Heating for hatchling

TortillaTheTortioise

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I have a month old angulate tortoise that I recently got and I need help with getting the correct heating bulb. Tortilla has an inside and outside enclosure so he does get natural UVB for 1-6 hours everyday depending on the weather, but inside it does get cold so he needs a heat source.

Does anyone have a review on the exo Terra daylight basking bulb in 50w? I read on another site that they don't last long?

Can it be dangerous to get the wrong type of bulb and is UVA harmful to a tortoise at all?
 

Yvonne G

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Hi, and welcome!

We have another member from (I'm guessing you're in South Africa because the Angulated tortoise isn't common anywhere else), @CarolM . I'm pretty sure she keeps her Angulated tortoises inside and outside, so maybe she can help you with your lighting problem.
 

CarolM

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Hi and Welcome,
I use A CHE on the one side of my enclosure and a normal 7W daylight led 5000 to 6500k light bulb inside (which I bought from Spar, you can get them from any of the shops actually) But I like the ones with the 6500k spectrum as they are good for my plants inside as well and it creates that nice white light. I also have the T5 UVB Tube light. But with the CHE to provide the heat, the other lights are more for the light than the heat. And my torts go outside a lot so they actually get all the UVB that they need from the sun. I also prefer the CHE as a heating source as you can have it on during the night (which is when it gets the coldest and is most needed) without having a light on. It is better to have no lights on during the night, as they need dark to sleep just the same as we do.
 

TortillaTheTortioise

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Hi and Welcome,
I use A CHE on the one side of my enclosure and a normal 7W daylight led 5000 to 6500k light bulb inside (which I bought from Spar, you can get them from any of the shops actually) But I like the ones with the 6500k spectrum as they are good for my plants inside as well and it creates that nice white light. I also have the T5 UVB Tube light. But with the CHE to provide the heat, the other lights are more for the light than the heat. And my torts go outside a lot so they actually get all the UVB that they need from the sun. I also prefer the CHE as a heating source as you can have it on during the night (which is when it gets the coldest and is most needed) without having a light on. It is better to have no lights on during the night, as they need dark to sleep just the same as we do.
Hey, thanks for the reply, on Saturday I bought a desk lamp from builders and had a left over bulb in the garage (Osram 60w spot bulb), he gets put outside normally everyday unless the weather is bad for 1-6 hours for UVB
 

CarolM

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Hey, thanks for the reply, on Saturday I bought a desk lamp from builders and had a left over bulb in the garage (Osram 60w spot bulb), he gets put outside normally everyday unless the weather is bad for 1-6 hours for UVB
Can we see your enclosure? It is important to keep them when they are small in a enclosed chamber. Ideally you don't want their heat at night to drop too low, as it is winter you will need to have a source creating heat in the enclosure at night time. However as I explained above you should not use a light as your heat source at night, as they require darkness at night time to get a good sleep. This is where the CHE (Ceramic heat emitter) comes in very handy. As it provides the heat without the light. You also want to soak them everyday for hydration a well as provide water in their enclosure and humidity. This helps stop pyramiding. The best way to get a the humidity (Which should not be lower than 80%) would be to keep them in a enclosed chamber. If you plants lots of hiding places and plants in the enclosure it will also help to keep the humidity where you want it.

A few things to keep in mind and have:
1.) Enclosed Chamber enclosure - You can see lots of closed chamber ideas on the forum
2.) CHE for a heat source at night and during the day when it gets really cold
3.) A UVB tube unless your little one is getting at least an hour a day. You also do not want a hatchling to spend longer than a hour outside until they are much older.
4.) A light source for during the day to create a much lighter environment in your enclosure for the little one. This is where the daylight that I told you about comes in handy
as it gives a light that is as close to natural day light as possible.
5.) The lamp can be used, however it would be better if your light could be coming from the ceiling of your closed chamber, it works better.
 

