Red bearded dragons

Red Bearded DragonS – The Ultimate Guide to Care and Feeding

Red bearded dragons are a striking and popular morph of the bearded dragon species. These reptiles are known for their unique coloration and distinct physical features, which make them stand out from other bearded dragon morphs. This article will explore what makes red bearded dragons unique and what differentiates them from different morphs.

What Makes Them Unique Compared To Other Bearded Dragon Morphs

Red bearded dragons are a highly sought-after morph for many reasons. Here are a few of the features that set them apart:

Distinctive Coloration

One of the most notable features of red bearded dragons is their striking coloration. They have a bright orange or red hue covering most of their body, including their scales and beard. This makes them instantly recognizable and highly desirable among reptile enthusiasts.

Unique Physical Features

In addition to their vibrant coloration, red bearded dragons also have unique physical features that make them stand out. They typically have a rounder head and a more pronounced jawline than other morphs, which gives them a distinctive look. Their scales are also larger and thicker than other bearded dragons, giving them a more robust appearance.


Red bearded dragons are known for their friendly and docile personalities. They are generally easy to handle and enjoy human interaction. This makes them great pets for people of all ages, from children to adults.


Although they are a popular morph, red bearded dragons are relatively rare in the wild. This makes them a unique and valuable addition to any reptile collection.

Appearance and Characteristics

Red bearded dragons are a beautiful and striking morph of the bearded dragon species. In this section, we will explore these reptiles’ physical features and behavior.

Red bearded dragons

Physical Features Of Red Bearded Dragons

  1. Coloration: These dragons are known for their bright orange or red coloration, covering most of their body, including their scales and beard. Their coloration may vary depending on age, sex, and environmental conditions.
  2. Scales: Red dragons have large, thick scales covering their bodies. These scales are designed to protect from predators and regulate body temperature. The scales on their head and back are larger and thicker than other morphs, giving them a more robust appearance.
  3. Size: Red bearded dragons can grow to be quite large, with males typically reaching 20-24 inches in length and females reaching 18-22 inches. They can weigh up to 1-2 pounds.
  4. Lifespan: With proper care, red bearded dragons can live in captivity for up to 15-20 years.

Read more on Coloration of bearded dragon.

Behavior and Temperament

These bearded dragons are known for their friendly and docile personalities. They are generally easy to handle and enjoy human interaction. They are also known to be social animals and can thrive in groups or pairs. However, it is essential to note that each dragon has its own unique personality, and some may be more reserved or timid than others.

Red bearded dragons are daily, which means they are active during the day and sleep at night. They are also known for basking, where they spend time under a heat lamp to regulate their body temperature.

Housing and Habitat

Red bearded dragons require specific environmental conditions to thrive in captivity. This section will discuss the ideal setup for a red bearded dragon’s enclosure, including lighting and heating requirements, substrate options, and decor and enrichment.

Ideal setup for a red bearded dragon’s enclosure

  1. Size: Red bearded dragons require a spacious enclosure to move around freely. A minimum enclosure size of 40 gallons for one dragon is recommended, but more significant is better. A tank at least 4 feet long by 2 feet wide and 2 feet tall is ideal for one adult red bearded dragon.
  2. Lighting and heating: Red bearded dragons require UVB lighting to metabolize calcium and maintain proper bone health. The UVB bulb should be placed above the basking spot and kept at a temperature between 100-110°F during the day. The cool side of the enclosure should be between 75-85°F, and the nighttime temperature should not drop below 65°F.
  3. Substrate: A variety of substrate options are available for red bearded dragons, including reptile carpets, paper towels, newspaper, and ceramic tiles. Avoid using sand, gravel, or other loose substrates that can be ingested and cause impaction.
  4. Decor and enrichment: Red bearded dragons enjoy climbing and basking, so provide branches, rocks, and other climbing structures in the enclosure. Add a hiding spot for the dragon to retreat to when feeling stressed. Additionally, provide a shallow water dish for drinking and soaking.

Feeding and Nutrition

Proper nutrition is essential for the health and longevity of red bearded dragons. This section will discuss their dietary needs and recommendations, safe food options, and feeding schedules.

Dietary needs and recommendations

  1. Protein: Red bearded dragons require a diet high in protein to support growth and muscle development. Offer protein-rich foods such as insects, worms, and small mice.
  2. Vegetables: In addition to protein, red bearded dragons require a variety of vegetables in their diet. Offer leafy greens such as collard greens, mustard greens, and kale, as well as other vegetables such as squash, bell peppers, and carrots.
  3. Fruits: Fruits can be offered as a treat or occasional supplement to the diet. Offer fruits such as strawberries, blueberries, and mango in small amounts.

Safe food options

  1. Insects: Offer insects such as crickets, mealworms, and dubia roaches. Avoid feeding wild-caught insects that may be contaminated with pesticides or other toxins.
  2. Vegetables: Offer a variety of safe vegetables for red bearded dragons, such as collard greens, mustard greens, kale, squash, bell peppers, and carrots. Avoid feeding vegetables high in oxalates, such as spinach and beet greens, as they can interfere with calcium absorption.
  3. Fruits: Offer small amounts of fruits such as strawberries, blueberries, and mango. Avoid feeding fruits high in sugar, such as bananas and grapes.

