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PostPosted: Sun Jan 05, 2014 1:47 am 
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EGG
EGG

Joined: Fri Dec 27, 2013 2:47 pm
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I am guessing this has probably been asked several times, unfortunately I can't seem to find it, so my apologies, but knowing me it is probably right in front of my nose.

I have been reading that Beardie basking spot temperatures should be taken as air temperatures with a probe thermometer and not an IR gun, which I might add have been using under advisement of 3 seperate reputable reptile shops as the IR gun only picks up the reflected temperature of the surface aimed at.
I have two digital probe thermometers in my viv measuring ambient temperature at the hot and cool ends. I shall use one of these to get the air temperature.
What I am wondering is, how high above the basking area in the air do you have to place the probe to get the correct air temperature reading?
I ask because if the probe is closer than a couple of inches to the basking surface then it will be influenced by the reflective/radiated heat of the material used.

Thanks
Andy


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 05, 2014 2:59 am 
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EXPERT
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Joined: Thu May 15, 2008 10:13 am
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Location: Victoria Australia
If you're looking for that sort of accuracy then ideally the probe should be at around shoulder height on the dragon given that that is where he'll receive the majority of the heat. To be honest, given that a range of temps from 38C through to 42C approx is acceptable at the basking spot then either method of measurement is acceptable. You can experiment by taking an IR reading and then a digital probe reading and see what the variance is. I'd bet it's not that great. When you've seen them sitting in the middle of a hot sealed road to soak up a little more heat you realise that they can tolerate quite a variance.

Rick

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 05, 2014 2:00 pm 
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EGG
EGG

Joined: Fri Dec 27, 2013 2:47 pm
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Thanks for the reply Rick.
I decided to check the temps and was shocked by the results.
I have the basking site measuring 40 degrees C using the IR gun. I then placed the probe of a digital thermometer an inch and a half above the baskng site to mimic the height of a Beardie in the hottest part of the light beam. I left it for 45 minutes to be sure the temp had settled.
The result was 32degrees C, way low. I used the IR gun again and sure enough 40 degrees was registered.
I then replaced the digital thermometer with another one and sure enough the same result.
I have also checked my second basking site in the same way, this time the IR gun registered 40 degrees again, however the digital thermometer registered 37 degrees.
The first site tested is a driftwood branch and the second site is a lump of granite. Its interesting how inaccurate the IR gun is in this situation especially depending on the material being tested.
I have also checked the IR gun and digital thermometer with something of the same temperature and they are within half a degree of each other.
It does appear that air temperature is significantly different to surface temperature and since getting the air temperature to around 40 degrees my Beardie raced into the area and sat there for ages and eventually began gaping which she hasn't done before, she has always roamed around basking in different areas, I did wonder why, now I think it was because all basking sites supplied were below temperature.


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PostPosted: Sun Jan 05, 2014 11:28 pm 
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Location: Victoria Australia
One of the reasons I use sandstone is because of the way it retains heat so well - I'm thinking you'd have had an even closer result had the basking spot been a big lump of sandstone. :D

Rick

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