Another beardie for me!

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splashy07
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Another beardie for me!

Postby splashy07 » Fri Jan 17, 2020 6:39 pm

Some years back I used to breed bearded dragons. I seriously missed having one and had been talking with friends recently about them. I had zero space and just wrote it off, until a neighbor who used to get his feeders from me gave me a call and said his son no longer had time for his bearded dragon and would I take it....a little divine intervention??
I promised him I'd find him the best home possible. And then I met him. It was instantaneous love. And now he has the best home possible. Mine. I called my neighbor the next day and he was thrilled that I was keeping him. I offered him a baby BTS this season, low maintenance pet his son may like. Looks like that may be a go, he loved my baby pics!
Had to do some serious rearranging, he is now ghettoed up in a Walmart tub but his new cage is scheduled to arrive tomorrow. And my luck, a storm is coming. Oh well. It'll get here. And I'm in love. His name is Miguel. I thought it was cute so I'm not changing. Will send more pics after he sheds. (He's not in full color).
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Re: Another beardie for me!

Postby kingofnobbys » Fri Jan 17, 2020 9:50 pm

Handsome spikey lad. How old is he ?

Settling in OK ?

Beardies and BTS are a great combination. I often have an adult BTS and a beardie out for shared floor fun time , have doing this for over 8 years since my first beardie was big enough to allow floor time ( too big to disappear under lounge or doors or display cabinets or fridges ).

I know keepers who regularly let their BTs and bearded dragons share a salad dish .
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Re: Another beardie for me!

Postby Meeesh » Mon Jan 20, 2020 7:55 am

I love yellow beardies!! What a cute potatoes. He has the BEST home now :D can't wait to see updates!!
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Re: Another beardie for me!

Postby splashy07 » Mon Jan 20, 2020 9:37 am

Isn't he a cutie? He's 3 years old. His cage came on saturday, and he's now getting used to that. He was a bit unsettled yesterday as this is his 3rd place in a weeks time. (His original home, his ghetto walmart tub, and his final) I'll post some cute pictures of him while I was assembling it (what he was up to during) when I get home from work. Too much change in too little time for an older reptile. Babies adapt much faster, all they care about is food.
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Re: Another beardie for me!

Postby splashy07 » Mon Jan 20, 2020 4:18 pm

Here's the goings on....he was sunning himself on my snake rack project that abruptly was put on hold when he arrived!
Proceeded to poop on that, too. Boys. Crappy pic of new cage, will take better ones. It's a critter condo 36x24x24.
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Re: Another beardie for me!

Postby kingofnobbys » Mon Jan 20, 2020 9:05 pm

Looks like he's settling in OK .

Regards the substrate , probably best to use something else as it's an impaction risk for bearded dragons.

I'd recommend ceramic wall or floor tiles ( there are fake slate or sandstone look tiles around ) that work very nicely for bearded dragons and make spot cleaning a breeze ( simply lift out the soiled tile , take outside on the lawn and blast it with the garden hose , let it dry , and it goes straight back in ).

I'd have a layer of kitchen grade paper towels under the tiles to soak up and wet stuff , also very easy replacement , some even lay lino under their tiles as well.

The tiles will help grind down the nails. And makes it hard for bugs like crickets, roaches and hoppers to hide.

A lot of folks here in Australia use washed screened playsand for their dragons - I'm not a fan of sand ( when damp it holds moisture and is a perfect medium for molds , bacteria , algae and viruses and near impossible to keep clean).
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Re: Another beardie for me!

Postby splashy07 » Tue Jan 21, 2020 7:21 am

I don't like sand either, I actually used to use newspaper when I kept dragons or paper pulp substrate called carefresh. (there are many grades, some are just plain old paper pulp). The reason I do not use tile is that it gets too cold at night if they decide to sleep on the ground. And oh God if they decide to walk through their poo all day... I don't feed crickets, and roaches only outside cage or on tongs. The only bugs I leave in there is a bowl of superworms. Bugs escape and I don't want them running around my apartment without my knowledge! There's already an escaped cricket under a radiator somewhere that's driving me nuts...they breed in one of my bio cages and every now and then one decides to come out. I'll be changing out the substrate to my previous, this was all I had on short notice. Going to look for a nice size branch for him too, probably over the weekend when I visit my friend's shop. I previously kept BDs for over 30 years and even bred them before I was re-introduced to BTs. Seriously missed having one, I more than likely always will from here on out. And they can keep all the silkies, leathers and horribly inbred whatnots, I like a bearded dragon to look like....well, a bearded dragon. Their look is what attracted me to them in the first place. All the genetic modifications do nothing but shorten their already too short lifespans.
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Re: Another beardie for me!

