UVB bulb or tube? (Recommendations)

aliceG

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Jul 15, 2015
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Hey, I've had my Russian tortoise for about a year now and I guess I'm still a little confused about the UVB lighting. When I first got my tortoise my mum picked up 2 UVB bulbs from a local pet store and I knew little about them but stupidly decided to use them. I've used both now and it's hitting the 6 month mark of when I need to change the second bulb but I want to buy better UVB lighting. Should I get a UVB tube or bulb, which is better? Also, can anyone recommend any good bulbs/strips that I can order online cheaply from the UK? Thanks x
 

tortdad

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I don't know about which brands you can get in the UK but a high output (HO) tube is good. The problem with the compact ones is that they can cause eye issues and blindness in a tort. Not worth the risk of you ask me.

ImageUploadedByTortoise Forum1437321879.659366.jpg
 

Yvonne G

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In my opinion, it depends upon the type of tortoise. I like the Mercury Vapor Bulb (MVB) for desert-type tortoises and the long tube like tortdad pictured for the forest-type.

MVB provides heat and UVB in one fixture while the tube fluorescent provides the UVB over a bigger space, but no heat.
 

aliceG

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I don't know about which brands you can get in the UK but a high output (HO) tube is good. The problem with the compact ones is that they can cause eye issues and blindness in a tort. Not worth the risk of you ask me.

View attachment 139822

I've just searched online and found this one in the UK and its £16-22 ($24-34) I think this price seems reasonable. Although the price depends on the wattage and size, it goes from 14- 30w, which do you recommend?
 

aliceG

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In my opinion, it depends upon the type of tortoise. I like the Mercury Vapor Bulb (MVB) for desert-type tortoises and the long tube like tortdad pictured for the forest-type.

MVB provides heat and UVB in one fixture while the tube fluorescent provides the UVB over a bigger space, but no heat.

My tortoise is a horsefield. I have a heat lamp for him anyways so I would just need something providing UVB only.
 

Tidgy's Dad

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If you have heating then only UVB is necessary and a strip light would be fine.
Don't use coiled or compact bulbs.
I, myself would use an MVB (and do), which gives heat and light and use a CHE (Ceramic Heat Emitter) on the other socket to provide heat at night as torts can't sleep properly if there's light.
 
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