The effect of exposure to different UVb compact lamps on the vitamin D status of growing bearded dragons (Pogona vitticeps) was studied. Forty-two newly hatched bearded dragons (<24 h old) were allocated to six treatment groups (n = 7 per group). Five groups were exposed to different UVb compact lamps for two hours per day, with a control group not exposed to UVb radiation. At 120 days of age, blood samples were obtained and concentrations of 25(OH)D3, Ca, P and uric acid were determined. In addition, plasma 25(OH)D3 concentration was determined in free-living adult bearded dragons to provide a reference level. Only one treatment resulted in elevated levels of 25(OH)D3 compared to the control group (41.0 ± 12.85 vs. 2.0 ± 0.0 nmol/L). All UVb-exposed groups had low 25(OH)D3 plasma levels compared to earlier studies on captive bearded dragons as well as in comparison with the free-living adult bearded dragons (409 ± 56 nmol/L). Spectral analysis indicated that all treatment lamps emitted UVb wavelengths effective for some cutaneous vitamin D synthesis. None of these lamps, under this regime, appeared to have provided a sufficient UVb dose to enable synthesis of plasma 25(OH)D3 levels similar to those of free-living bearded dragons in their native habitat.
Diehl, J. J. E., Baines, F. M., Heijboer, A. C., van Leeuwen, J. P., Kik, M., Hendriks, W. H., & Oonincx, D. G. A. B. (2018). A comparison of UVb compact lamps in enabling cutaneous vitamin D synthesis in growing bearded dragons. Journal of Animal Physiology and Animal Nutrition, 102(1), 308-316. https://doi.org/10.1111/jpn.12728