Postby kingofnobbys » Tue Jan 21, 2020 10:58 pm

splashy07 wrote:I don't like sand either, I actually used to use newspaper when I kept dragons or paper pulp substrate called carefresh. (there are many grades, some are just plain old paper pulp). The reason I do not use tile is that it gets too cold at night if they decide to sleep on the ground. And oh God if they decide to walk through their poo all day... I don't feed crickets, and roaches only outside cage or on tongs. The only bugs I leave in there is a bowl of superworms. Bugs escape and I don't want them running around my apartment without my knowledge! There's already an escaped cricket under a radiator somewhere that's driving me nuts...they breed in one of my bio cages and every now and then one decides to come out. I'll be changing out the substrate to my previous, this was all I had on short notice. Going to look for a nice size branch for him too, probably over the weekend when I visit my friend's shop. I previously kept BDs for over 30 years and even bred them before I was re-introduced to BTs. Seriously missed having one, I more than likely always will from here on out. And they can keep all the silkies, leathers and horribly inbred whatnots, I like a bearded dragon to look like....well, a bearded dragon. Their look is what attracted me to them in the first place. All the genetic modifications do nothing but shorten their already too short lifespans.


Some people don't like the sound of crickets churping, we get it all night in the warmer months here in the garden and lawn , and I find the sound soothing.
There's always a few rogue crickets ( escapees ) in my house , my friendly house skinks ( water skinks ) or house geckos ( G.Dudias ) control them.
So at night in the warm months we get crickets churping outside and inside , and also G.Dudias churping occasionally ( think there is one in the main bedroom , and a couple in the kitchen ) , and we've seen them on the walls outside too.
Used to have frogs croaking and churping too , til the local cats killed them all. Been too dry here the last few years for the frogs to build back up in my yard ( stage 2 water restrictions here at moment , means gardens can only be watered before 10am or after 4pm with a watering can or bucket. smart and drip irrigation systems may only be used for 15 minutes before 10am or after 4pm. the use of unattended hoses is no longer permitted).

Water restrictions are a bummer when you want to do any gardening / landscaping . My new raised beds ie a 6m x 3m x 0.6m garden bed at front of house ,, a 6m x 1.5m x 0.5m along my back fence, ,my problem area hockey stick shaped 3m x 0.5m x 0.4m + 3m x 1.5m x 0.8m + 3m x 1.5m x 0.3m garden beds between my house and garage ( next to the extended driveway ) , and my three 3m x 1.5m x 0.4m food beds will have to wait for a while before we plant natives in these landscaping beds , and similar for the herbs , berries / fruits , and veggies to go into the three 3m x 1.5m x 0.4m beds , as will returfing the north half of my backyard that will be left once I pave the area between the hockeystick bed + slab & my food beds and the 6m x 1.5m bed. No point putting new plants and new turf down if I'm not allowed to water them or use drip irrigation ==> plants and new turf will just die of thirst = lots of $ down the drain.

I tried breeding woodies ( wood roaches ) for a while last year and they are really quick and hard keep in containers . I had woodies all over the place everytime I tried to feed them or get some out to give to the lizards for a while. Ended up taking the breeding tubs outside and letting the woodies loose for the wild birds and lizards to have a feast for a while. Never again .

I find a film style heatpad sandwiched between two tiles works nicely at providing a warm tiled area under a hide for my skinks and beardies , I simply use a cheap Ebay switching thermostat to control the temperature of the "heatslabs" , I don't trust the temperature limitor built into heatpads. A 7W heatpad works nice , is near perfect size for an adult bearded dragon or an adult eastern BTS, and for a 4ft x 2ft tank, and my jumbo Hubba Huts sit ontop nicely.
I set my heatpad to stay at 36 degC for the dragons and 32 degC for the eastern water skinks and the eastern BTS.

