need ideas for INDOOR housing a sulcata

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stinax182

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need ideas for outdoor housing a sulcata

i live in springfield, ma. so my tortoise will be outside from may-sept give or take the weather. i have a space for him but have a couple questions:

- should i cover the top of the entire enclosure with screen or something?

- i have raccoons in my area, should i put a door on his nighttime house?

- is the regular grass i have previously growing okay? (not for his diet, but just to live in?)

- what should i use for the sides? (wood paneling, see-through fencing)

- should his nighttime house be off the ground?

- should it be heated? nighttime temps get as low as 50 degrees at the very lowest during the summer. i would bring him inside if i thought it would get too cold for him.

please help, i intend on adopting a larger one so i need it ready soon!
 

stinax182

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same person needing ideas for outside enclosures :D like i said, while he'll be outside may-sept, he will be inside my house oct-apr. i live in a 2 story house and i live mostly upstairs, so i'm hoping he could be up there with me.

i do have a room that i will be giving up for him, but how should i set this room up? i can't exactly have moist substrate on my nice hardwood flooring. and i REALLY can't have him bulldozing through walls. it has a nice closet that will be his hide box and i was thinking of just setting up some heat lights in a corner seeing as there's 2 windows in this small room. could i possibly put a big tuperware container with some moist substrate big enough for him to get in when he wants?

but then comes the problem of his pooping.....i might just lay a tarp down on the whole floor....remember, i have flooring that cannot withstand moisture.

PLEASE HELP.
 

Tom

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Whether you cover the top or not depends on the size of the tortoise, and the predator threat level in YOUR particular area.

I like a door on the night house both to keep out predators, and to keep in warmth.

Your grass should be fine.

For the sides you need a visual barrier as well as a physical barrier. Wood works fine, as does cinder blocks, rail road ties, landscaping timbers, corrugated metal sheeting, plywood and many more. 18" high will contain and adult.

Yes your night house should be raised. I set mine on 4x4s. Then if you hinge your door on the bottom, it's a ramp during the day and a fold up flap door for night time.

Yes you should put some heat in your night house, but on a thermostat. Pig blankets, CHEs, radiant heat panels and radiant oil filled heaters all work.

I don't know what to tell you about the floor and walls. Big sulcatas are messy. It's sort of like having a pig or small pony in your house. You will have to line everything with plywood, caulk it and seal it with something. If you put plywood 24" up the walls that should protect them for a while. They are just not good for indoors in normal house. It CAN be done, bit it's not cheap or easy.
 

wellington

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How large of one do you plan on getting? Carrying him up to the second level may be a job. I would cover your wood floor with PVC pond liner. A larger sulcata would probably rip regular plastic. If you lined the whole area you are allowing him to go, then you could put down a substrate to help him with his walking on the slippery liner. You could also put a kiddy pool in for the moist substrate area and just cut a side so he can walk in himself. The kiddy pool could also hold his large water/soaking dish. Good luck, post pics when you have it figured out and set up:)
 

Laura

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How long do you plan on housing him inside? years? when it is large? I wouldnt do it. :-( not fair to the animal or you! it can be done outside.. its just $ and harder.
 

stinax182

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well, i don't have a tortoise right now. i'm trying to adopt an unwanted one. nothing over 20 lbs.

and i have another option of housing him in my basement. it's not a finished basement but the cement foundation would be very hard to burrow through :D and it's basically the best place for him and my family what with their smell and i'm guessing dragging their weight probably makes a lot of noise, as well. it's well insulated and already naturally damp. i'd just box off a quarter of the room, lay some substrate on the cement, set some lights up, some hide boxes and definitely some fans for air circulation. is that a better idea than the upstairs spare bedroom? :p
 
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