Land species of turtles require careful attention and special conditions of detention. It is impossible to let a pet go freely around the apartment – it can easily get hypothermia and get sick, one of the family members can step on it, pets are also dangerous. To properly arrange all the necessary equipment, it is required to equip a separate terrarium for the turtle. In pet stores you can find many models of devices, different in size and shape, it is also possible to make a terrarium at home.
Before choosing a terrarium for a land turtle, you need to familiarize yourself with the functions that this device performs. A terrarium suitable for keeping reptiles meets the following requirements:
- Dimensions must correspond to the size and number of animals – the minimum area of u5bu6bthe pet’s dwelling should be 15-60 times larger than its own dimensions; the average parameters of the terrarium for one adult turtle (up to 50 cm long) are 50xXNUMXxXNUMX cm.
- The height of the sides is at least 15-20 cm (including the soil layer), otherwise the grown pet will be able to escape.
- The shape should be comfortable – it is better if the aquarium has sliding or removable walls, this will facilitate cleaning.
- Materials – only environmentally friendly and safe for the animal (plexiglass, plastic, wood, glass). The surface of the materials must be smooth so that dirt can be easily washed off.
- Ventilation – reptiles cannot be kept in stuffy containers where there is not enough air, so a tall aquarium for a land tortoise will be a poor home, it is better to choose wide models with relatively low sides. If you purchase a closed type terrarium, there must be holes for ventilation.
If the terrarium for turtles has transparent walls, the pet often does not see them and beats against the surface, trying to get out. To avoid this, it is better to glue the bottom of the container on the outside with a special background film for aquariums.
IMPORTANT: In order to properly install the terrarium, it is better to choose the shaded side of the room, where direct light from the windows does not fall. The sun’s rays can cause overheating of the walls, especially in the summer. If the temperature inside the terrarium rises above 36-40 degrees, the turtle may die.
Terrariums for land turtles are divided into several types, each of which is suitable for certain reptiles. The main differences are noticeable in the design of the devices:
- විවෘත – they are a rectangular horizontal container with low sides and without a top lid, well suited for Central Asian turtles, accustomed to climates with low humidity. The advantage of open devices is the ability to conveniently place lighting on the sides, it is easier to clean there.
- වසා – designed for guests from a humid tropical climate (star turtles), have a top cover that allows you to maintain the desired level of humidity and temperature. the cover will additionally protect the pet if there are small children or large animals at home.
- කර්ලර් – land turtles in nature travel long distances looking for food, so if it is possible to increase the pet’s future home, it is better to expand it to 1-3 sq.m. Such a pen can be placed on the floor in a room if there are no drafts in the apartment and the temperature does not fall below 26 degrees. If it is not possible to equip a permanent pen, you can allocate a special place in the apartment where the reptile can safely walk under supervision.
Based on the models presented for sale, you can build a terrarium yourself. The easiest way is to make it from wood, but the walls of such a device will absorb dirt, so you will need to pre-treat the wooden surface with protective impregnations. More hygienic will be models made of glass or plastic, which can be glued together with adhesive sealant.
To properly equip a terrarium for a land tortoise, you will need to select the necessary elements for the comfort of your pet, as well as purchase and install special equipment.
Land turtles have long enough claws designed for digging soil, so you can’t keep them on a smooth surface, this can lead to deformity of the paws. It is better to equip the bottom unevenly so that areas of harder soil are interspersed with loose soil, where the reptile can burrow. Sand, small pebbles can be used as soil, but it is better to refuse classic sawdust, the animal will inhale and swallow small particles of wood.
It is a flexible hose, covered with insulation, with a heating element inside. Such a hose is buried in the ground at the bottom, which provides the effect of a “warm floor”. It is recommended to install the device if the apartment is cold and the lamp cannot heat the terrarium, if the temperature level is sufficient, additional heating from below will harm the animal.
An ordinary lamp of 40-60 W is suitable, but it is better to use special bulbs with a mirror surface, they scatter light less, directing it with a beam. The lighting device must be hung 20-25 cm above the ground, the temperature under it should be kept within 28-32 degrees.
It turns on for several hours a day so that the turtle receives the necessary dose of ultraviolet, you need to hang an ultraviolet lamp at least 20 cm above the surface to avoid the risk of burns.
Turtles like to change their place of residence, basking part of the day under the lamps, and spending the remaining hours in the shade, the recommended temperature in the shady corner is 22-25 degrees.
A place where the pet can hide is a wooden or plastic box of a suitable size, you can also equip a canopy.
Feeder and drinker
Heavy ceramic saucers or ashtrays with a smooth surface are suitable, for stability they need to be buried a little in the ground.
To monitor the internal temperature in the aquarium, it is better to stick a special flat thermostat on the wall.
If the terrarium is too dry, it is necessary to spray daily to increase the humidity of the air. To do this, it is recommended to purchase a container with a sprayer, spraying is carried out with cool water. If the humidity, on the contrary, is too high, you need to place a soft bath mat under the soil layer – its porous surface will absorb excess moisture.
IMPORTANT: A turtle for a land tortoise will look more spectacular if you decorate it with decorative elements – picturesque snags, beautiful stones, corals, shells. You need to make sure that the items do not have sharp edges or thin parts that the pet can bite off. You can also plant live plants, cereals – the turtle will be happy to eat up the shoots.
Video: how to equip a terrarium
How to choose and equip a terrarium for a land turtle
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