Cold weather heat

zaff

New Member
Joined
Nov 13, 2020
Messages
4
Location (City and/or State)
Sanford
I’ve been using regular heat lamp light on outside enclosure my sulcata tortoise of 20yrs seems to do well with this. Is this wrong
 

Tom

The Dog Trainer
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Location (City and/or State)
Southern California
I’ve been using regular heat lamp light on outside enclosure my sulcata tortoise of 20yrs seems to do well with this. Is this wrong
Yes it is. Heat lamps damage the carapace of larger tortoises and don't heat them effectively.

Where is Sanford? Los Angeles?

Here are two ways to house and heat them in winter, and the rest of the year too:

 

zaff

New Member
Joined
Nov 13, 2020
Messages
4
Location (City and/or State)
Sanford
Yes I live in Sanford, Florida.. He is out year round, however in the winter if it gets below 50-He is bought in to the house. He usually finds a place to hide & normally can go out the next day. .If it stays 50 He can stay in the house outside with the heat lamp. We are able to close his house 6x10 rubber maid house with a large dog house in side with timothy hay.. He stays quite warm.. Under those conditions what type of heat bulb can I put in there.. I see you have the thermostat control going on.. I need something simple and safe for him.. I'm taking him in for a beak trim this Friday. .Lucky for me the Vet is listed on the forum. He normally keeps it down grazing but this time its gotten pretty ugly.. You certainly know your tortoises.. Thank you
 

Tom

The Dog Trainer
10 Year Member!
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jan 9, 2010
Messages
52,480
Location (City and/or State)
Southern California
Yes I live in Sanford, Florida.. He is out year round, however in the winter if it gets below 50-He is bought in to the house. He usually finds a place to hide & normally can go out the next day. .If it stays 50 He can stay in the house outside with the heat lamp. We are able to close his house 6x10 rubber maid house with a large dog house in side with timothy hay.. He stays quite warm.. Under those conditions what type of heat bulb can I put in there.. I see you have the thermostat control going on.. I need something simple and safe for him.. I'm taking him in for a beak trim this Friday. .Lucky for me the Vet is listed on the forum. He normally keeps it down grazing but this time its gotten pretty ugly.. You certainly know your tortoises.. Thank you
  • 50 is too cold.
  • Your house is too cold, unless is no lower than 80 down on the floor.
  • Rubbermade sheds don't work. Too drafty, not insulated well enough. I've tried multiple times.
  • Heat lamps over large tortoises damage the carapace and are not effective at heating them.
  • Dog houses don't work. They are designed for dogs, and don't work well for tortoises.
  • Having hay in the house provides a nice snack if the tortoise is hungry, but since they don't generate their own heat, it does not keep them warm.
  • The two heating strategies shown in those threads are the safest and most effective ways to do it, but they won't work well unless you have an insulated, sealed box of the correct dimensions. The boxes shown in those threads are the product of more than a decade of trial and error. Lots and lots of errors to figure out what works and what doesn't.
 

zaff

New Member
Joined
Nov 13, 2020
Messages
4
Location (City and/or State)
Sanford
Thank you for getting back to me. I have a couple of friends, electricians. If you could list exactly what I need to set up the safest & simple heat source. Obviously it’s just a few month of off & on cold temperatures. There is too many post reply, tried to go back to your comments relating to bulbs to use, & hook ups. Couldn’t find it. Thank you for your time and patience
 

Tom

The Dog Trainer
10 Year Member!
Platinum Tortoise Club
Joined
Jan 9, 2010
Messages
52,480
Location (City and/or State)
Southern California
Thank you for getting back to me. I have a couple of friends, electricians. If you could list exactly what I need to set up the safest & simple heat source. Obviously it’s just a few month of off & on cold temperatures. There is too many post reply, tried to go back to your comments relating to bulbs to use, & hook ups. Couldn’t find it. Thank you for your time and patience
Hi Zaff. This is post number 5. If you scroll up just a little to post number 2, I've linked two threads that explain and show with pictures two different ways to do it. Its not as simple as just adding heat sources. The heat must be contained in the correct sort of sleeping quarters, or it won't work. What happens when its done wrong is that even with tremendous amounts of heat being electrically generated, the air temps and tortoise core temp can't get warm enough.

Perhaps one of your electrician friends could help you build a sealed and insulated box too? Electricians are usually pretty handy people. I can link more threads to show them how to do it right, and I'm happy to talk on the phone or answer more questions here. Your tortoise's health and well being is the goal!
 

zaff

New Member
Joined
Nov 13, 2020
Messages
4
Location (City and/or State)
Sanford
Yes I live in Sanford, Florida.. He is out year round, however in the winter if it gets below 50-He is bought in to the house. He usually finds a place to hide & normally can go out the next day. .If it stays 50 He can stay in the house outside with the heat lamp. We are able to close his house 6x10 rubber maid house with a large dog house in side with timothy hay.. He stays quite warm.. Under those conditions what type of heat bulb can I put in there.. I see you have the thermostat control going on.. I need something simple and safe for him.. I'm taking him in for a beak trim this Friday. .Lucky for me the Vet is listed on the forum. He normally keeps it down grazing but this time its gotten pretty ugly.. You certainly know your tortoises.. Thank you
 
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