Outdoor enclosure ideas needed to keep out predators

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Mich

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I live in Ontario and we finally had the perfect temps to have my 3yr old Leopard Tort outside all day for 3 full days!! :) I have a few concerns though about having her outside when I’m not home. I am trying to come up with a type of temp outdoor enclosure for her to use during the day while I’m at work (she will ALWAYS be brought in at night. We have a lot of predators here, raccoons/cats/ravens/skunks, etc). When I look through all the pics of peoples enclosures they all seem nice and open .. are predators not a as much of a concern in warmer climates? I need to build something that naturally she can’t get out of .. and I will need some sort of mesh across the top that doesn’t block the sun but is strong enough to keep out predators. I also need the enclosure to be easily dismantled so I can move it when we need to cut the grass or for easy storage in the winter. If anyone has any ideas or pics that would work please let me know!! :)
 

Lulu

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Hi,

My husband builds these out of boards from the home improvement store (often from the scrap bin), and hardware cloth:

106alfq.jpg


The solid area in the back is a shade area. The last board is unattached on this one so we can retrieve the tortoise if he is back there, but the larger versions have that section hinged. You can make this any size, based on the boards you have. It doesn't dismantle, but the whole thing can be lifted up off the ground.

We definitely worry about predators. We lost two a year ago to a predator strike (skunks).
 

Zamric

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Here's what I did...

This is just hardware cloth stapled to a wooden frame. I dont think it will stop anything like a determined skunk or raccoon but I only have to worry about large birds, cats and one old, decrepid dog that weighs 9 lbs... and of course WalkingRock but the elevation takes care of him....for now!
DSCN0878.jpg
 

wellington

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Another very quick idea. Take a large plastic tub, the storage kind. Cut out the bottom, but leave a inch or so around the edge. Then do the same with the top. Place chicken wire or the hardware cloth showed in other posts and attach it to the opening you cut out of the top and bottom. It won't be really big, but if it is used just while your at work, at least he's outside. Then let him have a bigger space to roam when your home and can be supervised.
 

Tortoise

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Another idea for the top is stucco mesh(from most hardware stores), the holes are larger than hardware cloth-2inch x 2 inch, its quite economical, we use it for alpaca fencing too. I too have my torts covered here as we have racoons, skunks, birds of prey etc quite often. I plan to build new pens inside area where dogs patrol so that will cut down all of the prey entering the yard at all.
Looks like you got some nice photos and idea to get you started anyway.
 

wellington

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Tortoise said:
Another idea for the top is stucco mesh(from most hardware stores), the holes are larger than hardware cloth-2inch x 2 inch, its quite economical, we use it for alpaca fencing too. I too have my torts covered here as we have racoons, skunks, birds of prey etc quite often. I plan to build new pens inside area where dogs patrol so that will cut down all of the prey entering the yard at all.
Looks like you got some nice photos and idea to get you started anyway.

Be sure your dogs can't get to them either. Too many, even well trained dogs have done damage and death to tortoises. Just a reminder:D
 

Tortoise

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Yes thanks I was planning on 54 inch tall pens with roof wire on top so dogs have no chance of getting in there rather than a low lying pen that they can interfere with. The biggest dog is a livestock protection dog, its the smaller ones I have to watch so tall fence is best here for us.
thanks for reminder-any dog can do unpredictable things given a chance and some time alone.
 

Mich

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Zamric said:
Here's what I did...

DSCN0878.jpg

Wow you guys are great! I love this forum! :D
Oooh I like the idea of that wood frame! Nice and light, allows a lot of sun through and is big enough to allow a tort her size to roam a bit.

The skunks and racoons here are bad at night so I would never leave her out, but they aren't around during the day being nocturnal (that I've seen). My storage shed is pretty packed with all our other outdoor type furniture so I'd need to find a way to make this break down flat hmmmm *think think think* lol A little shade box and even though leopards dont dig much I'd still weight it down a bit. I've never seen the hardware mesh and stuff you guys have recommended so now I have an excuse to run back to the hardware store :p
 

lynnedit

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One word: zip ties. They come in all sizes. They can be cut and the enclosure dismantled at the end of the season.
You could decide on the size, build the 4 sides and mesh frame top (or mesh frame all around) and during the nice weather, zip tie the 4 sides together, and the back end of the top so it opens and shuts.
then have a hasp with a lock for the front of the top.
 

Zamric

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Mich said:
Zamric said:
Here's what I did...

DSCN0878.jpg

Wow you guys are great! I love this forum! :D
Oooh I like the idea of that wood frame! Nice and light, allows a lot of sun through and is big enough to allow a tort her size to roam a bit.

The skunks and racoons here are bad at night so I would never leave her out, but they aren't around during the day being nocturnal (that I've seen). My storage shed is pretty packed with all our other outdoor type furniture so I'd need to find a way to make this break down flat hmmmm *think think think* lol A little shade box and even though leopards dont dig much I'd still weight it down a bit. I've never seen the hardware mesh and stuff you guys have recommended so now I have an excuse to run back to the hardware store :p

"Light"? Oh yah! the whole thing weighs about 10 lbs and now I have lift handles on the two middle rails. I really like the idea of building it in 5 differant pieces and Zip tying it together during the Spring and Summer. Also building it in 5 pieces would make it a heck of alot more stable if a little heavier. This one reliese alot on the surounding land scaping timbers and fence to support it but I took that in mind when designing it.
 

Mich

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lynnedit said:
One word: zip ties. They come in all sizes. They can be cut and the enclosure dismantled at the end of the season.
You could decide on the size, build the 4 sides and mesh frame top (or mesh frame all around) and during the nice weather, zip tie the 4 sides together, and the back end of the top so it opens and shuts.
then have a hasp with a lock for the front of the top.

FANTASTIC!!!!!!! Thanks :D I was thinking screws but taking those in and out would strip the holes .. zip ties would be perfect!
 
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