At Adventure Pets in Mandeville, LA we have an important item of guidance for everyone who adopts a snake, lizard, turtle, or any other reptile: Reptiles make great pets, but if you don't stay in their natural environment (and chances are that you do not), they aren't necessarily easy to look after. You will not need to take your reptile for a walk daily, but you will need to supply it with a healthy environment with the right reptile heating and lighting. And to do that you will require the appropriate reptile heating and lighting tools from a store you can rely on.
There is a basic reason reptiles need supplementary heat. Reptiles are cold-blooded. They can not control their temperature.
In nature, reptiles control their body heat by switching their environment. They sun on a rock. They burrow into the ground. But reptiles you keep in a cage do not have that choice. They require you to provide heat for them. Some reptiles, like geckos and ball pythons, need extra heat 24/7.
Reptile heating isn't rather as straightforward as placing a heating system in a cage. Many heating systems emit light. Using them to keep a pet reptile warm can be like producing 24-hour daylight, so your pet would not have a typical cycle of activity and rest. Heating for reptiles at night requires come from an infrared source, like a heated ceramic, rather than from a heat lamp.
On the other hand, reptiles you maintain indoors also need supplemental lighting. They need the same wavelengths of light provided by sunlight so their bodies can make vitamin D. They require a daytime source of light in addition to supplemental heat source all the time.
And different reptiles require different reptile heating and lighting. Here is a rundown of reptile heating and lighting demands by species.
Ball python heating and lighting: Ball pythons require 8 to 12 hrs of light daily, with several breaks of one to two hrs during the day. They like a nocturnal source of light to imitate conditions in the wild; infrared light is great during the night (just not a glowing light bulb).
Bearded dragon heating and lighting: Bearded dragons need continual heat, ideally from a ceramic heat source, 24-hour a day. They also like to be able to bask in "sunlight" you provide with an incandescent bulb, but make sure it's only switched on during the day.
Chameleon heating and lighting: Chameleons absolutely must have UV-B light during the day so their bodies can make vitamin D. They choose lower temperatures at night from an infrared bulb.
Corn snake heating and lighting: Corn snakes require eight to 12 hrs of light everyday with a "night light" or infrared light during the night. Do not give them too much white light.
Gecko heating and lighting: Geckos are nocturnal, so they do not require lights that provide UV-B. It's OKAY to provide them with a regular incandescent bulb for daytime lighting but they need ceramic heat or a nocturnal heat bulb at all hours.
Russian tortoise heating and lighting: Russian tortoises aren't rather as picky as other reptiles about heat, but they require a UV-B light for 12 to 14 hours a day.
You will discover everything you require for keeping your snake, lizard, or turtle healthy and happy at Adventure Pets in Mandeville, LA. We can help you keep your pet reptile well-fed, cozy, and healthsome for many satisfied years to come.