Most of us have an understanding of hibernation in animals. Animals undergo deep sleep to protect themselves in particular weather. Hibernation is very rejuvenating for animals, and it builds up the internal strength for survival in extremely cold weather and helps them stay alive during harsh weather conditions. Brumation is known as a reptile’s sleep or hibernation.
For better understanding, brumation is the winter sleep that most animals perform in their lives, and it occurs between fall and winter. However, there is a slight difference in hibernation and brumation. During brumation, reptiles slow down their metabolism to some extent rather than completely shutting it down.
Bearded dragons also experience a brumation period in their lives. While brumating, the beardie will fall into a sleep-like state that will last for months. During the brumation period, the bearded dragon does not eat at all. Bearded dragon brumation is not a condition, and it is natural.
For a first-time beardie owner, it might be scary for them, and it is natural and should not be disturbed.
Things to Know About Bearded Dragon Brumation
It is well-known that brumation is a deep sleep lasting for months, and every reptile has experienced the same. Now let’s understand the brumation in bearded dragons in detail.
There are many things to be known about the brumation process in bearded dragons. Brumation is necessary for bearded dragons to suppress digestion, ingestion, and excretion for a couple of months.
When bearded dragons brumate, they become sluggish and least interested in food, making them lose some weight, which is normal for them. Bearded dragons seek an isolated place for their deep sleep without any interference.
Brumation is very good for the health of bearded dragons, and it encourages sage breeding after they wake up from sleep. Bearded dragons sometimes turn black during their brumation period. So these are the things that happen when a beardie is in brumation.
Signs for Bearded Dragon Brumation
The beardie must understand the meaning of the signs the beardie shows. Before going into the brumation process, a bearded dragon can show several symptoms, such as:
- Increased sleep duration, lethargy
- Loss of appetite
- Burrowing and hiding
- Less frequent bowel movements
- Loss of interest in movement and individuals
- Unusual aversion to being handled
Sometimes, it can be confusing for the beardie owners whether it is a brumation sign. The important point to be kept in mind before getting to a conclusion is the season. Usually, beardies get into a brumation state during October (Just before winter). It can vary from region to region.
If the beardie shows signs of brumation on off-seasons, the owner should be concerned about their bearded dragon. It can signify some parasitic attack, eventually deteriorating the beardie’s health. Always consult the vet before going to any conclusion.
Where and When Does Bearded Dragon Brumate?
Dragons don’t require a specific place to perform brumation. However, they seek an isolated place to rest for a couple of months. It is a period of dormancy similar to hibernation. Bearded dragons are exotic species that are easily affected by the environment. For going into a brumation state, beardies search for shelter.
Search for an Isolated Place
Bearded dragons usually look for places with minimal human and other animal interference. Like every animal that undergoes hibernation, the state looks for a secure place to rest for the next 4-5 months until winter ends. Similarly, beardies also look for an isolated place to seek shelter. They perform brumation while slowing down their internal body movements and functions. It is crucial as it rejuvenates them and helps them fight against extreme weather changes.
A common question in the owner’s mind is when a beardie undergoes brumation. An answer to this query is that beardies perform brumation during the winter, which usually starts mid-October and lasts till mid-March. In most places like Australia, winter arrives in June, so it varies accordingly.
However, it can be a concern to the owners if the beardies start showing signs in warmer seasons, and it can be a call for a Vet visit.
How Long Bearded Dragon Brumation Lasts?
Bearded dragons have a few weeks to several months of brumation in their life every year. Brumation is a kind of deep sleep in which the beardie suppresses their organs to some extent to survive the winter season. There is no such limit on brumation duration. However, it usually lasts till the winter season is there. In the wild, the brumation period lasts three to four months. Brumation is necessary for survival.
Though, it varies with every bearded dragon. Mostly the brumation period starts from 1 year till the beardie dies, and a beardie doesn’t need to face brumation. Most of the time, many bearded dragons don’t undergo a brumation period.
Should I Try to Wake My Beardie and End Brumation?
Brumation is a critical stage for a beardie. During this phase, it is advised not to disturb a beardie.
A beardie owner must clean their surroundings, which is very easy to perform since they produce fewer excreta. Also, make sure to put enough water in their dish such that they will stay hydrated during their sleep.
Always try to make sure that the heat and temperature should moderate. For example, if a beardie consumes around 10-12 hours of UV light exposure, try to reduce the duration by several hours, which will help them maintain their body temperature perfectly. Continue this procedure until the light becomes zero for them.
Since there are no rules to be followed, every owner must try not to disturb the bearded dragon in its deep sleep.
What Happens After a Bearded Dragon Wakes?
When a bearded dragon wakes up from their brumation state, there are two possible things to happen:
After the end of the brumation period, a bearded dragon usually starts eating more than before. It helps them fulfill their appetite and maintain the weight they have lost during brumation.
Sudden interest in food grabs their attention towards everything offered to them, and it eventually helps them build their diet and daily routine as usual.
Bearded dragons show drastic changes in their behavior after waking up from a brumation period, which is also helpful for them. Brumation helps a beardie to rejuvenate themselves and their body from depth.
Most of the time, beardies get involved in reproduction rather than focusing on food. They mostly roam near a female for reproduction purposes. However, it is perfectly normal if there is a female nearby. Although, many such changes happen after a beardie wakes up. These two are the most common signs a beardie shows.
Bearded dragons are very energetic animals. Seeing their lifestyle tells a lot about the behavior and requirements of these little creatures. Understanding their food patterns and their diet is crucial because a sudden difference in their nutrition count can be dangerous for them.
After understanding the concept of brumation, we have an answer about what bearded dragon brumation is, and we can conclude that it is a deep sleep experienced by every reptile. Brumation is essential for the survival of the animal during unfavorable weather conditions. Brumation is also not the same as hibernation, but it has some differences too.
How long does brumation last?
Brumation is a deep sleep felt by every reptile in this world. There is no such fixed duration for the brumation to last, and it lasts for a few weeks to many months. Brumation is rejuvenating for bearded dragons.
How old should a bearded dragon be before it goes into brumation?
Generally, bearded dragons start brumation after one year of age, and they don’t brumate until ten months to one year. However, predicting the correct period of bearded dragons undergoing brumation is difficult.
Do all bearded dragons brumate?
Brumation is a survival necessity, and Not all bearded dragons can brumate. Usually, a beardie may or may not show signs of brumation; they can even get in a brumation state from a few weeks to the entire winter.