• Common Group: Lizard
  • Common Name: Chinese Water Dragon
  • Scientific Name: Physignathus cocincinus
  • Distribution: South East Asia
  • Size: Up to 90cm (3ft) inc long tail (2/3) Females somewhat smaller
  • Natural Habitat:

    This species can be found in the branches of trees and bushes overhanging the river and in burrows along the river banks.  When these dragons are frightened or nervous they take refuge in the water and can stay submerged for up to 25 mins.  Lifespan is around 10-20 yrs.


    One of the more adaptable pet lizards the Chinese Water Dragons are easy to handle, quite gentle, not destructive and given the right conditions will breed easily.

    Captive Environment

    A large vivarium is required (3ft at least) for these dragons with a water area big enough to submerge 50% of the dragons’ body.  A viv that is too small can result in snout damage.  A UV light is essential (12hrs a day) to ensure healthy bone growth.  We use a ceramic bulb to keep the temp up in the basking area.


    Daytime temperature is 32 degrees C. Nightime temperature should be 24 degrees C, use a thermostat to obtain correct temperatures.


    Water Dragons require high humidity therefore the tank and plants need misting twice a day.

    Nutritional Requirements

    Young Water Dragons should be fed crickets on a daily basis and offered mealworms every couple of days.  Adult dragons should be fed every 2-3 days and will take small mice, large crickets, kingworms, greens and fruits.

    Water Requirements:

    Fresh clean water is a must.  A large water dish or even water area in the viv should be provided, as this species likes to be in water.