Feeding schedule

  1. Juvenile dragons: Juvenile red bearded dragons should be fed 2-3 times daily. Offer as many insects as they can eat at each feeding in 10-15 minutes.
  2. Adult dragons: Adult red bearded dragons can be fed once per day. Offer a mixture of insects and vegetables, with a ratio of 70% vegetables and 30% insects.

Health and Care

Maintaining the health of your red bearded dragon is crucial for its well-being. This section will discuss common health issues, how to prevent them, signs of illness to look out for, and regular care and maintenance. Visit Care tips for bearded dragon.

Common Health Issues and How to Prevent Them

  1. Metabolic bone disease: Metabolic bone disease is a common health issue in red bearded dragons caused by a lack of UVB lighting and calcium. Prevent this disease by providing appropriate UVB lighting and a calcium supplement.
  2. Impaction occurs when a bearded dragon ingests a substrate that cannot be digested, such as sand or gravel. Use a safe substrate such as reptile carpet, paper towels, or newspaper to prevent impaction.
  3. Respiratory infections: Respiratory infections are caused by poor farming and hygiene. Prevent respiratory infections by providing a clean and properly humidified environment.

Signs Of Illness To Look Out For

  • Lack of appetite
  • Lethargy
  • Weight loss
  • Diarrhea
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Abnormal behavior

If you notice any of these signs, consult a veterinarian specializing in exotic animals.

Regular care and maintenance

  1. Cleaning: Clean the enclosure regularly by removing uneaten food, feces, and soiled substrate. Disinfect the enclosure with a reptile-safe cleaner at least once a month.
  2. Bathing: Bathing your bearded dragon once a week can help prevent skin infections and keep their skin hydrated.
  3. Nail trimming: Trim your bearded dragon’s nails to prevent overgrowth and injury.
  4. Veterinary check-ups: Schedule regular check-ups with a veterinarian specializing in exotic animals to ensure your bearded dragon is healthy and catch any health issues early.

Breeding and Genetics

Breeding red bearded dragons can be a rewarding experience for experienced reptile owners. In this section, we will discuss how to breed red bearded dragons, the genetics of the red bearded dragon morph, and the care and raising of baby bearded dragons.

How to Breed Red-Bearded Dragons

  1. Age: Bearded dragons should be bred once they reach 18 months and are healthy.
  2. Pairing: Pair a male and female bearded dragon in a separate enclosure and closely monitor their behavior.
  3. Mating: Allow the male and female bearded dragons to mate naturally. After mating, separate the female and watch her for signs of pregnancy.
  4. Egg-laying: Bearded dragons lay eggs approximately 30-40 days after mating. Provide a suitable nesting area, such as a container filled with soil and sand, for the female to lay her eggs.

Genetics of the Red-Bearded Dragon Morph

The red bearded dragon morph is a recessive trait. This means that two bearded dragons with the red morph gene must be bred to produce offspring with the red morph.

Care and Raising of Baby Bearded Dragons

  1. Incubation: Incubate the eggs in a suitable incubator until they hatch. The temperature and humidity should be maintained at optimal levels for successful hatching.
  2. Feeding: Feed baby bearded dragons small insects, such as crickets and mealworms, dusted with calcium and vitamin supplements.
  3. Housing: Provide a suitable enclosure for the baby bearded dragons with proper heating and lighting requirements.
  4. Socialization: Handle the baby bearded dragons frequently to promote socialization and adequate development.

Ownership and Considerations

Owning a red bearded dragon is a responsibility that should not be taken lightly. This section will discuss legal considerations and regulations, time and financial commitments, and the importance of responsible pet ownership.

Legal Considerations and Regulations

Researching and following all local, state, and federal regulations regarding the ownership of exotic pets, including red bearded dragons, is essential. Some areas may require permits or restrict the types of animals that can be owned as pets.

Time and Financial Commitments

Owning a red bearded dragon requires a significant time and financial commitment. They require daily care and attention, including feeding, cleaning, and socialization. Additionally, they need a suitable enclosure with proper heating and lighting, regular veterinary check-ups, and potential medical expenses.

Importance of Responsible Pet Ownership

Responsible pet ownership is crucial for the well-being of all pets, including red bearded dragons. This includes providing proper care and attention, ensuring they are housed in suitable enclosures, and following all regulations and laws. Additionally, responsible pet ownership includes making informed decisions about owning a pet and being prepared to provide for their needs for the entirety of their lifespan.


In conclusion, red bearded dragons are a unique and fascinating reptile species that require proper care and attention. Their vibrant red coloring and friendly temperament make them popular with reptile enthusiasts. In this blog post, we have discussed various aspects of red bearded dragon ownership, including their appearance and characteristics, housing and habitat requirements, feeding and nutrition needs, health and care considerations, breeding and genetics, and ownership and considerations.

It is important to remember that owning a red bearded dragon, or any pet, is a significant responsibility that requires time, resources, and attention. Proper research and preparation are necessary to ensure that the red bearded dragon is provided with a suitable environment and receives proper care throughout its life. By following the information provided in this blog post, potential red bearded dragon owners can make informed decisions and ensure that they are prepared to provide a happy and healthy life for their new pet.

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