Basking Temperature Advice

Tommy03

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Jan 12, 2021
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England
Hello,

I was just wondering whether anyone could give me some advice please regarding my adult Russian Tommy's basking lamp.

I tried incandescents but they kept breaking & wasn't able to find many options, so he has a 50W Arcadia Basking Flood in a 12inch dome with a slate underneath. To test the temperatures, I leave a box under the bulb for a while whilst Tommy has a soak to replicate shell height & my temp gun gives a reading of around 96F so in the right range. However, I have just noticed the slate (so ground level without the box) gives a reading of around 96-97F too in a particular spot directly under the light (it ranges from 80-97F across the slate depending on how far away from the bulb). The temp gun seems to be accurate as matches the ones I have mounted on the wall when checking temperatures elsewhere in the enclosure & I can't raise the bulb anymore. I don't know whether I should be concerned about this, or if I need to change the bulb or remove the slate if it's absorbing too much heat? Tommy seems to be completely fine within himself.

This thread has all the details of his enclosure & photos if it helps: https://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/opinions-advice-on-updated-enclosure-care.190794/#post-1933851

Thanks in advance :)
 

KarenSoCal

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95-100° is a perfect basking temp. I think you may have the confusing temps because of using a box to measure tort height. If you mean a paper or cardboard box, I don't think that would give an accurate temp.

Why not try putting the slate on the box, directly under the bulb? Let the slate heat up for about an hour, then use your temp gun.

The slate should be 95-100°F on the box. If it's too hot and you can't raise the bulb, try removing some substrate under the bulb. It doesn't take much to drop the temp a couple degrees.
 

S2G

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I just put the slate under the light & temp gun the slate. It will
 

Tom

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Hello,

I was just wondering whether anyone could give me some advice please regarding my adult Russian Tommy's basking lamp.

I tried incandescents but they kept breaking & wasn't able to find many options, so he has a 50W Arcadia Basking Flood in a 12inch dome with a slate underneath. To test the temperatures, I leave a box under the bulb for a while whilst Tommy has a soak to replicate shell height & my temp gun gives a reading of around 96F so in the right range. However, I have just noticed the slate (so ground level without the box) gives a reading of around 96-97F too in a particular spot directly under the light (it ranges from 80-97F across the slate depending on how far away from the bulb). The temp gun seems to be accurate as matches the ones I have mounted on the wall when checking temperatures elsewhere in the enclosure & I can't raise the bulb anymore. I don't know whether I should be concerned about this, or if I need to change the bulb or remove the slate if it's absorbing too much heat? Tommy seems to be completely fine within himself.

This thread has all the details of his enclosure & photos if it helps: https://www.tortoiseforum.org/threads/opinions-advice-on-updated-enclosure-care.190794/#post-1933851

Thanks in advance :)
Temps guns measure surface temps. Place a Digital thermometer under the lamp and let it bake for a while. That will tell you hot hot the tortoise's carapace is getting. 95-100 is perfect.


Something similar to this. You can lay it on its back:
thermopro-outdoor-hygrometers-tp-50-c3_max.jpg
 

Tommy03

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Joined
Jan 12, 2021
Messages
48
Location (City and/or State)
England
95-100° is a perfect basking temp. I think you may have the confusing temps because of using a box to measure tort height. If you mean a paper or cardboard box, I don't think that would give an accurate temp.

Why not try putting the slate on the box, directly under the bulb? Let the slate heat up for about an hour, then use your temp gun.

The slate should be 95-100°F on the box. If it's too hot and you can't raise the bulb, try removing some substrate under the bulb. It doesn't take much to drop the temp a couple degrees.
Ah that's a great idea, thanks very much! I'll give it a go whilst he has his next soak
 

Tommy03

Member
Joined
Jan 12, 2021
Messages
48
Location (City and/or State)
England
Temps guns measure surface temps. Place a Digital thermometer under the lamp and let it bake for a while. That will tell you hot hot the tortoise's carapace is getting. 95-100 is perfect.


Something similar to this. You can lay it on its back:
View attachment 324594
Okay, thank you! I'll raise the slate then with the box to try and match shell height, & put one of my Inkbird digital thermometers on the slate
 

Tommy03

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Joined
Jan 12, 2021
Messages
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Location (City and/or State)
England
I left the digitial thermometer under the basking lamp for an hour but the temperatures still seemed to be continuing to rise slightly by around 0.1-0.2 degrees so I left it for about another 20 minutes. It seemed to stabilise then at 99F so I think it's in the right range of 95-100. Thank you for your help :)
 

Tom

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I left the digitial thermometer under the basking lamp for an hour but the temperatures still seemed to be continuing to rise slightly by around 0.1-0.2 degrees so I left it for about another 20 minutes. It seemed to stabilise then at 99F so I think it's in the right range of 95-100. Thank you for your help :)
Perfect. Even I don't usually get it that close to ideal.
 
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