Setting a correct tank temperature is important for your Bearded Dragons health. As bearded dragons origin is from a high temp area, it will feel comfortable in the appropriate heating captive environment.

Tank temperature settings for bearded dragons is a science; you must master this skill to make your pet happy.

In this section I’ll discuss several temperature setting techniques and equipments that I’ve experienced before for your reference.

The basic heating for bearded dragons needs to be done correctly in order to keep your pet dragon healthy. It isn't complicated to set up a properly heated cage for your dragon.

Many pet owners always neglect that heating is important for their lizard. Inappropriate heating may cause many health problems to bearded dragons, especially improper temperature. It requires little time to set the heating element for the correct temperature. It is tedious work but it is worth doing. 

Bearded dragons are a thermoregulation animal, which is the way the reptile regulates the body temperature. Since bearded dragons originate from a high temperature continent. Thus in the wild, they basically depend on the sun for body heat. Basking under the sun and hiding at shaded places is the only way to help them adjust and maintain the body’s temperature. This is why it is vital to help them to achieve body thermoregulation in captivity using different types of reptile heating equipments.

The main source of bearded dragon heating equipment in the captivity would be the basking lamp in most reptile cage settings. It can provide a gradient of warmth throughout the vivarium with certain basking spots where bearded dragons like to spend their time.

If your home is very cold at night, (about 65F or lower), a second source of heating elements is recommended. The good examples of reptile heating accessories are under tank heaters, heat mats, heat lamps, or ceramic infrared heater emitters.

After deciding on reptile heating supplies to use, you need to setup a proper heat gradient in the bearded dragon cage for good body thermoregulation. A fixed temperature throughout the vivarium is not recommended, it doesn’t serve the purpose on heating up or cooling down the pet’s body temperature. High temp spots may help them to digest the food, but a cooler place is where they need to go if overheated.

The change of temperature is good for a bearded dragons digestion. A constant low temperature will not help the beardie to digest food properly; a constant high temperature will cause them to be overheated. Both are non-ideal for them and may cause illness and sickness. This is why poor heating can cause the bearded dragon to not want to eat.

The gradient of temperature for a bearded dragon is 100F to 110F as the high temp area, the cooler side with 75F to 85F. A least one basking spot with 100F is needed. You may need to cool down the temperature to around 65F at night. Thermometers are recommended to be placed at high and low temperature spots for temperature monitoring.

This is the basic bearded dragon cage heating guidelines that you need to know. It is vital for keeping the bearded dragons healthy most of the time by setting the temperature gradient correctly within the vivarium. 

Proper lighting environment for bearded dragons is also very important in terms of their health conditions.

You may help your bearded dragons get away from bad health issues by providing them with a good light setting. It can greatly help on their appetite and the absorption of calcium which eventually makes the colors of your dragon more vivid.

There are many insights, tips and information regarding bearded dragon tank lighting that I would like to share with you here.

In the pet market today, the two common types of lighting options that are always used for the bearded dragon vivarium are UV-A and UV-B lights. As a diurnal animal, bearded dragons need the UV-A and UV-B rays.

UV-A rays can be provided together with the basking lights at the same time. Another type of light is UV-B light which is vital to the bearded dragons health.

UV-B lights are brighter and it can help stimulate the appetite of the bearded dragons. Another advantage of UV-B lights is providing energy for the formation of vitamin D which is necessary for metabolism of calcium and phosphorus. It increases the calcium dissolve and utilization of the calcium that bearded dragons consume, and reduces the risk of metabolic bone disease.  

There are bulbs that are made to emit UV-B rays, designed for reptile pets that can be used for bearded dragons. A better source of UV-B is the sunlight. Florescent lights and mercury-vapor lights are designed to generate UV-B rays as well. They can be used for the bearded dragon. In the wild, sun light is the main source of UV-B rays for bearded dragons. Do expose your pet dragon to the sun once in a while.

Mercury-vapor is the stronger type of UV-B emitter, yet providing high temperatures as well. Many claim that this type of options is good for bearded dragons because it helps lighten up the colour of the morph, increases their appetite and makes them more active. However, it might be too hot if your pet cage is small. Use it with care.

The maintenance of lighting is essential to keep your bearded dragon healthy. Even if the bulbs or lights are not burnt out; it might be malfunctioning in generating UV-B rays. Try to change your lights once a year to make sure that your UV-B lights are still functioning well. 

Bearded dragons experience day and night cycles, which is called the photoperiod. The photoperiod duration on day and night depends on the season.

In the wild, the photoperiod duration of bearded dragons vary with the season. It might be 14 hours a day and 10 hours a night for summer or 10 hours a day and 14 hours a night for the winter. Spring is the time with 12 hours a day and night. In captivity the bearded dragon is doing well with the 12 hours a day and night.

To have an appropriate photoperiod for your bearded dragon, an economical way is to switch on and off the lights manually. You will have to remember to do this everyday and it will be very tiring. A better way is to use a timer for the lighting. It can be done automatically with the timer. However, do not take it for granted and do a check on this from time to time.

A healthy life of your bearded dragon may largely depend on the surrounding environment. This includes the correct setting of photoperiod for your reptile pet.