Bearded Dragon Humidity: The Ideal Level And How To Maintain

A bearded dragon is really easy to take care of. But there’s one crucial factor that can affect the general health of a bearded dragon is humidity. Maintaining humidity requires some basic setup and thorough research.

If you’ve encountered problems getting it set up. This article will show ideal humidity, how to maintain it,  and what problems arise for your bearded dragons if you have the wrong humidity.

Cute Reptiles as Pets
Cute Reptiles as Pets

Bearded Dragon Humidity Overview

Both adult and baby bearded dragons require the same humidity level, they only vary in diet as when feeding baby bearded dragons should be more careful to avoid health issues, and complications.

Wild bearded dragons usually make habitats in warm environments such as deserts, savannas, and heathlands. This is because these environments have the ideally low humidity for them in order for them to live properly.

This is why, mimicking this environment along with its humidity, is the best thing for owners to do, especially in terms of humidity to keep a happy and healthy bearded dragon. Remember,  Having too high or too low humidity can greatly affect their health! 

Importance Of Humidity For Bearded Dragon Growing

Whenever you feel that warm feeling in the air, you have a tendency to take a bath, or wear lighter clothes. Lucky you, since bearded dragons can’t do any of these, it’s important to keep track of their humidity level.

Bearded dragons are cold blooded animals, which depend on other external factors such as temperature and humidity to raise their heat levels. This is why humidity is very important for bearded dragons, since they cannot adapt to their environment to raise their body heat.

It has major effects on their health such as their digestion or even sometimes they can develop respiratory problems, and it can hinder or affect the growth of these beardies.

Ideal Humidity For A Bearded Dragon

Remember during the summer we always feel that humid air and during the winter, we feel that it’s less humid instead. Well, as humans we can adjust to this, but for Bearded Dragons, they can’t, and their tank should be at the ideal humidity.

The ideal humidity for bearded dragons is 30%-40%. This is in accordance with their tank, as their enclosure should mimic they’re natural habitats which are in the woodlands, heathlands, or tropical savannas of Australia.

But it is okay to have 50% humidity but only during the nighttime. But when it’s during the day, make sure that you maintain the ideal humidity of 30%-40% to keep them healthy, and happy.

bearded dragon humidity
The ideal tank setup for bearded dragons is that which is not too hot nor too cold

What Happen If Bearded Dragon Humidity Is Wrong

Certain respiratory infections such as pneumonia, can occur when there is too much humidity within the tank, and shedding problems happen when humidity is too low within the tank of bearded dragons.

Several problems may also include bacterial or fungal growth within the tank, dehydration for bearded dragons, or lowering the total health of the environment of bearded dragons. Which is why maintaining humidity levels of 30% – 40% is definitely important.

Humidity For Bearded Dragons Is Too High?

Several signs that humidity levels are too high include: Fogging of glass of the enclosure, warmer atmosphere, and having a musty odor. If these signs are present then your humidity levels are higher than 50%. 

It’s okay to have a bit of high humidity. But it’s considered dangerous having more than 60% for long periods of time such as over 5 days.

Health Risks If Humidity Is Too High For A Bearded Dragon?

When humidity is too high, they develop respiratory infections, especially pneumonia. But that’s not all that’s at stake, it can also greatly affect the quality of the enclosure since having too high humidity can cause the speed up of bacterial and fungal growth within the tank.

Not only that, but serious health risks are also at stake, such as whether it’s too high or too low, it can affect the growth of your bearded dragon. They might not be able to grow to their full size, or again, may have health problems.

How To Decrease Humidity In Bearded Dragons Tank

When you feel that it’s too humid, you usually open a window, open the Air Conditioner, some people even go as far as using charcoal briquettes, and getting a dehumidifier. But for our beloved beardies, it’s a different story.

The surefire way to decrease humidity in their tanks is by simply opening up the tank. Like using a mesh cover instead of glass, while this also works for other parts or walls of the tank, just make sure that the dragon won’t escape. 

bearded dragon gasping
Higher humidity levels will give room for viruses and bacteria to thrive which will lead to respiratory infectious diseases.
Increase Air Flow In The Tank By Try Increasing Ventilation

This is what I’m talking about. When you increase ventilation, all of that excess humidity has a place to go and won’t be just floating around the tank. To do this, you could replace the walls and covers of your tank with mesh, or open an AC if room temperature is the problem.

Another way to increase air flow is by investing in specialized fans or vents for the purpose of increasing air flow.

Move Water Bowl Away From Any Heat Sources

A simple bearded dragon life hack, it may look like an uncomplicated solution but this works wonders. The water droplets suspended in the air because of fast evaporation of water from the bowls add up to the total humidity of the tank.

