Vet Blog

"Here Comes the Sun"Temperature Needs For Bearded Dragons

September 30, 2016

Hi! This is Lily again. I am currently basking under my heat lamp at Sawnee Animal Clinic.

My cousins and I LOVE the sun. We are diurnal which means that we get up in the morning, are active during the day and sleep at night. (Much like you humans but without the coffee.) Since I am a modified ectotherm, I need the sun to warm up and become active. I can control my body temperature some by behavior modification. Basking in direct sunlight and orienting my body toward the heat warms me up. Hiding and panting cools me down. Most people don't realize that I can lower my body temperature to BELOW the surrounding air temperature. By using body positioning, I can keep my internal temperature within a narrow range. My human servants sometimes worry about me getting too hot but this is very rare. I can get too COLD especially at night when most of the lights are shut off.

Having a ceramic heater is the best thing for heating rather than a red light. I can see light in the ultraviolet and red band spectrum so the red light is still visible to me. It is hard to sleep with that thing on at night. A ceramic heater produces a consistent heat without light or places that might burn me like a "hot rock".

I don't need much water to drink either. In Australia, rainfall is very sporadic. In the wild, pogonas go for several days without water. My human servants really only need to give me water every 3-4 days and this frequency helps to keep humidity low. I do love to take water soaks though. Soaking helps my digestive system.