I couldn't care less about fancy engineered morphs either. Definitely not willing big dollars for a weird / rare morph or pedigree .
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Re: Another beardie for me!

Postby splashy07 » Wed Jan 22, 2020 6:18 am

Can you post a picture of your dragons and enclosure? Would love to see. And, haha the roach thing happened to me once too, when I decided to breed a species I didn't know could climb!! And me always preaching research...
Be careful with the cheap thermostats, I had one malfunction years back and since then everything I need to have thermostatically controlled is on Herpstats. Pricey but the best in the industry.
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Re: Another beardie for me!

Postby kingofnobbys » Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:29 am

I sent my old all timber ( my 8 years old homemade pair of stacked painted plywood 4ft x 2ft x 2ft beardie tanks were broken up and sent to the tip last November (when I hired a mini-skip) , was starting to fall apart , my dodgey carpentry to blame there :( as I only used PVA glue and nails to build it and no fancy stronger joins ( simple butt joints all through ,was a fast build 9all done in one weekend) but not a good job and weighed heaps was very difficult to move about , so the double stack ended up on our old coffee table ( which I put small casters onto each leg , not so flash on carpet ) .
You learn from your mistakes.

I learnt ,
> box like enclosures are claustophobic if not against a wall
> never use simple joinery (butt joints are hopeless)
> nails and glue is not good enough (glue and screw is better)
> don't paint a lizard enclosure ( the paint erodes where and starts to look horrible )
> don't use heavy material like plywood ( I used pine plywood in the bearded dragon tanks , was cheap ! )
> timber enclosures unless made to look as good as a display cabinet are going to upset the wife ( they start off as an eyesore and being worse eyesores as they age / deteriorate , start coming apart at the joints )
> more bother than it's worth to repair a timber enclosure
> bigger casters are a must .
> I retired the plywood bearded enclosures to the shed when my old adult bearded dragons died in winter and summer 2018 ( so they really started fulling apart then when I had a couple big strong mates take them to the shed ).

At least I don't use laminated particle board , melamine or laminated MDF , been there and done that with another DIYS job and learnt from that experience.

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Scanned photo of one of my old original plywood bearded dragon tanks shortly after I built it and before built the second one and nailed them together to make a permanent stack of two, also before I upgraded to T5ho 10% UVB tubes , was still using 26W 10%IUVB dodgey / cloned brand compacts at the time .
Lost my other photos as I shortly after bought my first DSLR and unfortunately the portable HDD I kept my images on for several years died and the images were all lost
Lesson , save your photos on more than HDD and regularly backup or make hard copies and keep in an album or at least a box.

So my two yearlings are currently in a 120L converted "rearing" tub .
My current substrate is floor tiles for about 1/2 the floor area and a couple layers of absorbant tough paper towels for the rest.
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Re: Another beardie for me!

Postby kingofnobbys » Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:29 am

Am in process of building new enclosures using aluminium tubing , Connectit joiners , aluminium channel and angle , plywood and 6mm thick acrylic .
Will have 6mm thick sliding front doors, 18mm thick varnished plywood bases , 9mm thick varnished plywood lift off lids .
This is my first prototype enclosure at the stage I left it at last weekend.

Took a long time to build the cabinet base to furniture grade for my stacked / modular bearded dragon & water skink tanks to go ontop off .
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The framing for my cabinet base ( long nook has room for sliding a 34L underbed tub in one end and short nook has room for two 10L tubs in the other

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18mm plywood top and bottom on , being varnish/stained.

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Vanish stained colonial Baltic, kickboards attached concealing 2" heavy duty casters ( 2 with foot brakes , the long front and back kickboards are on piano hinges so I have easy access underneath) , airing / devaping / varnish hardening / drying before we roll it into the house .


