New baby bearded dragon - hi!

Hi everybody

I've become a bearded dragon mum today (or technically nan as our new baby belongs to my 12 year old son!). Lemon, our baby Citrus bearded dragon came home with us today as a Christmas present for my son. We spent Christmas Day / Boxing Day setting up the vivarium and have been doing as much research as we can before collecting him / her today.

So... it's a bit overwhelming isn't it?! We are head over heels in love already but I feel like I have a newborn again I'm so worried! Literally every single thing we research comes up with conflicting information. I just hope we're doing everything correctly. Lemon has eaten really well today but already we're worried we have fed him / her the wrong things. Some of the crickets I think were bigger than the space between Lemon's eyes, which is something we have only read about this evening! Lemon has also eaten a few mealworm which seems to be a no-no for babies?

Lemon has been fast asleep, we think, since 7pm but all we can see is his / beautiful tail sticking out from the foliage. I feel like I won't sleep tonight panicking that Lemon is just asleep - yep, that newborn feeling again! We only have a stick on thermometer so I'm stressing the temp in the vivarium isn't accurate, and also that there is a rogue cricket still in with Lemon even though we cleared it completely before lights out. Arrrrghhhhh!

Please tell me it gets easier? I was not this stressed when we got our cat!
20211228_120947.jpg
 

Beansbanana

Hatchling Member
Hi everybody

I've become a bearded dragon mum today (or technically nan as our new baby belongs to my 12 year old son!). Lemon, our baby Citrus bearded dragon came home with us today as a Christmas present for my son. We spent Christmas Day / Boxing Day setting up the vivarium and have been doing as much research as we can before collecting him / her today.

So... it's a bit overwhelming isn't it?! We are head over heels in love already but I feel like I have a newborn again I'm so worried! Literally every single thing we research comes up with conflicting information. I just hope we're doing everything correctly. Lemon has eaten really well today but already we're worried we have fed him / her the wrong things. Some of the crickets I think were bigger than the space between Lemon's eyes, which is something we have only read about this evening! Lemon has also eaten a few mealworm which seems to be a no-no for babies?

Lemon has been fast asleep, we think, since 7pm but all we can see is his / beautiful tail sticking out from the foliage. I feel like I won't sleep tonight panicking that Lemon is just asleep - yep, that newborn feeling again! We only have a stick on thermometer so I'm stressing the temp in the vivarium isn't accurate, and also that there is a rogue cricket still in with Lemon even though we cleared it completely before lights out. Arrrrghhhhh!

Please tell me it gets easier? I was not this stressed when we got our cat! View attachment 66142
It is hard not to worry! We have had our dragon for a month and I have worried about every little thing. Luckily this forum is so helpful! The people on here will make sure your lights, temperature, and diet are all correct. They will help you get any of the supplies you may not already have. This website is a great resource!
 

KarrieRee

BD.org Sicko
Beardie name(s)
Hiccup he is 4 and Blaze is 2
Hi everybody

I've become a bearded dragon mum today (or technically nan as our new baby belongs to my 12 year old son!). Lemon, our baby Citrus bearded dragon came home with us today as a Christmas present for my son. We spent Christmas Day / Boxing Day setting up the vivarium and have been doing as much research as we can before collecting him / her today.

So... it's a bit overwhelming isn't it?! We are head over heels in love already but I feel like I have a newborn again I'm so worried! Literally every single thing we research comes up with conflicting information. I just hope we're doing everything correctly. Lemon has eaten really well today but already we're worried we have fed him / her the wrong things. Some of the crickets I think were bigger than the space between Lemon's eyes, which is something we have only read about this evening! Lemon has also eaten a few mealworm which seems to be a no-no for babies?

Lemon has been fast asleep, we think, since 7pm but all we can see is his / beautiful tail sticking out from the foliage. I feel like I won't sleep tonight panicking that Lemon is just asleep - yep, that newborn feeling again! We only have a stick on thermometer so I'm stressing the temp in the vivarium isn't accurate, and also that there is a rogue cricket still in with Lemon even though we cleared it completely before lights out. Arrrrghhhhh!

Please tell me it gets easier? I was not this stressed when we got our cat! View attachment 66142
Welcome to the forum- please if your using a red bulb please get rid of it- please make sure your feeding insects no bigger than the space between his eyes length wise- next your going to need 2 digital probe thermometers one for his cool 80's during the day nite time 65-75 cool and dark one for the basking side and you want surface temps not air- or ambient place the probe on the spot where he sits for basking 10 min get the temp- 105-110 - next NO coils for a uvb - long tube fixture -- tell me what your using and I will post fixtures if I need to - you want a CLEAR bright white basking bulb like a Exo Terra intense basking bulb-- or a Zoo Med reptibasking bulb-- no off white no daytime bulbs they have a coating on them neoydium bad for the eyes No colored bulbs - also what size tank?
 

