Grow tent Enclosure for Greek Yearling - Feedback wanted! [With Photos]

daddy_frankenstein

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Jan 4, 2021
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6
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Edinburgh, U.K.
Hello all!

My Greek yearling is moving to a new home and I’ve built her an indoor enclosure that I hope will last her I until she is 3.

Dimensions are 180cm by 90cm (roughly 6ft by 3ft). The substrate is a mixture of coco coir and orchid bark (Roughly a 70:30 mix). She’s got a heat lamp, UVB strip and 6500K LED bulb for light

The basking slate under the heat lamp is roughly 38.5C after 4 hours, is that too hot?

Is there any specific plants I should be looking to add? I’m planning on adding a spider plant and devil’s ivy

Any feedback would be useful!

EDIT: I haven’t mounted her 150W ceramic heat bulb yet, but that will be mounted soon connected to an on/off thermostat set to turn on if it dips below 22C

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KarenSoCal

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Overall, it looks pretty good. I do have a few observations though.

Your substrate is fine. If you pack down the coco with your hand it will hold water better and stay put better. Then put the bark on top.

If you have mixed them, you might find that the coco will eventually settle to the bottom. You may want to increase the bark ratio. The coco will still settle though.

The basking temp is a little high.
33-35°C is what we usually aim for. For the low at night, most of the time we keep it above 27°C. I am not sure of the exact values for Greeks specifically, but this is the care sheet.

I'm not familiar with devil's ivy, but spider plants do fairly well. Pothos is a vine and grows great in the enclosure! Put the plants in pots and sink them into the substrate if you don't want to see the pot. It makes the plant a bit harder to knock over and trample or eat. Prayer plants, Boston fern, African violets, any kind of bromeliad are all safe. I haven't tried these, so I don't know how they would hold up.

Are you aware that you cannot just buy a commercially grown plant and put it into the enclosure? If you know this, I won't go through it all. If you don't know about this, let us know.

The easiest way to get plants is to get cuttings from friends or family, as long as they don't use bug or weed killers. Plain fertilizer is OK...just no added chemicals in it.

The water bowl could be a problem. With straight up and down sides, small torts have difficulty getting in and out. They easily fall onto their backs, and if in water they can drown. A terra cotta plant saucer is the best item to use. Get one big enough for your baby to get into, sink it even with the substrate, and she'll be safe.

My last suggestion is to stuff the cords from the vent into the vent. Green things hanging down are too much temptation for our torts.
 

daddy_frankenstein

New Member
Joined
Jan 4, 2021
Messages
6
Location (City and/or State)
Edinburgh, U.K.
Overall, it looks pretty good. I do have a few observations though.

Your substrate is fine. If you pack down the coco with your hand it will hold water better and stay put better. Then put the bark on top.

If you have mixed them, you might find that the coco will eventually settle to the bottom. You may want to increase the bark ratio. The coco will still settle though.

The basking temp is a little high.
33-35°C is what we usually aim for. For the low at night, most of the time we keep it above 27°C. I am not sure of the exact values for Greeks specifically, but this is the care sheet.

I'm not familiar with devil's ivy, but spider plants do fairly well. Pothos is a vine and grows great in the enclosure! Put the plants in pots and sink them into the substrate if you don't want to see the pot. It makes the plant a bit harder to knock over and trample or eat. Prayer plants, Boston fern, African violets, any kind of bromeliad are all safe. I haven't tried these, so I don't know how they would hold up.

Are you aware that you cannot just buy a commercially grown plant and put it into the enclosure? If you know this, I won't go through it all. If you don't know about this, let us know.

The easiest way to get plants is to get cuttings from friends or family, as long as they don't use bug or weed killers. Plain fertilizer is OK...just no added chemicals in it.

The water bowl could be a problem. With straight up and down sides, small torts have difficulty getting in and out. They easily fall onto their backs, and if in water they can drown. A terra cotta plant saucer is the best item to use. Get one big enough for your baby to get into, sink it even with the substrate, and she'll be safe.

My last suggestion is to stuff the cords from the vent into the vent. Green things hanging down are too much temptation for our torts.

Thanks so much for the response!

I was a little concerned about putting too much bark in, as I accidentally bought large bark pieces rather than fine, and I've heard on their own they can be tricky for e ones to walk on, so I thought I'd add additional coco coir to compensate, but I'll definitely try and put more of the bark on top if that would be better for them.

In terms of basking temp and water bowl, I'll definitely pull it up a bit to make sure the basking temp is 35°C max, and I've use a terracotta saucer for water - thanks for highlighting those👍

I didn't know I couldn't order plants 🙈 I'll search around the forum for more advice regarding that as I was just planning on buying some - Thanks for the plant suggestions though, my grandfather grows a lot of plants so I'll enquire if he already has some tortoise friendly plants and see if I can get cutting from him.

And what was I thinking regarding the green hanging cords, I'll make sure those are tied up so the little one can't get to them!

Thanks again!
 
Joined
May 27, 2021
Messages
5
Location (City and/or State)
Kent, UK
Hi,

Your setup looks great and should be big enough easily.

The ceramic heater should be on during the day with the thermostat set to keep the temp above 27c then switch off at night. Temperate torts like a drop in temps at night and as long as it doesn’t drop below 18c you won’t need additional heat.

For plants, look for live plants in reptile centres where they provide plants that are safe for your tort, tortoisehut.co.uk and reptilcentre.com are two that I have used.

Download the tortoisetable app to easily find out which plants are safe for your tort.

Hope that helps 😁
 
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