wow (new enclosure)

poppop

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well i wanted to say we got a red foot about 6 months ago and the cage we got even being 2ft by 4ft wooden box with window she just seemed unhappy maybe it was just me or her leaving the person who raised her from a egg but some days she just seemed down and just to clear it up clean bill of health shes like an ox so i decided it was the cage and about 2 weeks ago off to the lumber yard i went now she has the same size cage made outa real wood not that amazon wood lol but now shes in a window on floor of course with a mini wooden fence arownd her cage with a door misters fake grass comes today to cover up wood and new substrate they said to buy this stuff so i kept doing it but idk i think i was lied to but want softer stuff to try and now she can come and go as she pleses shes the happyiest lil red foot she flys arownd the house and when shes done she gose back to her cage walks in to her hut or under the heat lamp i just never knew how smart these guys were omg she is so funny but smart as a whipIMG_20240618_083417.jpg
 

wellington

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Glad to here you updated her enclosure but you should have gone bigger than she had as she should not be roaming the floors of your house. They are to cold, to dangerous and we see it to many times where people do this and then the tortoise gets hurt or dead.
Substrate should be orchid bark or fir bark. Coconut coir is fine too.
 

poppop

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Glad to here you updated her enclosure but you should have gone bigger than she had as she should not be roaming the floors of your house. They are to cold, to dangerous and we see it to many times where people do this and then the tortoise gets hurt or dead.
Substrate should be orchid bark or fir bark. Coconut coir is fine too.
yea but i have a free rang rabbit who just has a litter box like a cat and 2 birds that are free as well except night same with jelly bean my tortoise my floors are heated so i didnt think that was a prob but im glad you spoke up so shes about 6 inces right now but im also not an avarage pet owner this is however my first tortoise so really anyinfo helps so she should be locked most of the time and how big should i go i made it so i can put in extensions when she got bigger and can make fence higher ...i just want her to live the best life i can possibly give her with out an outside encloser as i live in Vermont i got coconut coir coming today i dont like the bark i wouldent want to sand and sleep on that.. now being in the open the way it is 4 misters 5 times a day 1 min spray time keeps wood damp like when i would say its kinda dry misters go agian exept under heat light should i run it more should i get a humidifire not really shure how that would help being in open like she is now but like i said any info helps like a make sure this this and that gets done
 

wellington

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No humidifiers. Redfoot are prone to shell rot. So you want top layer dry while bottom being damp. There really is no way to keep humidity where it needs to be without having a closed chamber enclosure. Get a pop up greenhouse and place over the top.
Like this in pic.
1000001352.png
 

wellington

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As she gets bigger you can add on. However, when full size, she will need a room size enclosure. Hopefully you can dedicate a room just for her
Always best to get them outside when possible.
 

Tom

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well i wanted to say we got a red foot about 6 months ago and the cage we got even being 2ft by 4ft wooden box with window she just seemed unhappy maybe it was just me or her leaving the person who raised her from a egg but some days she just seemed down and just to clear it up clean bill of health shes like an ox so i decided it was the cage and about 2 weeks ago off to the lumber yard i went now she has the same size cage made outa real wood not that amazon wood lol but now shes in a window on floor of course with a mini wooden fence arownd her cage with a door misters fake grass comes today to cover up wood and new substrate they said to buy this stuff so i kept doing it but idk i think i was lied to but want softer stuff to try and now she can come and go as she pleses shes the happyiest lil red foot she flys arownd the house and when shes done she gose back to her cage walks in to her hut or under the heat lamp i just never knew how smart these guys were omg she is so funny but smart as a whipView attachment 372345
This is an awesome idea and you are obviously putting in huge effort to make a wonderful life for this tortoise, but this is the wrong type of environment for a RF. They need a large closed chamber to keep it warm and humid. Open topped enclosure don't work.

No tortoise should ever be loose on the floor. That always ends in disaster in one of many many ways. Everyone thinks it is safe and doesn't understand why we all say this. They argue because they don't understand. They don't understand until "it" happens, and then they understand one day too late. Please keep your tortoise confined to its enclosure if you want it to survive and be unharmed.

