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I'm thinking of getting a Chinese Water Dragon, and I'm wondering if monthly costs are inexpensive or expensive? I will have my own bug breeding "farm," so i won't have to buy bugs all the time. Does bedding get expensive, like up too 100 pounds for a 5x2x4 enclosure?
 

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No medium is going to cost anywhere near £100 a month.not even close.maybe £10 a month depending on what medium your useing.
 

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When our one was a baby we used wicks multi purpose top soil 25 lts for£3.00
Steralised and lime free.
Holds moisture and compaced holds the digging/ tunnels.
Only when older did we use bark (fine as they will eat it catching prey).
It's harder to clean that's all.
But well when they are adults it's ok to top off the soil with bark and then the soil will last longer .
easy just to clean off the bark with the poop.



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When our one was a baby we used wicks multi purpose top soil 25 lts for£3.00
Steralised and lime free.
Holds moisture and compaced holds the digging/ tunnels.
Only when older did we use bark (fine as they will eat it catching prey).
It's harder to clean that's all.
But well when they are adults it's ok to top off the soil with bark and then the soil will last longer .
easy just to clean off the bark with the poop.



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Yeah and I bet that £3 bag lasted several months.
 

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Ok would think heat and bulbs would be the biggest expenses.
Definitely when you get to large animals it is !!

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The OP is American, 100 pounds is likely a weight.
The enclosure is (assumably in feet?) 5x2x4 and you are going to want a decent substrate depth, you can top that off with things like bits of orchid bark and leaf litter and so on, I dont know but i'm guessing you wont be doing bioactive, and you'll have a pool area and a lot of branches etc. I would probably go with at least 6 inches of substrate, that also then gives you somthign to bed everything else down into, so you are probably looking at about 5 cubic feet of substrate, which would be around 140 litres. Roughly 300lb.

This wouldnt be something you continually replace, you spot clean, things like orchid bark are fairly cheap used just as a light surface scattering/covering.
Its initial cost isnt really that great, as mentioned, garden/DIY stores sell topsoil and bark chips etc, cant see it being much more than £30 for it all (soil, bag or bark bits, maybe playsand if you are mixing the soil a little (10% or 20% perhaps)) I have no idea what prices are like over there for this kinda stuff though.

By the time you are done that would probably end up a little more than 6 inches deep as you sink the pool section into it, whatever logs bedded down into it and its not going to be as compacted as when its done into backs for the stores.

I would not do just orchid bark, and to be fair, I would be tempted to look at bioactive as its not hugely different to above, that way you also never really have to empty and redo which you would with just soil, maybe annually depending on how you spot clean. Bioactive has a bit more cost though and the viv would need to be properly sealed, custodian crew also takes weeks to establish etc so its much more of a input from both you and your bank account.
 
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