Help with living space for our (almost) 4 year old tort Mort


New Member
Oct 18, 2015
Hello fellow Tort lovers! I need so help or recommendations! We have a soon to be 4 year old tortoise, Morty. We love him SOOOOO much! Ok with that being said- we are having a dilemma figuring out Mort's next living move.

Before summer we realized, he is going to out grow his tank and we need to figure something out for the upcoming fall/winter (we are from Long Island, New York). But it slowly slipped away from us. Morty spent everyday in the summer blocked off outside and at night blocked off in a corner area under my desk to sleep. He loved it, it was cozy, very easy summer living. Soooo September creeps up and we are like, hmmmm for now we will just block him off in the kitchen and he still has had his cozy area under the desk. Now, its time- moves need to be made- It's going to be warm the rest of the week but it is going to get too cold in the next two weeks to not have any thing for him to live out the winter months in (the cozy desk spot is in a room that is not insulated so it's not an option.

We thought of a few ideas (some are no's & maybes....nothing is, YES, yet....)
1. Get a new bigger tank that he will just out grow again-NO... We wen't to a reptile store and the owner showed us a used tank the appropriate size for like $600... I mean really ti was pretty beat up!
2. Make him an enclosure for outside- No way! We live in NY it gets to cold and he isn't old enough yet.
3. Create his living environment in a kiddie pool- maybe, but is it enough room?
4. Build or buy a water proof box to create his environment-maybe
**5. Get a baby/pet gate, put a tarp down underneath and create his living environment.

My fiance and I really need help. We have been trying to figure out the best thing but can't seem to agree on something and get it and or make it.

Morty's shell is about 10 inches long. We have a stand for his heat/UV light to clamp on. We just don't have the actual structure to create his living environment yet! Please any advice is GREATLY appreciated!


Well-Known Member
Tortoise Club
5 Year Member
Sep 6, 2011
Location (City and/or State)
Chicago, Illinois, USA
Letting him roam your house is not a good idea. However, do you have a room you can dedicate to him only? There is no tank that will be big enough without a special order and you don't want to pay that price, besides it would have to be really big,so glad that's a no. Do you have the room for a large enclosure? That size needs a big space. Otherwise you could build him a two level enclosure. But still it has to be very big. A room, basement or garage will work if you heat it and provide a heated hide to go into. An oil filled space radiant heater would heat the garage nicely if you can insulate it or basement then add extra heat to the hide and hang a basking light. Also lay substrate to keep him off the cold cement floor. A room in the house would be easier.

Gillian M

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Aug 28, 2014
Location (City and/or State)
A very warm welcome to the forum!:tort:

Have you read the many threads available? These will definitely help you.;) And whenever in doubt, do not hesitate to ask any question.:)

Good luck.

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