Hi Donna,

I Have Built A Viv For A Chinese Water Dragon & A Bearded Dragon I'm Just Wondering If It Would Be Worth Having A Compact Fluorescent Bulb Instead Of A UVB Tube. ?

Thanks For Your Time.

I hope you mean that you have built two vivs, one for each animal (as they cannot ever be housed together, lol).

Compact fluorescent UVB bulbs have been tested, and they put out insufficient UVB light, and have been linked to eye problems.  I would not recommend to use them at all.

Normal fluorescent UVB bulbs work better, but must be within 6 inches of the animal to provide adequate UVB light.  The new mercury-vapor reptile lights are a better solution for the species you're talking about.  They provide both heat and UVB, and work well in very large vivariums.  I would recommend this type of light for both species.  Bearded dragons are an arid environment species, and like it hotter, but water dragons grow larger and need a much larger vivarium, so the same light solution would work for both.


All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Donna Fernstrom


My particular focus is on snakes and lizards, but I have a decent smattering of knowledge of turtles and crocodilians as well, plus the experience to get relevant information quickly if I don't have it on hand in my brain. I can answer questions on captive care, diet, breeding, incubation of eggs, starting hatchlings, and more. I am particularly experienced with ball pythons, Lygodactylus geckos and other small lizards with similar care requirements, leopard geckos, and garter snakes.


I am a professional breeder of ball python morphs, Lygodactylus (dwarf) geckos, and mourning geckos. I have begun working with Irian Jaya carpet pythons, and plan to expand to include more gecko species in the future. I also have a background breeding leopard geckos, and have kept several other species of small lizards, snakes, and a water turtle.

Nebraska Herpetological Society (

I have many care sheets published on my own website.

High School Graduate. Extensively self-taught due to high interest in wildlife and reptile care.

Awards and Honors
Fauna Classifieds board of inquiry Good Guy Certification

©2017 All rights reserved.

[an error occurred while processing this directive]