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BEARDED DRAGON

bearded dragon


Reptile Rapture,
6308 Monona dr, Monona WI 53716

608-221-0094
, www.reptilerapture.net


BEARDED DRAGON Caresheet

Common Name:Bearded Dragon
Scientific Name:Pogona vitticeps
Origin: Australia
Size: 18"-24" head to tail
Lifespan: 10 years


You will find many ways on the internet, on "how to" take care of this animal. This care sheet is showing the way we found works best for us from our many years of experience of breeding and caring for this species.

HOUSING
You can start babies in enclosures as small as 10 gallons, but they will outgrow it within a couple months. An enclosure that is at least 30" x 12" inches (like Zilla critter cage 20 Long) would be a good starter, and should comfortably house your baby until it is 6 months of age. Adults do well in a tank at least 36" x 18" (Exo Terra Large, or Zilla 40 gal) You can always give them something bigger if you have the space. Spot clean the bedding whenever they defecate.


LIGHTING AND HEAT
Bearded dragons or "Beardies" originate from Australian, and as such, they like it hot. Basking temps can get as high a 110 degrees on the hot side as long as the rest of the enclosure is cooler. Ambient temperature can be around 80 degrees. Nighttime temperatures should stay above 72 degrees for babies. Adult can get a little cooler. We recommend a Zoo Med heat mat or Exo Terra heat pad that stays on 24/7 to give them a little bit of supplemental heat during the night. Both of these are placed on the outside underneath the enclosure. You want a heat pad that only covers half the tank (or a little less).

Bearded dragons need UVB lighting to help them absorb calcium and to synthesize vitamin D3. Since they are not out in natural sunlight in our homes, we must provide UVB light in the form of a special fluorescent bulb designed to produce UVB rays.

The best bulbs are the mercury vapors such as Exo Terra's Solar Glo bulbs, ZooMed's Powersun, or Solar bright bulbs. These provide heat and UVB all in one bulb. You can also use separate basking (heat) bulb and UVB bulbs. If you use these you will want the Zoo Med 10.0 or Exo Terra 150 desert variety.

Depending on where you live, in colder climate areas, your beardies may need extra heat in the winter to keep them from brumating. You can add an extra heat lamp, or depending on the temperature in your home, you may be able to get away with something as simple as putting a folded towel over half of the enclosure (away from your heat fixtures).


HUMIDITY
Keep a non porous water bowl in with your beardie and make sure it always have clean water. Exo Terras water bowls or Flukers water bowls are good choices. You might have to change the water out everyday if your lizard likes to defecate in it. Scrub the bowl at least once a week to keep bacteria slime from building up. Some bearded dragons also enjoy being misted with water, but don't make the enclosure too moist--they come from a dry climate.



FEEDING babies to 1 1/2 years old
- 75% protein / 25% greens
Crickets (
crickets or roaches or mealworms) 1-2 X A DAY
Finely chopped greens 1 X A DAY

ADULTs - 1 1/2 YEARs & OLDER

Crickets (crickets or roaches or mealworms) 3-4 X A WEEK
Finely chopped greens 1 X A DAY


SUGGESTED FOODS

PROTEIN:
Crickets
Dubia roaches
Hornworms
Superworms
Waxworms
Baby mice
Small lizards

GREENS:
Mustard greens
Turnip greens
Collard s
Beet tops
Carrot tops
Kale

OTHER VEGGIES
Green Beans
Peas
Sweet potato (grated)
Yam or Squash (grated)
Romaine lettuce (once in a while)
Corn (once in a while)

FRUITS - CAN OFFER FEW TIMES A WEEK (ONLY FOR ADULTS)
Banana
Melon
Apple
Papaya
Berries

SUPPLEMENTS
We recommend dusting your bugs with Zoo Med Repti Calcium with D3.
3 times a week

We also suggest supplementing with Zoo Med reptivite multi-vitamin with D3. The day you use the multi-vitamin you don't have to use the calcium dust.
Babies - 2 times a week.
Adults - 1 times a week.


TEMPERAMENT

Bearded dragons are considered the puppy dogs of the lizard world. They are naturally tame and tolerate handling better than other lizards. Most beardies will seek out attention from the people who care for them. It’s not unusual for a happy bearded dragon to enjoy a ride perched on their owners’ shoulders.