Have you ever become so shocked seeing your female bearded dragon laying eggs without a male beardie? Or, do you want to know the care guide of your pregnant beardie? Besides, several beginners remain confused about how to take care of the newly laid eggs properly. So, you’ve come to the right place, in case your bearded dragon is laying eggs.
In this article, I’ve shed light on all sectors of bearded dragons laying eggs. I’ve covered the care guide for gravid beardies and their eggs, bearded dragon egg incubation, handling, and other common questions in this article.
So, without further ado, let’s get started!
At What Age Do Bearded Dragons Lay Eggs?
Like all animals, the bearded dragon needs to be sexually mature. Generally, bearded dragons tend to lay eggs when they reach 8-18 months.
In this age, bearded dragons gain the ability to become gravid and carry eggs. So, these beardies may lay unfertilized eggs without mating when they gain reproductive ability at this age. But, the successful reproduction rate of beardies happens at their age of 2-4 years.
What Time Of Year Do Bearded Dragons Lay Eggs?
Generally, bearded dragons lay eggs in the warm condition of the environment. So, you may notice them laying eggs before or after wintertime.
Several kinds of research show that the temperature and hormone level play a significant role in the reproduction of beardies.
Bearded dragons prefer the early summer and spring time for breeding. So, September to March seems the ideal month of the year for bearded dragons to lay eggs.
How Do You Know If Your Bearded Dragon Is Going to Lay Eggs: 6 Signs
There are a few signs to tell whether your bearded dragon is going to lay eggs or not. Let’s check out the following signs of a gravid bearded dragon.
1. Swollen Abdomen
The prime identification sign of a gravid bearded dragon is its swollen abdomen. If your bearded dragon is going to lay eggs, her abdomen will be swollen because of carrying eggs. Moreover, the eggs will appear as marble-like structures from the outside appearance of the abdomen.
2. Rapid Weight Gain
Since the pregnant bearded dragons carry eggs, they’ll suddenly gain weight.
Lethargy or idleness is one of the most common signs of a pregnant bearded dragon. A gravid bearded dragon tends to spend more time sleeping. You’ll notice the minimal activity of your beardie if she is going to lay eggs. Also, she may show discomfort in roaming around.
4. Changes In Appetite
There will be a huge change in the appetite of a pregnant bearded dragon. In the beginning, these gravid beardies show more interest in food than usual time. After all, they require extra food and nutrients for their eggs.
In the meantime, the owners may find their gravid bearded dragons become picky. These beardies start eating a decreasing amount. It happens due to their extreme lethargy.
Also, bearded dragons suddenly stop eating when they are close to laying their clutches of eggs. It is also termed anorexia.
5. Changes In Excretion
You might know that color, state, and frequency of stool are vital health indicators of any animal. The same thing goes for identifying a pregnant bearded dragon.
You might notice the color change of your beardie’s urate if she is going to lay eggs. It may turn into a pinkier tint color. Besides, sometimes, the owners complain about runny stools of their gravid beardies.
6. Behavioral Changes
When your bearded dragon is gravid, you can see her noticeable behavioral changes. A common sign of gravid beardies is their nesting behavior. Pregnant bearded dragons tend to dig the substrate to lay their eggs.
Although pregnant beardies remain lethargic, you’ll notice their restless digging in the bedding. This nesting behavior is to create a safe den for their upcoming babies.
How Often Do Bearded Dragons Lay Infertile Eggs?
Bearded dragons lay infertile eggs within a few months during the mating season. These animals usually lay around 3-4 clutches with an average of 20 eggs per clutch. Generally, they take a few weeks off after laying a clutch. Then, these beardies start repeating the laying procedures.
Can Male Bearded Dragons Lay Infertile Eggs?
Only female bearded dragons can lay eggs no matter if the eggs are fertile or infertile. No male bearded dragons can become gravid or carry eggs. So, male beardies can’t lay infertile eggs.
What Do I Do If My Bearded Dragon Is Gravid?
Like all animals, it’s a pretty exhausting and stressful process for bearded dragons to bear and lay eggs. As an owner, you must ensure proper care of your pregnant bearded dragon. These gravid beardies require special attention and nutrients.
