Bearded Dragon – A beginners Guide

A bearded dragon is a friendlier and calmer lizard than an iguana and usually lives its life in eastern Australia, where it is extremely well located in the warm desert environment. As an adult, it measures up to 60 cm., And has a special name because it has a “beard” around its head.

Bearded dragons are popular as pets within the family of lizards, as they do not grow very large, and due to their calmer nature, they are also suitable for families with children. 

However, they never become real pets that you can sit and cuddle with, but they can learn to distinguish between people and even see different colours – so it may be that you can have a sense of belonging to it, but otherwise, it is for most people he is also nice enough to see it with his fellow species while it puzzles around in the terrarium – for the bearded dragon is a social reptile that thrives best in a herd with a male and a few females.

The appearance of the bearded vulture

A bearded dragon is usually seen in green / sand-coloured shades, and will at first glance look a bit dangerous and “stinging”, but this is simply due to the design of its ham, which it otherwise changes every time it grows. So it is neither poisonous nor dangerous, and when you have overcome the fear of its appearance, you will find a quite good-natured and calm lizard below the surface.

It can be very difficult to tell the difference between the male and the female when the bearded dragons are small, but the older they get, the easier it becomes, and when they are sexually mature you will be able to see two dents next to each other, placed by the hole. , where on the female there is only a single bulge at the gut.

The behavior of the bearded vulture

In the wild, the bearded dragon is not a herd animal, and they actually only come close to each other when it is breeding season. One can, however, advantageously keep several bearded dragons in the terrarium, and truly look at them how they thrive in each other’s company. It also provides more activity and more behaviour in the terrarium, and therefore there is the opportunity to observe some really exciting, fun and entertaining things.

However, it is important that you acquire bearded dragons of exactly the same size and no more than one male per terrarium! Bearded dragons have a habit of fighting for territory, and if they are not like-minded, it will affect the weakest who are at risk of being eaten. 

The reason why you can only keep one male in a herd is that the sexually mature males during the breeding season will start a fight for the females’ favour, and this can lead to serious injuries. It is recommended to acquire one male and at least two females, as the male may well be very dominant.

Since the bearded dragon lives in the desert, it has of course adapted to the environment here and is also prepared in the event of a drought or lack of food. In other words, it has a built-in function in the body that allows it to lower its metabolism to close to zero. It uses it when it goes to sleep, where it digs a hole in a damp sandy area and hides there for up to several months. So you may well risk that your bearded game suddenly goes to sleep, and you should let it do so, as it is not harmful to it. 

However, you must remember to take it up once a week and let it take a bath so that it can maintain the moisture level in the body – even if it does not consume food, it still needs water, which it can consume through the hole, and that it can not when the sand around it is not moist as in the desert. Therefore, it requires a bit of care on your part when going to sleep. It is also important that it is allowed to defecate BEFORE going back to sleep, as defecation during sleep can make it very ill. So you have to keep an eye on it…

And when it has had its faeces, it will typically return to its dormancy, where it digs itself into the sand again.

Understand your bearded dragon

To make it easier for you to understand your bearded dragon, it is important that you pay attention to its signals in different situations. Listed here are some of the most common behavioural patterns in bearded dragons, as well as their significance:

  • “Waving”
    A bearded dragon waves by lifting one front leg and moving it around in slow circles. It is typically the females and the less dominant males who do this as a kind of gesture to the dominant male, and mean “you decide – I do as you say”.
  • Bend the tail up in a semicircle
    When a bearded dragon is aware of something, e.g. if it senses danger, it will typically raise its head high and bend its tail up over its body in a semicircle. It acts as a signal to the herd that there may be danger ahead. Young bearded dragons also tend to do this when eating.
  • Nodding with the head
    It is a dominant signal, and is typically seen in males during the breeding season before mating. The males do this to show interest in the female, but it also acts as a kind of threatening behavior towards other males that intrude. In a herd consisting of females, they will also be able to nod their heads at each other, which means the same thing – “it is me who decides here”.
  • Black, spiky beard and hiss
    When a bearded dragon shows very aggressive behavior, it will be lifted all the way up to its front legs, and the beard and tail will be colored black to make it more distinctive and dangerous. It will typically open the gap at the same time to make the head even bigger and to exhibit ultimate threatening behavior. In some cases, it hisses at the same time. However, it can also be seen if the bearded vulture is ill or stressed.
  • Sit with your head raised
    The dominant male will typically sit at the top of the terrarium and “throne” beyond the landscape. He will typically signal his dominance by sitting with his head raised high. However, it can also be seen in highly pregnant females, but it is solely because it facilitates its breathing.
  • Lowering the head
    A bearded dragon lowers the head to show acceptance and submission to the dominant in the group. It is also seen in females who refuse a mating offer so that the male cannot complete the act.
  • Gasping
    If your bearded dragon is too hot, it will need to breathe in and out through your mouth to further ventilate your body. At the same time, you will be able to see the “beard” being inflated and moving in quick jerks, to enhance the cooling effect.

