The most important part of keeping a pet dragon is proper bearded dragon lighting. Along with proper nutrition and habitat size, proper lighting and heating is the difference between a healthy dragon and a dying dragon. Bearded dragons are a very popular part of the reptile pet trade. They originate in Australia which is closed to export. So all bearded dragons for sale are captive bred here in the US or in Europe. With a multitude of bearded dragon color and pattern mutations available it isn’t hard to find one that you will fall in love with. Keeping a bearded dragon as a pet is easy to do if you follow these specific steps. Start by getting the right equipment before purchasing your new pet.
Bearded Dragon Heat Lamp
A bearded dragon heat lamp is the perfect source of heat as well as UVA lighting. The most common type of heat lamp is an incandescent bulb. And the most common sizes are 75 watts and 100 watts. The size of the bulb is directly related to the size of the terrarium being used. For hatchling bearded dragons we recommend a ten gallon sized enclosure and a 75 watt heat lamp. If you are keeping juvenile to sub-adult dragons we recommend a twenty to thirty gallon terrarium and a 100 watt heat lamp. For adults and breeding pairs we recommend a minimum terrarium size of forty wide or larger and a heat source to match. The 100 watt lamp will work for low tanks but taller tanks will need a larger bulb size.
Dragon UVB Light
The next step and probably the most important one is a proper bearded dragon UVB bulb. Lizards are basking reptiles and only part of this behavior is for temperature regulation. An essential part of basking is absorbing UVB rays from the sun. This light wavelength is essential in helping your reptile with the production of Vitamin D which is in turn necessary in absorbing Calcium from their diet. UVB lighting is also important for the regulation of daily activities and the balance of their circadian rhythm. The lack of a proper UVB light in a bearded dragon setup will lead to a slow down of activity. This will shortly cause a depressed state and eventually lead to Metabolic Bone Disease, decreased appetite and a number of other problems.
Bearded Dragon Lighting And Setup
The perfect bearded dragon light setup is one that has a combination of a dragon heat lamp and a dragon UVB light. You can purchase a combo light dome and a light dome stand for the perfect setup. The combo light dome will house both of your dragon lights. And the stand will keep it clear of the terrarium lid for stability and easy access. Remember that the average life span of a dragon UVB light bulb is six to nine months. We strongly recommend that you keep a second set of bulbs on hand in case of damage to the existing lights. This will ensure that you bearded dragon always has a sufficient source of UVA and UVB lighting. You will want to make sure you understand the needs of your bearded dragon. Meeting those needs will ensure a healthy, happy reptile pet.