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"Rocky Outcroppings"

Discussion in 'Cage Furniture - Accessories' started by CentriRitanni, Jul 29, 2012.

  1. CentriRitanni

    CentriRitanni Elite Member

    I'm looking to make a hide for a 30 gallon tank. To be specific, I'm looking to make a multi-level hide meant to imitate something similar to a "rocky outcropping". Any suggestions?

    Ideally I would like it to come apart just in case. My thought was to sort of imitate Mike's rockwall he made for his Sav (foam, thinset) and to attempt to make 2 mirrored pieces that when placed in the enclosure would fit snuggly together. Opinions?

    My intent is to make the bottom take up a little less than 2/3 of the tank, then slope upward toward the top corner (not a perfect slope, of course). If I could make it work, I'd like to sink a ceramic pie pan into the piece as well (still removable, maybe just the lip over the edge). Any thoughts, suggestions, and questions are more than welcome. I'm trying to make a more ideal habitat for multiple Jones in one tank (though, fret not, I have back up enclosures and only the one Jones at the moment).
  2. lopez82

    lopez82 Elite Member

  3. CentriRitanni

    CentriRitanni Elite Member

    Um, I suppose I could to keep it lined up, though if I had it going all the way across the tank, I don't know that I would necessarily need them. My main concern would be that the noise of them clicking together would scare the Jonesies.
  4. Wyldrose

    Wyldrose Elite Member

  5. CentriRitanni

    CentriRitanni Elite Member

    Thanks, Susan. This one gave me some ideas. I'm thinking perhaps take the styrofoam from a glass lamp (from work, because the 2 pieces fit together), then carving it out, adding some bits, thinset and sealing. Hmm, well it'll be a good project for recoop (I find out if I'm having surgery next Friday on Tuesday... I will need something to do, if so).
  6. CentriRitanni

    CentriRitanni Elite Member

    I'm assuming the grout being used to coat stryofoam would be unsanded? Can anyone verify this for me? I've never used grout, but my understanding is that sanded is more prone to cracking. If I'm flat-out wrong, do let me know.
  7. mld

    mld Subscribed User Premium Member

    I did half of my bearded dragons tank with styrofoam with mortar used for under the tiles, watered down and then painted and sealed it. I also make a sunk in area for a stainless dish for food, makes it much easier for my dragon to eat without tiping the bowl over and no feeder escapes. It works great.

    P4180013.jpg P4180014.jpg P1110007.jpg
  8. CentriRitanni

    CentriRitanni Elite Member

    Great mind think alike. ;) I basically just made a piece that fits into the bottom of the tank with a sink hole for the water dish. It's the only piece that is fully grouted so far, though I need to seal it. I also have 4 layers of hides that function as a den when stacked, and I just used wood biscuits to hold them together (plus a little Velcro on the tank). I'll probably still put some of the eco earth faux sand/soil mixture on the bottom piece (dunno about all Joneses, but Herp likes to get wet then roll around in substrate). I think it'll be pretty cool once finished. I can't look at you're pics from my phone. :( But once I can use my laptop, I well definitely check them out. :)
  9. Vers

    Vers Elite Member

    Have you considered a short retes stack out of non-coated ceramic tiles with a removable faux rock 'shell'/facade, using dense foam board and grout and or topping mix to give it a naturalistic appearance?
  10. CentriRitanni

    CentriRitanni Elite Member

    No. they only weigh 20-30 grams, so I just constructed it out of styrofoam, liquid nails, and grout. I didn't figure it needed to be too rugged considering they have almost no nails and are light weight. Would a retes stack be beneficial?
  11. Vers

    Vers Elite Member

    Perhaps I'm not quite grasping what you're trying to accomplish here. When I think 'rocky outcropping' I think of a rock face with small gaps and crevasses. This is why I suggested a multi-layer (retes stack) construction with a faux rock face constructed out of dense foam board and concrete with small gaps cut into it to allow the animals to squeeze through to gain access to different levels of the stack. Am I way off base here...?
  12. CentriRitanni

    CentriRitanni Elite Member

    Not at all, I had just built the styrofoam so that it had multiple chambers, all with access to the stack below and above. The picture attached is of some of the pieces (some are humid hides for the Swifts). My concern with the retes stack is that they are small enough that they could be inured? Maybe I'm totally wrong here.

    Attached Files:

  13. Vers

    Vers Elite Member

    I don't see how the stack would cause injury...but it seems you're on a different path already, so it doesn't really matter :)
  14. CentriRitanni

    CentriRitanni Elite Member

    It's at a standstill until the cage is off my leg anyway, and there's only about two hours and five dollars invested in the project so far, so if there is a better way, I'm up for it, just wondering if there was a comparison for one being better than the other.

    My intent is to start a colony in the next year if I can find a male (which is ridiculously difficult to do), and I want plenty of burrows for the females to choose from. In the wild, there are several females to a single male (if you want to know more about that, check Herp Aderpa the thread under lizards general), and females generally coexist peacefully even without males. The worst I've seen is the end of a tail bitten off during feeding time, but they were also being housed in too small an enclosure and only fed once a week.

    For all that explanation, what I'm looking for is a way to set up multiple chambers so multiple females could potentially coexist with babies. They are ovoviviparous and protective of their young. My aim is to start a captive bred population so fewer wild caught Joneses are needed to supply for pet demand (ideally). Hence why I'm looking for the best possible set up.
  15. Vers

    Vers Elite Member

    I didn't mean to insinuate one way was better than the other, just simply offering another possible route. A retes stack comprised of ceramic/porcelain tiles would not only hold heat well, but would also be easily cleaned. A removable carved, foam board exterior would give the stack a natural rock appearance. I constructed a couple nest boxes with a similar design, a carved foam board 'box' (four sides) with a pvc box insert designed to hold relatively humid substrate. The top, which is open, will be capped off with a flat stone.

    In the end I'm not sure what to do with gravid females, but I would assume it may be better just to separate them rather than leaving them all together in the same tank/enclosure...though I could be entirely off base.
  16. CentriRitanni

    CentriRitanni Elite Member

    There is literally no research on the subject, so it will be trial and error. In the wild they live in fairly large groups (30 or more) divided by males (usually 5-8), then the females will generally stay nearer to one male, but may actually go to another male's space (and even breed with multiple males). The actual space the "male" groups live in is fairly small. So, if I were successful in breeding (assuming I can find a male), I think I would definitely separate the first group, but possibly see if they would do alright together at some point (obviously observing how they do separately will give more information on how they do together). They are unique in that they are protective of their young and have been known to feed them, which makes them different. They are social, so I'm not sure how they would be about being separated or left together, it would all be experimentation.

    Do you have pictures of the stack you were describing? Or a basic diagram? (All apologies if I'm being difficult, I'm on some high dose pain killers at the moment.)

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