Need advice.

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Need advice.

Postby Daxbernard » Thu Oct 17, 2019 12:40 pm

Thanks for adding me. Needing a little bit of advice before getting my 5 year old son a beardie. He asked for one back in July. Went to the local big pet store to see it was and what was needed because I had never even heard of them before. Well I fell in love with them at first sight. As expected the sales person tried to sell me on the kits. But decided to go home and do more research. Best decision ever. I found a local breeder and asked if the kid and I could go look at his to make sure this is what he wanted and I could ask questions. He was more than happy to and even showed me how to set up feeder colonies. So since then been doing more and more research and getting piece by piece little by little. Told the breeder I would be back when I was ready to get one and have been in contact with him for advice throughout the process. Finally got everything together and the dubias should be in today or tomorrow. Sorry for the long backstory.
My question is this. He has a clutch born may 13th and one july 2nd. Plus there is another breeder that has some a month old that we went check out last week. What would be the best age group to get one from? The babies or one of the older clutches where they are more used to being handled and eating veggies? Hoping to go get our little Pepper (yes my son already named it before even picking one out) this weekend or next. Just don't know which age would be good for a first reptile owner. If up to my son he wants the smallest one possible. Will try to upload a picture of the enclosure. Thanks for reading all this and for any advice given. [Click image to enlarge]
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Re: Need advice.

Postby CooperDragon » Thu Oct 17, 2019 12:45 pm

I'm glad you took the time to do some research first. That will make a big difference (and save money in the long run). Your setup looks great. Looks like a T5 ReptiSun Hood for UVB and a standalone basking bulb for heat. What are you using for thermometers? I suggest either an IR temp gun or a couple of digital thermometers with probes - one for the basking log and the other for on the cool side near the rock steps. Shoot for 100-110 range on the log under the basking light and maybe 75-80 or so near the rock steps and hammock. Be careful about that hammock. He will probably love it, but they can sometimes get their nails caught in the mesh. Not necessarily an issue but you might consider swapping it out with a fleece version or covering the current one with some fleece just in case.

As far as age range, I'd probably pick one that is still young enough to watch grow, but a month old is still very young and could be risky. I suggest choosing one from the July hatch. I'm looking forward to seeing photos of your new buddy! Please let us know if you have any other questions.
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Re: Need advice.

Postby Daxbernard » Thu Oct 17, 2019 5:05 pm

Thanks for ther reply. You are correct about ther lights. I'm using a zoomed thermometer with probe on ther hot side.. have the probe on the tallest spot on the log. It's been reading between 104 to 107. And on the wall all the way to the left is a digital thermometer from v Walmart. That temp been at 77. I do have an IR thermometer I got from harbor freight but think it's malfunctioning because it never reads even close to the same thing twice. Also what is a good temp for nighttime. It's been averaging about 69/70. Will see if I have something I can cover the hammock with
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Re: Need advice.

Postby daveferns1 » Thu Oct 17, 2019 7:34 pm

Just wanna say great job on doing your research, you've probably saved a lot of money by getting the proper lighting and stuff first!

Im not as experienced as a lot of other posters so I cant give much advice, only thing I would say would be try and offer shade, just because your uvb tube runs the entire length of the tank so if he needs to get out of the rays he might want some shade or stuff to sit on at the front end of the tank where theres less UVB, you've got the hammock already which offers some shade tho :)

Id also second the temp. gun thing, you said you had one that didnt work, I find them super useful not only for tank temps but also bath temps, you can find some pretty cheap ones on amazon. Always worth the buy if you wanted to get one. And ya if you get a dragon older than 2 months you might get a better idea of the health of the little guy, though im sure whatever you get will thrive in your setup :)
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Re: Need advice.

Postby CooperDragon » Fri Oct 18, 2019 7:47 am

Your temp ranges sound good. 70 overnight is fine. If it starts to drop below 65 (seasonally maybe?) you can add a ceramic heat emitter, but you want the temps to cool off a bit overnight so if it stays around 70 I'd leave it as it is. I agree with adding some shade to provide an option. Sometimes they like to get away from the lights. It's best to watch them over time and see how they use and react their environment and make tweaks based on their preferences.
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Re: Need advice.

Postby Daxbernard » Fri Oct 18, 2019 8:52 am

Thanks for the advice
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Re: Need advice.

Postby ComicBookMama » Fri Oct 18, 2019 11:46 am

First off, kudos to you as the other posters have said - doing your research is a huge step in the right direction! Since you asked specifically about the age of the baby to get, I'm going to chime in on that... granted, I'm not the old hand with beardies that lots of these posters are, but I did my master's thesis on companion animals in a classroom setting, and have a lot of experience with kids and critters!

In my opinion, going with one of the two older clutches is definitely better. Your son is going to want to handle his dragon, and month old hatchlings are sooooo fragile and skittery. Heck, my 4 month old is still skittery! Getting a slightly older dragon will allow your son the interaction he craves without your having to worry too much... plus, a dragon who's already a started veggie feeder will take a load off your mind, if the other posts I've seen on this topic are any indication. Another plus is that the dragon's personality will already be starting to show; you can pick one that seems best suited to you and your son's temperaments. Some folks like more active, feisty dragons; others want someone who will grow into being a big cuddlebug. In fact, for a five year old, I'd usually suggest a dragon who's closer to being an adult, settled, and well past the "omigod it's gonna eat me" handling phase, but since you're clearly going to be an active participant in the dragon rearing, you can handle a 4 - to - 6 month old perfectly well. :)

Good luck with your new Pepper!
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Re: Need advice.

Postby Daxbernard » Fri Oct 18, 2019 8:24 pm

Thanks everyone for the great advice. As for the shade in the tank I bent the leaves of the plants creating several shady spots so he has places to hide from the lights. Also planning on covering the hammock and the step thing to the left of the tank is actually hollowed out and is a big hide. But I will still look for another hide for him. Gonna try to get a new battery for my IR gun and see if that makes it work right if not I'll order another one.
Talking to the kid further about what age he preferred to get. He said he liked the babies because while we were looking at them they were active and would come stare at him and was worried the older ones wouldn't do that. Since starting to research the beardies every Friday I've been getting off early and stopping at both Petco and petsmart on my way home to check out different options and supplies needed. To get ideas about what l liked. I would always stop by the tanks and talked to the dragons and check out all the other lizards. At Petco they have some the morph he likes also close to the same age as the ones we are going look at tomorrow. So we went to Petco this evening to show him about what size they were and how they were still very active. They had a few that came to the glass and would follow him. So now he's excited to get that age group instead of the one month old.
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Re: Need advice.

Postby Daxbernard » Sat Oct 19, 2019 6:56 pm

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So we went back to the original breeder today. And the kid had his heart set on a red leatherback but after looking at them again he chose the original one he fell in love with. The runt of the youngest clutch. He named it pepper uber. Pepper because dragons breath fire and fire is hot like pepper. And the breeders were calling him uber because he loved to ride on his siblings. Sorry for all the pics. [Click image to enlarge]
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Re: Need advice.

Postby daveferns1 » Sat Oct 19, 2019 7:25 pm

Haha hes a cute little guy, im sure he will be happy in your setup! Keep us updated!
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Re: Need advice.

Postby ComicBookMama » Sun Oct 20, 2019 6:21 am

Love the pics! So glad your son found a dragon to love!
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Re: Need advice.

Postby claudiusx » Mon Oct 21, 2019 6:50 am

Haha I love the name and the reasoning behind it.

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Follow along with all my beardies. Check out my thread here!: Claud's Crew
P.S. We have lots of pictures ;)
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