Pet shops give poor information on Reptiles and sell a lot of products that are dangerous. Many Dragons we see coming out of the Pet shops have toes missing, tail nips, and other injuries as well as parasites. I am going to give you my care sheet and have you read it. It will give you a lot of information about Dragons, Diet and husbandry.
Bearded Dragon Care Sheet
- Bearded dragons should be housed alone.
- Ages of bearded dragons follow these guidelines:
1. 0-3 months- baby
2. 3-12 months-juvenile
3. 12-18 months- sub
4. 18 months + -adult
- Bearded dragons live as much as 10-12 years if well cared for properly.
- Bearded dragons have a very good temperament as long as they are cared for
- When you bring your baby home, it may be quite stressful to him/her to get
use to new home. May not eat well the first 2-3 days. They may not need to
handled the first 2-3 days if skittish and nervous.
- Never use sand or any other type of loose substrate: Loose substrates can
cause impaction (not being able to go Poop) in all ages of bearded dragons-
lick their environment to explore .It is difficult to keep germ free
Ceramic tile, newspaper, non adhesive shelf liner and reptile
carpet is what is
most recommended. Use paper towels for the little one and
as they get bigger you
can change to something else.
- Be sure you keep your beardies home as clean as you can. Clean up by spot
cleaning when needed. Clean & sanitize entire tank every 10-14 days. A
cleaning solution is a 20% bleach solution. If you choose to use wood
branches etc, these should be soaked in the bleach solution and
Then bake in 250 degree oven for 30 minutes.
- Need a climbing accessory: to bask and to warm up under basking heat light
and lower branches or platforms to come down and cool off.
- A hide of some sort like a cave.
- A food dish and water dish.
- Plastic spray bottle
- Can use artificial plants when they get older- 3 months or so.
- Digital thermostat and/or temp gun
- Tank size: Minimal size tank for this age is 20 gallon long
- Minimal size for older beardie: 4 months of age: 40 gallon breeder is the
minimal tank size for older dragon. Can divide a 40 gallon breeder for a
dragon. Must have two lights for your beardie.
1. A UVB light source-best is 10.0 Reptisun that runs the length of your
tank. Your dragon must have this light to metabolize calcium. If not he will
metabolic bone disease, a serious condition. You can also take your
outside to bask in the sun for 15 minutes each day if your temps are
or above outside. You can purchase cages or reptariums from your
Never leave a beardie outside unattended.
2. A basking type
light that puts
out heat and warmth above basking spot. Your beardie must
have warmth to digest
food & thrive.
- Lights should be on for 12-14 hours each day. Follow the seasons and light
timers are a great luxury if you can get them. 6 dollars at Lowe's. No
warmth needed at night unless your temperatures get below 62
degrees. If they
do, there are ceramic heat emitters that put out no light,
only heat. Use these
at night if temperatures fall below 62 degrees.
- Temperatures have to be kept at the following ranges during the day:
Babies: Warm basking log: 105-125 degrees F
Cool side: 85-90
Warm basking spot: 110-115
Cool side: 80-85
digital probe type thermometer or a temp gun-these are most accurate.
- Feeding a Beardie: Beardies eat live prey consisting of crickets, roaches
and/or silkworms. Never feed any size of mice to your beardie. Never feed
worms. They also must be given greens/veggies everyday. The younger
they are the
more live prey they should have. As they grow older the live
prey decreases and
the veggies/greens should be the major part of diet.
Never feed anything bigger,
than the space between your beardie's eyes. This
includes both live prey and
pieces of veggies/greens,
- A chopper or food processor is a huge help when your beardie is small.
Always offer greens and veggies: collard greens, turnip greens, mustard
cabbage, red cabbage, fresh green beans, yellow summer squash,
sweet potato, cactus pad. Apricots, strawberries, apples,
raspberries, cantaloupe- fruits are treats only.
- What is live prey? The easiest and less expensive live prey is crickets when
you have a young or first beardie. The other live preys you can feed are
silkworms, and special types of roaches. You can learn to raise your own
prey. Treats can be wax worms, super worms, and tomato/Goliath worms.
find that ordering live prey from the internet is the way to go.....
live prey or greens/veggies in tank overnight. . Crickets can
bite your beardie
- Babies should get 80% live prey, and 20 % greens/veggies. But since the
greens/veggies are a must when they are older, get them eating their
greens/veggies very early. Give greens/veggies in small pieces everyday. You
should eventually start decreasing your older dragon's protein intake when
are about a year to 15 months old. Their protein intake decreases to 20
prey and 80% veggies/greens.
- A baby eat 50-75 crix a day depending on the size of the crickets. Never
feed crix or veggies bigger than the space between your beardie's eyes. Use
guide when buying crix or chopping your greens/veggies.
- You must provide calcium dust without D3 and multivitamin dust for your
beardie. You should dust the live prey with calcium one time a day, and
3 times a week. Just collect your live prey into baggie and add
and vitamin to dust them. Then pour a few at a time into your
tank. Some people
feed their beardie in a separate tank so that no crickets
can hide. Or some take
out "furniture" from tank and feed this way. As they
get older, 4-5 months or so
dust live prey with calcium 3 times a week.
- Feed the veggies/ greens 1st thing in morning after lights on for one hour
at least. Then after 2-3 hours offer crix. Then freshen green/veggies. Then
more crix. Make sure after last crix feeding there is at least 1-2
lights so that they can digest their food before night time.
*Beardies over the age of one year old during the winter
months will go into a Brumation like most Reptiles and Herps. It is a form
Hibernation that is governed by the weather and time of year. The lights
be on a shorter period at this time. Fresh greens should be available
this period. Do not feed live prey during Brumation.
Water: Mist your little one with the spray bottle 3-4 times a day. You can
also offer a small dish of water in your enclosure but be sure your dragon
not too small to drown in it. It is recommended that when your beardie is
months old you can bathe your baby in a small plastic container with warm
not hot. It will help them to stay hydrated. As they get older you
can move up
to the bathroom sink and then to the bathtub. Very important for
to be thoroughly cleaned and rinsed prior to bath time. Clean
too if bathing more than one.
If you have any further questions feel free to ask. I like to start people
off with proper husbandry and then see if I can further assist.
This is for fruits and Vegetables
Nutrition chart: http://www.beautifuldragons.com/Nutritionframeset.html
Sand as a substrate: http://www.beardeddragon.org/articles/impaction/?page=3
Walnut shell Graphic: http://mrskingsbioweb.com/beardeddragngrossanatomy.htm
sexing bearded Dragons: http://repticzone.com/articles/sexingbeardeddragons.html