TortillaTheTortioise

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Can we see your enclosure? It is important to keep them when they are small in a enclosed chamber. Ideally you don't want their heat at night to drop too low, as it is winter you will need to have a source creating heat in the enclosure at night time. However as I explained above you should not use a light as your heat source at night, as they require darkness at night time to get a good sleep. This is where the CHE (Ceramic heat emitter) comes in very handy. As it provides the heat without the light. You also want to soak them everyday for hydration a well as provide water in their enclosure and humidity. This helps stop pyramiding. The best way to get a the humidity (Which should not be lower than 80%) would be to keep them in a enclosed chamber. If you plants lots of hiding places and plants in the enclosure it will also help to keep the humidity where you want it.

A few things to keep in mind and have:
1.) Enclosed Chamber enclosure - You can see lots of closed chamber ideas on the forum
2.) CHE for a heat source at night and during the day when it gets really cold
3.) A UVB tube unless your little one is getting at least an hour a day. You also do not want a hatchling to spend longer than a hour outside until they are much older.
4.) A light source for during the day to create a much lighter environment in your enclosure for the little one. This is where the daylight that I told you about comes in handy
as it gives a light that is as close to natural day light as possible.
5.) The lamp can be used, however it would be better if your light could be coming from the ceiling of your closed chamber, it works better.
He gets his light source in the day, I place the desk lamp facing downwards so the light inside can't be seen from the sides, at night he doesn't get a heat source coz he burrows into the potting soil and the temp is about 16-20°C at night depending on the outside temp

His enclosure is a rectangle and the Ionger sides are 52cm and shorter sides are 34cm but I'll upgrade as he grows (his only 4cm at the moment at 23-25g) IMG_20190427_125839.jpg IMG_20190426_163944.jpg

Also for hibernating him because winters in June, should he hibernate? His only 23g and 1 month old born in March, would he be disrupted by seasonal change and not eat because his bodies telling him to hibernate if I overwinter him?

He gets an hour to five hours outside for UVB almost everyday because I also made him a outside play pen, unless it's raining or very cold. I noticed today that he didn't eat as much only nibbled in the morning a leaf then burrowed and went back to sleep, hardly waking up the rest of the day. His enclosure temps are 32°C on the one side and 21°C on the other. What could this mean?

Another question, what percentages should an angulates diet consist of? For example 30% succulents and aloes, 40% grasses etc
 

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TortillaTheTortioise

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Also forgot to mention in the picture showing the light, I've moved it on top of a round butter container so it's 19cm away from his shell and points straight down
 

CarolM

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Also forgot to mention in the picture showing the light, I've moved it on top of a round butter container so it's 19cm away from his shell and points straight down
Where are you exactly. Could you put in the location where you are? If you are in Cape Town, then dandelion, narrow leaf plantain and broad leaf plantain is coming out now. You want to be feeding him 99% weeds. They do eat grass but a small amount. Dandelion, clover, plantain weeds are much better foods to feed. If you have optunia ( prickly pear cactus) you can cut a small piece and blend it into mush and mix that with his food as well. They can eat endive lettuce, raduchio lettuce, hibiscus flowers and leaves, banana tree leaves, paperthorn weeds.
There are lots of succulents they can eat as well. If you want to give grass then cut it really finely and sprinkle over their food.

With regards to the light it should work fine, but you really want to make your enclosure a closed chamber. They need the humidity in order to grow properly. If you raise it dry your tortoise will end up with pyramiding.

Your enclosure is really too small. It would be better to have something that is over a meter long. But until you can organise something bigger I would take 3 pieces of wood and make a frame to hang plastic over to enclose your chamber. You want to also wet your substrate. If you enclose your chamber and have the light inside under your plastic, the heat from the lamp and the wet substrate will create the humidity that you need to keep your little one healthy.

And we advise that for baby tortoises to take them outside for only an hour a day. When they are older that can go outside for longer periods.

Did you read those threads I advised you to read? They really are very helpful and explain much better than I can why we advise certain things.
 

TortillaTheTortioise

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Collected some weeds for him to eat after his soak, his been eating them under his lamp for the passed hour. His shell looks shiny because I misted him and the enclosure for humidity
 

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CarolM

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Collected some weeds for him to eat after his soak, his been eating them under his lamp for the passed hour. His shell looks shiny because I misted him and the enclosure for humidity
Tortilla is beautiful btw. Could you open a thread under Bowsprit, where we can get to enjoy updates on the life of Tortilla?
 

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