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outside cage

Discussion in 'Not So Spineless Wonders' started by P. Novak, Sep 30, 2008.

  1. P. Novak

    P. Novak ArachnoGod Old Timer

    As the title states I plan to build an outside enclosure for my reptiles. It will only be used on summer days while I'm out for the day, or just around the house. It will be designed for my large lizards and snakes. Only one at a time will be placed in there, rotating days. I plan to make it 10'W x 10'L x 8'H or somewhere around there. I'll begin by digging a 1' deep trench so they can't just dig under it. I was either thinking of cementing it or just having longer pieces of 2x4s that go into the ground with the attached fencing that'll then be covered back up by the dirt. I'll be using long 2x4's as the frame work. I will coat these with some kind of laminating waterproof substance(any ideas?). Then I was planning on using some kind of chicken wire or something(again, any suggestions?) of the sort to attach to the frame with nails. I will also have a walk in door which I'm still thinking on how to make properly. The cage will contain a large pond with filter and a couple of small plants. Some logs and branches to climb and hide under. Also rocks for decor and added basking. With the plants, what would be some good non toxic plants to use? Also, would grass be ok to put in there?

    The cage will probably mainly be used for iguanas and a black throat monitor. Occasionaly a burmese python and Argentine boa(won't be in together), but the snakes will be supervised at all times.

    Open to every idea, and all suggestions, especially from those who have constructed something similar.

    Last edited: Sep 30, 2008
  2. Mushroom Spore

    Mushroom Spore Arachnoemperor Old Timer

    I've never built anything like that, but another thought - won't these animals become potentially stressed due to the scent of the previous animals in and around the enclosure and its furnishings? There's also the risk of passing anything contagious, if any of your captives come down with something.
  3. JohnEDove

    JohnEDove Arachnoknight

    Around my outdoor box turtle rescue enclosure which is 48ft X 42ft. I dug a narrow trench 2 feet deep and cut corrugated tin into 3ft lengths then burried them in the trench so that 12 inches remains above the ground.

    For my outdoor Iguana Enclosure I stacked railroad ties 3 high and back filled in the box created then constructed what is basically the frame of a house with 24 inch centers on the studs and joists then covered the whole thing with hardware cloth/hail screen. Of course I added large suspended logs etc for climbing prior to attaching the covering screen/cloth.
    AVOID chicken wire, is can slice up your animals.

    Thus far I have had no problems from outside pathogens. As for the scents of other animals, neither my dogs or poultry seem to both the Iguanas when they want to go out and bask.
  4. crpy

    crpy Arachnoking

    Last edited: Sep 30, 2008
  5. harveythefly

    harveythefly Arachnoknight

    man the iguanas will love you forever if you plant hibiscus flowers in there...red ones if you can find them...believe it or not they love to eat the flowers and they're an excellent source of vitamins for them as well...my cousin had a green iguana a few years ago that he had raised from a neonate up to three feet long that would come running like a maniac for hibiscus flowers! also if you'd like to stick something else edible in there you could plant a loquat tree...the only drawback is that you'd have to keep it pruned fairly regularly to keep it from getting too tall...but the fruit is delicious and full of vitamins and minerals...also with the loquat tree being fairly branchy and covered in large broad leaves it'll give the iguanas a place to climb and feel at home...

    as for some other plants bromiliads and sword ferns are a safe choice...they're non toxic and make for an awesome primordial rainforest look with the added benefit of taking no care what so ever hehe:)...

    just some thoughts:)

  6. P. Novak

    P. Novak ArachnoGod Old Timer

    Thanks alot for the info guys! I don't think I was gonna really go with chicken wire, just something simialr. Maybe something vinyl so it won't really hurt them. Now one more question if I don't use chain link how would I get a door installed? Also, any suggestions on the type of water coating I can use that'll sustane winter rains? I'm thinking anything for "outside" coating will be fine.

    Edit: One last thing, would the grass be ok if planted there or should I just leave it dirt?
  7. harveythefly

    harveythefly Arachnoknight

    i don't see grass as a problem but personally i'd leave it dirt or cover it in some kind of mulch like cypress or fir bark...but that's purely for asthetic reasons on my part hehe:)

    as for the door...you can buy aluminium pipe and connectors for regular chain link fencing and fashion a door and door frame out of it...and you can attach vinyl mesh to it the same way you would normal chain link...i had an outdor dog pen years ago that was made the same way...although i used regular chain link fencing instead of vinyl the theory is still the same...the door and frame construction should be identical except make the pipes for the frame slightly larger than the pipes for the door so it'll fit inside of course...and there are hinges and latches made expressly for the purpose of making doors like this one...you just have to check the local home depot or other home improvement store and use a little creativity:)

    hope this helps!


    EDIT: i'm pretty sure that you can buy vinyl fencing that is made just like and acts just like chain link fencing now...i'm pretty sure i've seen rolls of the stuff around but i might be mistaken
    Last edited: Sep 30, 2008
  8. hardlucktattoo

    hardlucktattoo Arachnobaron

    Some Ideas

    What I would do personally would be to drive wooden posts into the ground ans take a heavy vinyl clear plastic and stretch and staple with any type of fence you run some risk of escape as far as a door goes put two posts close together and use a piece of plywood and attach two hinges and a latch between those two posts pm me for a more detailed description