Tortoises need opaque walls. That sort of fencing is not suitable.

No fake grass. They will eat it and it can cause impaction.

RFs don't need a basking lamp. Just an over all warm ambient temp of around 82-86 al the time.

More general info here:
 

Littleredfootbigredheart

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Hello! It’s sweet how much effort you’re putting in to improve things, I’d definitely take the advice of the other members!

May I ask what bulbs it is you’re using? If going with a light emitting heat source, use an incandescent floodlight, avoid anything labelled halogen or mercury vapour. This will need to be on a 12hour timer.

However red foots aren’t necessarily a basking species coming from the forest floor, nor do they need a ‘warmer end’ and a ‘cooler end’ they thrive in a ambient temperature range of 80-86, 82-84 being optimal. To achieve this you’ll probably find it easier switching to CHE’s (ceramic heat emitters) as your heat source, hang them evenly from one another to distribute the heat more evenly, these can run 24/7 and they need to be on a thermostat.
Then for ambient lighting, hang it so the entire enclosure is lit but provide plenty of shady spots with plants and hides cause red foots don’t like things too bright. Either get some led strip lighting or a standard screw in led in the colour range 5000-6500k from the hardware store, this needs to be on a 12hour timer.

What are you using for uv light? You need to provide it the form of a t5 fluorescent tube light, don’t go with compact uv bulbs, they can damage the tortoises eyes, I’d recommend the Arcadia brand cause it comes with the reflector fitting to waste no uv light, mount it 18-21 inches from substrate, this can be on a separate 4hour timer from noon. I’ll include photos of it and how people mount them for your style set up, perhaps make a stand out of some timber.

Definitely remove any foggers/ misters, they make the air too wet causing respiratory issues and only focus of getting the top layer of substrate wet, which will leave them prone to shell rot. You want to aim to have the bottom layer of substrate damp, to do this pour lukewarm water into the corners, not loads but enough to dampen the entire bottom layer. To stop that top layer getting a little too dry/dusty, mix the substrate now n then, which also helps boosting humidity.

You’re going to find it impossible to maintain humidity in your set up, the humidity is vital to your young red foot! You need a closed chamber set up, to achieve this, a greenhouse topper is a good shout! If you can’t find an exact fit for your base then place it over like the one with the white base in the photo, I’d put lining down under the base and cover though to stop condensate getting on your floor. I’d also line your base with cheap pond liner as it’s wood, it’ll be sure to rot otherwise. Some people even hang their lighting from the frame! Simply wrap the wire round so it’s at the height you need(check with temp gun/put thermostat in, 18-21 for uv) and secure with cable ties.

For a larger base because your baby could do with more room, you could use a flower bed lined, or make your own to line. Then secure the greenhouse topper on.

Definitely have something measuring both your temps and humidity, keep an eye on your monitors and substrate to do the pours as and when needed.

Ignore whatever else is in these enclosures in the photos, they’re just to give you an idea👍
 

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poppop

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Waitsfield Vermont
As she gets bigger you can add on. However, when full size, she will need a room size enclosure. Hopefully you can dedicate a room just for her
Always best to get them outside when possible.
oh yes i tried telling my girl we should redo room downstairs
This is an awesome idea and you are obviously putting in huge effort to make a wonderful life for this tortoise, but this is the wrong type of environment for a RF. They need a large closed chamber to keep it warm and humid. Open topped enclosure don't work.

No tortoise should ever be loose on the floor. That always ends in disaster in one of many many ways. Everyone thinks it is safe and doesn't understand why we all say this. They argue because they don't understand. They don't understand until "it" happens, and then they understand one day too late. Please keep your tortoise confined to its enclosure if you want it to survive and be unharmed.

Tortoises need opaque walls. That sort of fencing is not suitable.

No fake grass. They will eat it and it can cause impaction.

RFs don't need a basking lamp. Just an over all warm ambient temp of around 82-86 al the time.