So it is advised that you move your beardie’s water bowls to cooler areas, or use a smaller bowl with fewer water to decrease humidity inside the tank.

bearded dragon with water in tank
Placing the water dish directly under the heat lamps will encourage water evaporation and condensation thereby increasing the humidity in the tank
Change Substrate

Substrate refers to the layer to which an organism, or in this case your bearded dragon grows. Which has a direct effect on the total humidity of the tank.

Several substrates such as grass, leaves, wood bark, coconut sheddings increase the total humidity. Go for newspaper or other paper products since these are low cost and low maintenance. 

You could also go for tiles or reptile carpets. Impaction is a common issue among bearded dragons, which makes tiles or reptile carpets a go to choice for breeders. Just remember to maintain and clean them regularly.

Stop Misting Until The Humidity Is Under Control

Misting helps one way or the other especially if your bearded dragons suffer from dehydration. But sometimes it does more harm than good as it can greatly affect and increase the total humidity of the tank.

Which is why it is recommended to limit or completely stop misting and only do so whenever necessary or if you have a mesh cover tank instead until not only the humidity but also other factors are controlled.

Consider Using A Dehumidifier Or Natural Desiccant

Well, the best solution and the most costly one is using a dehumidifier. There are several benefits for this, as you can use this for your personal consumption or to keep the ideal humidity of your bearded friend.

There are as low as $50 for a small dehumidifier, you can go for this option if you think this is your best choice. After all, all the best for our pets!

Humidity For Bearded Dragons Is Too Low?

A bearded dragon’s enclosure should mimic its natural habitat which is the outback regions of Australia with its dry, hot, and arid air. But there is such a thing as being too hot, or too arid and it can cause serious problems for Bearded Dragons.

Quick signs to notice that a bearded dragon’s task is too much dry air will definitely show up on the bearded dragon themselves. Several signs that the humidity inside the tank are: Bearded Dragons have trouble shedding, and they have femoral pore blockages.

The ideal humidity for bearded dragons is 30%-40%. Anything lower or higher proves to be dangerous for bearded dragons. Having your humidity for 20% over long periods of time is considered too low.

Health Risks If Humidity Is Too Low For A Bearded Dragon

Just like having too much humidity in the tank causes health risks for your little ones, the same goes for having way too low humidity.

Shedding problems, Femoral pore blockage, dehydration, Kidney issues, Urinary tract infections and fertility problems for female bearded dragons are all potential health risks if a bearded dragon’s tank has low humidity.

How To Increase Humidity In Bearded Dragons Tank

The most surefire way to increase humidity is to add a humidifier or a fogger within the tank which you can get for around $50 for small ones. These are a relative cost, but can definitely go a long way in order to keep your little ones healthy. 

Decrease Ventilation

Another way to increase humidity is to decrease ventilation. Ventilation are openings that air can enter which has a direct impact on the temperature of the tank which in return has an effect on the total humidity.

Decrease ventilation by removing fans, or changing the setup of your tank. If you have mesh covers as walls instead of glass then it may be advised for you to convert to glass instead.

Place Water Bowl Near The Hot Side Of The Tank

This seems to be a direct solution but works wonders. Placing a water bowl near the hot side increases evaporation of the water, and all that water vapor in the air increases humidity of the tank itself.

This is also recommended as when your bearded dragons get thirsty they have something to drink, just remember to change the water on the tank every few hours. 

This is also one of the best and recommended ways to increase humidity as it practically has no cost, and low maintenance and very easy to control.

Try Misting Tank Walls More Frequently

Misting is also a good solution. It uses a water sprayer or misti sprayer to provide small amounts of mist that keeps your bearded dragons hydrated. It doesn’t mean that they live in the desert, it’s that they don’t want to be refreshed!

Misting directly adds up water vapor in the air, thus increasing the total humidity of the enclosure of your little ones. BUT DO NOT mist more than you have to, mist whenever necessary a few sprays once or twice a day is already more than enough.

Also if the humidity is really low on the tank, this means that you have to mist on a nearly daily basis which also creates problems as it can cause issues for your bearded dragon, so mist responsibly.

NOTE: Too much mist can decrease the humidity, which also has direct effects on the bearded dragons.

Add Plants To Their Tank

Plants create a natural climate and produce moisture in the air that increases the total humidity. Adding more broad leaf plants increases humidity in no time just use plants that can be moved from one tank toward the other.

It is also one of the best ways to raise humidity levels in an easy way. Also, it can really be a permanent solution. Just try to invest in the best possible plants for your bearded dragons!

Tip: You can try misting near the plants as they retain moisture better.

If you’re not sure which sort of plant you should get, click here

How To Monitor Humidity In Bearded Dragon Tank

There are instruments used to measure humidity like the hygrometer that measures humidity in the air, soil, but is mostly used in confined spaces such as enclosures. Such as Hygrometers which are the perfect tool to measure humidity.

