Bearded Dragon Lighting
One of the most important aspects of keeping Bearded Dragons is the lighting. If you don’t provide your Beardie with the correct lighting ( UVB 10.0 ) he will be highly susceptible to various diseases. Some people use UVB 5.0 but this is really not enough as they are native to the rocky desert area of Central Australia ,
These lizards require UVB light to make Vitamin D3. Vitamin D3 is essential for the metabolism of Calcium. Therefore, you need to buy a special light that produces UVB. You should also know that the UVB light will only be effective up until a certain distance. Although it’s best to put it 10-12 inches away from your dragon, you can put it up to 18 inches away.
You have several options for providing UVB light for your beardie. Some only provide light but no heat. Mercury vapour bulbs provide both, although they’re more expensive. You’ll need to replace the light every six months. Although they will still produce light after six months, they won’t produce as much UVB.
A UVB light can't take the place as natural sunlight. You should try to take your bearded dragon outside as much as possible. Although he’ll appreciate the natural sunlight, you’ll still need to provide shade so he doesn’t overheat.
It’s also a good idea to provide a hiding spot so he doesn’t become too stressed. Keep in mind that the temperature needs to be above 70 degrees Fahrenheit whenever you take your dragon outside.
When using an overhead UVB light source, the top of your enclosure is very important. Plastic, wood, or glass will effectively block out or filter the light. It’s best to use a screen on the top. The size of the holes on the screen are also important. If they’re spaced too closely together, they will block out a lot of UVB.If you are like myself and have a wooden vivarium with glass sliding front panels, then a UVB 10.0 tube with a back reflector set around one 3rd from the top of the viv does the job a treat
Your bearded dragon is active during the day and sleeps at night. So, give him about 14 hours of light, and 10 hours of darkness. If you don’t want to do this manually everyday, you should set the lights up with a timer.