Outdoor enclosure

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siwash

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I am thinking of bring my little guy outdoors this summer... He's only 2.5 inches (and growing)..he's a hermann. I live in Toronto so cold winters but summers can be quite hot and humid (90's are not uncommon)

Just a few questions:

1) I was thinking of using PVC type material from Home Depot and staking it into the ground to form a small pen (maybe 3X4). I want to create this pen within an existing small vegetable garden (tomatoes, herbs, peppers, lettuce). How deep should the stakes/pvc material be driven into the ground? I know those torts can dig...

2) How tall should the side walls be? I'm thinking 5 or 6" or is this overkill?

3) Should I cover the area with some sort of caging material? This part will be trickier b/c as I said previously, it will be built within a garden so there will be tomato plants and other greens growing within the enclosure (providing him shade and something to munch on...)

The other option is I just take him out daily and let him wander about while I watch him...

Thanks in advance!!

Rob
 

tortoisenerd

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Of course the safest option is to be there to watch him at all times. But, whether you do this or not is a personal preference, depends on how safe the enclosure is, and what kind of predators might be around. Ideally you'd want a fence dug into the ground, and top covering/caging.
 

siwash

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well, i won't be able to be around at all times if i do leave him there... I wonder if jsut taking him out as often as i can might be the best option..
 

jenrell23

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There are many options you can use. For his size right now I would drive stakes 12-18' deep to keep him in, Also you will need a cover to keep him in and animals out. I would only leave him out for a few hours each day, my little ones stay out for the mornings and in during the hottest part of the day. Right now 6" would be good but when he gets bigger you will need taller sides.
 

Laura

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Tomatoe leaves are toxic. I would build a completely seperate area for him. Or use a kiddie pool.. fill it with the peat moss sand mix 2 in or so. place a hide, plant some edible stuff dish for water slate for feeding and then frame a square with 2x4 that will fit over the kidde pool, stretch chicken wire over it and you have a secure outdoor enclosure. Be sure where you build it, is where you want it to be. They get way too heavy to move. AND be sure to poke holes in the bottom so if it rains, the water drains out.. they last a season before they break down. For height you want a few inches taller then your tort is long including stretching. Or if you have a livestock store/feed store see if they sell Sheep waterer/feeders. Large plastic troughs. Not as tall as some. Last longer in the sun. OR get a sheet of plywood, have someone with a table saw cut it into four lengthwise pieces. and build a 8 foot square pen or taller 4 foot square pen. OR a large rubbermaid storage container that you can move outside and bring inside at night.. but probably easier to pick up tort and move around then a whole container.... just some thoughts. ;) have fun!
 

siwash

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thanks folks... rubber-made sounds good to me... just wanted the "natural" terrain feel of the grarden... i'll just let him wander around
 
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