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Pair of Bearded Dragons or a Red Tail Boa for 4x2x2

Discussion in 'Boas *General*' started by Dirkthejerk41, Apr 12, 2013.

  1. Dirkthejerk41

    Dirkthejerk41 Elite Member

    I am planning on getting a new addition for my 4x2x2 melamine enclosure and have narrowed it down to either a pair of bearded dragons or a red tail boa. Just curious as to what ya'lls thoughts are (forgive me for the grammar, it's habitual, I'm from Texas).
     
  2. justor

    justor Elite Member

    Melamine would hold up better under dry conditions so the bearded dragon would be a better choice. You shouldn't keep two together though.
     
  3. Dirkthejerk41

    Dirkthejerk41 Elite Member

    Yeah we will see. I feel the care for the boas is less maintenance, aside from humidity.
     
  4. Thalatte

    Thalatte Elite Member

    But the melamine will turn into toxic mush if the surface is scratched and it gets wet. It would be best to keep the conditions dry inside the cage.
     
  5. diehardislanders

    diehardislanders Elite Member

    A red tail boa should be kept around 60% humidity, possibly higher during shed. That will not work well with melamine. Some of the complications you will have include housing a substrate that can hold humidity without moistening and ruining a melamine base, a big snake knocking its water bowl around etc. Also, they are fairly active snakes, and my opinion is that a snake that can exceed 10 feet of length (especially in captivity) should be provided a bigger enclosure with more length than 4'.
     
  6. Dirkthejerk41

    Dirkthejerk41 Elite Member

    Don't many people use melamine cages for tropical species?
     
  7. mshrmheadcharge

    mshrmheadcharge Moderator Staff Member Premium Member

    Ditch the toxic enclosure...why risk the health of your reptiles??
     
  8. Thalatte

    Thalatte Elite Member

    Well it is readily available and lots of companies build enclosures out of melamine since its cheap and looks good. And many people use them until they do disintegrate. But people also house bearded dragons in 20g aquariums or savannah monitors in 55g aquariums. Just because idiots do it doesn't mean you should.
    It is a horrible product and shouldn't be used for tropical enclosures unless you want to take FRP or a similar product and completely line the inside and seal the corners. You could do that and make it safe.

    I don't have any enclosures made of melamine but my 90gal stand is and the bottom of it is starting to rot. It got wet from moping and water being splashed on it so now it is expanding and disintegrating in areas it looks horrible and I hate it.
     
  9. diehardislanders

    diehardislanders Elite Member

    They should not. Many people use melamine to make "racks" for geckos, ball pythons, and other tropical animals, but they are in tubs, not on the melamine direct. Melamine is composed of compressed wood fibers and synthetic fibers, fused with glues and chemicals including formaldehyde. The word "melamine" actually refers to its coating, which is a chemical based polycrylic resin made mostly from pesticides and fire-retardant chemicals. It is the same stuff that formica is made of, which is why you usually find the stuff in cheap old kitchen base cabinets. Any moisture under the coating, and the synthetic fibers and wood pieces blow up like on of those old "soak and grow" dino's I used to play with. Aside from it not being safe for direct contact with your animals, the stuff is pure garbage, and does not hold up well at all. Its only suitable function is for shelving, and even as far as shelving is concerned I choose pine over it. I never touch melamine, because it does scratch easy, and once it scratches it is aesthetically forever tarnished, and as far as the specific application you have in mind for it, permanently compromised. Hope this helps.
     
  10. Thalatte

    Thalatte Elite Member

    I didn't know it had that many chemicals in it. I knew it had formaldehyde ingredients.

    Ugh now I want to just through the entire thing away and put the 90 on the floor. But then the dogs can get in it.
     
  11. Dirkthejerk41

    Dirkthejerk41 Elite Member

     
  12. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    For a while. But the first scratch will allow the moisture to get in and ruin your work. And if there is any stress on the screw holes they will wallow out and come apart. Melamine book cases are the ones you see sitting on the curb on big trash day for pick up because they fall apart.
     
  13. Thalatte

    Thalatte Elite Member

    If you line it with a safe waterproof material like FRP (fiberglass reinforced plastic) or even tile or thick laminate would work as well, then yes seal the corners with silicone and it will be ok.

    You could also use a thick coat rhino liner. Instead of lining it with something else.
     
  14. Dirkthejerk41

    Dirkthejerk41 Elite Member

    Will humidity cause it to rot or actual contact with water?
     
  15. Thalatte

    Thalatte Elite Member

    Prolonged contact or repetitive contact of water with the melamine can cause it to rot yes but it takes longer.
     
  16. Dirkthejerk41

    Dirkthejerk41 Elite Member

    ok so it would work fine for bearded dragons though?
     
  17. Thalatte

    Thalatte Elite Member

    Yes as they don't need ambient humidity or substrate. You can like the bottom with tiles and silicone the gaps inbetween and around the edges then if they spill their water or something (which is rare) it will stay on the tiles and be easy to clean up without damaging the melamine.
     
  18. Dirkthejerk41

    Dirkthejerk41 Elite Member

    We'll see... I'm either going to sell it to get a boamaster enclosure for a redtail boa or keep it and get a bearded dragon.
     
  19. Dirkthejerk41

    Dirkthejerk41 Elite Member

    Would a 48Lx30Dx18H be okay for a red tail?
     
  20. Dragoness

    Dragoness Elite Member

    You might be able to get by housing a male in it, as they don't get as big, but a female would be folded up like origami in there. I'd recommend a minimum of 6 feet long.
     

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