Jump to content


Photo
- - - - -

Outdoor Enclosure Advice

outdoor enclosure

  • Please log in to reply
37 replies to this topic

#1 Cara_Garton

Cara_Garton

    Tortoise Forum Newby

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 10 posts
  • Gender:Female

Posted 06 May 2015 - 05:25 PM

Hello there,

My husband and I have recently brought a 4 year old Herman and this is our first tortoise experience!

As the weather is hopefully going to brighten up soon we are looking to move him outside permanently. We have an old pond area that we are looking to use (photos attached) but as this is our first time we want to get it right! Just a few questions....

How big does the shed area need to be for him? I don't want it to be too small that it's uncomfortable but too big and it will take up the garden space.

Does the whole area need to be covered,? Our garden is already mainly covered by wire trellis and we've never had any animals in the garden.

Is it a good idea to get a greenhouse as well for him to warm up in?

How deep can the soil be? He has a habit of digging down quite far!

Sorry for so many questions, I just want to get it right!

Any help would be greatly appreciated, thanks!

Cara

#2 mildredsmam

mildredsmam

    Advanced Tortoise Member

  • Administrator
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,806 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:north east

Posted 07 May 2015 - 04:23 AM

Hi Cara, welcome to the forum. :)

Sorry I can't see any pictures if you add them we can take a look, firstly for a good permanent outside enclosure to work it does need a heat source added, this can be in a small shed area or small greenhouse, this gives the tortoise the chance to warm up on cooler morning's/ days, and with our weather that can be quite often, greenhouses work well, for mine they have a large heated shed, but this is used all year, for size I think you want to be thinking about it lasting him as he grows so your not having to re do it as he get's bigger, I always think the more space they have the better. :)  

How big is the tortoise, I don't cover my adults outside enclosure but I do with the smaller ones, you need to just make sure he is safe from any predators, birds, rats and foxes are the worse, also if you or your neighbours have a dog, this is also some thing to think about.  :)

Nice deep substrate will work well in the enclosure as this will give him the opportunity to dig down if he wants when he get's too warm or cold.

For the outside area, it's best to add plenty of plants and rocks in there as this will make it more interesting for him, this also might be of some help. :)

 http://www.tortsmad.com/outdoor.htm



#3 Cara_Garton

Cara_Garton

    Tortoise Forum Newby

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 10 posts
  • Gender:Female

Posted 07 May 2015 - 10:27 AM

Thanks Karen, I must have forgotten to add the photo!

I think he should be okay without a cover as nothing can really get into our garden due to the wire mesh over it (it was once used as an aviary)

We are thinking of having a shed and a greenhouse, can you recommend which lighting and heating bulbs we would need in there?

ThanksAttached File  image.jpg   61.98KB   4 downloads

#4 wizzasmum

wizzasmum

    Advanced Tortoise Member

  • Moderator
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,106 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Shropshire/Welsh Borders
  • Interests:Family
    Tortoise keeping and breeding
    Gardening
    Greyhound rescue
    Reading
    Walking
    Travelling

Posted 07 May 2015 - 10:58 AM

That will be fine for him while he is tiny, but he will need more room when adult. As Karen says, you will need a heat source, preferably somewhere he can enter and exit at will, as moving them from one space to another doesn't really work too well. Hope this helps ;)
Sue

#5 Beermat89

Beermat89

    Advanced Tortoise Member

  • VIP Member
  • PipPipPip
  • 680 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Somerset
  • Interests:Tortoises/reptiles,fishing/football

Posted 07 May 2015 - 12:17 PM

Great little encloser but does it get much sun as looks very shaded?

#6 Cara_Garton

Cara_Garton

    Tortoise Forum Newby

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 10 posts
  • Gender:Female

Posted 07 May 2015 - 01:20 PM

Hi, it gets sun from around 10-11 till 4 ish. Will this be okay? The photo was taken at half 5 last night and there wasn't any sun all day!



#7 Cara_Garton

Cara_Garton

    Tortoise Forum Newby

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 10 posts
  • Gender:Female

Posted 07 May 2015 - 03:52 PM

Also, what kind of soil would I need? Can I use the soil that is already in there or would I need something different?

#8 wizzasmum

wizzasmum

    Advanced Tortoise Member

  • Moderator
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,106 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Shropshire/Welsh Borders
  • Interests:Family
    Tortoise keeping and breeding
    Gardening
    Greyhound rescue
    Reading
    Walking
    Travelling

Posted 07 May 2015 - 05:09 PM

Yes you can use the existing soil, so long as it's not recently had any fertiliser added. If it is mainly compost then I would cover it with topsoil. Add a few rocks, logs etc and somewhere to hide, with electrics. If you have no hut with electrics, you could convert the whole thing to a greenhouse type construction, but again, added heat would be a necessary bonus.

