The 36” x 18” Tortoise kit is designed as more of a starter kit to temporarily house a tortoise until it grows large enough to live in an adult-sized enclosure. This is a slightly larger enclosure than the standard 36” x 15” kit and will give your tortoise a bit more freedom to move around and may last a little longer. This kit is suitable for most types of tortoise, though for faster growing, or larger species it may not last long before the tortoise outgrows it. As a rough guide, this set up may be used for a Hermann’s, Mediterranean Spur Thighs, or Horsfield’s tortoise up to approximately 2-3 years of age.
This kit is based on an enclosed wooden vivarium which we have found to be the most successful way of housing tortoises. Our wooden enclosures strike a balance between excellent ventilation (via convection of air through ND vents) and maintaining a good ambient air temperature. We have found them to be more suitable than “table top” enclosures as they are far more energy efficient and allow you to create a suitable ambient temperature rather than extremes of hot and cold at each end.
The set up includes everything that a tortoise needs, including heating and UVB lighting, substrate, hay bedding, a water bowl, cuttlefish and a few other bits and pieces.
If you only go for one extra piece of kit with your set up this is the one to get. We cannot stress how important and useful a thermostat is. The only reason we don’t include it in the kit is because, it tends to be the only piece of kit people keep from kits they are upgrading. Not having one is very time consuming and can potentially be very dangerous. As your home changes temperature (ie central heating on and off) so will your tank without a thermostat. The addition of a Habistat Dimming thermostat automatically dims or brightens your heating source depending on the pre-set temperature you choose. This will keep your animal safe from dangerous overheating. Plus give your animal a stable set of temperatures with which to regulate its body temperature effectively.
The digital thermostats are much the same as the basic ones discussed above, but with some added benefits. You will get a digital readout, added safety cut off and a separate channel for putting an extra electrical item on a timer. The Digital thermostat will also allow you to program a controlled night time drop in temperature (very useful for many chameleons). Plus it will give you a permanent readout off the current temperature inside your enclosure on an easy to read display.
This upgrade came about after new opinions regarding night time darkness. We quite often advise keeping heating running 24hr a day (where appropriate) due to most homes getting far too cold for the reptiles in question if your normal incandescent light were to be turned off. This option allows for the replacement of a longer lasting fitting made of ceramic. In addition your bulb is replaced with a top quality Moonlight dark bulb that produces far less light than a normal bulb. Meaning your animal can regulate its temp day and night. Whist getting the night time darkness it would prefer.
As it says we will upgrade your analogue thermometer for a digital thermometer with probe. This will make it easier to read and less opening and closing your enclose to check it’s all work correctly. The digital thermometer is also more accurate and measures the temperature to an accuracy 0.1F.
This addition keeps your animal safely in the enclosure. Often it is a more useful as a way of keeping unwanted attention out. Such as young children and other curious pets.
Arcadia T5 tubes are in our opinion the very best way of giving your animal the best quality and most natural UV there is on the market right now. The unit its self is a beautifully neat self-contained tube, starter and reflector. It has only the one splash proof wire. Meaning, no more dangling wires, or having to find a neat place to put the starter. That’s not all. The UV it self lasts a year before needing to be replaced. Plus the UV radiation will travel up to 4ft from the unit, perfect for taller vivariums.
Some may well be aware that nearly all tubes currently on the market lose the ability to produce UV after about 6 months. This option allows you to upgrade you tube to an Arcadia 12% D3+, which we believe is the best T8 tube on the market right now. D3 Plus is the only T8 tube that we are aware of that produces a guaranteed 12% UV for a full 12 months. So not only a better tube, but cheaper over the course of a year compared to buying 2 weaker tubes.