CitrusLemonBeardie

New member
Original Poster
It is hard not to worry! We have had our dragon for a month and I have worried about every little thing. Luckily this forum is so helpful! The people on here will make sure your lights, temperature, and diet are all correct. They will help you get any of the supplies you may not already have. This website is a great resource!
Thanks so much for the reply @Beansbanana - just really want our new buddy to be as happy as possible!
 

CitrusLemonBeardie

New member
Original Poster
Welcome to the forum- please if your using a red bulb please get rid of it- please make sure your feeding insects no bigger than the space between his eyes length wise- next your going to need 2 digital probe thermometers one for his cool 80's during the day nite time 65-75 cool and dark one for the basking side and you want surface temps not air- or ambient place the probe on the spot where he sits for basking 10 min get the temp- 105-110 - next NO coils for a uvb - long tube fixture -- tell me what your using and I will post fixtures if I need to - you want a CLEAR bright white basking bulb like a Exo Terra intense basking bulb-- or a Zoo Med reptibasking bulb-- no off white no daytime bulbs they have a coating on them neoydium bad for the eyes No colored bulbs - also what size tank?

Welcome to the forum- please if your using a red bulb please get rid of it- please make sure your feeding insects no bigger than the space between his eyes length wise- next your going to need 2 digital probe thermometers one for his cool 80's during the day nite time 65-75 cool and dark one for the basking side and you want surface temps not air- or ambient place the probe on the spot where he sits for basking 10 min get the temp- 105-110 - next NO coils for a uvb - long tube fixture -- tell me what your using and I will post fixtures if I need to - you want a CLEAR bright white basking bulb like a Exo Terra intense basking bulb-- or a Zoo Med reptibasking bulb-- no off white no daytime bulbs they have a coating on them neoydium bad for the eyes No colored bulbs - also what size tank?
Thanks @KarrieRee I now have digital thermometers and a strip uvb on order thank you. The tank is 36.5 gallons.
 

KarrieRee

BD.org Sicko
Beardie name(s)
Hiccup he is 4 and Blaze is 2
Thanks @KarrieRee I now have digital thermometers and a strip uvb on order thank you. The tank is 36.5 gallons.
What size fixture did you get? And what brand and bulb please? I am sorry to say but your 35 gallon will haft to be upgraded to a much larger tank here real soon - like before a year -- dragons need a 75-120 gallon tank and he wont be in the 35 for long- if your gonna go big I recommend a 120 gallon - there are places you can look either used or new --- if you need more help or ideas please ask -
 

blue11

Sub-Adult Member
Hi everybody

I've become a bearded dragon mum today (or technically nan as our new baby belongs to my 12 year old son!). Lemon, our baby Citrus bearded dragon came home with us today as a Christmas present for my son. We spent Christmas Day / Boxing Day setting up the vivarium and have been doing as much research as we can before collecting him / her today.

So... it's a bit overwhelming isn't it?! We are head over heels in love already but I feel like I have a newborn again I'm so worried! Literally every single thing we research comes up with conflicting information. I just hope we're doing everything correctly. Lemon has eaten really well today but already we're worried we have fed him / her the wrong things. Some of the crickets I think were bigger than the space between Lemon's eyes, which is something we have only read about this evening! Lemon has also eaten a few mealworm which seems to be a no-no for babies?

Lemon has been fast asleep, we think, since 7pm but all we can see is his / beautiful tail sticking out from the foliage. I feel like I won't sleep tonight panicking that Lemon is just asleep - yep, that newborn feeling again! We only have a stick on thermometer so I'm stressing the temp in the vivarium isn't accurate, and also that there is a rogue cricket still in with Lemon even though we cleared it completely before lights out. Arrrrghhhhh!

Please tell me it gets easier? I was not this stressed when we got our cat! View attachment 66142
Hi there! Hi Lemon!

If you are in a position financially to upgrade the size of the tank/viv in the coming few months, there are a lot of really great custom vivarium websites around to give your beardie a lovely and functional forever home - these custom viv people/companies can make a world of difference for your sanity and your dragons health and happiness! Also, if they don’t already have one built for sale that you like, lots of people allow for you to customize it - size (height / width /length), front doors, length of fixtures, placement of fixtures, etc.

It may seem like “dang that’s expensive” - but paying an upfront cost early on can save you a ton of money and save Lemon from a ton of health problems in the future.

Most are built quite well, and they can last the length of your dragons life for sure - my custom viv has been going strong for over 10 years for my girl (knock on wood). She got her custom forever home at 7 months old.

Ofcourse you can always create your own proper tank/environment too rather than have a custom built by someone else!