More general info here:
they dont need a basking lamp? i have a uva and uvb balb and a ceramic baulb and wanted to combine them and when i say free range i mean as long as im in the house shes more then welcome to run arownd if i leave the house take a shower go outside work or bed shes in her cage and temp i keepp my house 75 all year arownd i should move to the south bc vt is to cold for me lol if my girl would let me have the heat at 90 i would lol but we all can say stuff like human food is bad for your dog. witch is well wrong ask a vet people food is just as good for your dog as you like my rabbit people told me he couldnt be free range with out chowing wires basebords pissing and pooping everywere here i am 1 year later fully house broken rabbit he has free range 24/7 did he chew every wire on my reef tank yes did he pee yes but we did it togather im fine going that extra mile my birds are working on harnis training so from there we can start to learn free flight outside i just need to know how to do it safly like before my tortoise runs aroownd floors are moped and dryed so i know shes not eating anything yes pet safe cleaners i dont mess arownd when it comes to my animales i dont under stand let her outside to run but arownd the house is wrong i fell like if im arownd she should have option to run arownd my aunt owns a pet store my brother owens prob 30 diffrent reptiles i grow up with just about any animel you can imagine exept turtels bcmy parents said they stink but now im 35 and a tortoise well i wish i had gotton one years ago she is so funny
 

The_Four_Toed_Edward

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While you have done many things to make roaming your floors safer, fact is that it cannot be made safe.

Here are some experiences other people have had with tortoises free roaming the house: https://tortoiseforum.org/threads/s...o-roam-around-on-the-floor-of-my-room.162445/

You need to remember that tortoises can't be compared to mammals like rabbits. One issue you might be overlooking, is that walking on the floor, or any hard surface is bad for your tortoises joints.

Even though your house might be warm, it might be colder near the floor and there even could be a slight draft which is terrible for your tortoises health.

Bottom line, free roaming tortoises is a whole different thing compared to rabbits.
 

Littleredfootbigredheart

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oh yes i tried telling my girl we should redo room downstairs

they dont need a basking lamp? i have a uva and uvb balb and a ceramic baulb and wanted to combine them and when i say free range i mean as long as im in the house shes more then welcome to run arownd if i leave the house take a shower go outside work or bed shes in her cage and temp i keepp my house 75 all year arownd i should move to the south bc vt is to cold for me lol if my girl would let me have the heat at 90 i would lol but we all can say stuff like human food is bad for your dog. witch is well wrong ask a vet people food is just as good for your dog as you like my rabbit people told me he couldnt be free range with out chowing wires basebords pissing and pooping everywere here i am 1 year later fully house broken rabbit he has free range 24/7 did he chew every wire on my reef tank yes did he pee yes but we did it togather im fine going that extra mile my birds are working on harnis training so from there we can start to learn free flight outside i just need to know how to do it safly like before my tortoise runs aroownd floors are moped and dryed so i know shes not eating anything yes pet safe cleaners i dont mess arownd when it comes to my animales i dont under stand let her outside to run but arownd the house is wrong i fell like if im arownd she should have option to run arownd my aunt owns a pet store my brother owens prob 30 diffrent reptiles i grow up with just about any animel you can imagine exept turtels bcmy parents said they stink but now im 35 and a tortoise well i wish i had gotton one years ago she is so funny
Read my reply if you can, clear up your queries here. Make sure you’re using the right types of bulbs, I’ve attached them in my reply, I don’t see a tube light in your photos for uv?
You’ll definitely want to add something like the greenhouse topper me and wellington mentioned, and maintain your humidity in the ways suggested, get rid of any foggers/misters👍
Also read @The_Four_Toed_Edward latest reply, highly discourage the free roaming for the reasons mentioned🙂
 

poppop

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oh uva/ uvb bulb for her its what the pet store said i needed its not a tube and a ceramic heat bulb mister that mist outa 4 mister heads 1 min 5 times a day to keep bottom of bedding damp but top drys out and it dosent mist at night ok yea the plastic thing idk why have somthing to plastic off so thats gunna be temp ima treat her like a teenager and give her to spend all her time in but now i have the question of a pound 1-2 inces ok and flooring would wood chips on half be ok and cement on other or no cement either way i gatta cut a whole for a pound that i gatta custume build bc these guys a wierd and can drownd i would have never thought but i think people should talk to people selling these at pet stores and vet bc i was told 30min bath everyday for soaking and the misters and she would live a happy healthy life so im glad i found all of you my girl not so much lol when it comes to my pets no amont of money will stand in my way i just want a happy heathy tortoise so plasic for now and no hard wood floors bc of her joints
 