Let’s check out the following suggestions to reduce the physical stress of your gravid beardies.
1. Making A Nest
The very first thing that you need to do is make a nest or lay box. You might have noticed your beardie digging the bedding restlessly.
To reduce her worry, you should create a lay box fulfilling all required conditions. If your pregnant beardie does not find any comfortable place, she’ll not lay eggs.
You can choose a plastic or glass container as a lay box. Then, you need to fill the box with damp soil.
Firstly, you need to fill up the box with soil. When the time comes to lay eggs, you must make the sand wet.
Also, make sure that the soil depth is around 6-7 inches so that your beardie can dig tunnels to bury her eggs well. They require a medium where the tunnel will not get collapsed.
2. Keeping Optimal Heat And Humidity
You must ensure that the lay box or nest is warm for your pregnant bearded dragons. The optimal temperature should be 85-90 degrees Fahrenheit. Also, the humidity of the tank needs to be pretty low. Keep the humidity level around 20%-40%.
To keep the environment warm, you can use a heat lamp, basking lamp, or ultraviolet B light exposure. Exposure to ultraviolet B light will help your beardie fulfill the calcium requirements.
However, you need to provide supplements along with using the light. Besides, you should keep the light off during nighttime.
3. Proper Supplementation
If your bearded dragon is gravid, you’ll need to ensure its increased intake of calcium supplements. As the pregnant beardies carry eggs, they require more calcium from their bones. Besides, these pets are prone to suffer from the metabolic bone disorder.
Hence, you should increase giving calcium supplementation. If your pregnant beardie lacks enough calcium, her eggs may not form a hard shell. So, it can be risky for both the mother beardies and their babies.
Along with calcium, you should not forget to provide multivitamins and vitamin D3 supplements.
4. Keeping Hydrated
Make sure that you’re keeping your pregnant bearded dragon hydrated. So, you should keep a water bowl with fresh water in the tank. You can also choose certain foods that contain a good quantity of water.
Can Bearded Dragons Lay Eggs Without A Male?
It might be surprising to you. But, laying eggs without a male is pretty common in wildlife.
Bearded dragons can lay eggs without a male beardie. When your beardie becomes sexually matured, your pet may start laying infertile eggs without having any physical contact with the males. Also, these beardies can lay fertile eggs alone from a past mating session by storing sperms.
There are several examples where the female bearded dragons lay eggs after bringing into the home. So, this may happen because the female beardies mated before with the male bearded dragons in the store. After all, the female bearded dragon can store the sperms up for up to one year.
Otherwise, they can lay eggs without a male and they’ll be infertile. You can take laying unfertilized eggs of chicken as an example of laying eggs without mating. Ovulating without males is termed female menstruation in the case of mammals.
How Many Eggs Do Bearded Dragons Lay Per Year?
It depends on the number of clutches and eggs on each clutches laid by beardies. Usually, bearded dragons lay 3-4 clutches of eggs on average per year. In each clutches, there remain around 15-30 eggs. So, bearded dragons lay around 30-150 eggs per year depending on the number of eggs per clutches.
What Do You Do When Your Bearded Dragon Lays Eggs?
If your bearded dragon is laying eggs, the most significant thing to assure will be their comfort. Hence, you must not disturb your beardie while she is laying eggs. Keep the room noise-free. Also, you should not remove your beardie until she’s done.
Sometimes, the owners remain too excited to check out the bearded dragon eggs. But, you need to hold some patience to let her finish laying eggs. Generally, when a bearded dragon finishes laying eggs, she’ll bury her eggs.
Also, you may notice them emerging from the laying box. Then, you should relax your bearded dragons. Afterward, you can check out which eggs are infertile or fertile. After identifying the infertile eggs, you have to discard them away. Also, move out the fertile eggs to a safe place.
How To Take Care Of Your Beardie After It Lays Eggs?
You might have seen taking extra care of a human mother after giving birth. Similarly, a mother beardie demands special care after laying eggs. You need to help your beardie regain her lost energy. Let’s see how you can take care of your new mother beardie.
