Are Bearded Dragons Cold Blooded? Everything You Need to Know

Bearded Dragons are cold-blooded animals. As reptiles, they belong to the class of ectothermic creatures, meaning they rely on external heat sources to regulate their body temperature. This characteristic enables them to conserve energy but also requires them to bask in the sun or use other environmental heat sources to maintain an optimal body temperature, which is crucial for their survival and daily activities.

Temperature and Heat

Body Temperature

Bearded dragons are cold-blooded reptiles, meaning that the environment around them regulates their body temperature. Their body temperature can range from 75°F to 104°F, depending on the temperature of their surroundings. Therefore, it is important to maintain a consistent temperature range in their habitat to ensure their body functions properly.

Basking and Tank Temperature

The temperature in the bearded dragon’s habitat should be maintained between 75°F and 85°F during the day and around 70°F at night. The basking area should be kept between 95°F and 100°F. The temperature can be monitored using a thermometer or a temperature gun.

Heat Lamp and Basking Area

A heat lamp should be used to provide heat in the basking area. The lamp should be placed at one end of the tank, and the bearded dragon can move away from the heat if it becomes too warm. A basking area should have a flat surface for the bearded dragon to sit on and absorb the heat.

Cooler Spot and Cooler Area

A cooler spot should be provided in the habitat for the bearded dragon to cool down if it becomes too warm. The cooler spot should be maintained between 75°F and 80°F during the day and around 70°F at night. The cooler area should be located opposite the tank’s opposite end from the basking area.

Humidity and Water

Bearded dragons require a humidity level between 30% and 40%. Using a hygrometer, you can monitor the humidity level in the habitat. A water dish should also be provided for the bearded dragon to drink from and to help maintain humidity levels. The water dish should be cleaned regularly to prevent bacteria growth.

In conclusion, maintaining the correct temperature and heat in a bearded dragon’s habitat is crucial for their health and well-being. Therefore, providing a basking area, cooler spot, and monitoring the humidity levels in their habitat is important. In addition, a heat lamp and thermometer can help regulate the temperature, and a water dish should be provided for drinking and humidity maintenance.

Habitat and Environment

Enclosure and Tank

When it comes to keeping a bearded dragon as a pet, it is important to provide them with a suitable enclosure and tank. The enclosure should be large enough for the bearded dragon to move freely and have a basking spot. A 40-gallon tank is the minimum recommended size for an adult bearded dragon. The enclosure should also have a basking lamp and a ceramic heat emitter to provide the necessary heat for the bearded dragon.

Natural Environment

In the wild, bearded dragons are found in Australia, where they prefer warm, arid areas such as deserts, subtropical woodlands, savannas, and scrublands. They are ectothermic animals, meaning their heat source is usually derived from their environment. During daytime, bearded dragons bask in the sun to regulate their body temperature, and they need somewhere to hide and feel secure.

Red Flags and Signs of Illness

Bearded dragons are generally hardy and can live for 10 to 15 years with proper care. However, they are susceptible to health problems such as respiratory infections, stress, and shedding issues. Monitoring their activity, growth, and bodily functions regularly is important. If a bearded dragon appears sick or is not eating, it may be a sign of illness. Other red flags include lethargy, lack of appetite, and abnormal behavior.

Causes of Illness

Bearded dragons can become sick if exposed to extreme temperatures, improper lighting, or poor nutrition. Stress can also weaken their immune system, making them more susceptible to illness. Captive bearded dragons are also prone to health issues such as impaction caused by ingesting substrate or other foreign objects.

Overall, providing a suitable habitat and environment is crucial for the survival and well-being of bearded dragons. Therefore, regular monitoring and proper care can help prevent health problems and ensure they live long and healthy lives.

Basking and Activity

Basking Spot and Basking Lamp

Bearded dragons are cold-blooded creatures that rely on basking to regulate their body temperature. A basking spot is an area within the enclosure heated to a temperature between 95°F and 105°F. This spot is essential for the bearded dragon to thermoregulate and digest food properly. A basking lamp is a heat source that provides the necessary heat for the basking spot. The lamp should be placed at one end of the enclosure, allowing for a temperature gradient.

Activity and Appetite

A bearded dragon’s activity level is directly related to its body temperature. The bearded dragon will become lethargic and inactive if the temperature is too low. Conversely, the bearded dragon may become stressed and agitated if the temperature is too high. A healthy bearded dragon will be active and curious, exploring its environment and interacting with its owner.

A bearded dragon’s appetite is also directly related to its body temperature. If the temperature is too low, the bearded dragon may not have the energy to eat. Conversely, the bearded dragon may become stressed and refuse to eat if the temperature is too high. Therefore, it is important to ensure the basking spot is at the correct temperature to ensure the bearded dragon has the energy to eat.

Mood and Stress

Bearded dragons can become stressed if their environment is not properly maintained. Stress can lead to a variety of health problems, including impaction. To reduce stress, providing a comfortable environment that meets the bearded dragon’s needs is important. This includes providing a basking spot, hiding places, and various substrates.

To help reduce stress, some owners use a grain pillow or warm water baths. A grain pillow is filled with grains that can be heated in the microwave and placed in the enclosure. Warm water baths can help stimulate bowel movements and reduce impaction.

In conclusion, basking is essential for the health of a bearded dragon. The basking spot and basking lamp are critical components of the enclosure. A healthy bearded dragon with a good appetite will be active and curious. Stress can lead to health problems, so providing a comfortable environment that meets the bearded dragon’s needs is important.

Reproduction and Mating

Mating and Territorial Behavior

Bearded dragons are sexually mature at around one year old, although some may reach sexual maturity as early as six months. This is the age when male and female bearded dragons are ready to mate. However, keeping male and female beardies apart is recommended until they turn two years old, even if they show signs of readiness for mating. This is because they may only be fully developed and ready for breeding once they reach two years of age.

The male dragons bobble their heads and wave their arms as they court the female. When mating, the male bites the female on the back of her neck. In sunny spots, females dig shallow holes for laying two clutches of 11 to 30 eggs. The eggs are incubated for approximately 60 to 80 days, depending on the temperature.

Bearded dragons can be territorial animals, especially during breeding season. Male bearded dragons may become aggressive towards other males and even females during this time, therefore providing enough space for each dragon to prevent territorial disputes is important.

Morphs and Babies

Bearded dragons come in various morphs with different color and pattern variations. Breeding different morphs can result in unique and interesting offspring. However, it is important to note that not all morphs are compatible for breeding and some may produce unhealthy offspring.

Baby bearded dragons are delicate and require special care. They need a warm, humid environment, proper lighting, and a balanced diet to thrive. Researching and understanding baby bearded dragons’ needs before bringing them into your home is important.

Adults and Adulthood

Once the female is sexually mature, she can become gravid (with or without mating) and lay eggs. Female bearded dragons are fertile and pregnant from spring to early summer, when mating and egg laying occurs. Therefore, providing proper nutrition and care for adult bearded dragons is important to maintain their health and well-being.

In conclusion, bearded dragons are cold-blooded animals with specific reproductive and mating behaviors. Therefore, it is important to understand these behaviors to provide proper care for your bearded dragon.


Bearded dragons are cold-blooded animals that rely on external sources of heat to maintain their body temperature. They cannot control their internal temperature like mammals, so they need to bask under a heat source to warm up and move around. They can suffer serious harm if they are cold for an extended period.

Maintaining a proper temperature is essential for the survival of bearded dragons. They need a temperature gradient in their environment to thermoregulate. They require stable temperatures to perform everyday bodily functions like moving and eating. Without a heat source, a bearded dragon and its bodily processes will slow down dramatically.