In the last 20 years, bearded dragons have become popular reptile pets because of their superb personality and ease to care for. I’ve had the honor of interacting with several reptiles, and I can tell you now that beardies are the most animated and social reptile species in our society.
But just because they’re deemed as easy pets to take care of, doesn’t mean they’re easy to keep happy. Everyone knows that communication is key in a relationship, whether it’s between two human beings, two animals or a human and animal. And it’s unfortunate that the bearded dragons aren’t able to speak our language. However, there are ways to understanding their behaviors through the actions that they do.
Here are the common behaviors of bearded dragons and what they actually mean.
The Flared Beard
This specific behavior is the reason why they’ve been aptly named, the bearded dragon. This occurs when they are threatened or trying to establish dominance with another reptile. They will puff out their throats and change the color of it to black, therefore making it look like the reptile has a human’s beard. Don’t freak out if you see this happening, it’s all part of nature. This will most likely happen if you introduce two male dragons in an enclosure.
The Head Bob
Unsurprisingly, head bobbing occurs when a dragon bobs it’s head up and down. This is another display of dominance that can happen with two males in an enclosure. You may even someones see this happening while in their flared beard state. If it’s mating season, expect to see a lot of head bobbing, even if the dragon is alone.
The Arm Wave
When a dragon bobs it’s head at another dragon, two possible actions may occur. Either the other dragon doesn’t back down and displays dominance back with the same behaviors, or he submits to the other dragon be arm waving. For example, if the other dragon is too old and big, usually the smaller dragon will slowly raise its arm and move it in a counter clockwise motion, signaling to the other dragon that it will submit to their dominance.
The Push Up
This is quite a funny behavior because it looks like your beardie is trying to get their daily exercise in. However, push ups are typically performed by female dragons during the mating season. It’s their signal to male dragons, giving them the “okay” to mate with them.
The Erected Tail
A erect tail is when the dragons tail is pointed straight up in the air. This will happen if they are laser focused on capturing a prey. One of my favorite things to do is to watch my dragon hunt down their crickets. And, more often than not, they will have an erect tail when doing so. Whether the erect tail improves their chances of catching their prey still seems like a mystery to me.
The Gap Mouth
Bearded dragons are cold blooded reptiles that need a lot of heat. They come from the deserts of Australia and require heat in order to maintain good health. But sometimes, their body becomes too heated and they need to release some heat. They don’t have pores on their body like humans, so they have to open their mouth to lower their body temperature.
As you can see, owning a beardie can be a wonderful and interesting experience. If you’re interested in such a pet, i’d recommend this guide on properly finding bearded dragons for sale. There are a number of things to look out for when considering to buy a beardie. The last thing you want is to take home an unhealthy dragon.
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