Care and maintenance
A little bit of attention can mean all the difference in a healthy and non healthy reptile. We have provided some information on the reptiles we sell in order to provide you with all the necessary information to give your pet a great life.
Reptile Safety IS A MUST
Providing your pet with a good healthy life means to give them all the necasarry healthy things they would come across in the wild without the harmful ones. A good multivitamin should be given to any herp 3 times a week. We here at DNG like to use Vionate multi for all animals and reptiles mixed with calcium+d3. If your the owner of a reptile that eats fresh greens, always offer a variety of different fruits and veggies along with multi vitamins and calcium 3 times a week.
- Rhacodactylus ciliatus otherwise known as the crested gecko from south province, New Caledonia. These sly wall crawlers are omnivores eating both pureed fruits and bugs for proteins. They are nocturnal so this means they are active at night. These pets are beginning reptiles and very docile.
- Enclosure: For a full grown adult crested the enclosure should be a 20 gallon high tank. In this tank should be, eco earth (coconut husk) substrate to retain moisture and humidity. A water dish large enough for your crested’s body to fit into and a food dish with fresh baby food couple times a week. Mist enclosure daily to ensure humidity and hydration for your pet. There should be either live plants or vines in the enclosure making available hiding/sleeping spots.
- Lighting: We suggest UVB lighting for for 12-14 hrs and bulbs should be replaced every six months. Although nocturnal it still helps with vitamin d3 and calcium absorption.
- Temperature: During the day temps should be from 72-80 degrees, while at night the temperature can drop to the 60’s.
- Feeding: As juveniles mealworms can be offered from time to time. Along with 5-10 crickets weekly: powdered 3x weekly with calcium+D3. Roaches as long as they are small enough to fit between the crested’s eyes. Either crested gecko diet or baby food fruits(non-acidic) or fresh fruit such as bananas, apples, pears.
- Hydration: It’s important to keep your lizard hydrated to help with digestion and overall health. Mist your enclosure once to two times a day depending on if humidity needs to be up more. Also offer a water dish big enough for the reptile to soak its full body. Fresh water should be offered daily to cut down on bateria.
- Pogona Vitticeps(bearded dragons) a docile beginner reptile. These guys are omnivores and need proper care/lighting/diets/and enclosures. With proper care and maintenance the bearded dragon can live for 8-12 years.
- Enclosure: I suggest using nothing smaller then a 40 gallon tank from the time that you choose to get a bearded dragon. This will reduce tank costs in the long run and allow for the dragon to grow faster. I choose to keep my smaller adults in a 40 gallon tank and my larger adults in pairs of 2 or 3 females in an 90 gallon tank.
- Lighting: Dragons require UVB lighting in order to produce vitamin D3(important for calcium absorption) the UVB bulbs should be on for about 10 hours a day and kept anywhere from 6-12 inches from the dragons basking area. UVB BULBS SHOULD BE CHANGED EVERY 6 MONTHS!!! If you do not change your bulbs for regular maintenance you reptile will become susceptible to MBD(metabolic bone disease) which can cause debilitating effects and eventually death. A UVA bulb is also good for your lizards health and will generate heat which is needed for these desert creatures.
- Temperature: To ensure that your lizard’s immune system stays up and for healthy digestion a basking area should offered 5-10 inches from the UVA lamp or ceramic heat emitter in the tank with temps ranging from 90-100 Degree F(for babies temps can climb to 105 Degree F). On the other side of the tank the temperature should range from 75-80 to allow the dragon a place to go and cool off if needed. Night temperatures can drop into the 70’s, remember they live in deserts where its colder at night.
- Feeding: ****WHEN FEEDING BUGS THE FEEDER SHOULD BE NO BIGGER THEN THE SPACE BETWEEN YOUR REPTILES EYES***Bearded dragons are a fast metabolizing creatures. This means they like to eat ALOT. As babies and juveniles their diets shoulds be about 80% bugs and 20% greens/veggies as adults on the other hand, the diets shoulds change over to about 70-75% veggies/greens and 25-30% bugs. For bearded dragons of all ages proper nutrition is a must, so to ensure all necesarry vitamins/calcium dust feeder insects 3 times per week with calcium+D3 and Multivitamins.
- Bugs: Dragons can eat a variety of bugs ranging from crickets, roaches, super/meal worms, wax worms, horned worms, butterworms, pinkie mice(once in blue moon or to gravid females).
- Veggies/greens: kale, collard/mustard greens, dandelion greens/flowers, arugula, habiscus leaves, blueberries, bananas(as treat on ocassion), winter squash, turnip greens.
- Water/watering: Although beardies are desert reptiles THEY NEED WATER. A water dish big enough for the bearded to soak in should be offered ***With a water dish, dish must be cleaned and fresh water must be given daily to avoid any harmful bacteria***. Also 10 minutes soaks in luke warm water once or twice a week.
- The Blaptica Dubia or orange spotted roach is a perfect feeder for any of your reptiles. They have an amazing meat to shell ratio which means less for your reptile to digest and more bang for your buck. They have very soft exoskeletons which is also better for your reptiles. Dubia roaches compared to crickets are extremely quiet and don’t smell as much.
- The dubia male and females are easily identifiable by the wings or lack of wings(wing stubs). When breeding it is suggested to keep a ratio of 1 male to every 3-5 females. Feed off any unnecessary males, they will just take up space and food and cause competition in your colony.
- For an enclosure the dubia adults cannot climb a smooth surface, although some baby nymphs may be seen climbing that can be stopped with a line of packing tape around the top of your sterlite rubbermaid bucket or glass aquarium. If you choose a rubbermaid make sure to have plenty of ventilation holes in the top lid and to ensure of no escapes i cover my rubbermaids with an extra screen mesh. Place a small heating pad on one side of the tank to add heat(**note these roaches are tropical and do better under hotter 85-95F and slightly more humid conditions**). THE BEST SUBTRATE IS NO SUBSTRATE just give your colony plenty of egg crates to hide under, I cannot stress this enough, sorting threw roaches is enough work so why add extra stuff to sift through.
- I choose to make my own blend of roach/bug chow. I use 1 cup of a premium and i mean premium dog food for high protein, 1 1/2 cup of bearded dragon pellet food, oatmeals, whole grain cereals and more get creative but remember your herps will eventually be eating these guys so choose wisely.
- ***important*** Don’t allow for any perishable foods to mold. MOLD WILL KILL YOUR ROACH COLONY!!!! Mold=bad news
- Offer fresh orange slice(s) weekly along with fresh greens/banana puree/crested gecko diets. Make sure to get water crystals otherwise your roaches will drown in waterdish or dehydrate. water crystals should be replenished as needed.
- If breeding allow for your colony to be in a dark place and try to only disturb them to feed and give water crystals.