Bearded Dragon

Pogona vitticeps


In the wild, Bearded Dragons color depends on the environment they live in. A desert habitat favors a yellow-brown color, whereas a forested habitat would favor a brown or gray. The goal of the color is to blend in to avoid predators. Captive breeding, however, has introduced many other colors and patterns. Colors can range from white to yellow to red to green. Their underbellies tend to be white while their backs and heads are usually striped in different colors.

Bearded Dragons are named for their “beard”. The skin on their chin can be inflated for mating or dominance purposes. The beard also has pointed scales to look more intimidating; these scales are also found along their backs and sides for predator protection. Like other desert lizards, when scared, bearded dragons can make their bodies bigger to either seem more intimidating or wedge themselves under rocks so nothing can pull them out.

Beardeds can be 1-2 ft long, including their tail, and weigh around a pound. The average lifespan is 8-10 years. A couple of interesting behaviors they exhibit are head bobbing, used to court a female or show dominance, and hand waving, used for species recognition or avoiding aggression.


Say Hello To Cub Creek's Bearded Dragons: Granite, Slate, and Spyro

Granite and Slate both came to camp in the summer of 2018. They are both gray beardeds, but Granite has some orange markings on his head and cheeks. Their favorite activities include basking and hanging out on people’s shoulders. Spyro came to us just recently in the fall of 2019, and he was born not much earlier. He has beautiful red markings on his back. He is extremely friendly and full of energy. His favorite treat is live crickets he gets to chase.


Bearded Dragons are native to Australia. They inhabit rocky, desert central regions of the country.

Habitat Icon Cub Creek Science Camp

HABITAT -Can live in a variety of habitats, like deserts, dry forests, or scrublands.

Diet Icon Cub Creek Science Camp

DIET -Being opportunistic omnivores, they eat plants, insects, and even small rodents or lizards.

Fun Fact Icon Cub Creek Science Camp

FUN FACT -Captive bearded dragons likely come from one founder stock that was smuggled out of Australia.

Social Behavior Icon Cub Creek Science Camp

SOCIAL BEHAVIOR -They are mainly solitary, but can be housed in pairs (not two males).

Activity Icon Cub Creek Science Camp

ACTIVITY -They are diurnal, meaning they are active during the day.

Predator Icon Cub Creek Science Camp

PREDATORS -Predators include large lizards, dingoes, and birds of prey.

Size Icon Cub Creek Science Camp

SIZE -They can be 1-2 ft long, and weigh ­0.6-1 lb.

RelativesIcon Cub Creek Science Camp

RELATIVES -The Pogona genus includes other beardeds, such as the Western and Dwarf dragons.

Conservation Icon Cub Creek Science Camp

CONSERVATION -They are not evaluated by the IUCN.


Cub Creek Animal Care Information


Housing - Our Bearded Dragons are housed in the Reptile Room, where the rest of our lizards and snakes are also kept. They live in large heat and UV light-controlled enclosures. Fresh water and plenty of places to hide, explore, and bask are provided for them. Granite and Slate live together while Spyro lives in his own enclosure.

Diet - Our lizards are fed on a reptile specific schedule, meaning they are fed Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. Reptiles have slow metabolisms and do not require to be fed everyday if they are fed adequately. They are given apple, shredded sweet potato, and chopped greens supplemented with a calcium powder in order to give them all the necessary nutrients they need to be healthy.

Enrichment - Most of the enrichment we give our lizards comes from handling and socializing them. In the summer, they get held daily and sometimes even brought outside when it is warmer. During the off-season, Animal Interns can be found carrying them around on their shoulders as they work!