Alex and the Redfoot

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> they dont need a basking lamp? i have a uva and uvb balb and a ceramic baulb and wanted to combine them
They can do just fine without a basking lamp, just having half of the enclosure shaded and ambient light + UVB tube in other part. And ceramic heat emitters or radiant heat panels for stable temperatures across the enclosure. Redfoots bask but heating should be mild (not 95-105F zone as for Testudos) and basking time should be limited to 2-4 hours otherwise they develop pyramiding easily. Combining ambient heat and light, UVB/UVA source and basking area heat/light in a single bulb is a bad idea it's more expensive in the long run, has worse characterisitcs and you can't tweak and adjust parameters (intensity, timings, areas) easily.

> and when i say free range i mean as long as im in the house shes more then welcome to run arownd
If you make your house 100% tortoise-proof and risk-free territory than you basically built a bad room-sized tortoise enclosure. If it's not 100% safe - then incidents will happen.
 

Littleredfootbigredheart

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oh uva/ uvb bulb for her its what the pet store said i needed its not a tube and a ceramic heat bulb mister that mist outa 4 mister heads 1 min 5 times a day to keep bottom of bedding damp but top drys out and it dosent mist at night ok yea the plastic thing idk why have somthing to plastic off so thats gunna be temp ima treat her like a teenager and give her to spend all her time in but now i have the question of a pound 1-2 inces ok and flooring would wood chips on half be ok and cement on other or no cement either way i gatta cut a whole for a pound that i gatta custume build bc these guys a wierd and can drownd i would have never thought but i think people should talk to people selling these at pet stores and vet bc i was told 30min bath everyday for soaking and the misters and she would live a happy healthy life so im glad i found all of you my girl not so much lol when it comes to my pets no amont of money will stand in my way i just want a happy heathy tortoise so plasic for now and no hard wood floors bc of her joints
Yeah unfortunately you’ve been sold the wrong bulbs, your uv needs to be a t5 fluorescent tube light, the compact bulbs don’t give out enough uv and damage the tortoises eyes, the misters definitely need to go and get a closed chamber set up and do the lukewarm water pours, my previous answer above is more detailed with all the changes that need making asap to make sure you little one thrives🥰
Im glad you’ve found us too! Pet stores will give you all the wrong outdated care information and sell you completely inappropriate equipment unfortunately, which has been the case here😣fear not though, go over my first response and take all the information in to start step by step making the changes🙂
 

poppop

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> they dont need a basking lamp? i have a uva and uvb balb and a ceramic baulb and wanted to combine them
They can do just fine without a basking lamp, just having half of the enclosure shaded and ambient light + UVB tube in other part. And ceramic heat emitters or radiant heat panels for stable temperatures across the enclosure. Redfoots bask but heating should be mild (not 95-105F zone as for Testudos) and basking time should be limited to 2-4 hours otherwise they develop pyramiding easily. Combining ambient heat and light, UVB/UVA source and basking area heat/light in a single bulb is a bad idea it's more expensive in the long run, has worse characterisitcs and you can't tweak and adjust parameters (intensity, timings, areas) easily.

> and when i say free range i mean as long as im in the house shes more then welcome to run arownd
If you make your house 100% tortoise-proof and risk-free territory than you basically built a bad room-sized tortoise enclosure. If it's not 100% safe - then incidents will happen.
ok her heat spot is reading 91 got a temp gun should i higher it its only in that spot the rest of cage is reading 78-83 depending on spot and 2-4 hours on heat? also in the window is that ok not too much light should i limit the uva/uvb bulb i know those rays have a hard time through glass and heat panel ima look those up right now im intrested
 

Alex and the Redfoot

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> oh uva/ uvb bulb for her its what the pet store said i needed its not a tube and a ceramic heat bulb
Pet stores often sell the wrong stuff, simply because they have to sell what people buy. Sometimes just because they lack enough knowledge.
 

