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Reptiles/b.d eating habits

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Mulan
Mulan  
Mulan
Mulan  
QUESTION: Hello Tracie,
        My name is Christian I have a female bearded dragon she about 16 weeks old and 15 in long. I have a dubia colony and been feeding her roaches for about 2 months and she was eating great. So I started feeding her superworms about 3 or 4 weeks ago . For the first two weeks she was eating both of them really good along with her greens but now she only wants to eat superworms it seems like. I look online for info on them some say they can be feed as a stable and other say they cant. I look at ther nutritional value and I like the dubia better I gut loade both of my feeders with good stuff. How can I get her to eat dubia like she use too or should I just give her superworms as a stable?It also seems like she acting like a teenager more now lol. Thank you for taking the time to read this and helping me out.




Thank you
Christian

ANSWER: Hello Christian,

Your dragon is 15 inches long & is only 16 weeks old?  Geez, she is going to be good sized.  
That happens pretty frequently when you start feeding them supers.  They can change their eating habits when they hit 6 months or so.  
I would continue to try to feed both just for variety.  Superworms can be fed as a sole staple but you would need to cut down to around 30-35 per week for maintenance, as an adult so she doesn't get too much fat.  Though if you feed a combination of the supers & the dubias, you can feed upwards of 50 feeders once she gets to be an adult.
Since she is still growing, you can feed as many dubias as she wants to eat but the supers should be limited a little more so she doesn't lay down too much fat while she is growing.  Once she is an adult it is easier to monitor the food.  Right now she can have as many feeders as she wants.  
At her age, she can have 40 or so supers per week plus the dubias & greens but monitor her weight to be sure she is gaining healthy weight.
Gut loading is great for the insects.  How often do you use calcium supplementation?
Mulan is beautiful!  Are you using a UVB light right now?    

Tracie

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Hello Tracie,
         Thank you for getting back to me. Here is my setup I have a powersun 100w with a basking temp of 110 and I also have a halogen 75 w and the temp is 108 to 111. I have two basking spots one with uvb and another without. I also have two 24in repti glo 2.0 for lighting up her viv and the cool side of the tank is around 85. I dust with calcium first feeding of the day 6 days a week and vitamins 1 day . I feed her 2 times a day with green in her tank all the time. I use to give her live feeder 3 time a day but for the last 2 weeks ive gone down to 2. Thats pretty much my care for her I let her out of her tank few times a day once she start to get a little cold I but her back, but lately she been acting diffrent. I dont know if its her hormone or the weather cuz we llive in az and it doesnt rain that much but its has for 2 days I dont know. Thank you for taking the time to anwers my questions and any other advice you have for me ill take it. Thank you.




Christian

ANSWER: Hello Christian,

How are you?
The Powersun should be fine as long as you have it mounted at least 12 or so inches away for safety.  The lighting with the halogen along with the Mercury vapor bulb is good.  Are you using a digital probe or temp gun to measure the temperatures?  Be sure the cooler end stays under 85 so she doesn't get overheated.  
The reptiglo 2 tube bulb is safe, as you are just using it for extra brightness for her.
The rain or weather can affect the dragons' appetites or moods.  It sounds like she gets out plenty to run around & exercise.
The feeding schedule sounds great, at 2 times per day along with greens.  
The calcium supplementation can be given 5 times a week with vitamins 1-2 times per week.  Are her urates soft or hard right now?  That is a good way to monitor calcium levels or giving too much.  If her urates are soft & white & not hard or discolored then you can keep her on the 6 days a week right now since she is growing.  If they get too hard then you can back down on them to 4-5 times per week.
Is she eating her greens regularly?
What is the size of her tank?

Let me know how she is doing.
Tracie

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

Mulan tank
Mulan tank  

Mulan tank
Mulan tank  
QUESTION: Hello Tracie,
         How are you doing? Am good thanks for asking. I think im going to cut down her calcium to 4 or 5 times a week. Know that I know what to look for because her urates are hard sometimes thank you for that tip. I am useing a zoo med temp gun cuz its easy and faster to check different spots in my tank. I have a 36x18x15 size tank a 40g breeder. She eat her greens everyday ever since she was a baby never had a hard time with that thank goodness. I think I know why she was acting weird she had finish shedding last weekend but the shed are her nose didnt come off so it was hard for her to breed I guess but I got it off today. I was freaking out was going to take her to the vet but she back to her old self.I thought she had a U.R.I so im going to keep a closer eye on her. Do you have any tips on that? Thanks you once again.



Christian

Answer
Hello Christian,

The tank looks good.  The Powersun is mounted right by the reptiglo 2 correct in the middle of the tank?  The other light at the other end is just a basking light with no UVB?
Great.  The temp gun is accurate for measuring the temperatures so they should be right on.  

A 40 gallon breeder tank is fine size wise for now until she gets bigger.  
The shed can sometimes retain in their nostrils making it hard for them to breathe.  Is she doing better today?  
To help with shedding, baths are good & just make sure the humidity in the tank is optimal, around 30-40% to help with shedding.
Is she eating well today?
If her urates do get hard, then you can go ahead & back down on the calcium supplementation some to help.  

Let me know how she is doing.  It looks like she is very comfortable in her home!


Tracie

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Tracie Kretzschmar

Expertise

I can answer questions pertaining to health, UVB specifics, overall husbandry care & supplementation, analysis of blood test results, and behavioral problems & handling. I can answer questions pertaining to bearded dragons, leopard geckos, iguanas, uromastyx & ball pythons. I can answer adeno virus related questions in bearded dragons, & then specifically about the testing methods as well. I am beginning an Pogona Adeno Testing Society in 2008 which will help to begin to start some standardization within the bearded dragon colonies of the breeders who choose to test.

Experience

I have been working with bearded dragons for over 5 years now, as well as leopard geckos, too. I am currently doing rescues, as well. I hope to be able to educate people prior to them purchasing an exotic pet in order to avoid any health crisis with them.

Education/Credentials
I have a master's degree in sports medicine & physiology, & 1 year of vet tech schooling, & am currently working on a reptile certification through the Pet Industry Joint Advisory Council.

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