A proper temperature setting in bearded dragon for the heat gradient is very important to keep the bearded dragon healthy. It will help them on their food taking, digestion and away from several sickness. It is needed for the body thermoregulation of the reptile pets.
The pet dragons need the warmth and shaded area to move around for regulating their body temperature. This can achieved by setting the reptile heating accessories correctly.
Bearded dragon cage heating gradient can be setup easily by placing the heating equipments at one end of the enclosure. This can create a nice warm and cool side at each end of the cage. The adult dragon even needs a better heat gradient, which can be achieved using bigger vivarium.
Many bearded dragon owners like to place the basking light on top of the screen top, at the middle of the cage to create a nice basking spot, especially when you look at it at night. However, this is not the best solution. The constant high temperature may overheat the enclosure, with no cool area for your bearded dragon to shade with it is overheated. This may cause the illness and health issue for the pet dragon. I find out that if the basking light is placed at one end of the vivarium, the result is even better, setting a warm and cool side of the reptile cage.
Setting up the proper heat gradient is a tedious job. Trial and error should be always to be done. After changes are made to the enclosure, try to monitor the cool and warm side of the reptile cage using a thermometer. Place your bearded dragon once you are satisfied with the temperature setting. Observe the activities and behaviors of the bearded dragon. Make changes if it is needed.
If the result is not satisfactory, then try to change the basking bulb with varying wattage. For example, 50W, 75W or 100W bulbs should be tried until you find the proper setting. The high wattage of the bulb resulting the higher temperature.
The changes of bulb wattage, light position and replacement of other types heating equipments should be able to find the right setting.
Either temperature rheostat or dimmer switch is recommended to adjust the heating equipment, lower the cage temperature especially at night. With the rheostat or dimmer switch, there is no need to change the light position once you have found the perfect placement.
Whatever you use to get a nice warm basking spot, make sure that there is a cool area where your dragon can retreat to if needed. It is vital that you let your dragon thermoregulate their own body temperature.