Ideal UV index for a Hermann hatchling?

Agathaade

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Joined
May 25, 2020
Messages
128
Location (City and/or State)
Los Angeles
Hi there,

I set up my enclosure months ago for my baby, dialed in the temperatures and set up the UV strip before it arrived two weeks ago.

Reading about Ferguson zones for Hermanns (zone 3), I set the UV strip where it reads about 2.3 UVI, which falls within the zone 3 range according to the chart on my meter (Solarmeter). From that value, there is a gradient going down all the way to zero in areas of shade underneath plants that the UV doesn’t reach.
My strip is on 5:30hrs a day between 9:30am and 3pm.

Seeing how my meter reads well above 4 when I set it outside in midday in the sun, I’m wondering if I’m doing this right.
Should I lower my strip to reach a higher index? Should I leave it on longer/shorter?
I’m a bit confused about the Ferguson zone values and how they’re supposed to be used.

I am only able to piece together things I read online, but I don’t have a lot of experience or understanding of UV, so I’m curious what experienced keepers do and what they’ve observed works.

Thank you for any advice you can offer!

Pic of enclosure attached

*************
- DAYTIME
BASKING SPOT: 94/100. She basks in spots that are usually around 96/98.
BASKING SIDE RH: 70% average
COOL SIDE: 82 on average
COOL SIDE RH: 90%+
- NIGHTTIME
TEMP: 82 on hot days - 79/77 regular days
RH: 90%+
-SUBSTRATE : coir at the bottom, orchid bark & cypress mulch on top. About 3in deep.
- LIGHTS
Basking : flood bulb, 45W
UV : 22” T5 HO 10% strip, 5h/day - UVindex ranges from 2.3 to 0. 30DC0AD3-B276-4ECB-BAAF-BFA60A0EE73C.jpeg
 

Tom

The Dog Trainer
10 Year Member!
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Messages
54,506
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No one has definitive answers to this question, but I believe what you are doing will work great. I'd shorten the UV duration to 3 hours a day, and not use the UV tube at all in the warmer months when you can get your tortoise outside for some real sunshine a couple of times per week.

Be sure your basking bulb isn't a "spot" bulb.
 

Agathaade

Active Member
Joined
May 25, 2020
Messages
128
Location (City and/or State)
Los Angeles
Thank you for your insight Tom.

I can certainly shorten the amount of time the UV strip is on.
I have cut back on outside time for now - that’s why I got a strip - because it seemed to disturb her to be picked up and moved to a new location. She naps a lot and I never want to wake her up to take her outside, also. I’ll introduce her to outside again in a few weeks.

The basking bulb is a flood bulb.

Wouldn’t it be nice if there was a bulb that would replicate the daily cycle of the sun, from sunrise to apex to sunset? ;)
 
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