Beardie is only eating a small amount of crickets a day. help?

Moxxie1122

Member
Beardie name(s)
Moxxie
So for my beardies first feeding of the day I put about eight crickets in assuming id put more in a little later once she had eaten them. but she hasn't eaten all. most but not all and its near bedtime. how do I get her to eat more than eight a day??
 

smaugthebeardie3756

Hatchling Member
Beardie name(s)
Smaug
So for my beardies first feeding of the day I put about eight crickets in assuming id put more in a little later once she had eaten them. but she hasn't eaten all. most but not all and its near bedtime. how do I get her to eat more than eight a day??
How old is she and how long have you had her? Relocation stress can affect appetite, so if she is brand new to you that could be a reason. Also, what are the basking and ambient temps in your enclosure and what type of light are you using for UVB? If the basking temps are too low theyay not eat because they won't be able to digest it. Surface temp should be around 110F for a baby and 100F for adult for proper digestion. If they aren't getting adequate UVB they may stop eating or eat less because they can't make d3 to absorb the calcium. They are sun worshippers, so lighting is extremely important and if it is off it will effect just about every part of their health.
 

Moxxie1122

Member
Original Poster
Beardie name(s)
Moxxie
How old is she and how long have you had her? Relocation stress can affect appetite, so if she is brand new to you that could be a reason. Also, what are the basking and ambient temps in your enclosure and what type of light are you using for UVB? If the basking temps are too low theyay not eat because they won't be able to digest it. Surface temp should be around 110F for a baby and 100F for adult for proper digestion. If they aren't getting adequate UVB they may stop eating or eat less because they can't make d3 to absorb the calcium. They are sun worshippers, so lighting is extremely important and if it is off it will effect just about every part of their health.
Shes a hatchling and has just started shedding if that means anything (I'm a tiny bit new to beardies) iv'e had her for 6 days now. I think her ambient is about 70-80 degrees and her basking temp is around 102 degrees and shes been basking with her mouth open when she didn't before we raised the temp. she has a dual heat lamp so it has some heating thing and the other bulb is a repti basking spot lamp by zoo neo 75w. if this is not the info you need let me know
 

smaugthebeardie3756

Hatchling Member
Beardie name(s)
Smaug
Not familiar with that brand of basking bulb but if she is gaping while basking it sounds like you're at least on the right track there. I would recommend getting a couple of digital probe thermometers if you don't already. They will be the most accurate for getting a surface temp. Is that basking bulb a mercury vapor all in one type of bulb, or is the other one possibly the UVB coil? If the basking is all in one type, that will give some UVB, although there are drawbacks to them in larger enclosures. If your other bulb is a coil UVB, it is likely not giving enough as most of them don't. What are the dimensions of the enclosure and how close to the light can she get? She will grow fast, so if she isn't in at least a 75 gallon tank already, you should start thinking about upgrading as soon as you can afford to. I would also recommend getting a T5 tube UVB. They cover more area than the MVB all in one bulbs or coils, and you can control heat and UV independently.

Shedding can definitely impact their appetite as well, so that in addition to the relocation stress could very well be the issue. Sometimes it can take weeks for them to adjust to new surroundings, so give it time. Making sure the lighting is on point will help and save you from a lot of possible health issues in the future. In the meantime, make sure you are still offering salads daily even if she isn't eating them and feeding three times a day with bugs, dusting one feeding per day 5 times a week with calcium and twice a week with vitamins. When she gets older she will eat more greens and less bugs. My guy is a little over a year old and he gets protein four times a week, with two feedings dusted with calcium without d3 and one feeding dusted with calcium with d3 and a multivitamin. I also dust his salads but it's hit or miss how much of that he eats right now. Some days he ignores it totally and some days he chows down like it's the best thing in the world 😆.

Anyway, congratulations and welcome to the club! I can guarantee this won't be the last thing you'll wonder and worry about, so I hope you'll find this place as helpful as I have!
 

klika

Member
So for my beardies first feeding of the day I put about eight crickets in assuming id put more in a little later once she had eaten them. but she hasn't eaten all. most but not all and its near bedtime. how do I get her to eat more than eight a day??
I had the same issue. I switched to mealworms and my ZZ loves them. He is close to 3 months old and he is doing very well on 15-ish mid size worms plus veggies a day. No need to over feed your tiny dragon with 60-100 crickets a day as some people suggest.

I personally do not buy the theory about mealworms being bad choice for baby dragons.
They are much easier to breed.
 

AHBD

BD.org Sicko
It's always helpful to post pics of your baby to show the size, as well as the entire set up including the lights. Proper heat + uvb are SUPER important, a baby can go downhill very quickly without it.

Since you just got the baby less than a week ago, relocation stress may be part of the problem but at least he's eating some. They don't need 50 bugs of any type per day but I would avoid mealworms for now until you're sure the temps. are good , especially if your baby is tiny. Post some pics when you can.
 

Moxxie1122

Member
Original Poster
Beardie name(s)
Moxxie
Not familiar with that brand of basking bulb but if she is gaping while basking it sounds like you're at least on the right track there. I would recommend getting a couple of digital probe thermometers if you don't already. They will be the most accurate for getting a surface temp. Is that basking bulb a mercury vapor all in one type of bulb, or is the other one possibly the UVB coil? If the basking is all in one type, that will give some UVB, although there are drawbacks to them in larger enclosures. If your other bulb is a coil UVB, it is likely not giving enough as most of them don't. What are the dimensions of the enclosure and how close to the light can she get? She will grow fast, so if she isn't in at least a 75 gallon tank already, you should start thinking about upgrading as soon as you can afford to. I would also recommend getting a T5 tube UVB. They cover more area than the MVB all in one bulbs or coils, and you can control heat and UV independently.

