Baby Bearded Dragon - What You Need To Know
Basic Facts About Your Baby Bearded Dragon
Bearded Dragon Facts:
Baby bearded dragons are born at just under 4 inches and 1/10 of an ounce. At full adult, you can expect them to be 19-23 inches and up to 1 pound, although the German giant can reach around 26 inches.
Typical lifespan is 5 to 8 years. There have been a couple of cases of inland beardies to live up to 10 years.
Bearded Dragons go through 5 life stages:
- Hatchling/Juvenile - birth to around 8 inches
- Sub-adult - 8 inches to adult - major difference is size and behavior
- Sexual Onset/Young Adult - first 3 years of breeding - more social behaviors among bearded dragons noticed
- Mature Adult - fourth year of breeding to 6 or 7 years old with decrease in reproductive rate
- Old Age - 6 to 7 years; little to no breeding
General Baby Bearded Dragon Information
Common Baby Bearded Dragon Species:
The most readily available of the bearded dragon species are the Inland, with the next popular being Lawson's dragon, and finally the Eastern bearded dragon.
Inland Bearded Dragon
The most common and least expensive is the brown/tan Inland bearded dragon. If you want a more exotic looking beardie, there are several morphs of the Inland, such as German giants, orange-red Sandfire, pale pastels, and Snow/Ghost dragons. You can expect many more morphs in the future as bearded dragons become more popular pets.
Lawson's Bearded Dragon
Lawson's dragon are originally from Queensland province of Australia, and are the smaller of the species. They are known 'hiders' to avoid detection from natural predators.
Eastern Bearded Dragon
The Eastern bearded dragons are indigenous to Eastern Australia and are known to survive in both wet forest areas and dry scrublands.
Do You Need A Baby Bearded Dragon Care Sheet?
A baby bearded dragon care sheet, or checklist, is really recommended for the simple reason that it is just too easy to forget to do something.There are certain things that need to be done daily, weekly, monthly, and annually.
A bearded lizard has little communication with their owners. Certain behaviors might indicate that you need to do things, such as feeding. However, UVB lights need to be changed every 6 months, and your baby bearded lizard will not be able to express this to you no matter how hard they try.
Baby bearded dragons need constant care to avoid illness, stress, and harm from any other bearded dragons you may have and a care sheet just acts as a reminder for you.
Should You Get More Than One Baby Bearded Dragon?
As far as taking care of multiple bearded dragons, there is not much more work for multiples as there is for one.
However, you must have a larger vivarium to accommodate multiples. Food expenses will also be higher, although vivarium equipment (lights, heaters, etc) should not be much different.
Of course, you must monitor your beardies' social behavior more closely to ensure no mutilation occurs (this will usually happen in juveniles if there is not enough food available or they don't have enough room).
Baby Bearded Dragon Behavior
Bearded dragons, are on a whole, considered very tame, gentle pets. However, there are times when they will exhibit aggressive behavior. This time is mainly in the juvenile stage when there are multiple males and an alpha must be established. This usually happens as they start their reproductive stages of life.
Aggressive behavior can also be displayed if there is not enough food or enough space for the bearded dragon.
What Kind Of Equipment Is Needed To Raise A Baby Bearded Dragon?
On a very basic level, you will need a habitat that is able to mimic conditions for your particular species of bearded dragon.
What does this mean? You must be able to keep it temperature controlled fairly well. The easiest way to do this is with a glass aquarium, creating what is referred to as a vivarium, or a smaller scale ecosystem for your lizard species. Obviously you will need heaters (basking lights and/or other heating elements) and thermometers to adjust and monitor temperatures in your lizard's home.
Another major concern is lighting. If your bearded lizard is not subjected to direct sunlight - not filtered through a window, but direct - you will need a UVB light for the vivarium. Without this your lizard's health will deteriorate. Your lizard will also need a basking light to warm up under during the day.
You will need to craft your vivarium such that it is multi-leveled, allowing your beardie the ability to move between hotter and colder areas in their habitat to adjust their internal body temperature.
Of other importance is the need for enough space. If raising multiple bearded dragons, ensure there is not overcrowding, otherwise social problems may arise.
Baby Bearded Dragon Food
Baby bearded dragon food is different from other life stages. Protein from live prey is a must here. Without it, baby bearded dragons run the risk of stunted growth, malnutrition, and even starvation. Whereas for the mature adult, prey only need to be offered a couple of times a week, and even then it does not have to be alive.
If you are uncomfortable with having to feed live prey to a bearded dragon, then please, get an adult - you will only be torturing a baby with this mindset.
Baby bearded dragons like to eat different types of insects and vertebrates, such as crickets, mealworms, superworms, wax worms, and pinkies (baby mice). Always make sure the size of the prey is correct for the size of your beardie.
Are You Unknowingly Torturing Your Baby Bearded Dragon?
Not knowing how a baby bearded dragon should behave is a good way to kill your pet lizard.
- Thinking that not moving around is normal - it's not normal.
- Not pooping regularly -it's not normal.
- Aggressive and biting at your finger - it's not normal.
- Scared when held - it's not normal.
- Not eating, or eating little - it's not normal.
- Attacking its own cage - it's not normal.
But if you don't take the time to learn about your baby bearded dragon, you'd never know if that was normal behavior for a lizard or not.
You're going to put some considerable time and money into owning a baby bearded dragon - between purchasing your lizard, the vivarium setup, and on-going costs of lighting and food - why not learn as much as possible about what is normal for your reptile?
There are in-depth bearded lizard guides that talk all about the behavior, habits, feeding, and setting up the correct kind of habitat for your beardie. It even talks about ways to get equipment and food at lower costs than what you might expect.
You can't be too informed. Learn about your bearded dragon and you will be rewarded with a fun and entertaining pet for many years!
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