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What do Rolly Pollies eat?

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Think back to the times when you were a kid playing on the playground. Do you remember seeing a small animal crawling on the ground and rolling into a ball when you tried to touch it? Most likely you have, which means you have a rolly poly, also known as a pill bug. These curious critters are named for their habit of rolling into a ball when threatened. They are also known as slaters, potato bugs or doodle bugs. Despite its name, the rolly polly is not actually a bug, nor is it an insect. Rolly pollies belong to the family Psyllidae in the order Isopoda, which makes them terrestrial crustaceans. Although they originally came from Europe, you can now find them throughout the Americas as well. They are now common sites in various ecosystems. However, the question remains, "What do rolly pollies eat?"

In this article, we'll try to solve this playground problem. We'll start by talking about what Pollypoli likes to eat. Then we'll move on to discussing their senses, and how they find food. Next, we'll discuss what rolling Polly parrots eat in the wild, as well as what they eat as pets. Finally, we'll explore what a small polipoli is. So, let's start this conversation and learn all about what to eat in Pollypoli.

What does Rolly Pollies like to eat?

what to eat rolly-pollies-1
Rolly pollies are scavengers, eating decaying plant and animal matter.

© AZ-Animals.com

Rolly pollies are decomposers, primarily eating dying or dead organic matter. They are scavengers, feeding on decaying plant and animal matter. That said, rolly pollies also eat living organic matter, such as living plants, especially when the weather is wet. Because of their penchant for eating domestic crops, some farmers and gardeners consider them pests. However, most environmentalists consider whorls to be contributors to healthy ecosystems. Given their penchant for recycling dying material, they help to temporarily remove toxins and heavy metals from the soil. Rolly pollies eat many different types of plant and animal matter. For the purposes of this article, we've compiled a list of 10 foods they typically eat.

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The 10 foods that Pollypolis dogs like to eat include:

  • Leaves
  • stem
  • bud
  • root
  • tubers
  • fruit
  • vegetable
  • animal waste
  • carrion
  • Shedding hide

How do Rolly Pollies find food?

Rolly pollies interact with the world in a very different way than humans. First, although they cannot hear sound, they are able to sense vibrations using their antennae. While not very helpful in finding food, it does allow them to protect themselves from threats. Generally, rolly pollies rely primarily on their sense of smell. First, they emit a scent that allows them to find other rolling pollies. In addition, the fine hairs on their antennae and mouth help them detect smells and locate food. Studies have shown that they are very sensitive to taste and smell, suggesting that they are likely to use these senses primarily to find food. Although polypolis do have eyes and can see, their eyesight is rather poor. In general, their vision is only helpful for navigation, and they don't rely on their eyes to find food.

Rolly pollies become most active at night, which means they are not limited by poor vision. They are attracted to sweet, pungent and neutral odors, which usually indicate that organic matter is dying or decaying. Once the Rolling Polly locks onto a scent, it moves in that direction until it finds the food it's looking for. Rolly pollies are foragers and do not chase live prey. Rolly polly will start eating with relish once he finds some rotting material. It chews food using a lower jaw consisting of 2 jaws. The food particles then pass through their digestive system before being excreted as waste. Because of their eating habits, Pollypolis don't need to chase food or use ambush tactics. Instead, they will simply move from spot to spot in search of the tastiest substance.

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What do Rolly Pollies eat in the wild?

What Rolly Pollies (Pill Bugs) Eat - Pill Bug Rolled Up
Rolly pollies rely on their sense of smell to locate food.

©Mauro Rodrigues/Shutterstock.com

In the wild, rolly pollies will eat almost any decaying matter they can find. This includes plant and animal matter. Typically, their diet consists mainly of stems, shoots, leaves, roots and tubers of dying or dead plants. Grass, twigs, shrubs and weeds are all on rolly polly's menu. In addition to wild plants, rolly pollies will also eat domesticated vegetables. They also like to eat fruit, especially spoiled or rotten fruit. While rolly pollies will eat fresh plants, they usually only do so when it's wet outside. As long as the plant is soft enough, they will eat it. In addition, rolly pollies also eat rotting animal carrion. Sometimes you can see them eating the discarded skin of reptiles such as lizards or snakes. In addition to animal meat, they also eat animal waste, including their own.

What do pet Rolly Pollies eat?

What does Rolly Pollies eat?
Lolipolis in captivity can live on raw fruit and vegetables.


Some people keep rolly pollies as pets because of their ease of maintenance and charm. If you decide to keep a Rolling Polly as a pet, you need to make sure you provide it with an appropriate diet. If you take good care of your corolla and feed it properly, it can easily live up to 2 years and up to 5 years. Feeding a pet roller can seem like a daunting task at first. After all, they are scavengers, thriving on dead or decaying plant matter. That said, a pet Lolly Polly will do just fine eating only raw fruits and vegetables. The older these foods are, the better. Safe foods include potato skins, carrots, apples, and pears. You can mix these foods with clippings and fallen leaves from your yard.

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What do baby Rolly Pollies eat?

Rolly polly females keep their eggs in a pouch under their body until the eggs hatch. After hatching, baby Polly pups look exactly like adult Polly Polly, only smaller. However, even after hatching, babies remain with their mothers for another two months. rolly pollies take about a year to mature. During that time, they ate roughly the same food as adults. Soft plants make up most of a baby rolly pollies' diet, along with animal droppings and carrion. If you have a small rolly polly, you can feed it fruit peels and vegetables, or lawn clippings and leaves. Just make sure to change its food frequently so it doesn't get moldy. Alternatively, you can feed it small pieces of paper or cardboard.


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What Rolly Pollies (Pill Bugs) Eat - Pill Bug Rolled Up

© Mauro Rodrigues/Shutterstock.com

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