How Big of a Tank Does a Bearded Dragon Need?The absolute minimum size tank that a fully grown bearded dragon needs is 36” x 18” x 18”. While not technically 40 gallons, this is commonly called a 40 gallon breeder tank. These dimensions are also commonly listed as a 50 gallon tank. There are other 40 gallon reptile tanks on the market but their proportions are less ideal for housing bearded dragons.
Since adult beardies range in length from 16 to 24 inches, a bearded dragon enclosure that is only 18 inches wide and deep may prove to be tight quarters for the largest bearded dragon specimens. For instance, your beardie may not be able to turn around in its enclosure. Moreover, you will be limited in your choice of bearded dragon tank accessories. This means less enrichment opportunities for your beardie, especially if it spends a large portion of its day inside the habitat.
Most beardies will definitely be happier in a 120 gallon bearded dragon tank. The size we recommend is 4’ x 2’ x 2’ or 48” x 24” x 24". However, if your space is limited, don’t despair, a 40 gallon tank can be a good and safe home for your bearded dragon provided you’re careful about your care and husbandry practices. This is especially true if you have a smaller adult bearded dragon or if your bearded dragon is not especially active inside the habitat.
Please note that regardless of the size enclosure you choose, each reptile terrarium should house only one bearded dragon. Bearded dragons are territorial creatures that are used to a solitary existence and may injure their companions or experience significant levels of stress by having to compete for resources, etc.
If your space is limited, and you have settled on a 40 gallon breeder tank as the right home for your bearded dragon, please refer to our recommended tanks below.
- REPTI ZOO Reptile Glass Terrarium, 2 in 1 Side Meshes and Side Glasses Double Hinge Door with Screen Ventilation 36" x 18" x 18"
If you prefer to obtain one locally, 40 gallon breeder tanks are also sold at many pet stores. They can also be occasionally found in used condition through Craigslist or local classifieds.
The “Goldilocks” Terrarium Size for Bearded Dragons Is there such a thing as just the right bearded dragon tank size? Many experienced bearded dragon owners certainly think so and choose to house their bearded dragons in a 120 gallon tank.
This is the size that we recommend to anyone in the market for a new reptile terrarium. The reason is because a 120 gallon tank provides a good balance between still fitting comfortably into most homes while being plenty big for the exploration and hunting needs of your bearded dragon. Because these reptile enclosures are three times larger than the 40 gallon breeder tank, you will also be able to choose several bearded dragon tank accessories that match your beardie’s personality and interests.
Many of these larger tanks also come equipped with front-sliding doors. Using these would be less stressful for your beardie whenever you need to reach into the enclosure or handle your pet.
Below you will find our recommended 120 gallon bearded dragon tanks from several well-respected brands.
Both the Repti Zoo tank and the Carolina Custom Cages tank come equipped with sliding doors. The Carolina Custom Cages is also easy to assemble and dissemble, which is not always the case when it comes to larger enclosures. One unique feature of the Zen habitat is that it comes with an optional stacking spacer for bearded dragon owners who want to stack two enclosures on top of each other.
For experienced bearded dragon keepers, you can also design your own 4’ X 2’ X 2’ enclosure.
A Touch of Luxury for Your Beardie FriendCarolina Custom Cages also makes a handful of reptile terrariums that are even larger than the 120 gallon size. So, if you have the room and the resources to invest in some truly luxurious bearded dragon accommodations, check out some of these custom enclosures.
While your bearded dragon will be spoiled by all the floor space available for ultimate exploration, one potential drawback of the largest terrariums is that it may be more difficult to set up proper lighting and heating. You will likely need to double up on UVB fluorescent tubes and basking bulbs in order to create proper temperature gradients for your bearded dragon, and sufficient UVB light to keep it healthy.
On the flip side, if you do invest in proper lighting and heating for this size terrarium, your bearded dragon can most certainly enjoy more than one basking spot (in addition to any tank accessories your heart desires). Maintaining proper temperature gradients between the basking spot and the cool down area also becomes much easier.