The mostly built prototype Connectit
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& acrylic (sides) & plywood (base and lid) 1.2m L x 0.596m W x 0.5m T bearded dragon tank waiting on good weather to vanish the 18mm and 9mm project plywood (standard size 1.2m x 0.596m) lids and based.
Sizing up the 1" x 1" sqr Al hollow tubes
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Left the protective film on the acrylic to protect it while it's in the garage on my workbench from scratches and dust.

I'm hoping to build it's twin in a week or two , then I'll install my UV and basking lights , some loose tiles on the floors and I'll fit out with basking branches, seagrass woven hammocks, jumbo Hubba huts ( two for each beardie ( cool zone hide and warm zone hide (aka low basking spot) ) and upgrade my bearded dragons to their new forever homes ( and mothball their rearing tub ).
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Re: Another beardie for me!

Postby kingofnobbys » Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:47 am

How I am making my multibay 1.2m L x 0.596m W multibay system modular and easy to mix and match :

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Minimal Height, with a 30mm airgap providing lid ventilation, cables external ( on top lid ).
A standard size for square DAR is 30mm x 30mm ( not 25mm x 25mm as shown ).

I can also have a bigger airgap ( 100mm say )
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or extend the height by any given distance ( ie 150mm say ) for each tank using either thin plywood or acrylic to make the walls solid very quickly and easily.
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Re: Another beardie for me!

Postby kingofnobbys » Wed Jan 22, 2020 9:27 am

splashy07 wrote:Be careful with the cheap thermostats, I had one malfunction years back and since then everything I need to have thermostatically controlled is on Herpstats. Pricey but the best in the industry.


I back up by having a thermometer on the warmed tiles so I can see the temperature at a glance since the thermostats are all on hidden 8 and 4 outlet powerboards and it's hard to see the temperatures in the small dusty screens

So far so good with my ebay thermostats like this
Image
currently running
one per bluetongue enclosure (warm hide) heatpad
two in the bearded dragon rearing tub ( warm 36 degC hide heatpad , cool 32 degC hide heatpad )
one in the water skink tub ( set to 32 degC )
these are all on 7W heatpads.

My bluetongue heatpads and thermostats have been running 24/7 for over 10 years.
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Re: Another beardie for me!

Postby splashy07 » Wed Jan 22, 2020 12:40 pm

Very nice. And that thermostat certainly looks way better than the cheap ones over here. Best of luck with your projects!
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Re: Another beardie for me!

Postby kingofnobbys » Wed Jan 22, 2020 10:47 pm

splashy07 wrote:Very nice. And that thermostat certainly looks way better than the cheap ones over here. Best of luck with your projects!


Only time I've had an issue with one was when the 3 pronged back plate on my hospital tub's thermostat was damaged ( dropped on the lino floor ) and became loose and I could hear bits of plastic rattling about inside).
I unscrewed the back to see if it could fix it but there was too much damage inside , and at $16 per unit , not worth the effort to fix it. So I simply binned it and replaced it with new one.

Was a learning experience for us both building the prototype enclosure as neither of us had ever worked with Connectit joiners or acrylic sheet before.

Will likely also retire my old bluetongue enclosures , yes plywood builds , but marine varnish coated . Bought as flat packs about 10 years ago and starting to show their age. Will do similar builds as above, but with plywood backs as these will be against a wall.

>>>> my other ongoing projects

I hired a handyman / chippy to build the raised beds , and the monster mobile 2m x 1m work benches ( one for the garden that's seat height and made entirely from offcuts of 100x100mm treated pine posts and offcuts of 200x75mm treated h/wood sienna sleepers , the other for the garage capped with two sheets of 24mm thick floor plywood) , and my cabinet base .
He was hired mainly to do the laboring and carpentry to deal with building raised beds at the front of the house, and in the back yard , and some retaining walls and to repair my garage .

This is why I ended up with a two level hockey stick shaped raised bed next to my driveway and slab extension :

12 july 2019 excavator desaster zone

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That little cliff was 0.7m high.

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South boundary fence looked precarious too.

The hockeystick bed that hides all the disaster left by the excavator
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Will fill this with small native flowering eucalypts, acacias, shrubs and perennial ground covers to turn it into a nice feature in my backyard (when the water restrictions are lifted).

