Newbie! Need lots of tips!

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Newbie! Need lots of tips!

Postby fanton589 » Mon Jan 14, 2019 6:07 am

Alright, I'm going to try and make this as short as possible but I want to provide all the info too so that nothing important is left out! I'll start from the beginning...

We bought an almost 2 month old beardy from my brother that lives about 4 blocks away. We have had him(?) for less than a week and a half now. His(?) name is Sparta and I'll attach pics! When we bought Sparta we got his entire viv and setup. Whatever my brother had, we got and set up everything the same at our home. Sparta has always been in a 40 gallon tank since my brother got him. At his home the temps ranged from 90-105 on the basking side and 80-90 on the cooler side. He basked almost all day, and refused to go into his cave. He did not like being held there. They have 2 small cats, a yorkie, a 13 year old and 15 year old girls. He was kept upstairs and his viv was about waist level on a stand.. He ate well from what I was told but was only given greens a couple times the entire time..

Now at my home: We have a small pit/lab mix, a 4 year old girl that runs like a heard of elephants, and a 12 year old boy that we get every other weekend and all school breaks.. His tank is about chest level with my 4 year old and eye level with the dog.. (I know that's gotta be super stressful for him) His tank temp on the basking side is between 80-90 and the cool side is 70-80. He did ok the first couple of days here except for his relocation stress issues.. He ran frantically around for a bit but still rarely hid.. Now a week and 2 days later, he rarely leaves his cave and has very dark stress marks.. I thought it was viv temps.. So we got a higher wattage basking bulb to increase the temps to 90-100. When we did that, his entire body got darker, he hid in his cave all day, cut back on food and stayed in his cave with his mouth open. I've read that gapping is ok to an extent but it was almost like it was too hot for him.. I'll include pics of the bulbs we are using, the tank setup, and all that also.. We currently are using a stick on thermometer and a stick on thermometer/humidity gauge. I already know the humidity is too high and am working to get a dehumidifier for this room. It is currently between and 40 and 50.. If I am correct it should be between 30 and 40??

Anyway... Questions/concerns.. The only thing we have really changed is the tank temps, humidity, and environment in which his viv sits... His color and behavior has changed.. He is almost always showing stress Mark's and is darker in color most of the day unless I am holding him.. Then he lightens up a lot! (he hated being touched at my brothers but appears to love me holding him..) He is not eating consistently (between 10 and 35 crickets a day, give or take.. and is now eating greens-turnip, collard and occasionally kale- and very tiny amounts of fruit- apple and a tiny bite of banana yesterday- every so often) He only has a BM maybe once to two times a day, with very normal appearances. He appears very stressed out. Aside from the humidity issue.. What am I doing wrong? I remove his cave and log when I feed him because the crickets run straight for them and hide.. I keep his cave away from him for about 1 hour after he eats because otherwise he will go straight in there and not bask at all to digest. I do not leave crickets in the tank for more than 15 minutes.. I removed his water bowl that my brother had due to humidity reasons, for now... Could he be dehydrating? Overly stressed? Just hate this house? We had a desert leopard gecko for over 9 years so it's not like it is 100% new to us.. But man he is being difficult so far! What can we improve? I want him to be happy as possible! Sorry for the novel but I didn't want to leave anything unsaid just in-case!

Oh and lights- We had the 100watt in at first, it appeared too cold so we got the 150 and used it for only 1 day as he seemed very hot with it.. Pics coming soon.. Thanks in advance!! I know I've come to the right place for our beardy advice!
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Re: Newbie! Need lots of tips!

Postby fanton589 » Mon Jan 14, 2019 6:24 am

[Click image to enlarge]
(CURRENT- but he did just get up about 20 min. ago)

[Click image to enlarge]
(SET UP)

[Click image to enlarge]
(Started with 100watt- used 150 for 1 day and back to 100 watt now)

[Click image to enlarge]
(HE WAS NOT TRYING TO GO BACK TO HIS VIV! HE LOVES LAYING ON ME!)
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Re: Newbie! Need lots of tips!

Postby destiny1998 » Mon Jan 14, 2019 11:20 am

Hi. I would get a reptisun 10.0 to5 long tube. Those coil/compact are week and when there is a screen between it and the Dragon he really does not get very much uvb. Also I'd get a temp gun or a digital thermometer with a wire probe. So you know the temps on the basking spot. He looks pretty good and very cute. :D
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Re: Newbie! Need lots of tips!

