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  1. #1
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    Question How's my Setup?? + I Need Advice!

    I procrastinated making this post because I'm bad at taking criticism, but here's hoping most of it is constructive.
    here's my setup for my 6-month-old BP:

    https://imgur.com/a/VYxynLr
    (hopefully that photo uploads)

    The Specs:
    • 40-gallon exo-terra tank

    it has a mesh top that didn't hold heat well so i have Super High Tech aluminum foil-covered cardboard rectangles that fit into each one so they hold heat and humidity better but i can take them off to clean & regulate

    • 100watt CHE

    does its job reasonably well, I have a very DIY'd set up for it because it doesn't clip to the tank but it works. i don't have it on a dimmer but it seems like it BARELY keeps the ambient temp up so do i need a higher wattage on a dimmer?

    • Probe Thermostat #1

    measures the ambient temp and humidity. i have it stuck to the back center wall and it usually barely hits 80. is that enough?

    • iPower 16w UTH

    covers roughly a third of the bottom of the tank. plugged into two different thermostats (see below)

    • Probe Thermostat #2

    Measures the UTH on the INSIDE of the tank. stuck to the floor directly over the UTH so i can see how warm it is once it gets through the glass.

    • Jumpstart Thermostat

    what the UTH is plugged into. i keep it on the highest setting (105) because the heat that makes it through the glass only gets to about 95.

    • Water Dish

    technically it's a food dish but whatever. I keep it directly under the CHE to help with humidity, and near but not precisely on top of the UTH. the water temp does not get hot but it helps with humidity.

    • Warm Hide

    Rock hide because it holds heat better than the plastic ones I tried. plus my BP seems to boycott plastic ones (maybe because of heat)

    • Cold Hide

    big fake log. that's it. he likes it and i like it.

    • Coco Fiber Substrate

    sometimes he eats some of it when it sticks to a mouse but it keeps humidity reasonably well.

    • Sphagnum Moss

    for humidity. but damn it's hard to spell.

    • Various Leaves n Decor
    • Coming Soon: going to add a beardie hammock because he thinks he is a tree python.


    I know it isn't a fancy set up, but is it okay? I struggle with keeping the heat up enough in the winter but i'm not sure what I should do to combat it. I have emergency snake funds set aside but I am on a budget so I can't just keep buying things looking for something that will work. is 40 gallons enough for a young BP? he's 6 months old now, and I really probably just need to get a year, year and a half or so out of it before I can move into a space where I can fit a larger tank.

    also, on the subject of heat: is it warm enough? the UTH usually gets about 95 regularly, but that's under the substrate, and I worry that it doesn't get that warm in the hide enough though I keep the substrate under there pretty thin. should I find a different thermostat that will let me turn it up a little higher? if so what kind? is the CHE a high enough wattage, because sometimes the ambient is only is the 70s....

    please critique!!
    Last edited by Bogertophis; 02-18-2021 at 09:56 PM. Reason: family-friendly forum language spoken here

  2. #2
    Registered User BlueOrleans1290's Avatar
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    Re: How's my Setup?? + I Need Advice!

    Honestly I'd say that you're doing pretty well! I don't use a CHE for my BP, but I do for my kenyan sand boa. Honestly I don't even use a dimmer on it because with the thermostat it never let's it get too hot, and she enjoys it, I believe. For my BP I've been too scared to use a CHE because of humidity levels, so I switched to a zoo med infrared light and it doesn't bother her, it keeps the ambient temps up, and it doesn't harm the humidity as bad. I have my BP in an Exo-Terra, and she is about 5 months I believe, so still quite small. She can stretch all the way out in it, so as long as yours can. I'd say the size is just fine. I keep newspaper on the bottom of my terrarium to help with the heat and moisture as well, plus it makes It a loooooot easier to clean, and if your BP pushes the substrate aside to get a bit warmer it won't harm them even a little bit! The beardie hammock is a good idea. Just make sure that your snake can't push the lid open. Because I know that my Exo-Terra has a lot that doesn't really latch to anything [it's an older cage i used for my chameleon once apon a time.] I found it super hard to keep temperatures up, but if you have a screen lid I found that putting a blanket on the opposite side of the enclosure lid helps to keep the Temps up a little, and if you have. A backing on your cage, preferably made of an insulator like a styraphome [butchering spelling] rock look, that helps too!

  3. #3
    Registered User BlueOrleans1290's Avatar
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    Re: How's my Setup?? + I Need Advice!

    Oh and! I'd really suggest switching to the infrared bulb of 100 watts, you can find them at your local pet store. Preferably by Zoo-Med they're a good company. The ambient temps in my cage used to be at 71 and now they're in the mid 80's because of it. The winter is tough.
    I keep the news paper in the back with the heat pad with extremely thin substrate and have the heat pad set to 94, it usually stays around 92 on the inside, and she seems to love it. A heat gun has helped me out tons!
    Last edited by BlueOrleans1290; 02-18-2021 at 08:30 PM.

  4. #4
    BPnet Veteran nikkubus's Avatar
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    95F is too hot, I would put it at 90F.

    CHE should be higher wattage on a pulse proportional thermostat. Ideally you want that at 85-87 rather than 80.

