vet glider diet PDF - 07/20/05 03:42 PM

Okay, looking at the care sheet, it reccomends an insectivore type staple or insects? It doesn't seem clear to me for that. Looking at Marla's diet and Gina's diet, am I correct in assuming that the egg mixture in Gina's replaces that staple? If so, is there a replacement for the hemp hearts? My gliders love, love, love scrambled eggs with chicken mixed in. Is it possible to do this instead? It might be easier to show what each part of the diet provides, that way if I make a change, I will know where to balance it (if needed). I am looking into a diet change for my guys, but I want to make it easy on me as well, as I am doing rescues, and I think some of this could easily get quite expensive.
© 2020 GliderCENTRAL