Size wise, I feel like 75 gallons - 120 gallons is about what people aim for (or more, some people definitely go over 120). Since you said Lemon is a baby, now is a good time to start pre-gaming your ideal set up for when Lemon becomes a juvie soon - and will require more room for space, temp gradients, etc.

As far as the red light we are seeing - you can leave that out / return that and replace with a bright clearer bulb for basking/heat. Its actually kinda neat the way they are so much like us when it comes to that diurnal life they live - day with light and warmth - night with darkness and cooler. Never underestimate the simplicity of a good tube UVB and a good bright day bulb, then shutting them off at night for a restful nights sleep for Lemon.

I remember the first 2 months I had my girl (as a 1 month old little tiny baby) I was doing everything so wrong. I was inadvertently making things way more complicated than need be (way more excessive, bad lighting, using calci-sand, relying on sticks ons, etc). At her two month mark, I commuted to researching hard core and ever since then - so much smoother sailing.

So yeps - you are correct - it can feel overwhelming for sure. And to answer your other question - yes - once you get the right set up (size, substrate, lighting, foods, day/night cycle, a dependable hydration method, bonding, etc) - it gets easier 🙂 … I think the initial viv prep and getting your dragon settled / comfortable is the most overwhelming thing at first. But you’ll get amazing advice on here!

As far as feeding - I started out feeding my baby pinhead crix, but then I just felt like they were a hassle - so I moved over to Repti-Worms (aka Phoenix Worms or BSF larvae), and dubia roaches … as a juvie she still got the roaches, with the addition of some superworms and hornworms. I also like to give her butter worms as well. Mulberry Farms is a website that I use to to order most of her food from - but there are lots of other sites too! Honestly, she didn’t even touch a green until 1.5 years old. And I tried everythingggggg. But now - collards and mustard greens are her staple greens.

PS - Regarding UVB … I know many people on this forum that can help you out with the T5 fixtures and high output bulbs. Long ago when I got my custom viv made, a T8 fixture was kinda “the thing” to get - much more so then than now - but definitely still used and still around. I still use a T8 … my two linear / tube light brands have always been ReptiSun 10.0 (majority of the time) and also the Arcadia 12%.

But yeps - there are a lot of newer tanks being set up that use the T5 HO bulbs, and also I have seen people that used to use a T8, switch over to a T5 HO - so they can help ya out with the T5 if that’s the route you want to take. A big difference between the two will be both placement and distance of the bulb from your dragon.

Keep asking away - questions big or small - help is a clicky click away from lots of people with lots of awesome ideas and extensive experience.
 
Last edited:
Hi everybody

I've become a bearded dragon mum today (or technically nan as our new baby belongs to my 12 year old son!). Lemon, our baby Citrus bearded dragon came home with us today as a Christmas present for my son. We spent Christmas Day / Boxing Day setting up the vivarium and have been doing as much research as we can before collecting him / her today.

So... it's a bit overwhelming isn't it?! We are head over heels in love already but I feel like I have a newborn again I'm so worried! Literally every single thing we research comes up with conflicting information. I just hope we're doing everything correctly. Lemon has eaten really well today but already we're worried we have fed him / her the wrong things. Some of the crickets I think were bigger than the space between Lemon's eyes, which is something we have only read about this evening! Lemon has also eaten a few mealworm which seems to be a no-no for babies?

Lemon has been fast asleep, we think, since 7pm but all we can see is his / beautiful tail sticking out from the foliage. I feel like I won't sleep tonight panicking that Lemon is just asleep - yep, that newborn feeling again! We only have a stick on thermometer so I'm stressing the temp in the vivarium isn't accurate, and also that there is a rogue cricket still in with Lemon even though we cleared it completely before lights out. Arrrrghhhhh!

Please tell me it gets easier? I was not this stressed when we got our cat! View attachment 66142
Omg I feel your stress I got one for my 8 year old .. had it at my mothers for 2 wks because it was a Christmas surprise then my brother calls saying he thinks it’s dead nope just sleep not moving lol it’s been about a month now and I am always scared when I wake up she won’t be alive. The crickets ugh she misses them and I am chasing them around the take out breaking their legs … feeding with the tweezers Had to do a total light switch as well. Pet stores don’t sell you the right stuff at all and just got a night ceramic because temp went to 68 last night and it’s getting colder out so it might drop more. Looking for poop chasing crickets 🤦‍♀️ They say this is a beginner pet lol 😂 ours is violet and she was like 5 weeks old when we got her now she’s around 9/10 wks I think she is sassy and likes to upset me 🤷‍♀️ Can’t hold her yet - Just yesterday I freaked she was doing the weird gagging thing but she’s fine… so stressful
 
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