Top Three Reptiles For Beginner Keepers
The act of reptile keeping has become a common staple in the American household with over 4.5 million reptile owners across the US. During the unfortunate times of 2020 the reptile keeping hobby has exploded! There are more herpetology enthusiast now more than ever, so we at Dragonhaus, LLC wanted to provide the top 3 beginner reptiles for those who are late to the party!
Quite possibly the most popular household reptile, the Pogona (bearded dragon) is a semi-arboreal reptile that tends to hide in the bushes and branches found throughout most of Australia. But oftentimes you will find these beauties basking in the sun on their favorite rock! Bearded Dragons can get up to 2 feet long so they require a terrarium that can properly accommodate their size as well as room to run. Due to these reptiles coming from a hot and arid environment, bearded dragon cages require a temperature range of 75F on the cool end and 100F in the basking areas. They also thrive in a humidity range of 20% to 30%, and if it gets too dry, a light misting of your dragon or their morning salad will do fine. Bearded Dragons are omnivores and will often either eat the succulent plants or they will hunt for their snacks (Dubia roaches, superworms, ect.). It is common practice to make a Bearded Dragon enclosure with a mixture of both substrate and calcium sand so your bugs can burrow and your dragon can hunt! The final and possibly most important aspect of your Bearded Dragon Enclosure is the UV lighting from T5HO light sources. This lighting not only provides the proper light temperature for plant growth, but also provides the proper UV light and vitamins that your Bearded Dragon requires. Bearded Dragons have some of the most varied diets in the reptile world. You can find beardies snacking on superworms, Dubia Roaches, kale, carrots, celery, blueberries, apples, and much more. When it comes down to feeding your pet, we always recommend you consult with your local veterinarian for a proper nutrition plan.
Ball pythons are some of the most common household snakes due to their ease of upkeep and low temperament. The Python regius, or the Royal Python, is native to grassland and shrublands of west and central Africa, and get its more common name “Ball Python” for their habit to curl up into a tight ball. These snakes can live up to 30 years and tend to get 4 to 5 feet long! Due to the lifespan of Ball Pythons, you would typically only want to change it’s enclosure two or three times throughout it’s life. Because the Royal Python is native to Africa, it is recommended to provide a warmer heat gradient (95F on the warm side and 78F on the cool), a place to hide, and maybe a perch to climb. Ball Pythons also require a humidity level of 40-60% and possibly more when they are about to shed. It is not necessary to provide Ball Pythons with UVB lighting so basic LEDs on a light cycle to emulate day and night would be sufficient. Finally you gotta add some substrate! Ball Pythons like to burrow and hide so adding some substrate like Freedom Breeder’s Coco Blox is an absolute must! Like most (if not all) snakes, Ball Pythons are carnivorous and require live or dead mice and rats for food. When it comes down to feeding your pet, we always recommend you consult with your local veterinarian for a proper nutrition plan.
From the desert and grasslands of the Middle East, Leopard Geckos have exploded in popularity over the years. These small lizards are perfect for beginner keepers as they do not require a lot in terms of their environment. They thrive in an arid enclosure so a humidity of 20% to 40% is optimal. Like most lizards, Leopard Geckos like to bask in the warmth at range of 85-90F and typically like the cooler areas to be in the mid to upper 70s. When it comes to lighting, LEDs will be sufficient as Leopard Geckos do not require UVB to survive. However, we at Dragonhaus want the absolute best for your animal, so we include a T5HO fixture as studies have shown that UVB lighting will boost the immune system of your lizard! These little guys are very easy to feed with their diet mainly consisting of superworms, hornworms, Dubia roaches, CalciWorms (add calcium), Phoenix Worms (high source of calcium) and Waxworms (to add fat). When it comes down to feeding your pet, we always recommend you consult with your local veterinarian for a proper nutrition plan.