    The hides not being identical could cause your snake to favor one over the other and not properly thermoregulate because it is choosing "safety" over proper temps.

    40 gallons is far larger than I would usually keep a 6 month old BP in, but that is going to be something there are a lot of opinions and ideas about. You have to use your own judgment with your individual snake to decide if he likes it. I have one little female that got moved to an enclosure almost that big around that age because she was exceptionally bold and curios compared to any other BP I've ever had, and it absolutely works for her. I also have a 2.5 yr old male in an enclosure far smaller than that because he absolutely hates large spaces and goes of food for prolonged times when I try to upgrade him.

    His log hide seems way too big for him for right now, though eventually he will grow and it will be great. I'd get a much smaller one for right now, just like his other one ideally.

    Coco fiber gives me a lot more trouble than coco chunks, but if you are able to keep it moist and keep him from ingesting it, it's a good substrate.

    Ultimately, if he is eating, not overly active at night trying to figure out how to escape, and otherwise seems healthy, it's a 10/10 setup because his opinion is the only one that really matters
    7.22 BP 1.4 corn 1.1 SD retic 0.1 hognose

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  6. #5
    Registered User BlueOrleans1290's Avatar
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    Re: How's my Setup?? + I Need Advice!

    Ah I agree with that last post, safety over temp is something even I forget about occasionally, thanks for catching that. I completely spaced lol.

  7. #6
    BPnet Veteran jmcrook's Avatar
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    How's my Setup?? + I Need Advice!

    You donít want the UTH to get any hotter than 90į directly where the animal can touch the floor of the cage. They will move substrate out of the way to get to it. 95į is too hot.

    Screen top enclosures are hard to maintain ambient temps in. Heat rises, screens donít contain heat, and is a very sisyphusian effort at raising ambient temps. Keep the majority of it covered with foil/plexiglass/etc and ideally the CHE should be thermostat regulated as well, but a dimmer switch can help if youíre monitoring temps a couple times daily at least.

    40 gallons is pretty big for a 6 month old baby. Honestly big enough for most adult males.

    Edit: didnít see Nikkubusís post that echoes most of what I just posted.

    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Last edited by jmcrook; 02-18-2021 at 08:54 PM.

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  9. #7
    Registered User Hugsplox's Avatar
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    Re: How's my Setup?? + I Need Advice!

    Quote Originally Posted by klevert View Post
    • Probe Thermostat #2

    Measures the UTH on the INSIDE of the tank. stuck to the floor directly over the UTH so i can see how warm it is once it gets through the glass.

    • Jumpstart Thermostat

    what the UTH is plugged into. i keep it on the highest setting (105) because the heat that makes it through the glass only gets to about 95.
    Sorry if I missed this somewhere, but where is the probe for your Jumpstart for the UTH? Just want to make sure that its sandwiched between the UTH and the glass and not inside the enclosure. If your snake moves that then you've got a UTH that's not regulated and it may burn your snake. Just ignore this if you've got it in the right place I just wanted to clarify.

    Also to echo jm and nikkubus 95 is too hot for your UTH and a proportional thermostat on your CHE is going to solve a lot of your humidity issues.

    I have a 40 breeder as well for my guy, Jumpstart on the UTH is set to 95 and creates a 90 hotspot in the warm hide.
    Last edited by Hugsplox; 02-19-2021 at 10:53 AM.

  10. #8
    BPnet Veteran nikkubus's Avatar
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    Re: How's my Setup?? + I Need Advice!

    Quote Originally Posted by Hugsplox View Post
    Sorry if I missed this somewhere, but where is the probe for your Jumpstart for the UTH? Just want to make sure that its sandwiched between the UTH and the glass and not inside the enclosure. If your snake moves that then you've got a UTH that's not regulated and it may burn your snake. Just ignore this if you've got it in the right place I just wanted to clarify.

    Also to echo jm and nikkubus 95 is too hot for your UTH and a proportional thermostat on your CHE is going to solve a lot of your humidity issues.

    I have a 40 breeder as well for my guy, Jumpstart on the UTH is set to 95 and creates a 90 hotspot in the warm hide.
    Looking at the pic, it appears "thermostat" is a digital thermometer with probe except for the one on the heat mat itself, set to 105, causing a hot spot of 95. I'm unsure if the CHE has any thermostat at all, which at this low of a wattage this time a year seems to be alright, but I wouldn't trust that as weather warms up.
    7.22 BP 1.4 corn 1.1 SD retic 0.1 hognose

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  12. #9
    Registered User Hugsplox's Avatar
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    Re: How's my Setup?? + I Need Advice!

    Quote Originally Posted by nikkubus View Post
    Looking at the pic, it appears "thermostat" is a digital thermometer with probe except for the one on the heat mat itself, set to 105, causing a hot spot of 95. I'm unsure if the CHE has any thermostat at all, which at this low of a wattage this time a year seems to be alright, but I wouldn't trust that as weather warms up.
    I'm an idiot I completely missed the picture that was attached.

    Yea my concern is that since he has the probe for just the thermometer IN the enclosure that the probe for the actual thermostat is inside too.

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  14. #10
    BPnet Veteran jmcrook's Avatar
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    Re: How's my Setup?? + I Need Advice!




    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

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