Echinops telfairi (Lesser Hedgehog Tenrec)

Tenrec Diet

Around 90% of your tenrecs diet should be live insects. Tenrecs can be hugely picky over food, so it is important to vary the food offered to avoid selective feeding. For the live insects, you can use large reptile feeding tongs and buy food bowls design to prevent insect escapees. Some tenrecs will be happy to be fed via the tongs. Tenrecs need added calcium and vitamin and mineral supplements. Calcium can be dusted on livefood or added via drops to the water.

As your Tenrecs approach Torpor they will begin the eat less. On milder days they may awake to eat and drink so dry food and water should be kept constantly available. Some tenrecs may eat and drink very little over these months. If it is their first torpor it is important to monitor their weight.


Should always be available and changed daily.Tenrecs prefer bowls and the water is a good method to add calcium drops to.

Kibble/Cat biscuits

A high protein and high fat dry kitten food should be left constantly in your tenrecs cage. Tenrecs will typically only eat this if there are no live insects available.


Mealworms, morio worms, crickets, earthworms, locusts, roaches, slugs, snails and waxworms are all good choices and can be dusted with a calcium supplement before offering. Tenrecs are very individual in their preferences and it is good to have multiple feeding bowls if you have multiple girls in your cage to avoid one dominating food. Waxworms are high in fat and should be fed in smaller quantities than others. You can also get calciworms which have a higher calcium content than other insects.

Meat & Protein

Turkey, chicken, and mince are all good options for your Tenrecs. They also like pinkies and day old chicks. Scrambled or boiled eggs are also popular. Do not offer food that has any additional spice or sauce and make sure you remove after the evening.


Tenrecs also enjoy many fruits, such as banana, papaya, peach and apricot.