Outdoor hide box

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brandhllg

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Maumelle Arkansas
Hello everyone,
I am from central Arkansas I have a one year old african spurred tortoise doing absolutely perfect. It's about time for me to be moving him back outside to his 15'x15' enclosure I have built for him in the backyard ( i know in time this will become much much larger) I have some great ideas to make his outdoor space a perfect place for him but the one thing I'm struggling with is his hide box. It gets hot here and even though he did great outside last summer I want to be able to provide him a space to allow him a perfect cool down area if he wants to cool off from our extremely hot summer days. I have already decided to remove some earth and replace it with a clay/coconut mixture that he can dig into that would provide some cooling but what building materials should I use to build the actual hide box out of? Should it be wood, plastic, or stone? Which material would reflect the sun the most?! I have everything else completely in check for my tortoise I have literally planted dandelions, clover, Bermuda, orchard grass, and other weeds and grass throughout the entire back yard which can grow here year round, but need help with this one piece of the puzzle.. Can anyone suggest?
 

abclements

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I would build it out of stone and cover it with dirt. That way you get a naturalistic feel of the stone and the insulation of moist dirt. Maybe even plant some grass on top of that for added moisture. Thatll give him a good place to crawl into during the hot summer days :)
 

rideburton87

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This is my first year owning tortoises but for my outdoor hide I was going to build it out of wood (possibly insulate it like a normal house) but underneath the hide I was going to dig down a little bit till I hit the right depth where the temp would regulate around 80. I have an electronic temp/humidity gauge that will tell the high's and lows through out the day I was planning on using to check n see how stable the temperatures would be. Whatever you plan on doing let us know n post some pics n plans!

Oh yeah and I got my idea from another member here. Her house for her sulcata is made of wood with I wanna say a tarp used to water proof it and she used leaves (I Think) around the outside to insulate it and I wanna say dug down 2 feet to keep a consistent temp.
 

SpdTrtl

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Austin, TX
Tom, that is amazing. I love it. Daisy must be the happiest Tortoise under the earth! Thanks for sharing!
 

brandhllg

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Location (City and/or State)
Maumelle Arkansas
I will post pics of the enclosure once I finish the hide box for everyone to see.. I'm going to use several of your suggestions. I'm extremely close to the Arkansas river/ Lake Maumelle so we have an extremely high water table, with clay ground as well. I love the suggestions and I viewed Toms build.. I'm basically going to build half above ground and half underneath the ground. For the roof I'm going to seal it but place sod layer on top to help with coolness.. Flooding is a concern so whatever I do I'm going to make sure it's accessible.. Again thank y'all for the input.. Your ideas have now have gave me a plan..
 

N2TORTS

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yet another idea ......here is an X-tra large Dog~loo.....buried 3' down.With natural "feather weight" Lava rocks on top to provide a "natural " surround. It too has electrical/lights/ heat ....keeps temps coolin’ the summer and warm in the winter ....:)



JD~
 
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