Different Breeds Of Bearded Dragons: Are Breeds The Same As Morphs

Usually, when speaking of different breeds of bearded dragons, we mix bearded dragon morphs, species, and subspecies.
However, these are not the same.

That’s why, we are going to help to differentiate these terms and talk about bearded dragon breeds.
Let’s start.

Are Bearded Dragons Breeds And Morphs The Same

No, bearded dragon breeds and morphs are not the same. 

Breeds refer to different subspecies of a species, while morphs refer to genetic variations within a species. 

In the case of bearded dragons, there are no recognized subspecies, so the term “breed” is not typically used. However, there are many different morphs of bearded dragons, each with its own unique set of physical characteristics.

Morphs are the result of genetic mutations that occur naturally in the wild or are intentionally bred for by breeders. 

These mutations can affect a variety of traits, including color, pattern, scale type, and body size. Some popular bearded dragon morphs include leatherback, dunner, hypomelanistic, and trans.

Here is a table that summarizes the key differences between breeds and morphs:

DefinitionDifferent subspecies of a speciesGenetic variations within a species
How they ariseNatural selectionMutation
Traits affectedAppearance, behavior, physiologyColor, pattern, scale type, body size
Number of variationsLimitedMany

In general, morphs are more common than breeds. This is because mutations occur more frequently than subspecies speciation. Additionally, breeders have been actively selecting for new and desirable morphs for many years, which has led to a wide variety of options available to bearded dragon enthusiasts.

The Common Breeds of Bearded Dragons

While there are numerous breeds of bearded dragons, a few are more commonly found in the pet trade. Let’s take a closer look at these popular breeds:

The Inland or Central Bearded Dragon

The Inland or Central Bearded Dragon

The Inland bearded dragon (Pogona vitticeps) is perhaps the most well-known breed. It is native to the arid regions of central Australia and has a docile temperament, making it an excellent choice for first-time reptile owners. Inlands are known for their vibrant colors, including shades of yellow, orange, and brown. They are relatively hardy and adaptable, making them popular pets in captivity.

The Eastern Bearded Dragon

The Eastern Bearded Dragon

The Eastern bearded dragon (Pogona barbata) primarily inhabits the eastern regions of Australia. Compared to the Inlands, they are slightly larger in size and have a more robust build. Eastern bearded dragons often display distinct patterns and colors on their scales, ranging from lighter shades to darker tones. They are known for their curious and active nature, making them entertaining pets to observe.

The Rankin’s or Lawson’s Bearded Dragon

The Rankin's or Lawson's Bearded Dragon

Rankin’s or Lawson’s bearded dragons (Pogona henrylawsoni) are a smaller breed that is endemic to a specific area in Australia. They are often mistaken for juvenile bearded dragons due to their petite size. Rankin’s dragons have a reputation for being friendly and sociable, making them excellent pets for individuals with limited space. They have a similar appearance to the Inlands but with subtle differences in their scales and overall body structure.

The Rare Breeds of Bearded Dragons

In addition to the commonly found breeds, there are also some rarer breeds that enthusiasts seek out. Let’s explore two of these more unique breeds:

The Kimberley Bearded Dragon

The Kimberley Bearded Dragon

The Kimberley bearded dragon (Pogona microlepidota) is native to the Kimberley region in Western Australia. They are known for their stunning coloration, which includes vibrant blues, greens, and yellows. Kimberley dragons are generally more skittish compared to the previously mentioned breeds, but with proper handling and care, they can become just as friendly and engaging as their counterparts.

The Nullarbor Bearded Dragon

The Nullarbor Bearded Dragon

The Nullarbor bearded dragon (Pogona nullarbor) is a unique breed that is endemic to the Nullarbor Plain, a large arid region stretching across South Australia and Western Australia. These dragons have adapted to the unique landscape and often blend in with the rocky surroundings. They have a distinct appearance, with shades of gray, black, and pale yellow. Nullarbor dragons require specialized care due to their specific habitat requirements and are generally recommended for experienced reptile keepers.