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Exo Terra Bearded Dragon Starter Kit Review

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This Exo Terra Bearded Dragon Starter Kit is ideal for anyone who is bringing a bearded dragon home for the first time that has no experience on what they need to complete their enclosure set up. The kit is a useful starting point for the new bearded dragon owner, which you can build on as you gain more experience.

Pros

  • The kit includes most of the products you need to bring your bearded dragon home
  • Convenient
  • Easy installation
  • Cost-effective solution
  • Quality products
  • It comes with one light bulb for UVA, UVB, and heat

Cons

  • You will need to make some adjustments overtime to ensure the best care for your dragon
  • The kit comes with one thermometer when you need two to ensure you monitor the temperatures on the hot and cool side of the enclosure accurately.

Introduction

Bringing a new bearded dragon home can be so exciting. The one problem I encountered was identifying the right products to purchase, so I could have the habitat all set up before I brought my dragon home. There are so many different bearded dragon products from enclosures to basking lights. It was so overwhelming and then I came across the Exo Terra Adult Bearded Dragon Starter Kit.

The kit includes just about everything you need, except for a few items you will need to purchase separately. The benefit is that it is cost-effective for buying your bearded dragon habitat as a kit. If you have to buy each item individually, you can expect to pay more in the long run. The kit helps you set up and get ready for your new reptilian pet.

Is the Exo Terra Bearded Dragon Starter Kit Beneficial?

This starter kit is best suited for anyone that is bringing a new bearded dragon home and wants to have the enclosure all ready in advance. It saves you time, money, and energy when it comes to sourcing bearded dragon products and making your purchase online.

This kit is ideally suited for a beginner enthusiast, ensuring that you have everything you need to provide a comfortable and safe habitat for your bearded dragon.

There are a few things to take into consideration if you are considering the Exo Terra Adult Bearded Dragon Starter Kit:

  • Is the kit useful? This kit is exceptionally useful for the beginner bearded dragon owner, ensuring you have all the necessary products to provide a good habitat for your new reptile.
  • What Age Bearded Dragon Is This Kit For? The kit I am reviewing here is for an adult bearded dragon. Note that a baby or juvenile bearded dragon can live in an adult kit. However, if you prefer a smaller kit for your baby bearded dragon and will upgrade it later, Exo Terra does provide a juvenile starter kit.
  • Do I need to buy additional items to complete the setup? The kit includes just about everything you need, except for a few items.

To complete the set up you will want to consider a light timer so you can set your basking light for twelve hours, you will need to purchase food, decorations, and separate light bulbs if you prefer.

One minor downside of the kit is that it combines the UVB and heat lamp in one bulb (this is also an advantage because the bulb is an all-in-one solution which is a good choice for reptile beginners). Ideally, a bearded dragon thrives when you have a UVB fluorescent tube covering two-thirds of the tank with a separate heat lamp and heat emitter. 

As a starting point, you will find the kit will provide ample heat and light, but you may want to consider separate lighting options once you get comfortable maintaining the enclosure and looking after your bearded dragon.

What's in the ​Exo Terra Bearded Dragon Starter Kit?

The Exo Terra Adult Bearded Dragon Starter Kit includes a full range of great products to help you set up for the arrival of your new pet.

Exo Terra Natural Terrarium Large - Advanced Reptile Habitat

This is a large forty-gallon terrarium, suitable for an adult bearded dragon complete with front window ventilation and dual doors to reduce the risk of escape. The enclosure comes complete with a waterproof base, raised bottom platform and stainless-steel mesh cover, which allows for ample airflow, UVB and infrared penetration.

The enclosure comes with locks, which reduce the risk of escape with an easy twist screen cover lock and closable inlets for wires. The base is raised which allows for substrate heaters and enables a thicker layer of substrate.

The terrarium comes with a rock background which provides a natural finish to your bearded dragon habitat design. The color and texture promote a natural finish.

What I like

  • Front window ventilation
  • Dual doors for an escape-free access
  • Waterproof bottom
  • Raised bottom frame
  • Stainless steel mesh cover
  • Locks to prevent escape
  • Easy-twist screen cover lock
  • Cable inlets for wires and/or tubing
  • Cut out in the back for wires and/or tubing

Reptile Dome - Aluminum Dome Fixture

This is an extra deep aluminum reflector dome designed to boost light and UVA and UVB output. This dome is suitable for use with fluorescent and incandescent bulbs complete with on and off switch and six-foot power cord. It has a heat resistant socket for added peace of mind.

This is a multi-purpose fixture to be used with a host of screw-based bulbs.

What I like

  • Extra deep aluminum reflector dome
  • Boost light, UVA and UVB output
  • Suitable all screw in based bulbs
  • Six-foot power cord
  • On and off switch
  • Heat resistant porcelain socket

What I don't like

  • Tends to rust if not cared for properly
  • Reports of the dome causing light flickering after a few months of use

Solar Glo - Sun Simulating Bulb

This sun simulating bulb incorporates your UVB, UVA, and visual light into one bulb to provide all the benefits of natural sunlight and preventing the risk of metabolic bone disease complete with increased UVB penetration.