Littleredfootbigredheart

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ok her heat spot is reading 91 got a temp gun should i higher it its only in that spot the rest of cage is reading 78-83 depending on spot and 2-4 hours on heat? also in the window is that ok not too much light should i limit the uva/uvb bulb i know those rays have a hard time through glass and heat panel ima look those up right now im intrested
They need constant heat, Alex means if you’re going to use an incandescent floodlight, to limit the time they bask under it. Their enclosure shouldn’t be going below 80 ideally.
I think you’ll find it easier switching to ceramics for your heat and led for you ambient lighting. Again all in more detail on my first reply🙂
 
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poppop

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Yeah unfortunately you’ve been sold the wrong bulbs, your uv needs to be a t5 fluorescent tube light, the compact bulbs don’t give out enough uv and damage the tortoises eyes, the misters definitely need to go and get a closed chamber set up and do the lukewarm water pours, my previous answer above is more detailed with all the changes that need making asap to make sure you little one thrives🥰
Im glad you’ve found us too! Pet stores will give you all the wrong outdated care information and sell you completely inappropriate equipment unfortunately, which has been the case here😣fear not though, go over my first response and take all the information in to start step by step making the changes🙂
ok tube light ill get one asap and yes she take warm bath every day and plasic no hard wood floors
 

Littleredfootbigredheart

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ok tube light ill get one asap and yes she take warm bath every day and plasic no hard wood floors
The lukewarm water pours I’m mentioning is to maintain your humidity🙂 I’ll paste my first response for you to go over, try and read each bit carefully so you don’t get confused or mixed up with anything.

If going with a light emitting heat source, use an incandescent floodlight, avoid anything labelled halogen or mercury vapour. This will need to be on a 12hour timer.

However red foots aren’t necessarily a basking species coming from the forest floor, nor do they need a ‘warmer end’ and a ‘cooler end’ they thrive in a ambient temperature range of 80-86, 82-84 being optimal. To achieve this you’ll probably find it easier switching to CHE’s (ceramic heat emitters) as your heat source, hang them evenly from one another to distribute the heat more evenly, these can run 24/7 and they need to be on a thermostat.
Then for ambient lighting, hang it so the entire enclosure is lit but provide plenty of shady spots with plants and hides cause red foots don’t like things too bright. Either get some led strip lighting or a standard screw in led in the colour range 5000-6500k from the hardware store, this needs to be on a 12hour timer.

You need to provide it the form of a t5 fluorescent tube light, don’t go with compact uv bulbs, they can damage the tortoises eyes, I’d recommend the Arcadia brand cause it comes with the reflector fitting to waste no uv light, mount it 18-21 inches from substrate, this can be on a separate 4hour timer from noon. I’ll include photos of it and how people mount them for your style set up, perhaps make a stand out of some timber.

Definitely remove any foggers/ misters, they make the air too wet causing respiratory issues and only focus of getting the top layer of substrate wet, which will leave them prone to shell rot. You want to aim to have the bottom layer of substrate damp, to do this pour lukewarm water into the corners, not loads but enough to dampen the entire bottom layer. To stop that top layer getting a little too dry/dusty, mix the substrate now n then, which also helps boosting humidity.

You’re going to find it impossible to maintain humidity in your set up, the humidity is vital to your young red foot! You need a closed chamber set up, to achieve this, a greenhouse topper is a good shout! If you can’t find an exact fit for your base then place it over like the one with the white base in the photo, I’d put lining down under the base and cover though to stop condensate getting on your floor. I’d also line your base with cheap pond liner as it’s wood, it’ll be sure to rot otherwise. Some people even hang their lighting from the frame! Simply wrap the wire round so it’s at the height you need(check with temp gun/put thermostat in, 18-21 for uv) and secure with cable ties.

For a larger base because your baby could do with more room, you could use a flower bed lined, or make your own to line. Then secure the greenhouse topper on.

Definitely have something measuring both your temps and humidity, keep an eye on your monitors and substrate to do the pours as and when needed.

Ignore whatever else is in these enclosures in the photos, they’re just to give you an idea👍

Any further questions please ask🙂
 

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