Date Published: May 2011
The Central bearded dragon (Pogona vitticeps) is an Australian native lizard which is found in a wide range of arid to semi-arid habitats in the interior of Queensland, New South Wales, Victoria, South Australia and the Northern Territory.
The species is common and widespread throughout its Australian range and is not listed on the IUCN Red List of Threatened Species. Central bearded dragons are commonly used for commercial display in zoos and recreational keeping, and are common to the global pet trade. They are able to be handled easily and are described as 'docile and social', making them favourable pets for children.
The Central bearded dragon is legally protected in all range jurisdictions of Australia under various Acts, and was rejected for inclusion on the list of specimens suitable for import under the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act 1999.
The species is a 'controlled animal' under the Tasmanian Nature Conservation Act 2002.
The Central bearded dragon is not considered a pest species. It has not established feral populations outside its native range and no introduction attempts have been noted. There is no evidence of the species causing any significant impacts on the environment or agriculture.
There is a moderate likelihood of this species establishing in Tasmania. Anticipated impacts include competition with the Mountain dragon (Rankinia diemensis), and the Tussock skink (Pseudemoia pagenstecheri), and predation upon the endemic Ptunarra brown butterfly (Oreixenica ptunarra). The Tussock skink and the Ptunarra brown butterfly are listed threatened species under the Threatened Species Protection Act 1995.
This risk assessment concludes that Central bearded dragons are a moderate threat to Tasmania and proposes that imports be restricted to those license holders approved for keeping moderate threat species.
Central Bearded Dragon (Pogona vitticeps) (769Kb)