Postby MarlowAndMe » Mon Jan 14, 2019 11:30 am

I agree - the uvb is not good enough at all
A t5 reptisun 10% tube with a good t5 fitting mounted under the mesh lid and have his basking spot 10” beneath it
Or a t5 Arcadia 12% tube mounted under the mesh lid and have his basking spot 12” beneath it
Lack of uvb leads to metabolic bone disease so is highly important to remedy ASAP

100f at basking spot is much better than 80-90f so you did great changing that :)
Also are you giving him calcium? He needs calcium with d3 lightly dusted on his insects 5days a week and the other two days he needs vitamins
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Re: Newbie! Need lots of tips!

Postby fanton589 » Mon Jan 14, 2019 2:02 pm

Thank you. He did fine with this exact set up at my brothers and changed within 2 days of being with us.. He ate great with my brother using this UVB bulb and everything I mentioned. I have looked into a tube uvb instead already (from looking at other posts on here) but it is not doable currently with our home and outlet availability. It is something we are working on though!

I will put the 150watt bulb back in if you recommend it. He appeared very hot with it in and became very stressed out with it in.

Is there a way to better the UVB option until I can get the better bulb?? And yes, he is getting calcium. He will lick it off the carpet in his viv when some gets on it.. What vitamins do you recommend? He was not given any at time of purchase. My brother was only given the calcium powder when he bought him. We have ordered the temperature probe already also! :)

What do I need to watch for in regards to illness?Thank you!!
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Re: Newbie! Need lots of tips!

Postby MarlowAndMe » Mon Jan 14, 2019 6:03 pm

There’s no way to skint on good uvb sorry. He is still a baby and mbd does not always appear instantly ( hence being ok while he was at your brothers) it can sometimes happen after a month, 2 months - sometimes even longer of bad uvb. But once’s it starts the only way to stop it is getting the proper uvb and sometimes they need vet care too.

It can happen slow or fast - sometimes the we’re fine one day and unable to get up the next.
Yours has had a lot of factors play into his setup not being right - the wrong heat at basking- relocation stress - wrong uvb

He needs a better uvb set up and he needs his basking spot up to 100f in order to digest his food properly and get the heat he needs. If the 150w is getting it too high then you will need a dimmer to bring it to the temp you need
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Re: Newbie! Need lots of tips!

Postby fanton589 » Tue Jan 15, 2019 2:36 am

What size uvb should we get? I am seeing different lengths of bulbs. He is in a 40 gallon. Also, I see the bulbs sold seperate from the fixture and with a fixture/hood.. Do you suggest I get the hood and bulb package or is there a better fixture option other than the hood included in the kit?

Any idea on the best type of vitamins? I have the calcium powder but no vitamins.

Update: he is shedding finally! His tail went all white the day after we got him but then suddenly went back to normal. It is now shedding very well and his face is also! :) He seems to mostly enjoy his soak time but does splash and scratch at the edge as if trying to escape!
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Re: Newbie! Need lots of tips!

Postby MarlowAndMe » Tue Jan 15, 2019 10:42 am

It is the prot5 Arcadia kitset your meaning?
https://www.reptiles.swelluk.com/arcadi ... desert-12/ ? If so that’s a fantastic kitset and what I have coming also :)
Just make sure you get the 12% version I linked ( not the 7%)
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Re: Newbie! Need lots of tips!

Postby fanton589 » Tue Jan 15, 2019 2:46 pm

MarlowAndMe wrote:It is the prot5 Arcadia kitset your meaning?
https://www.reptiles.swelluk.com/arcadi ... desert-12/ ? If so that’s a fantastic kitset and what I have coming also :)
Just make sure you get the 12% version I linked ( not the 7%)



No I was referring to this reptisun kit with the viv hood. :) I'm open to getting whatever but my local stores only sell the reptisun option that I know of. I wasn't sure how the hood would work with our mesh top. This isn't the site I was looking at purchasing from but I just went to Google and picked the 1st one for posting purposes!

https://www.petmountain.com/product/zoo ... 6pEALw_wcB
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