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PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 11:02 am 
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EGG
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Hi, I unexpectedly inherited a 3 year old beardie from Chester Zoo 4 days ago. I have spent each day since rapidly expanding my knowledge and he now has new everything because what he did have was very basic indeed. I believe I have the right set up in his vivarium... log, cave, basking light, uv light, tiled floor. I use uv and heat lamp during the day and nothing at night. I have a thermometer and humidity monitor in the hot end and a dimming thermostat should arrive tomorrow. I gave him water through a pipette and misted him also. He won't eat though. I have tried chopped up grapes, red pepper, peeled cucumber, dandelion leaves and spring cabbage. I've tried crickets (removed at night) and giant mealworms but to no avail. I am hoping that the level of change he's experienced this last week is to blame. He is otherwise seemingly fine. Lively and happy to be held or out on the floor wandering about. Does anyone have any advice they can offer please? Many thanks.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 12:09 pm 
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Location: Victoria Australia
Firstly dragons hate change and will often refuse to eat for up to a week - pushing the issue will only make things worse. Best here is to offer a little food but don't fuss if it's ignored but o leave chopped fresh veg in the viv in case he changes his mind.Dragons hardly ever drink see this post viewtopic.php?f=8&t=1372 so other than a small drinking bowl at the cool end you should leave misting etc. out. Did the zoo give you any information regarding his upkeep? Can you tell us more about the viv, size, temps hot and cold sides as these factors can also affect his behaviour.

Rick

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 12:45 pm 
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EGG
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Hi, thanks for the reply. The viv is 3ft x 1.5ft x 1.5ft. It's about 108° at the hot end. I haven't got the temp at the cool end but will go and get that. I got nothing from the zoo other than he'd been kept in their petting zoo and they have to remove them after 3 years. I got him via someone who provides animal feeds to the zoo and had brought him home as they were giving animals away. He realised he didn't have the time to look after him so I took him to try to do the best for him. I bought the viv second hand as I needed something fast as he was in something very small and pretty horrible. His old log had all sorts of unmentionable creepy crawlies living in it.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 1:04 pm 
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If he's been handles regularly then he should settle well. You could actually drop the basking temp a little, ideal would be 39~42 C with a cool side of mid 20's. May be an idea to get him checked for intestinal parasites once he settles see this link viewtopic.php?f=3&t=9783 . Ideally he should be in a viv 4' x 2' x 2' so if you can update at some point it would help. As an adult he should be fed live food every second or third day with crix or roaches, locusts seem to be habit forming and most worms are fattening if fed regularly. Mixed chopped raw veg should be provided daily and it may be an idea to see if the zoo can tell you what he's been fed whilst with them. Hope this helps and do keep asking if you're unsure about anything.

Rick

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 1:43 pm 
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Hi Rick, thank you so much. I'll drop the temp and look for a new viv. Can you recommend any manufacturers or sellers please? One other thing, we go away for just over a week in August with friends offfering to look after him. Should we take the viv to them as we'd agreed or ask them to pop in to feed him? Lisa


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2014 1:45 pm 
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Ps I've located a reptile vet and will call them tomorrow.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 21, 2014 12:38 am 
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I usually have someone pop in to look after ours - move him around and he'll have a fit of the sulks again!! Being in Aus I'm afraid I can't recommend UK vivs ( I build my own) I'd spend some time looking on places like EBay and other second-hand sites and try picking up a pre-loved one.

Rick

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 21, 2014 11:41 am 
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Hi Rick,
I've just spoken to the Zoo and had some more wonderful advice. I may actually get some sleep tonight! All this worry cannot be good for me :-)
Thanks for everything,
Lisa


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 22, 2014 3:34 am 
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Given that I know of one zoo stating that beardies tails re-grew I'm always a little sus. of their advice, so what did they have to say for themselves? It probably is all good but it's nice just to confirm we're all on the same page!

Rick

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 22, 2014 10:49 am 
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Wow, that's shocking! I hope I am lucky as this is Chester Zoo who are supposed to be one of the best in the world.

They've reiterated a lot of what has been said to me already... they said that beardies are very easily put off their food and not to worry for another couple of days. He's drinking well and is perky and sociable so just to let him adjust to his new surroundings and to look out for any signs of nerves associated with noise. They said to start to worry if he stops drinking and his behaviour changes.

They said to keep the live food out for a day or two in case it's bothering him but to keep up the veggies. They said that taking it away for a day or so may just mean he's glad to see it back and it could re-invigorate his desire for crickets... also maybe try to hand feed him.

I've got my new habistat dimming thermostat today but it's not a high range one (goes to 92 degrees on the dial) so I think I need to play around with the position (unfortunately this means more fiddling around in the viv :-( . I need to order a new digital thermometer as I only have 1 at the moment plus a dial style one which doesn't seem so accurate. The digital shows his hot end is at 99.1 and the dial shows it at 105! Looks like I need to move the thermostat probe a bit further away to get the temp up a little? Luckily we are in the midst of a UK style heatwave and I'm home all day at the moment so it's very warm indoors.


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PostPosted: Tue Jul 22, 2014 11:14 am 
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If you put the stat near the cool end and set it around 26~28 you should achieve 39~42 basking spot. Dial thermometers are notorious for inaccuracy so just rely on the digital one for now. Personally I'm not a fan of dragons and drinking in the same sentence for the following reason viewtopic.php?f=8&t=1372 with a metabolism designed around a lack of water regular drinking/spraying is not really the best husbandry. Other than that I couldn't fault their assistance.

Rick

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PostPosted: Tue Jul 22, 2014 1:45 pm 
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Thanks for this link. It's very reassuring. Thanks also for the help with the thermostat. He's eaten 2 small pieces of greens today which is a start! Did not like my waving the cricket around so shall leave him alone for a while!


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 23, 2014 12:14 pm 
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Hi, I hope it's ok to ask another question please? My beardie is sitting in the corner scratching a lot now. I wonder if this is normal or not? Thanks.


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PostPosted: Wed Jul 23, 2014 12:33 pm 
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Keep askinng it's the only way you'll learn. It's possible that he's near ready to shed and is trying to loosen the skin, so just leave him to it for a couple of days. This will also explain his reluctance to feed but will improve once he's shed.

Rick

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PostPosted: Wed Jul 23, 2014 5:52 pm 
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Hi, ok thanks. I really appreciate all your help!


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