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Outdoor Accommodation in a Colder (UK) Climate

Discussion in 'Tortoise Enclosures' started by JoesMum, Apr 28, 2016.

  1. Tidgy's Dad

    Tidgy's Dad Well-Known Member

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    Welcome!
    I'm half Welsh and well know the climate, though I now live in a place where Greeks occur in the wild.Other Welsh members about too. :)
    JoesMum likes this.
  2. Kristoff

    Kristoff Well-Known Member

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    @JoesMum, I'm not anywhere near the UK climate but this thread is so helpful. The temps are starting to fall even here in Turkey, so I made a cold frame inspired by your post. (I'm not a hands-on person, unfortunately).

    A heartfelt thank you for sharing your knowledge!!

    ImageUploadedByTortoise Forum1472735666.236163.jpg ImageUploadedByTortoise Forum1472735739.302070.jpg
  3. Marinated mamma

    Marinated mamma Well-Known Member

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    It doesn't matter how hands on you are your tortoise will love it
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  4. JoesMum

    JoesMum Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    I'm glad this is proving useful for ideas :)
  5. Marinated mamma

    Marinated mamma Well-Known Member

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    Our new cold frame is well and truly under construction! I can't take the credit it's the other half with his ingenuous building skills ImageUploadedByTortoise Forum1472806395.376533.jpg ImageUploadedByTortoise Forum1472806404.628875.jpg
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  6. Marinated mamma

    Marinated mamma Well-Known Member

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    Will post with the finished result obviously!
  7. Marinated mamma

    Marinated mamma Well-Known Member

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    Not today tho as its raining ... Boo thumbs down
  8. JoesMum

    JoesMum Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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  9. Lauren Tilbury

    Lauren Tilbury New Member

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    Hi, @JoesMum.
    This cold frame, is it used during the winter months? If so, when they are hibernating, do they mind the sun coming in. I'm sorry. I'm really new to this. I live in Southern California. We don't get very cold here. It's been beautiful for the last week. I am trying to come up with a configuration for her den. I see different things on the forum. Do you have two houses? One for winter and one for summer?
  10. JoesMum

    JoesMum Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    @Lauren Tilbury In the winter months Joe hibernates so he does absolutely nothing for 3-4 months.

    Until this winter we have always had a hibernation box in the garage, but climate change has made temperature stability an issue. As a result, this winter he's hibernating in a fridge we got specially for the purpose.

    If you have a tortoise that's not hibernating for the winter and the weather outside is warm enough there's no reason you couldn't use the cold frame all winter.

    It does not provide enough insulation against temperature change for hibernating a tortoise in it though. For successful healthy hibernation temperatures must be stable around 5C/40F and never going below freezing or above 10C/50F
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  11. Lauren Tilbury

    Lauren Tilbury New Member

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    @JoesMum, thank you for the info. I am in Southern California. I am about 15 minutes from Disneyland, but by the beach. It doesn't get too cold here. Right now it's 65 degrees, but warm in the sun. I was wondering about the black slate rocks. I'm having a hard time finding black slate. Can it be any natural rock that is black??
  12. JoesMum

    JoesMum Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Any dark coloured rocks will do the job. The dark colour absorbs the heat better.

    65F is 18C which translates into a pretty nice day in the UK. We'd be more than happy with that! If the sun is out, you should have no problem getting the ground temperature up. :)
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  13. micki

    micki Member 5 Year Member

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    This is an excellent read. Many thanks for posting it.
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  14. beccabobbins

    beccabobbins New Member

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    I have just finished making an outdoor enclosure in Dorset for my Greek tortoise and I found this such a helpful read.
    I'm definitely going to invest in some blue slate chippings and have an area for basking.
    My tortoise spends a lot of time indoors under his lamp at the moment but my plan is to let him spend most of days outdoors and bring him in overnight.
    On cooler days should I let him warm up under his lamp before I put him out or just pop him in his cold frame?
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  15. JoesMum

    JoesMum Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    I let Joe warm up under a lamp first.

    I tend to think of it as putting him on charge like a mobile phone... if he's got a full charge then he's good for a couple of hours even in the colder days. Joe can of course return to the lamp in the kennel at any point.
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  16. risepark

    risepark New Member

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    Thanks for a terrific post. Unfortunately we have no neighbours able to come in every day, or relatives. In addition we have a large field to the rear, and I know we get the occasional fox. There is a wildlife park who will look after him, in an enclosed space with heating etc. They are very proffesional, and we will probablly take him there. We have used a local specialist reptile shop, and he is kept in a terrarium. It's just that he loves the outdoors. All the other advice is great, and I thank you. Regards risepark
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  17. Ed mitch

    Ed mitch Active Member

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    This is very helpful especially as I live down in cornwall!
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  18. TiffytheTort

    TiffytheTort Member

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    Thx! This will help with my outdoor enclosure for Tiffany ImageUploadedByTortoise Forum1496054424.310404.jpg great thread :D ImageUploadedByTortoise Forum1496054469.944832.jpg ImageUploadedByTortoise Forum1496054485.430298.jpg
    JoesMum likes this.
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