Heating help- ambient vs surface temp

EmberRising

Member
Beardie name(s)
Ember
I have a new baby beardie (4-5m old) and am having trouble getting the temperature right. I can’t get the air temp high enough and the surface temps are at their max. I am currently using a Philips 72w par38 bulb. (I also tried a Zoo med 100w repti basking spot bulb with similar results.) The ambient temperature at the raised basking rock is 93-97. Surface temp of rock ranges from 95-106. We tried using both basking lights (listed above) time, and still only got ambient air temp up to 99, but surface temps way too high. (And our house is not that cool - kept at 80 degrees.)

So the basking rock is close to max surface temp but ambient air needs to be higher - 100-105 for a baby, I think? Am I understanding this correctly? I am shooting for a basking spot air temp of 100-105 and a surface temp of 108-113? Anyhow, then I checked the reptile carpet underneath the basking rock and it’s 120!! Way too hot.

I’m trying both of my digital probes in the basking spot now, to see if one is way off. They both get similar readings. Tank is 40 gal, glass sides, mesh top. I’ve been thinking of putting some aluminum foil over screen to hold in heat? But then I worry about air flow. I have a dimmer switch I can use too but not sure how that will help my situation. Or do I need a different substrate? I will post enclosure pic. Please - any help would be appreciated!
 

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KarrieRee

BD.org Sicko
Beardie name(s)
Hiccup he is 4 and Blaze is 3
I have a new baby beardie (4-5m old) and am having trouble getting the temperature right. I can’t get the air temp high enough and the surface temps are at their max. I am currently using a Philips 72w par38 bulb. (I also tried a Zoo med 100w repti basking spot bulb with similar results.) The ambient temperature at the raised basking rock is 93-97. Surface temp of rock ranges from 95-106. We tried using both basking lights (listed above) time, and still only got ambient air temp up to 99, but surface temps way too high. (And our house is not that cool - kept at 80 degrees.)

So the basking rock is close to max surface temp but ambient air needs to be higher - 100-105 for a baby, I think? Am I understanding this correctly? I am shooting for a basking spot air temp of 100-105 and a surface temp of 108-113? Anyhow, then I checked the reptile carpet underneath the basking rock and it’s 120!! Way too hot.

I’m trying both of my digital probes in the basking spot now, to see if one is way off. They both get similar readings. Tank is 40 gal, glass sides, mesh top. I’ve been thinking of putting some aluminum foil over screen to hold in heat? But then I worry about air flow. I have a dimmer switch I can use too but not sure how that will help my situation. Or do I need a different substrate? I will post enclosure pic. Please - any help would be appreciated!
Air temp can be 90's -100 -- surface basking temp should be 105-110-- I see the probes dangling take the probe place it on the spot they sit for basking then get your temp- you said the temp on the rock is 95-106 that is good you dont want it over 110- how is the poop? Any undigested bugs?
 

EmberRising

Member
Original Poster
Beardie name(s)
Ember
Ok - this makes a lot more sense. Thank you!!! So when people say “basking spot temp is supposed to be 105-110 for babies,” they mean surface temp? When I use the IR thermometer gun on the rock, it’s 95-106 degrees. Poop looks nice and uniform, no undigested bits. Thank you so much!!!
 

KarrieRee

BD.org Sicko
Beardie name(s)
Hiccup he is 4 and Blaze is 3
Ok - this makes a lot more sense. Thank you!!! So when people say “basking spot temp is supposed to be 105-110 for babies,” they mean surface temp? When I use the IR thermometer gun on the rock, it’s 95-106 degrees. Poop looks nice and uniform, no undigested bits. Thank you so much!!!
yes surface temp- the IR gun is good but not accurate thats why we recommend the probe thermometers - they are the most accurate -- if you start getting undigested bugs you then need to check those surface temps
 

EmberRising

Member
Original Poster
Beardie name(s)
Ember
So undigested bugs mean the surface temps aren’t warm enough? I think I read somewhere that they need those higher temps to fully digest?

Can I just make sure I am understanding correctly now - the probe thermometers are good at getting the ambient air temp - which we want to be 90-100? But baby beardies also need a warm basking spot with a surface temp of 105-110 (and lower the older the get) to digest properly? The IR gun will give an accurate reading of the temp on a specific point of the surface (But not the surrounding air temp)?? Thank you again!!
 

KarrieRee

BD.org Sicko
Beardie name(s)
Hiccup he is 4 and Blaze is 3
So undigested bugs mean the surface temps aren’t warm enough? I think I read somewhere that they need those higher temps to fully digest?

Can I just make sure I am understanding correctly now - the probe thermometers are good at getting the ambient air temp - which we want to be 90-100? But baby beardies also need a warm basking spot with a surface temp of 105-110 (and lower the older the get) to digest properly? The IR gun will give an accurate reading of the temp on a specific point of the surface (But not the surrounding air temp)?? Thank you again!!
A probe is going to give ambient temps as well - the IR gun will give surface basking temps but can be inaccurate - the probe is going to give the best accurate surface basking temp -- you want air temps on the hot side 90's - 100 mine stay around 100 or so - but will have different temps in that area -- babies like hotter temps 105-110 for basking - as they get older like juvies 5-6 months they wont want those 105-110 temps - they will go down to a 95-100 temps for surface basking temps - just watch his behavior - adjust accordingly - if you find him not basking as long on that 105-110 surface its time to adjust it -- I have a piece of decor that I use on the hot side for basking -- it offers different heat gradients and both dragons have the same piece of decor will sit in different spots to bask --
 

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