Overnight heat lamp for desert tortoise

Gaylord75

New Member
Joined
May 29, 2022
Messages
5
Location (City and/or State)
Rancho Cucamonga
Hello. I have a desert tortoise. But i am seeing different suggestions on the subject of heat lamps on youtube, whether or not to leave them on all night or to turn them off to simulate true night conditions. Please give me your input. Thank you
 

Yvonne G

Old Timer
TFO Admin
10 Year Member!
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jan 23, 2008
Messages
90,807
Location (City and/or State)
Clovis, CA
We need more info - inside or out? how old/big? where are you (weather)?
 

Tom

The Dog Trainer
10 Year Member!
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jan 9, 2010
Messages
57,289
Location (City and/or State)
Southern California
Hello. I have a desert tortoise. But i am seeing different suggestions on the subject of heat lamps on youtube, whether or not to leave them on all night or to turn them off to simulate true night conditions. Please give me your input. Thank you
As Yvonne said, we need more info. In general they should all have it dark at night. This time of year, night heat should not be needed for any size or age DT, unless you live inside a refrigerator.

Sadly, most of the care info for this species is all wrong and often results in their death if followed. Pet store Gove terrible advice and sell you the wrong products. Online info from YT and FB is equally terrible most of the time.

Here is the correct care information. Questions are welcome.
 

Gaylord75

New Member
Joined
May 29, 2022
Messages
5
Location (City and/or State)
Rancho Cucamonga
We need more info - inside or out? how old/big? where are you (weather)?
We need more info - inside or out? how old/big? where are you (weather)?
Hello. I have a desert tortoise. But i am seeing different suggestions on the subject of heat lamps on youtube, whether or not to leave them on all night or to turn them off to simulate true night conditions. Please give me your input. Thank you
Thank you for replying. So yes, she is about 8-9 years old. She is outside now. About a footlong now. We live in rancho cucamonga, ca. so it seems that i dont need to provide a lamp afterall at night… even in the wintertime? It can go down to about 40-50 degress farenheit… but i guess they can withstand the conditions in the desert
 

Yvonne G

Old Timer
TFO Admin
10 Year Member!
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jan 23, 2008
Messages
90,807
Location (City and/or State)
Clovis, CA
Does your tortoise have a burrow? or a dog house-type shelter? No heat is needed in the burrow because the earth doesn't cool down enough to be harmful. If in a shelter, if the nights will be 50°F or below you can either usr a radiant heat panel or a ceramic heat emitter on a thermostat, but if you use a CHE be sure to hang it high enough to not burn the tortoise's shell.
 

Tom

The Dog Trainer
10 Year Member!
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jan 9, 2010
Messages
57,289
Location (City and/or State)
Southern California
Thank you for replying. So yes, she is about 8-9 years old. She is outside now. About a footlong now. We live in rancho cucamonga, ca. so it seems that i dont need to provide a lamp afterall at night… even in the wintertime? It can go down to about 40-50 degress farenheit… but i guess they can withstand the conditions in the desert
In the care sheet that I linked is an explanation of outdoor housing that will work great for you. In fall, we can help you figure out the best way to safely brumate your tortoise.
 

Gaylord75

New Member
Joined
May 29, 2022
Messages
5
Location (City and/or State)
Rancho Cucamonga
Does your tortoise have a burrow? or a dog house-type shelter? No heat is needed in the burrow because the earth doesn't cool down enough to be harmful. If in a shelter, if the nights will be 50°F or below you can either usr a radiant heat panel or a ceramic heat emitter on a thermostat, but if you use a CHE be sure to hang it high enough to not burn the tortoise's shell.
Oh yes, she has a burrow i made and also a buried doghouse as shelters. I had her in an enclosed
Does your tortoise have a burrow? or a dog house-type shelter? No heat is needed in the burrow because the earth doesn't cool down enough to be harmful. If in a shelter, if the nights will be 50°F or below you can either usr a radiant heat panel or a ceramic heat emitter on a thermostat, but if you use a CHE be sure to hang it high enough to not burn the tortoise's shell.
Does your tortoise have a burrow? or a dog house-type shelter? No heat is needed in the burrow because the earth doesn't cool down enough to be harmful. If in a shelter, if the nights will be 50°F or below you can either usr a radiant heat panel or a ceramic heat emitter on a thermostat, but if you use a CHE be sure to hang it high enough to not burn the tortoise's shell.
Yes thank you . I made her a burrow and also have a buried a doghouse as an option for shelter. I had her in an enclosed cage before and placed a heat lamp on top thinking she needed it for the winter nights, but now after reading what you wrote, it seems i dont even need it if she burrows under for the night. Thank you so much for the info
 

Gaylord75

New Member
Joined
May 29, 2022
Messages
5
Location (City and/or State)
Rancho Cucamonga
Does your tortoise have a burrow? or a dog house-type shelter? No heat is needed in the burrow because the earth doesn't cool down enough to be harmful. If in a shelter, if the nights will be 50°F or below you can either usr a radiant heat panel or a ceramic heat emitter on a thermostat, but if you use a CHE be sure to hang it high enough to not burn the tortoise's shell.
I actually am building a shed for my tortoise in hopes that she will use it during the winter months, instead of digging and disappearing for a few months. But i wont force it. Thank you again
 
Top