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Bearded Dragon Black Beard: TOP 10 REASONS THEY DO THIS

A Bearded Dragon Black beard can startle some new beardie owners. It’s commonly misunderstood as well as some owners will think its one thing vs another

When i first brought home my bearded dragon he was puffing up and showing a black beard in the new room we set up for him

It took us a while to figure out why this was and how we could fix it and we literally tried 10 or more different things (funny story ill tell you later)

Bearded Dragon Black Beard

Now the best thing you can do is not panic when they show this off

it usually means a few different things and sometimes owners will panic and want to just drop them which can lead to more stress

I’m going to assume you know what a beard on a bearded dragon is in case you don’t check the link here

Bearded Dragon Black Beard : REASON 1: FEAR

The first thing that comes to mind is that they’re scared. They will sometimes puff up their beards at the same time. They do this to appear bigger and more threatening.

in the wild bearded dragons do have a lot of things to be worried about and they will use the black puffy beard to scare off predators

In captivity, they will still do the same thing. They will especially do this when they first come home.

Many things in the room can cause them to feel threatened and puff up black beard style

Having another pet in the house can easily make them do this. Cats, dogs, birds, anything really.

What I had to do was put my bearded dragon into his own room without much in there. I kept him away from any windows as well because any birds that pass by can freak him out

Bearded Dragon Black Beard : REASON 2 : POOR CARE

This one is one that flies under the radar a bit because its something that’s more subtle and easier to miss

Most beardie owners will think its something obvious like a pet or being cold

Bad care can cause them to be stressed out and show a black beard

What does bad care look like?

  • Bad habitat setup
  • bad diet
  • unsanitary enclosure
  • lighting is bad
  • too cold

Now this is a bit of a more general piece of advice but you need to make sure they are doing well in all areas

Take your time and honestly think of how you yourself would feel if you had the setup, diet and so on that they have

of course, until you learn what foods they like and consume you won’t know what will make them uncomfortable but that’s what time will show you so don’t be afraid to work with your bearded dragon

Bearded Dragon Black Beard: REASON 3: BRUMATION

Brumation is something that bearded dragons do even when in captivity which is usually weird to new owners because they don’t really have to

Brumation is when they slow down their eating and activity prepping for the winter months

which sounds a whole lot like hibernation because technically it is

Wintertime is a bit of a nightmare for many animals in the wild and reptiles are no different. They have to conserve energy simply because there isn’t enough food to go around

bearded  dragon black beard (red beardie)

The sunlight change is their cue to start the brumation process and that is why the lights need to be set up properly because they will begin to brumate if they aren’t

Make sure you have the right lighting set up in your Bearded Dragon enclosure

When bearded dragons start brumating their metabolisms will slow down and they will simply wait for winter to be over

They will also not like to be touched much during brumation either so if your bearded dragon seems to be avoiding you this could be a cause

During this period they make actually stop sitting in their basking light as well and start hanging out in the darker areas of their tank

If they start acting funny it can be your Bearded Dragon brumating

Bearded Dragon Black Beard : REASON 4: NEW ENVIRONMENT

Taking your bearded dragon home for the first time will be quite an experience for both of you

It’s going to be stressful for the bearded dragon especially because they don’t know you or where they’re going

it can actually be quite traumatic if you think about it.

Now it will take some time for them to just get used to being around you but they will trust you eventually.

Bearded dragons are social creatures so they do like to be around you when they do trust you

The fear and anxiety they have will cause the bearded dragon black beard to come out

Just give them time and they will be ok. If they take long move them to another room or remove things from the room that

They are also just not used to you

Something that bearded dragons hate is anything that’s literally a threat to them and until they bond with you (which just takes time) they will be hesitant towards you

Bearded Dragon Black Beard Reason 5: Temperature

The wrong temperature can really set them off

it’s not like they will spaz out but I like to think of a black beard like a cat hissing

it seems like its a bad thing but really it’s just they are not feeling the best about a certain situation

being cold can set them off because they aren’t able to actually warm themselves up alone

bearded dragons are cold-blooded creatures so they use the environment to warm and cool themselves down

A Bearded Dragon Black Beard in this sense is just them being uncomfortable

The coolest thing about them is they can literally turn themselves black in order to absorb more heat from the sun

Black will absorb more heat than white. This happens with clothes and stuff like that.

