Uromastyx care and breeding by Troy Jones


The above Reptilian Magazine article I wrote on Captive Care and breeding Ornates was published over 15 years ago.

Here are my captive care instructions for establishing Uromastyx Ornata.

1) Cover all glass for 1-3 months. I use beach towels.

2) 120 degrees in the basking area and 80-90 degrees on the opposite site, called the cool side. I also use UVB light in addition to basking. My preference is florescent UVB lights.

3) 4 foot by 2 foot enclosure

4) At least 3 hides per cage. One on basking side, one in the middle, and one on the cool side. More hides needed if more than one lizard.

5) Sand, tile, paper, rock, and/or bare floor for bedding.

6) Never use Calcium Sand or Crush Walnut Shells for bedding - This could be fatal to your lizard.

7) No water in the cage.

8) No baths.

9) Do not feed insects.

10) Feed a good mix of greens (turnip greens, mustard greens, collard greens, kale).

11) Clean cage and feed in the morning or at night. Try not to be seen by your Uromastyx for the first month or so.

12) Weigh your Uromastyx once per month. Weight loss is one of the first signs that your Uromastyx is in distress.

13) Don't treat for parasites for the first 6 months the Uromastyx is in your care.

14) Don't treat for parasites unless your Uromastyx is losing weight.

15) Do not handle your Uromastyx except to weigh it once per month for the first month or so.

16) If you want to handle you lizard please give it at least a month to settle in. Afterwards, begin by trying to get it to eat out of your hand. Only handle for short periods of time. Slowly begin to extend the handling period.

17) Never keep different species of Uromastyx in the same cage. i.e., donít keep Ornate's with Mails. Donít keep Saharans with Rainbows. Donít Keep Philbyi with Banded, Etc.

18) Never use under the tank heaters. Uromastyx absorb heat from above, not below. They may not be able to move off an under tank heater soon enough and it could burn them.

I will continue to update this document as I learn new methods for keeping and breeding Uromastyx.

If you have questions, comments, or would like to add to my care sheet please send me and email troy@uroranch.com


Click here to return to home page