Collection of Articles and advice to help us keep our herps

Vicious_Fish

Here fishy fishy fishy...
MFK Member
Mar 9, 2007
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South Central...
Sorry for any of you who have already seen these pics but I thought I would show a good layout for an outdoor turtle enclosure.


My Box Turtle pen is basically made from 2x4's and some garden wire fence. It is 8'x8' and after being sunk into the earth is a little over 2 feet high.

The first pic shows a close up of a corner so you can see how it is constructed, not much to it. I choose large spaced wire because for most species of turtles, if they come to a barrier, they will try to climb it. Tight, 1/2 inch spaced wire for rabbit and chicken cages is not a good choice. Large spaced wire tricks the turtles into thinking they're not enclosed because they can see right through it. The color green helps as well!


This pic shows the entire cage before I sank into a five inch depth trench. The reason for this was in case my turtles started digging along the fence. They never have before but I don't want to take any chance of them escaping. Some species dig more than others so adjust the depth of the cage as you see fit


Here you can see the cage placed into the trench.


The final two pics are my finished cage. I filled the trench with the remaining dirt so the top of the 2x4's are flush with the ground. I constructed a house out of cinderblocks and some 2x10's. I sank a small tub for the turtles to soak in and I have a Chicken Water Dispenser for drinking clean, fresh water out of. I gave them some sand to dig in and lots of untreated mulch to bury into and hibernate. I plan on planting some more ferns and a couple of strawberry plants in there as well.



This pen can work for water turtles as well, just dig a pond in the middle. The wired sides will keep the turtles from escaping. I don't really recommend the open wire sides for tortoises because they will constantly try to escape and this will stress them out. Use plywood to block their view instead.
 

varanio

Jack Dempsey
MFK Member
Nov 24, 2005
3,797
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Pam Pam Pam
This is another angle of a tree monitor enclosure, this one is lined up with cork tiles all along the sides to utilize more surface are of the cage. And a close up of the cork tubes. ALL monitors that I have, have these tubes and they absolutley love them.

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malawi haps

Feeder Fish
MFK Member
Jun 20, 2007
891
1
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south carolina
Ok got the mist system finished !! It's cheap and easy to make .!st go to the home improvement store and get 90 degree misters for garden irrigation systems and a pack of t's and 90's and some hose. Then get a pump sprayer ( got mine at the dollar store) and 1/4 " cat 5 stapels .Alright the rest is very easy make up your plan as to where you want your misting heads to go and put all the components together . Use the 1/4 stapels to mount the heads and line to the inclosure.

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malawi haps

Feeder Fish
MFK Member
Jun 20, 2007
891
1
0
south carolina
N ext comes the sprayer , take the end off and drill a hole a little bit smaller than the outside of the hose.I was lucky enough to find one with a two part end to it and drilled out the second part as well next thread the hose through the tip first then the second part .Screwit to geather to make a water tight seal. Next fill up tank with water pump it up and walllllllllllah! your very own diy mister :headbang2

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malawi haps

Feeder Fish
MFK Member
Jun 20, 2007
891
1
0
south carolina
I am getting prices for the doors from other sources . That is the single largest cost for this due to needing to be tempered so if anything ever happens and one gets broken no one will be seriously harmed.I was also considering using acryllic but I dont think they will be rigid enough . Got a ton of silk plants and vines on sale today but those will be the last thing put in b4 the lizard.
 

vicedretard

Feeder Fish
MFK Member
Sep 8, 2006
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in the river

malawi haps

Feeder Fish
MFK Member
Jun 20, 2007
891
1
0
south carolina
Ok as promised the update with pics .I got the trim finished around the bottom and mounted the door to the storage compartment. I also doweled and pinned the top of the cage where the light box mounts and drilled holes in the light box so they fit together and lock in place .I also installed zinc coated L brackets so any would be escapees cannot get out. I am still deciding what I want to do with filtration .I am thinking of getting a renna fx2 canister and plumbing it in the water side to help with stagnation as well as waste collection .Or just putting a submersible filter in there.

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malawi haps

Feeder Fish
MFK Member
Jun 20, 2007
891
1
0
south carolina
Allright decided to go with a external filtration system to keep water from getting foul due to feces as well as stagnation .I decide to go with a renna fx2 ( got one for $40 used. It is currently hooked up to my 300 to get the benefical bacteria necessary to break down waste.I needed a way to hook it up in to the cage and keep as much as possible conceled .So I decided to go with bulkheads 1- 1" for drain and 1- 3/4" for return . I used a 1" for drain due to having a 1" strainer on hand already to keep large paticles from cloging up the filter..I drilled 2 holes in the ramp part or transition from water to land so the drain would be on the bottom and the return will be on top. I also got the rest of the fittings I needed to make them work .I still need to get tubeing to finalize the plumbing. I will mount the filtration system to the rear of the tank for concelment so I drilled 2 holes in the rear for the hoses to come through .Notice how the tubing and pluming is seperate from the storage compartment. I should be getting the tubing tomorrow to finish plumbing and finish the rockwork on the inside of the tank.

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