Use Mechanical Hygrometer

The mechanical (or analog hygrometer) is a tool that specializes in a more accurate reading compared to a psychrometer. You just place this on the tank, and that’s it, return every so often to get the humidity reading.

You just attach this tool on the walls of your tank. The best place would be on the opposite of your lighting, and water bowl and it gives you a more accurate humidity reading.

A benefit of using this tool is it’s really easy to use, and placed on the tank, and it costs cheaper (around $10) compared to its counterpart, the digital hygrometer.

The downside is it is slightly less accurate compared to the digital one but only by a small margin.

Thermometer Hygrometer

This is the best hygrometer you could afford and for sure your bearded ones will be happy as this is the most accurate way to tell the humidity of their enclosure. 

To use this, just set up the probe and wire (please set up the wire outside the tank), and that’s that! You finally have a way to tell not only the humidity but also the temperature.

A key pro in using this hygrometer is practically you can place it anywhere within the tank, it’s ready to use, and has the fastest reading for both humidity and temperature, and it’s actually the easiest one to use aside from being the fastest.

Machines like these are what you need to keep tabs on the humidity level of your beardie’s tank

A drawback here is that it costs somewhat expensive (around $12), and it’s a bit of a hassle and difficult to set up all the wires and probes. But other than that, it works magic.

 Govee Bluetooth Digital Hygrometer

A digital hygrometer is a state of the art instrument that measures temperature in the air, and pressure that results in calculating the humidity level present in the air.

This product is really easy to use as well! You just place it within the tank and there will be readings for your humidity after 3 minutes. Afterwards, you can check a chart with this product to give you a more detailed explanation about your humidity reading.

This product has many features which is its upside! It can read temperature, and can give you smart alerts if you set it to. However, the downside of this product is it’s best used if it’s 3 feet above ground, so you’re going to need a really big tank for your bearded dragon!

Last update on 2022-09-20 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

Note: The average tank for a bearded dragon is 50-75 gallons. That’s approximately 10 cubic feet, which makes this product perfect if you have that ltank of that size.

Tips To Control and Maintain Humidity For Bearded Dragons

The humidity of tanks is affected by a lot of factors such as temperature (both in room and enclosure), lighting, substrate, etc. And it could be difficult to maintain that happy humidity that your bearded dragons love, especially if you’re a novice breeder.

So here are several tips or points to consider to maintain humidity:

  1. Get a hygrometer as early as possible. This is your best friend and will tell you directly and quickly the humidity of the tank so you can make adjustments.
  2. Invest in reptile carpets or tiles and avoid moist substrate especially sand as this increases impaction for your bearded dragons.
  3. DO NOT USE AN ALL GLASS COVERING. This is possible only if you have specialized fans and vents but if you don’t, try using a mesh cover instead for their tanks.
  4. Trial and experiment where to place your water bowl. Once you have a hygrometer ready, get ready to try out different locations to place your water bowl.
  5. Plants are good, but having too many plants is bad. Invest in a few ones that can help you maintain humidity.
  6. Lighting is important. Direct lighting sometimes bounces back to the air which has an effect of humidity so try a 50-75 watt UVA bulb.
  7. Remember that humidity can go as high as 50% BUT ONLY DURING NIGHT TIME.
  8. Try your best to stay at 30%-40% level. This is the sweet spot. Any level higher or lower that is sustained for long periods is considered bad.
  9. Have patience, invest, and practice, and for sure your bearded friend will love you!
If you ever wondered what some points in this article mean, watch this [Source: Northern Exotics]

FAQs

Is 50 humidity bad for bearded dragons?

During the night it is suggested to keep humidity levels at 50%. But this should only be during night time. If you maintain 50 aside from night, it can cause health problems for your bearded ones.

Is 10 humidity bad for bearded dragons?

Yes. Ideal humidity ranges from 30%-40% any level higher or lower than that and sustained for long periods of time is considered dangerous and therefore bad for your bearded dragons.

Should I mist bearded dragon?

If the humidity is too low, you can opt to mist the bearded dragon in small amounts. However, please do not do this frequently, as directly misting your bearded dragons can also cause respiratory problems. It is more advised to mist near the bearded dragon instead.

Conclusion

Humidity is really, really important. Having too high or too low humidity causes problems, so it is important that you practice all the necessary factors to maintain the humidity of the tank. Invest in a hygrometer, use dry substrates, and mist carefully. 

It might be overwhelming at first, but you’ll soon get the hang of it, just don’t lose hope, and keep practicing carefully. Check if your current setup is effective once a week so you could make proper adjustments.

Getting a bearded dragon is an investment so are other pets, but it sure is worthwhile in the end watching them with their interesting personalities.

Go get that tank setup bud, and enjoy a life with a bearded friend, and who knows, it might just breathe fire if you take care of it (kidding).

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