Russian Tortoise - 5.0 or 10.0 UVB?

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bettinge

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Get the 5.0! The 10.0 has a longer range and is designed for stuff like Chameleon cages where the animal is much further from the bulb. In my opinion.
 

Yvonne G

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Hi Jaxie:

Welcome to the forum!!

Try to get your tortoise outside for some sunshine at least every other day, then the smaller light would be good enough.

I'm not familiar with that kind of light, does it give off heat? If not, you'll also need some sort of light that he can sit under to warm up his body. They can't digest their food unless they can get warmer than room temperature.
 

tortoisenerd

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Welcome to the forum! Do you have this tortoise already? If so, how old is it? If not, what type (captive bred or wild caught, age, etc) are you planning to get? Congrats!

If your tort gets sun on a regular basis (such as most days for a couple hours), which is the best way to go so it thrives, I would just go for a household light bulb for the time it may need to spend indoors such as when its cold. Otherwise, I would buy a 100 Watt T-Rex Active UV Heat (not UV Heat) or Mega Ray. Unfortunately both are on back order at every site I've looked at right now. Those are the two best brands and they are UVB, heat, and light all in one--top of the line in mimicking the natural sun. For a comparison of UVB output with a tube light to a UVB (the difference is vast), take a look here: http://www.uvguide.co.uk/mercuryvapourlamps.htm and http://www.uvguide.co.uk/fluorescenttubes.htm

The MVB can actually be cheaper in the long run because you buy one bulb every 12 months and one fixture, vs. the tube uvb every 6 months, heat emitter, and light bulb with their three fixtures. The wattage as far as electricity cost goes is also less with just the MVB. Plus, it's better for the tortoise! Unfortunately you can't just go to Petco and find a good MVB. They may carry the Powersun (not quite as good as the two I listed) for more like $80 vs. paying $50 online for the good ones. You need a lamp stand and a ceramic socket hood fixture with the MVB. They need to have the bulb face parallel to the substrate. With any light & heat set up you need an accurate thermometer like a temp gun (PE1 is $25 on Ebay). If your night temps are above 70 F for a hatchling and above 60 F for an adult, no night heat is required. Otherwise you need a ceramic heat emitter or black light bulb.

Good luck! We love photos of torts and enclosures.
 
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