PROVIDING A “HIDE” FOR YOUR BEARDIEIn most cases, Bearded Dragons who are going to brumate will go down for their period of sleep on the cool side of their tanks or enclosures, as they rest better in cooler temperatures, away from the warmth of their lights. This “hide” should be large enough to cover their entire body, but small enough that they will feel snug and safe during their period of deep sleep.
The “hide” that you provide can be as ornate or as plain as you like, as long as you provide them with something, so that they can feel safe, protected and comfortable.
Many pet stores and online suppliers carry a large number of different styles....some made out of natural rock, or resin material, which look very nice, or even those that look like a cave, whose tops can double as a basking site, with silk or plastic vegetation attached to them. These will dress up their tanks, and can be used year round, but they can also be a bit pricey. Or you can simply provide them with an appropriately sized cardboard box with an entry hole in one end, placed upside down in the cooler end of their tank. I made a cardboard cave alongside the full length of the back of my beardie's cage with openings large enough for her to go in and out of and the top wide enough for her to bask on. She loves running in and out of the holes and climbing up and running along the top. How plain or fancy you choose to go is totally up to you, and your own tastes, and pocketbook. Your beardie isn’t going to care one way or the other, as long as he has a darkened protected area, away from his lights, to do his sleeping in.
People have suggested shortening the amount of time the lights remain on and then as Spring approaches increase the time of daylight, however, remember they need a minimum of at least 8 hours every day. Do remember that your Beardie will decide when he wants to go into brumation and how long he/she is going to sleep. Some beardies will brumate for a week at a time, others for a month up to two, it all depends on when they were born and their own inclinations. It is recommended that if you are wanting to breed your beardie, brunation prior to breeding can be very helpful. More on the topic of breeding beardies later.