Taming of bearded dragons

A bearded dragon never gets tame in the most literal sense of the word because it is a lizard and these are not by nature herd animals or otherwise socially minded. It can be compared to having aquarium fish – they are lovely and cosy to look at and observe while living their lives in your surroundings, but they never become pets you can cuddle or cuddle around. However, you can easily get it used to your handling and touches.

A youngster will typically behave differently from an adult bearded dragon, because they instinctively perceive themselves as prey due to their small size as young, and because in Australia, where they naturally live, there are much larger predators that go after small bearded vultures. kids. 

Therefore, the pups will be far shyer than the adults of the kind, and therefore you need to be very careful with fast, uncontrolled movements until they are adults. Rapid, sudden or sweeping movements over the heads of the bearded dragons can frighten them and you risk them connecting your hand with danger.


The bearded dragon is actually omnivorous. It eats both animals and greens, but here it is important that you remember the mixing conditions, both for the kids and for the adult bearded vultures:

  • Adult bearded dragons’ diet:
    20% forage animals, insects etc.
    80% green (all organic green, NOT iceberg lettuce, squatter cabbage, dandelions)
  • Diet of young bearded dragons:
    80% forage animals, insects etc.
    20% green

It is important to keep in mind that a bearded dragon needs a healthy, properly composed diet, and since it can not distinguish between healthy and unhealthy but will typically prefer to eat saturated in feed animals or insects, it is important that you gradually teaches your young bearded dragon to eat well with greens. 

If you do not do so, it will be malnourished as an adult and it will settle on its organs which will be damaged and destroyed. A bearded dragon is an adult when it is about a year old, so during the first year, animal feed must be gradually reduced, and instead more and more green is given.

Vitamins are another important thing for a bearded dragon to meet its natural needs. In most pet stores you can get some special vitamin powder that you can shake the feed in before eating it. It contains all the calcium, minerals and iodine it needs for bone growth to grow properly.

It is a good idea to feed at fixed times each day, and preferably avoid too many upheavals. This is because it can cause stress, and if your bearded dragon is stressed, it will not eat, although it can get sick and die from it. Here it may be necessary to force-feed, which must be performed by a knowledgeable person, e.g. a veterinarian with a special sense of reptiles. After that, it will most often start eating on its own again.

The decor of the terrarium

As you know by now, bearded dragons are desert animals and warm-blooded animals, which means that their body temperature adapts to the environment. It, therefore, needs a good, dry and warm terrarium in a good, large size. There must be room for both a cold corner and a heat lamp that hangs over a flat stone where it can lie and warm itself. 

A seat branch in a good thickness is also a good idea, just as it will also be nice for the one with laid heating cables in the bottom bedding. However, it is not strictly necessary to have heating cables in the bottom of the cage, as long as you make sure that it has a stone to warm itself on. 

You can make the heat lamp yourself with an ordinary 40w bulb that is hung with a lampshade at a suitable distance from the stone – this then gives a good heat. However, it should not be an energy-saving bulb, as these do not emit any heat,

It may be a good idea to invest in a timer for the terrarium’s light source, which should not be on for more than 14 hours a day. This ensures that the bearded vulture gets a fixed circadian rhythm so that it does not become stressed or ill.

The temperature in the terrarium should not fall below 28 degrees during the day, and in the warm area around the heat lamp, it should be around 40 degrees. At night, the temperature should be lowered to normal room temperature, which you achieve automatically by switching off the heat lamp and possibly the Heating element.

The size of the terrarium should be about 1.5 meters in length and about half a meter in depth. The height is not so important, but a good rule of thumb is a minimum of half a meter. The babies can settle for less, but since they are already adults during the first year, it can rarely pay to invest in a small terrarium in the beginning, as they grow quickly from it.