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Care Sheet for Bearded Dragons

Average Rating Given To This Care Sheet Is 4.37    (1=lowest, 5=highest)    Last Updated: 02/01/2006

Main Category:

Lizards

Sub Category:

Bearded Dragons

 Care Sheet Submitted By:

X_Nile_x

Years Experience:

3 to 5 Years

Species:

Bearded Dragon

Other Species or Phases this Care Sheet May Cover:

Just Bearded Dragons

Sexing and Characteristics:

When sexing a bearded dragon, you should place the lizard on your hand, itís head facing the opposite direction of you. Carefully lift the tail upwards until you can see the vent. Just above the vent, you will either see:

In Females, youíll see one bump, or none at all.
In Males, youíll see two bumps on each side of the tail with a dent right in the middle.

Characteristics in females:
The cute arm wave. (Babies do this more often than juveniles and adults will, so you canít really say a baby is a female because it waves). The arm waving means "You are the boss, I am not worthy. Please donít hurt me, Iím harmless!"

Some say females have a smaller heads than males and also females tails arenít as thick as males.

Characteristics in Males:
The heads are usually bigger.
They have a thicker tail

Please do not take the characteristics as a for-sure statement of your beardies sex. Use the Tail technique for an accurate answer.

Mostly Active During:

Day

Substrate and Water Needs:

Recommended Substrates:

Ceramic Tile (my personal favorite)
Paper Towels
Newspaper
Reptile Carpet
Computer Paper
Indoor/Outdoor Carpet

Substrates to avoid:
Childrens Play Sand
Reptile Sand
Calcium Sand
Woodshavings
Walnut Shell

Please do not use any loose substrate to avoid to risks of impaction.
Sand will get moistened and collect into lumps in the stomach. As time passes it will eventually add up and impact your beardie.
Bearded Dragons are not on sand in the wild...MOST of it is hard packed clay.

Lighting and UVB:


Bearded Dragons require a UVB bulb. Youíll need a tube that can cover your basking spot. Iíd get an 8.0 or 10. A beardie deprived from UVB rays will suffer from a disease called MBD (metabolic bone disease).

Temperatures and Humidity:

Temperatures for the basking spot for a baby or juvenile can range anywhere between 110-115F. Keep a close eye on temperatures and check them with a digital thermometer you can usually find at Wal-mart. The pet store ones are usually inaccurate.

Heating and Equipment:

For Heating, you will need either of the following choices:
*UVA Basking Spot bulb (get a watt that will get to the right temp)
*A regular household bulb (100 watts)
*Indoor Flood Light (50 watts)

DO NOT USE:
Hot rocks
When laying on a hot rock, beardies will not know when it gets too hot and it can severely burn a dragon, sometimes it can even be fatal.

The only time I would use a heat mat or UTH is when the temperatures at night drop below 65F. Even then I would suggest getting a ceramic heater emitter.

Caging Provided:

Babies can be in a 20 gal. cage for a small amount of time due to the effects of beardies growing so fast.

For juveniles I would go-ahead and get the 40 gal. breeder so you wont have to be buying all these different size cages.

For an adult, the absolute minimum size for an adult is a 40 Gallon breeder cage. But keep in mind bigger is always better.

Diet:

Omnivorous

Description of Diet:

For insects, their staple diet should be crickets, silkworms and lobster roaches. Babies can eat up to 50-100 small crickets a day. Offer babies and juveniles as many as they can eat in a 10-15 minute period.

Adults should be offered 30 crickets max a week.

Superworms and Waxworms should be offered as treats only.

Staple greens:
Mustard Greens, Collard Greens, Dandelion Greens, Turnip Greens, Escarole, and Endive.

Supplements, Nutrition and Usage:

Dust live prey in calcium and multivitamins before feeding.

Maintenance:

Maintenance can be frustrating at some point, but it takes time to care for a dragon. You need to take at least 2 hours out of your time each day to care for this reptile. Youíll need money for food (especially for babies and juveniles as they require a lot more food), frequent vet visits, changing bulbs when needed.

Some Words on this Species:

Great reptile for kids or adults...most love being held and their just as interested in you as you are them.
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DISCLAIMER:
The information contain in these care sheets represents only the opinions and husbandry care of members and therefore is not guaranteed to be 100% accurate or reflects the advice or opinions of RepticZone.com. It is always advised to seek additional information or the advice of a qualified veterinarian or qualified reptile dealer. It is also advisable for you to a good amount of research before implementing any of the ideas and care described in these care sheets. We also recommend you ask many questions in their related forums before acting on any information.

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