Shedding can definitely impact their appetite as well, so that in addition to the relocation stress could very well be the issue. Sometimes it can take weeks for them to adjust to new surroundings, so give it time. Making sure the lighting is on point will help and save you from a lot of possible health issues in the future. In the meantime, make sure you are still offering salads daily even if she isn't eating them and feeding three times a day with bugs, dusting one feeding per day 5 times a week with calcium and twice a week with vitamins. When she gets older she will eat more greens and less bugs. My guy is a little over a year old and he gets protein four times a week, with two feedings dusted with calcium without d3 and one feeding dusted with calcium with d3 and a multivitamin. I also dust his salads but it's hit or miss how much of that he eats right now. Some days he ignores it totally and some days he chows down like it's the best thing in the world 😆.

Anyway, congratulations and welcome to the club! I can guarantee this won't be the last thing you'll wonder and worry about, so I hope you'll find this place as helpful as I have!
It isnt a coil or mecury one (I think so) we had a dual heat lamp but replaced the other regular bulb with the bulb I mentioned earlier because her heat wasn't getting high enough. the photo I attached is a photo online of what It looks like. I'll make sure to keep offering her food :) thank you so much.
 

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AHBD

BD.org Sicko
That's a ceramic heat emitter, just adds heat but neither bulb you are using supplies uvb. You need a long tube Reptisun 10.0 t5 or an Arcadia D3 12-14 % uvb bulb. Pet stores rarely sell the right stuff, new owners are taken for a ride with the wrong info. Without uvb your baby can not thrive and can develop mbd very quickly. Pictures of her enclosure will be very important.
 

smaugthebeardie3756

Hatchling Member
Beardie name(s)
Smaug
It isnt a coil or mecury one (I think so) we had a dual heat lamp but replaced the other regular bulb with the bulb I mentioned earlier because her heat wasn't getting high enough. the photo I attached is a photo online of what It looks like. I'll make sure to keep offering her food :) thank you so much.
Alright so then it looks like you don't have any source of UVB. You definitely need one. As mentioned by AHBD above, you want a ZooMed T5 fixture or Arcadia Pro T5 12% or 14%, depending on the tank size and if it is on top of a screen or not. The ZooMed comes with a 5.0 bulb but you want a 10.0. You can sometimes find the Arcadi at Petsmart now, but I'll put some links as well.

Pangea Reptile
Lightyourreptiles.com
 

Moxxie1122

Member
Original Poster
Beardie name(s)
Moxxie
Alright so then it looks like you don't have any source of UVB. You definitely need one. As mentioned by AHBD above, you want a ZooMed T5 fixture or Arcadia Pro T5 12% or 14%, depending on the tank size and if it is on top of a screen or not. The ZooMed comes with a 5.0 bulb but you want a 10.0. You can sometimes find the Arcadi at Petsmart now, but I'll put some links as well.

Pangea Reptile
Lightyourreptiles.com
i just checked and we in fact do also have a UVB bulb as well. I believe we have this one
 

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smaugthebeardie3756

Hatchling Member
Beardie name(s)
Smaug
i just checked and we in fact do also have a UVB bulb as well. I believe we have this one
Alright that is the one brand of coil that can be acceptable, but only the 26W not the 13W. Tube is more foolproof in making sure there is adequate coverage throughout the enclosure, especially if you get a bigger cage.
 

KarrieRee

BD.org Sicko
Beardie name(s)
Hiccup he is 4 and Blaze is 2
i just checked and we in fact do also have a UVB bulb as well. I believe we have this one
Please get rid of the 13 watt- they are terrible and will cause all kinds of health issues - you can use the 26 watt but it needs to be 6-8 inches directly above the basking decor -- no screen- I do not recommend any coil bulbs- a long tube fixture is best - your dragons appetite will increase w/ the long tube fixture-- I can post links for those fixtures
 

KarrieRee

BD.org Sicko
Beardie name(s)
Hiccup he is 4 and Blaze is 2
Your dragon will not eat w/ out proper uvb and proper surface basking temps-- the basking bulbs are good - flukers is another good one- please post pics of your tank- if you are using the coil in a 40 gallon the dragon is not getting any uvb
 

Moxxie1122

Member
Original Poster
Beardie name(s)
Moxxie
UPDATES: My beardie is eating well over the amount she was before! we got more crickets so I can supply her with more. She's more active but since she's shedding, she's missing my handling lol. we got a new light ( I was going to recommend the one I have been sent but my father bought a light without my knowledge. It's my beardie but my family helps out.) it's the Zilla 24-inch 15-watt T8 one. Is that okay?
 

smaugthebeardie3756

Hatchling Member
Beardie name(s)
Smaug
UPDATES: My beardie is eating well over the amount she was before! we got more crickets so I can supply her with more. She's more active but since she's shedding, she's missing my handling lol. we got a new light ( I was going to recommend the one I have been sent but my father bought a light without my knowledge. It's my beardie but my family helps out.) it's the Zilla 24-inch 15-watt T8 one. Is that okay?
It can work. I think that one comes with a plastic cover. If so, you want to make sure and remove it. It will need to be mounted under the screen 6-8 inches directly over the basking spot. The bulb needs to be replaced in six months. Even if it still works, the UVB output drops too low after that.
 

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