This self-ballasted mercury vapor bulb offers the benefits of natural sunlight, needed to keep your bearded dragon happy and healthy. This balances ultraviolet, infrared, and visual light into one bulb to save on space.

What I like

  • Sun stimulating bulb to improve the overall health
  • Save space
  • Prevent metabolic bone disease
  • Fits standard ceramic socket so no ballast required

What I don't like

  • Can be noisy during operation

Light Bracket - Light Dome Support Fixture

The Exo Terra Adult Bearded Dragon Starter Kit comes with a light bracket to support the light dome fixture. It is easily adjustable and is a suspension bracket that can extend the life span of the light bulb. This bracket is able to suspend most light fixtures while preventing the risk of accidental tripping and prevent the risk of damage to the terrarium.

Ensure you install the light after twenty-four hours, which allows the tape bond to cure. Incorrect tape bonding could be a result of poor surface preparation, poor adhesive contact, insufficient pressure applied or hanging the lamp too soon.

What I like

  • Easily adjustable
  • Suspension bracket to extend lifespan of light bulbs
  • Reduce risk tripping
  • Reduce risk damage to terrarium

Liquid Crystal Thermometer 

In order to ensure that you provide your dragon with the right temperatures, you are going to need to constantly monitor the temperatures of the enclosure to ensure you reach between 90ºF and 93ºF with your cooler side of the enclosure being between 80ºF and 90ºF. The thermometer included in the Exo Terra Adult Bearded Dragon Starter Kit is easy to read and install thermometer that can be placed inside or outside the enclosure.

What I like

  • Easy to read to monitor temperatures inside the terrarium
  • Place inside or outside the enclosure
  • Quick installation

What I don't like

  • It's not a digital thermometer
  • Ideally you will need a second thermometer so you can measure both sides of the enclosure
  • Cannot be removed and reused if you place it incorrectly during installation
  • Not the best accuracy

Sand Mat

The sand mat offers a natural desert finish to your bearded dragon enclosure design. This is a safe and hygienic substrate that is easy to use. You can place it, remove it and clean it quickly and easily. The mat offers minimal bacterial build up and cannot be accidentally ingested to cause impaction. Your bearded dragon will enjoy a firm grip on the substrate. Rinse clean or use the Exo Terra Terrarium Cleaner and Odor Remover.

What I like

  • Natural desert finish
  • Safe and hygienic
  • Easy to use
  • Easy to clean
  • Reduced risk of bacteria growth

What I don't like

  • Little stones do fall off, keep an eye on that to reduce the risk of impaction

Water Dish

The water dish included offers a natural look which can integrate into your natural habitat design. A very easy to clean water dish which is non-porous, therefore it won't absorb bacteria. Made from food grade resin, the dish is stable and cannot be knocked over by your bearded dragon.

What I like

  • Natural design
  • Easy to clean
  • Non-porous to reduce the risk of absorbing harmful bacteria
  • Made from food grade resin
  • Stable design to reduce the risk of being knocked over
  • Includes steps to prevent drowning

What I don't like

  • Reports of slimy chemical that comes off when it’s been used for some time. Ensure effective cleaning before use.

Informative Care Guide

The informative care guide is a basic care guide on how to care for your bearded dragon, ensuring that you provide them with a healthy habitat, where it can thrive.

What I like

  • Useful guide
  • Provides information on how to care for your bearded dragon

What I don't like

  • You can find more detailed information on the internet

What's Missing from the Exo Terra Bearded Dragon Starter Kit

There are a number of products which help you care for your dragon which are not included in the kit, this includes:

  • Food. Bearded dragons are omnivorous. Therefore, they need both greens and insects. 
  • Food dish (optional). You can use the water dish in the kit.
  • Cricket tank (optional). This is a small tank if you want to raise your own crickets for feeding.
  • Light timer, enabling you to set your daylight time to twelve hours (optional). This is optional but I highly recommended because your bearded dragon only needs 12 - 14 hour of light each day.
  • Decoration including hides and fake plants (optinoal)
  • An additional thermometer (optional)
  • Calcium supplements. Bearded dragons need Calcium supplement to ensure their overall health

In order to complete your bearded dragon setup, you will need some alternative products, which include your food dish, a hide, some decorations, and an additional thermometer. I always highly recommend buying a light timer, so you can set your lighting for twelve-hour intervals, ensuring that your dragon gets the right amount of daytime sunlight that they need to remain healthy and fit.

Alternative Option For Exo Terra Bearded Dragon Starter Kit

One of the alternatives to the Exo Terra Adult Bearded Dragon Starter Kit is the Zoo Med Reptihabitat Bearded Dragon Terrarium Kit, which also offers great value for money with an easy to use product helping you prepare for the coming home of your new reptile. This is also a forty-gallon tank with dual screen top, dome lamp fitting and heating and UVB lights. It comes with a reptisand substrate and a dual temperature and humidity gauge. In addition to this, this kit offers a combination of food and water dish, with a free care booklet.

Conclusion

Overall, I feel this is a fantastic starting point for any new bearded dragon owner. The kit ensures that when you bring your dragon home, their new habitat is set up for them. The Exo Terra Adult Bearded Dragon Starter Kit is a value for money solution, ideal for new hobbyists, or if you need an urgent quarantine tank.

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