1. Rehydrate Your Beardie
While laying eggs, there must happen a huge fluid loss of your bearded dragon. So, your first concern should be to rehydrate your exhausted bearded dragon.
When your beardie finishes laying eggs, you can offer her a warm bath. It’ll help her get cleaned as she might get messy digging in the sand.
Besides, you must provide them with fresh water to drink in a water bowl. If your beardie remains too exhausted, you can help her drink water through an eye-dropper or syringe. In addition, misting the tank will help your beardie get rehydrated.
However, if you’re curious to know the signs of bearded dragon dehydration, you can check out this write-up: how to tell if a bearded dragon is dehydrated?
2. Nutritional Diet
You should provide a balanced and nutritional diet to the mother bearded dragon. Along with the basic diet, you should add insect snacks.
Do not skip vegetables, leafy greens, and fruits to add to the diet. When you feed bugs and other insects, you should dust them with calcium. I’ll recommend using Zoo Med Repti Calcium with D3 reptile supplement.
3. Providing Clean Environment
In the entire process of laying eggs, bearded dragons tend to make tunnels in the soil by digging restlessly. In the tunnel, the beardies rest themselves for laying the clutches of eggs. So, it must be a messy room after laying eggs.
When you remove the beardies and eggs, you need to clean the tank. Provide a clean and nice environment for the mother bearded dragon. It’ll reduce their stress
4. Keeping Right Humidity Level
You can increase the humidity level a bit more than the usual time. Since the mother bearded dragon needs to get rehydrated, the increased humidity level can help. For this, often misting or spraying is a good suggestion.
5. Basking Your Beardie
After laying eggs, your bearded dragon may become highly stressed. To help her relax, you can keep a basking spot at around 40 degrees Celsius.
However, you should the behavior of your beardie after she lays eggs. If you notice any unusual behavior, you should take your pet to a vet.
Can Bearded Dragons Eat Their Eggs?
It may sound disturbing to you to know about the infanticide of the bearded dragon. But, it’s pretty ordinary among the wild populations.
Like many animals, bearded dragons may eat their eggs when these bearded dragons are left alone with their eggs. In worst cases, there remain several risks of eating up their babies by themselves.
Bearded dragons do not have any motherly affections for their eggs or babies. In addition, they might consider their babies as their competitors.
For details, you can go through this article for clearing your confusion about their cannibalistic nature.
For this reason, it’s pretty urgent to remove the fertile eggs from the tank of your bearded dragon. Besides, you can let your beardie eat the infertile eggs filled with nutrients.
Hence, you need to know how to recognize fertile and infertile eggs. Let’s scroll a bit more to know about these.
What Do Infertile Bearded Dragon Eggs Look Like?
When the female bearded dragons reach their sexual maturity, there remains a high chance of laying eggs. Beardies lay infertile eggs especially when they become gravid without mating. In addition, adult beardies can also lay infertile eggs after mating.
To identify the infertile eggs, you need to do a torchlight test or candling procedure. You will not see any blood vessels when you put the egg against the light source. There will not be any pinkish embryo, like fertile eggs.
Moreover, the infertile bearded dragon eggs look yellowish when the light passes through them. Also, these eggs may have dents.
If you find misshaped eggs of beardies, these must be infertile eggs. Moreover, such eggs do not bounce back when you press them. Check out this article to learn more about bearded dragon infertile eggs.
What Does A Fertile Bearded Dragon Egg Look Like?
The primary identification sign of a fertile bearded dragon egg is its being well-shaped. It looks more white-tinged than yellow. Also, there will be no dents or grooves in the fertile eggs. These eggs will bounce back if you press them.
But, the external examination of bearded dragon eggs can be tricky. After all, the outer appearance looks almost the same in maximum time in both fertile and infertile eggs.
So, the reliable option is the candling process.
When you keep a fertile egg against a bright light, you’ll notice a pink embryo with blood veins. It is the prime difference between a fertile and an infertile bearded dragon egg.
You should wait for 1-2 weeks after the eggs are laid. Such is because it takes some time for the blood veins to become visible in fertile eggs.
Why Are My Bearded Dragon Eggs Collapsing?