#9 Cara_Garton

Cara_Garton

    Tortoise Forum Newby

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 10 posts
  • Gender:Female

Posted 07 May 2015 - 06:33 PM

We are intending on getting a dog kennel type thing with heat in it. Could someone please help me with lighting and heating I would need in there, I have very little clue about what is best!

#10 mildredsmam

mildredsmam

    Advanced Tortoise Member

  • Administrator
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,806 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:north east

Posted 08 May 2015 - 04:12 AM

Hi Cara,

If your thinking of using a dog kennel type for the enclosure you will need to make sure that it has enough height to hold a lamp, so you can get a good temperature and not have it too hot, you will need a ceramic holder for the bulb, and a combined uv/ heat bulb in there, here's a couple of pictures of my enclosure it might give you some ideas. :)

 SAM_2522_zpseqoigdwg.jpg

 

 SAM_2354_zps8f7t5eyu.jpg



#11 Beermat89

Beermat89

    Advanced Tortoise Member

  • VIP Member
  • PipPipPip
  • 680 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Somerset
  • Interests:Tortoises/reptiles,fishing/football

Posted 08 May 2015 - 06:53 AM

What a great set up you have Karen sooooo jealous :)

#12 mildredsmam

mildredsmam

    Advanced Tortoise Member

  • Administrator
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,806 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:north east

Posted 08 May 2015 - 02:46 PM

What a great set up you have Karen sooooo jealous :)

Thanks Matt. :)



#13 finndor

finndor

    Tortoise Forum Newby

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 17 posts
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Telford
  • Interests:Reading - Walking - Horse Riding - Theatre - Computers/Gaming

Posted 08 May 2015 - 03:58 PM

Very nice Karen :) love it.

#14 mildredsmam

mildredsmam

    Advanced Tortoise Member

  • Administrator
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,806 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:north east

Posted 09 May 2015 - 04:32 AM

Thank you :)  I think a good enclosure takes time and planning. :)



#15 Cara_Garton

Cara_Garton

    Tortoise Forum Newby

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 10 posts
  • Gender:Female

Posted 09 May 2015 - 12:34 PM

Thanks for your advice Karen. If I am not able to find a dog kennel with the height is there any other type of light I can use that doesn't have to hang from such a height?

Cara

#16 wizzasmum

wizzasmum

    Advanced Tortoise Member

  • Moderator
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,106 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Shropshire/Welsh Borders
  • Interests:Family
    Tortoise keeping and breeding
    Gardening
    Greyhound rescue
    Reading
    Walking
    Travelling

Posted 09 May 2015 - 12:59 PM

All lights need a good head clearance, both for safety reasons and to give the correct basking temp below for the tortoise. Too close and the tort will be too hot and might not use the facility, too high and there is a risk of burning the roof, so height is a necessity really ;)

#17 mildredsmam

mildredsmam

    Advanced Tortoise Member

  • Administrator
  • PipPipPip
  • 1,806 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:north east

Posted 10 May 2015 - 07:58 AM

What a great set up you have Karen sooooo jealous :)

Matt could you add some pictures of your heated area on here, might give Cara some ideas thanks. :)



#18 gizmosmum

gizmosmum

    Tortoise Member

  • Member
  • PipPip
  • 90 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Cheshire
  • Interests:Dogs, narrowboats,

Posted 19 May 2015 - 09:25 AM

Whhops put it on twice!!

#19 gizmosmum

gizmosmum

    Tortoise Member

  • Member
  • PipPip
  • 90 posts
  • Gender:Female
  • Location:Cheshire
  • Interests:Dogs, narrowboats,

Posted 19 May 2015 - 09:29 AM

I'm also looking at dog kennel idea, what minimum height would you say, allowing for lamp? Also considering outside lamp on front to encourage out door basking on her patio? My husband says does she want a little table and some chairs for cocktails!!!:-)

#20 viperzbite

viperzbite

    Tortoise Forum Newby

  • Member
  • Pip
  • 4 posts
  • Gender:Male

Posted 24 May 2015 - 09:33 AM

Hi I'm ben. I'm new to sight and having been considering getting a tortoise for sometime I wanted to get some info from actually owners of tortoises rather than going of info from a pet store who are just after my money and not wellbeing of the tortoise.

I know all I need for indoor habitat but what I remain unsure of is outdoor habitat for those warmer days.

Having spoke to landlord I have found I cannot dig up any portion of the garden grass and replace and lay mesh underneath nor can I dig up and remove the grass for a more suitable substrate. Will this prevent me from being able to give a tortoise a decent and enjoyable home or could I just get an outdoor mesh habitat and sit it on top of grass and just bring the tortoise back inside at might to prevent colder weather and local foxes/animals getting to the tortoise?.

Obviously I don't want to invest a lot of money into an animal and not be able to give it the required home it deserves.

Thanks

Ben





Also tagged with one or more of these keywords: outdoor, enclosure

0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users