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Bearded Dragons

The Bearded Dragon is native to the arid woodlands and deserts of central Australia. Bred in captivity for many years, they make exciting pets and can be quite docile and interactive with humans.  They are diurnal meaning they are awake during the day and thus are a bit more active when their humans want to watch them than some of our other reptile and amphibian species.

Bearded Dragons can grow quite large with males reaching up to two feet in length so it’s important that they be provided with a large living space.  Hatchlings can be okay in a 20 gallon terrarium to start but you should plan on upgrading to a 60 gallon tank to give them adequate space when they are full grown. Their tanks should be securely closed on the top with a ventilated top and cage clips to prevent escape. These lizards also can live up to ten years or more, so make sure you are ready for a long commitment when you bring one home.

Bearded Dragons are usually tan to yellow in color and feature a skin flap that can be extended below their chins when they are stressed or perceive themselves to be in danger from whence they got the name “Bearded” Dragon.

A beardy should be kept on a dry substrate that is reptile-safe. They will need a primary heat source, such as an under-tank heater to keep their whole environment warm, as well as a secondary heat source for them to bask in. They should have sturdy, secure branches for climbing as well as a basking rock near their secondary heat source. They like warm temperatures and like to bask at temperatures around 95-100 degrees. Your bearded dragon will also need a UVB light to allow it to make vitamin D.

Your Bearded Dragon is omnivorous and will need to eat a combination of live insects like crickets and meal worms as well as fresh greens and vegetables, and, as they mature, small amounts of fruit. Your bearded dragon should also have fresh clean, chlorine-free water available at all times in a sturdy shallow bowl that is easy to access but will prevent spillage into their environment.

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Kitty City Cat Cam at Petworld Natick