There are a few reasons behind collapsing bearded dragon eggs.
Firstly, the bearded dragon eggs might be collapsing because of being infertile. If the eggs are fertile, you should keep them in an incubator in proper condition.
The fertile eggs can collapse due to the wrong temperature and humidity of the incubator. Besides, the inconsistency of moisture level and heat can be another reason for bearded dragon eggs collapsing.
How Long Does It Take For Bearded Dragons To Lay Eggs?
After successful mating, it can take around 3-6 weeks for bearded dragons to lay eggs.
How To Take Care Of Bearded Dragon Eggs?
When your beardie finishes laying eggs, it’s your job to take care of these eggs. As mentioned earlier, bearded dragons do not have any motherly affection for their eggs or babies. So, firstly, you need to identify fertile and infertile eggs through candling.
Then, you can take the fertile bearded dragon eggs to hatch. You can do it in two ways.
The most popular way to hatch bearded dragon eggs is incubation. Otherwise, you can hatch the fertile eggs in the soil where these eggs were laid.
Incubation: How To Incubate Bearded Dragon Eggs?
Hatching bearded dragon eggs in incubators is safe than hatching the eggs in the soil. If you want a maximum hatching rate, you should choose incubation as the hatching process.
As stated before, one of the biggest reasons for eggs collapsing is inconsistent temperature and humidity. Using incubators to hatch eggs, you can monitor the temperature and humidity level smoothly. Some incubators can adjust these conditions automatically.
The most troublesome part of incubation is moving the bearded dragon eggs into the incubators from the soil. If you move the eggs too much, the embryo of the eggs may get hampered. Hence, you should keep the eggs in the incubators without turning them over.
After placing the eggs, you should fix the correct temperature and humidity. The temperature has to be within 80-85 degrees Fahrenheit. Besides, the ideal humidity is 75% for hatching the bearded dragon eggs. I’ll recommend using REPTI ZOO Reptile Thermometer Hygrometer Controller.
These eggs may take around 40-90 days to hatch. During this period, you should monitor the eggs regularly. Make sure that there will not get any sign of molds over the bearded dragon eggs. So, wait for these 1-3 months to get new bearded dragon babies from the eggs.
Hatching Over Natural Soil: How To Take Care Of A Bearded Dragon Egg Without An Incubator?
If you don’t have an incubator, you can still hatch your bearded dragon eggs. For this, you can use the natural soil where the eggs were laid. In addition, you’ll require a heat source.
Firstly, you’ve to separate the mother beardie from the eggs. Otherwise, she might gobble up her eggs.
Secondly, you should clean the bedding so that no mold or bacteria can grow. Then, you have to add any heat source.
You can use a heat lamp or an under-tank heater. The ideal temperature for incubation should be within 80-85 degrees Fahrenheit.
Also, make sure to keep the humidity level around 75%. You can also use a hygrometer to monitor the moisture level. While spraying the soil, you must remain careful not to spray over the eggs directly. It may cause the growth of mold over the eggs.
Setting up like this, you need to wait for 40-90 days for the eggs to hatch. Make sure that the temperature and humidity level remains constant in the meantime of hatching. Otherwise, the eggs might collapse.
Can Infertile Bearded Dragon Eggs Hatch?
The short answer is a no. No infertile bearded dragon eggs can hatch. The eggs need to be fertile to get hatched. Also, it can take approximately 2-3 months for fertile bearded dragon eggs to hatch.
What Can You Do With Unfertilized Bearded Dragon Eggs?
Since the unfertilized bearded dragon eggs are of no use, you can discard them. Otherwise, these unfertilized bearded dragon eggs will only emit a foul smell.
However, infertile eggs are also full of proteins. So, you can let your bearded dragons eat the nutrient-enriched unfertilized eggs. It will help your beardies regain their lost energy.
Besides, you can mix these eggs with soil. These unfertilized bearded dragon eggs will work as fertilizer.
From taking care of a pregnant beardie to hatching the eggs is adventurous and patient work. I hope this article gave you a complete overview of what to do when your beardie is laying eggs. Follow the described instructions to keep your pet beardie and the eggs healthy.