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Confused by Information on D3...

Discussion in 'Bearded Dragons' started by SpidaFly, Apr 6, 2012.

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  1. SpidaFly

    SpidaFly Elite Member

    While browsing information provided by both large and small beardie breeders, I came across a piece of information that confuses (and WORRIES!) me a great deal. This bit is from Bloodbank Dragons' website, on their diet page.

    To quote then:
    So I'm confused.

    I thought that reptiles with a proper UVB bulb and plenty of spots that are close to it should NOT be receiving Calcium+D3?

    So for example, my beardie is under a 4' long ReptiSun 10.0, and his distance ranges from 1' to 2' from it. My australian water dragon has a 3.5' tall enclosure with 2x 4' long ReptiSun 5.0 - one on the ceiling, one under a basking shelf halfway down, and much of his preferred lounging spots are between 12" and 20" from the tubes. Because I thought these UVB bulbs were appropriate, I have been dusting my reptiles' bugs/salads with NON-D3 CALCIUM SUPPLEMENT.

    Tell it to me plain: am I hurting my reptiles by not feeding them D3 even though they have UVB tubes?
  2. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Relax! Its actually THEY who are confused!
    In the presence of UVB light, the dragon itself "creates" its own D3 in its skin. It does NOT need supplemental D3 and in fact can overdose on it.
    And the statement that
    smacks of the overly dramatic leanings of someone immature!
    You do have an issue with the distance from your bulbs. The animal needs to be able to get within 8-10 inches of the bulb, maximum, for the bulb to do any good.
  3. Rich

    Rich Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    You are going to hear loads of varying opinions on this and depending on how Bloodbank dragons houses their dragons, they may actually need to supplement with D3. Basking species such as bearded dragons are specifically designed to maximize and utilize the D3 they create from their exposure to UVB. If the animal is exposed to a high enough dose of UVB (safe dose) then they will be more than capable of producing the D3 needed for calcium absorption. If the UVB exposure is not optimal, then yes, additional D3 may be needed. That is where it gets tricky though because you can overdose a reptile with D3 and that can lead to hypervitaminosis-D.
    Do you own a UV Meter? What levels of UVB are being produced by your lights? If you don't own a meter and can't answer that question at specific distances from the bulbs surface then you really don't know if you are exposing your animals to improper UVB and they may not be producing enough D3.
    There is no real concrete answer to this question that can be backed with scientific research at this time. there is more info coming in and being produced but almost all of the info is still based on observations and behaviors of captive and wild animals. A hypothesis has been created based on the collected data and opinions are formed.
    I use a mercury vapor bulb and I use calcium without D3. I have a meter and can monitor my UVB in the enclosure.
  4. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Got this from Josh at Blood bank dragons
  5. CryHavoc17

    CryHavoc17 Elite Member

    Deitary D3 vs UVB and how much of either is a tough topic, as no one really knows for sure what is best,. All we can really do is rely on communicating with each other what we have been successful with
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