Sleeper retaining wall under my south boundary fence completed 17 July 2019.
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My new 6m x 3m x 0.6m two level raised bed at front of my house completed mid August .
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Made use of 14 cubic meters of fill that the was left piled up on my back path ( the excavator wanted to spread out all over my front lawn next to my house (creating a boggy mess , at which point I told him no and to bugger off) , will eventually be filled with native flowering habitat ground covers , perenials and thrubs ( perhaps including some bankias and grass trees .
Is topped with 6 cubic meters of premium garden soil.

House has been painted since this photo ( was painted 2 weeks out from Xmas ) so was no point putting plants in this bed til this was done and now we are on Level 2 water restrictions so planting will have to wait til the restrictions are lifted .

Dealing with big drop off left by idiot excavator along my back boundary fence ( honestly if I'd known I'd be left with half my back yard a bog I'd have told him to just make an even bigger pile of fill on my back path )
Became a major project fixing up the yard where the dangerous drop offs were left , 0.6m drop to old ground level at my back / east boundary fence
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Ended up asking my handyman to build a 6m x 1.5m x ( 0.4m H front & 1m H at back) all timber bed come retaining wall with privacy screen + three 3m x 1.5m x 0.4m H to take some of the loose fill and broken up old concrete 0.6m wide front garden path along the follow scheme adjacent to my north boundary fence ( drop off up to 0.4m at the eastern most / bottom small bed )
Took a several days work to put the timber and the metal posts in the ground set in concrete , hired a post hole digger for that .
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Built a privacy screen behind the 6m x 1.5m bed ( to hide the neighbour's eyesore of a shed )
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My beds all built and ready to be filled with rubble , then loose fill , then premium garden soil .
Took 10 bulkabags to fill all my backyard beds but one small one , so I'll finish off filling the last bed with garden soil ( one bulkabag will be sufficient ) when I get the course sand ( about 4 bulkabags of sand) to make a firm levelled compacted bed for the concrete pavers that will go between the beds and the slab.

Note the storm damage to my old shed's east wall ( we had a very bad storm in September that did this ) .
Ended up replacing the posts and rails supporting the roller doors ( were full of dry rot and black ant colonies ).
Also replaced 1/2 the hardieflex sheets
= all sheets on the shade side ( S side ) ,
= all the sheets on the front ( west side under the gable )
= and 1/2 the sheets east (back) side of the shed (under the gables)
, being missing, cracked or full of mould , and renailed all loose clouts and replaced the missing clouts with hexhead timber screws ( I don't want to have to return to fixing my shed again in the future ) .
Cost a fair bit ( but still cheaper and less bother than demolishing the old shed and putting up a new one to replace it ).

>>>

My current two bearded dragons Caesar and Cleo .
Cleo & Caesar

Caesar is now 267g.
Cleo is now 108g.
Growth chart , they both turn 1 year old in a week or two. Came from same breeder but suspect two different mothers and Cleo was a few weeks younger than Caesar when we bought them .
Image

I hand feed them individually so the long period over winter when Cleo's growth paused is likely a winter slowdown in her metabolic rate.
She shed at the end of the pause and has been back to a nice steady growth rate since.


Cleo and Caesar basking together.
Image
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Re: Another beardie for me!

Postby splashy07 » Thu Jan 23, 2020 6:09 am

Awwwww...they are so sweet!
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Re: Another beardie for me!

Postby kingofnobbys » Thu Jan 23, 2020 8:31 am

splashy07 wrote:Awwwww...they are so sweet!


Note the happy colours , they genuinely seem to like each other .

Caesar favours my wife for snuggles , goes to her when he's had enough floor fun time and "asks" for a pat , and if tired is very happy to snuggle into her chest .

Cleo is a dad's girl, loves to stay close to me, and takes over my fav seat on the lounge if I'm not sitting on it, and she lives for snuggles. Caesar regards me as Cleo's territory and wont settle on me if she's on me too or next to me on lounge.
If anything I think Cleo's the boss beardie , she even bull doses Caesar off her fav basking spot if he is and when she want to be there. Another ploy is she'll climb ontop his back or head to give his hint.

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