The most common variety of bearded dragon available in the exotic pet trade is the "inland" bearded dragon. All varieties are native to the woodlands and deserts of Australia.
"Dexter" was a house pet. He was surrendered to Fort Wayne Animal Care and Control before being placed permanently at Black Pine in 2014. When Dexter arrived he was quite aggressive, and needed patient and routine handing to help acclimate him to his new surroundings.
Bearded dragons will burrow underground when exposed to extreme heat in their native environment. They can also run on only their back two feet, standing upright as they move, to lift their bodies off the hot desert floor. When threatened, the dragon will flare out the skin around its throat, resembling a "beard".
Bearded dragons can grow to nearly two feet in length and live up to 12 years in captivity. Their special dietary and environmental needs make them undesirable as a pet for most people's tastes. Because as many as 90% of reptiles are carriers of salmonella, those who handle them are at risk of contracting salmonellosis, adding to the negative aspects of keeping bearded dragons as pets.
InfoBox - Bearded Dragon
Diet in wild: Insects and vegetables.
Life span in captivity: 10-15 years.
Size: Males can reach up to 24 inches at adulthood.
Native habitat: Subtropical woodlands, scrublands, savannas, shore areas and interior deserts of Australia.