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Cage Temp and Humidity Constantly Changing?

Discussion in 'Corn Snakes' started by Khorne, Mar 4, 2014.

  1. Khorne

    Khorne Well-Known Member

    Due to how my current set up is (A way to bright light), the cage either is too cold but humidified, or hot but dry. I try to balance it out, of course, but that requires hourly misting and turning the light on and off every two hours. Even then that occasionally fails. Is this safe for Khorne? His recomened temp and humidity are 85 and 40%, they drop between 20%-60% (60 is the max recomended, 40 is the lowest) and anywhere between 65-85 degrees. Is that safe for him? Will the constant change effect him in any negative way?
     
  2. MorganLeFay

    MorganLeFay Elite Member

    The temps and humidity should be constant. The constant fluctuations are not good for him. Snakes are cold-blooded and need to thermoregulate, so all these changes are preventing it from maintaining its proper body temperature. You should sort it out ASAP. What are the temperature sources (heat lamp, heat mat, heat emiter, etc.) and how do you keep the humidity up (water bowl size, misting, etc.)? What are you using to measure the heat/humidity? What's his tank size? Where is it located (draughts, near a window, on the ground)? The more info the better, right now it's difficult to give any specific advice. Cool end of the tank should be min. 70 degrees, hot end about 86. 20% humidity is going to leave you with major shedding issues.
     
  3. Khorne

    Khorne Well-Known Member

    Alright, heres some pics of the cage and water bowl, as I dont know the size of either.
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    DSCN5314.JPG
    The heat sources are a heat lamp with 100 watt night light I keep running during the day (Temporary fix, and the cause of most of my issues. My 50 watt blue day bulb should be here tomorrow), and a heating pad in the back corner behind the skull. Reading temp and humidity with a Zilla thermometer that came with the cage, as it was one of those tropical "all in one" sets, on the cold side.
     
  4. MorganLeFay

    MorganLeFay Elite Member

    You might want to replace the analogue thermometer/hygrometer with a digital one. They are considerably more reliable and usually not very exepnsive. It's not a complete must, but it will provide more accurate information. From what I can see in the picture, your cage has a screen top (there's a mesh covering it?). Most of your humidity is escaping that way. Cover it up with towels, should help for the time being. Also, I would recommend an undertank heater/heat mat; the extra heat coming from below will help the snake digest its meals and it will raise the overall temps in the cage. Heat lamps tend to dry the air out. You may want a bigger water bowl to keep the humidity high enough, the current one seems a bit small for a cage that size, though I can't really determine from the picture. Just bear in mind that it's going to be pretty much the only source of humidity inside the tank:) The hygrometer will tell you everything you need to know:) Otherwise everything seems good, just make sure you can stabilize the enclosure as soon as possible. Is the snake currently living in there?
     
  5. Khorne

    Khorne Well-Known Member

    Yeah, he's currently living in it. Also, I have a Heating pad in the cage, but it only covers one corner.
    Edit: Alright, threw a towel over half of the cage, gonna move the water bowl to the hot side if its still escaping to fast.
     
  6. MorganLeFay

    MorganLeFay Elite Member

    For the time being, even a small heat mat will do:) Just move the water bowl over it to encrease evaporation. Later on, you can think of getting a bigger one. Just make sure the snake has both a hot spot and a cool spot so he can properly regulate his body temperature. Corn snakes can survive happily without UV or any other kind of light, it's not necessary for them. You can have a light, though, just make sure that a) he can't burn himself on it and b) it doesn't dry the air out too much.
     
  7. jarich

    jarich Elite Member

    How handy are you with tools? The towel thing is a quick fix, but youll need a more permanent solution. If you are able, just get a piece of plywood or plexiglass and cut it to the size of the top of your enclosure, then cut out just the area large enough to fit your light at one end (the same end as the heat pad). That will trap the heat and humidity in for the most part, at least enough for a corn snake. Since you have a light, you could also add a small plant in there, like a pothos. That will increase the humidity and keep it more constant. You can just stick the plant with its pot right in. That will give you some much needed ground cover too. Im guessing your snake stays mostly buried in the substrate anyway, but it will appreciate any cover you give it. Id also get another hide of some sort to go on the cool end. That way it can go to whichever side it wants to and still feel safe. See if you can find some branches outside. Not sure if thats possible for you where you are at, but your snake will use as much of that enclosure as you give it access to. Since its decently tall, some branches will add three dimensions to the space and make it a more enriching environment for your snake.
     
  8. Khorne

    Khorne Well-Known Member

    Should I move the hideout from the hot side to the cold side for now?
     
  9. MorganLeFay

    MorganLeFay Elite Member

    Ideally you should have 2 hides, one one the cool side and one on the hot side, so that the snake can feel secure wherever he goes. Or some plant cover, etc. For the time being I'd put it on the warm side, simply because I'm guessing that's where he'll be staying most of the time (when shedding or digesting). The more places he he can hide, the more secure=less stressed=more fun he'll be:)
     
  10. Khorne

    Khorne Well-Known Member

    Yeah, I plan on buying him a second hide as soon as I can, for now will a simple cardboard box work on the cold side?
     
  11. MorganLeFay

    MorganLeFay Elite Member

    Of course. You can even use an upturned plastic container (like the cheese or yogurt ones) with a hole cut out, just make sure he can't cut himself on it. It'll work just fine for the time being, until you can get something more permanent:) heck, even a simple flowerpot (clean!) will do fine for now. Basically anything that can't go mouldy:)
     

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