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The Perfect Enclosure

Discussion in 'Tegu Enclosures' started by Nya Wasp, Nov 6, 2018.

  1. Nya Wasp

    Nya Wasp New Member

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    Hi All!

    I'm setting out to build Norbert's big boy tank, and I'm looking for ideas on what to include, layout, heating options etc.

    He's currently in a 40 gallon breeder in my bedroom, see pic.
    [​IMG]

    So I sketched up an idea for my livingroom, see pic.
    upload_2018-11-6_12-46-32.png

    The other shelves/openings are for my other herp kids.

    I've been going back and forth on whether to just use lamps for all heat, or to install a thermostat to control under floor heating for ambient and just use one lamp for basking/uvb. I live in Northern Virginia, and have central heating and cooling in my home (built 1991).

    My initial idea was to have Norbert on the floor for ease of play time, i.e. I could just slide door up and let him come out and play, and retreat to his room when he was done, rather then having to carry him back when he start to bury himself in the couch cushions... but then I saw some other builds where the main enclosure is build on top of a cabinet system, which i can see as a plus since heat rises and less dog nose prints to wash off the glass (plexi).

    I'm happy to hear comments and criticism. I'm expecting to have to alter things a bit along the way to meet Norbert's personal tegu preferences, but the base structure I would like to get right on the first go.

    Thank you for your advice in advance, and I'm happy to answer any questions!

    -Nya
  2. nightanole

    nightanole Member

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    If you are a going with a free range approach you need to mitigate at least 2 issues.

    Issue 1 is humidity. Odds are your home can only support 75-85%+ humidity for 6 months out of the year or less.
    Issue 2 is free range cooling. It is not good for them to spend the majority of the 24 hour day at 70-75f.

    I solved issue 1 by having a "sleeping box" that is 4x4 and about 3ft high, made out of a $40 ibc tote. I then filled it with 2ft of "insert your favorite mix of peatmoss and dirt mix". So the sleeping cave is at least a foot below level, and maintains the needed 85-100% humidity levels. The big guy will stay in the cave from about 7pm till 9am when he wakes up and starts basking. So thats a full 14 hours a day of ideal humidity.

    I solved my local cooling issue by placing several "outdoor pet 12v power supply heating pads" behind things where he likes to hide. These draw 15 watts each tops, temp regulated, and never turn off. I set them to 45c, which is enough to keep the tegu in the 90's for body temp.


    Finally you may want to "protect" your other scaly family members from the tegu. You will be dealing with a digger that can jump 3-4ft up that is very food curious.
    Nya Wasp likes this.
  3. Nya Wasp

    Nya Wasp New Member

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    Thank you for your advice! I like the compketely seperate zones idea. I'm going to go back to the drawing board, and sketch up some ideas. I'll update the post with new sketches ASAP.

    Thanks again!