Bearded Dragons will turn themselves black to get hotter

Now since they’re in captivity you (the owner) has control of how warm their enclosure is

They might puff up or show a black beard when they are outside their enclosure

IF they do you can place them under their basking light to see if warming them up will stop their black beard

You can see this list is mostly about trial and error

Make sure you replace any Bulbs every 6 months as well to make sure the lighting and temperature stays consistent

Bearded Dragon Black Beard REASON 6: MATING

Male bearded dragons will turn their beards black to show off their attractiveness to female bearded dragons

You will also notice they will bob their heads up and down as well to show signs of dominance

You will really only see this if they are in captivity with another bearded dragon so you don’t have a whole lot to worry about if you don’t have another one

This kind of behavior happens after they become sexually active around the 1 and a half year mark so you won’t see baby bearded dragons doing this kind of thing

Bearded Dragon Black Beard REASON 7: THEY’RE ANGRY

This is what most people assume bearded dragons are puffing up or showing a black beard for

Usually they do this because they feel threatened

If your breaded dragon gets angry they will want to be left alone

some owners don’t catch the hint and will try to keep holding their beardie

If they seem angry they may even start nipping at your fingers

This will only anger them more

My bearded dragon was totally mad at this stuffed animal we had in the room for when guests kids came over which is the same room we had set up for the bearded dragon’s room

It literally took us forever to figure out why our beardie was upset

so don’t make the same mistake I did and just check the room out right away for anything that could be messing with his comfort

Sometimes kids can make a bearded dragon angry because sometimes kids will do things to scare him like

  • tap on the glass
  • make loud noises
  • try picking him up from above instead of in front of him

There are all kinds of things that can set them off so just run down the list

99 percent of the time once they trust you they will be so calm they will even just fall asleep on you

Bearded Dragon Black Beard REASON 8: SICKNESS

Bearded dragons will puff up and show a black beard to show that they’re strong and not easy to kill

other animals do this a lot like birds. Birds will puff out their feathers to appear bigger and stronger

We had a pet bird that got sick and passed away but she did it all the time because she knew she was sick

she would puff up whenever someone she didn’t know came around her

Bearded dragons show a Black Beard for the same reason if they’re sick

In the wild bearded dragons have many predators so bearded dragons will try to appear big to not appear weak

If this is persistent I would bring them to the vet. It could also be impaction that is hurting them too

Bearded Dragon Black Beard REASON 9: I NEED AFFECTION!

this one is a bit strange because it can be so easily confused with the other ones

So if you notice that they show a black beard after you pick them up then they might be scared

If you notice they show a black beard when you put them down then they might need you

My bearded dragon has never done this before because I think he likes being alone and being handled. He can have it either way

But a friend of mine who owns many reptiles says that he gets lonely a lot

I was completely surprised when I heard this because I didn’t expect bearded dragons to want or need affection

Bearded Dragon Black Beard REASON 10: THIS IS MY TERRITORY

A territorial Bearded Dragon will puff up and show a black beard in order to appear strong

You’ll notice a lot of the things on this list are things to make them appear strong lol

Bearded Dragons are naturally calm most of the time but they can get territorial of you have another bearded dragon or reptile in the same tank as them

They will sometimes fight which can obviously lead to injury and infections

i would recommend you keep bearded dragons separate in their own tanks

Summary and FAQ’s / Stuff you might not know

A bearded Dragons beard is more than just a cute spiky beard. It gives you information as well

If you understand what different things you need to look for in order to figure out why his beard is going black you can increase his/her quality of life pretty easily

You may also see head bobbing from your bearded dragon as well. Usually, this happens when they’re in captivity with another beardie. Head bobbing shows a sign of dominance

A Bearded Dragon Beard is a bunch of spiky scales underneath its chin. You can scratch a Bearded Dragon’s Beard if you want to. They seem to like it.