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  1. #1
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    Prepping for a BCI - time to build a Bio Active Enclosure ...

    The vivarium will have a few things that I haven't seen that often. From a small ish waterfall running into the 'waterbowl', heated pump and drainage system, custom background, bio active all the way to automatic ventilation to regulate humidity and so on. I say 'will have a few things'.

    It really depends if it works out or not. Having a plan is one thing, execution a whole other. Maybe half way in running without a snake I find out the whole thing doesn't work lol - so we shall see.

    One thing I noticed is that the cost is already a lot higher than expected ... But with just one snake I want to do it right. Yepp - one snake. I used to bread BPs but when I met my wife my hobby was put 'on hold' - now having my own office I am 'allowed' again lol

    Anyway - few pics how it started. Might take a while to complete .. All about costs and time and whatnot but let's do it.

    Started with the stand ..



    And yes, woodfiller was messy lol ... I didn't appreciate the amount of dust when sanding ...



    Cleaned up nicely though.



    Now painted and started the actual viv



    LOL ignore the socks - it's for me to run not into the clamps haha...

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  3. #2
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    Re: Prepping for a BCI - time to build a Bio Active Enclosure ...

    Your plans for this enclosure sound really ambitious, I like it! Never seen a completely custom bio active enclosure like that before. I'm intrigued to see how it turns out, good luck! (Secretly wishes I was that handy)

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  5. #3
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    Re: Prepping for a BCI - time to build a Bio Active Enclosure ...

    Quote Originally Posted by RickySRonin View Post
    Your plans for this enclosure sound really ambitious, I like it! Never seen a completely custom bio active enclosure like that before. I'm intrigued to see how it turns out, good luck! (Secretly wishes I was that handy)
    Thankfully it is all just 'square' stuff .. But the problem with projects like that is always the amount of tools and stuff. First I ordered everything for the vivarium 'cut to size' - which I am sure costs a premium. Eventually ended up buying tools (garage looks like a DeWalt shop) but the lack of skills also means it is overkill.

    The stand is built based on a YouTube video



    Nothing wrong with that - but because I used 2x3 for something that doesn't need to hold 300 gallons of water, it essentially weighs a tonne lol

    Speaking of spending - now I found out I am two 50" clamps short - so there goes another 80 bucks (damn UK is expensive for tools).

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  7. #4
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    Oh I didn't even mention - this tank is 8x2.5x2.5 ft ... that is pretty much as big as it gets in my home office ...

    Rest of it is blocked by a desk. Desk is now against the other wall, but you can see with chair there isn't much wiggle room.


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  9. #5
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    Re: Prepping for a BCI - time to build a Bio Active Enclosure ...

    This does sound like an expensive endeavor, especially in today's time with Covid inflating alot of prices for raw materials. Thankfully you're only doing this for one snake lol You won't have much of an office left when you're done.

  10. #6
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    Re: Prepping for a BCI - time to build a Bio Active Enclosure ...

    Quote Originally Posted by RickySRonin View Post
    This does sound like an expensive endeavor, especially in today's time with Covid inflating alot of prices for raw materials. Thankfully you're only doing this for one snake lol You won't have much of an office left when you're done.
    Yea office will be small, but I can leave, the boa can't lol - so (s)he deserves a good place to live a long life.

    And yea - I don't know if it's a he or she. I am building the tank first before buying a snake, especially since it will to be run in for a while and I don't want to end up using a tub as temporary enclosure.

    Anyway, vivarium itself is finished structure wise.



    In the US most seem to use Pond Shield, but that costs a fortune here. I found this :

    https://psealit.com/contents/en-uk/d...l-Coating.html

    Anyway ... that's that for today - I am knackered.

    So next is sanding, painting outside, sealing inside and then I can think about layout.

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  12. #7
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    Oh actually I was lying ... I did put a deposit down on a 2018 Key West Sunglow Het Moonglow girl, but she won't be shipped until I am ready and who knows ... maybe I change my mind lol ...

    So for NOW it is her ...


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  14. #8
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    Jibba!

    This is an amazing project you're accomplishing! The boa that lives in there is going to be one lucky snake.
    I am also undergoing an extremely similar project for my ancient ball python. I must say, I feel you on the 'omg; this is costing a ton'. I thought I could whip together one of these grand enclosures for perhaps a few hundred dollars... That used to be a nice thought haha.

    A few tips about your bioactive endeavor:
    -no matter what the haters say, stay confident that you can establish optimal ecology within your enclosure!
    -Don't bother using fake climbing logs, just utilize real tree limbs for that. Saves money, is more natural, and depending on your wood will last many years.
    -It may take several months for the fungus gnat populations to reach a point where they are environmentally out-competed by your springtails, but rest-assured, the springtails will prevail (provided your substrate is optimal).
    -Do your absolute best to ensure stringent biosecurity controls, meaning sterilize the heck out of your enclosure components so other unwanted insects do not develop populations in your enclosure. Microwave wet leaves, bake the wood, bake substrates as best you can, and wash all the soil off of your plant roots. I have staphylinidae populations which have crept up in a few of my enclosures (likely from stow-away eggs in substrate component I had not sterilized), and its been a hassle.
    -Don't worry about fungal blooms or slime molds! Most fungal activity is benevolent, however, if you see an excess of black mold developing within any of the hides, do what you can to cleanse it, then modify the hide so there is more airflow into the hide.

    Creating a large and successful bioactive environment is a load of work and biological research, but once its' there; it will be incredibly optimal for your animal and beyond rewarding for the both of you.
    Good luck and keep us posted!
    Last edited by ProdigyPythons; 05-08-2021 at 01:24 PM.

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  16. #9
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    Thank you for the valuable information. Much appreciated. The biggest challenge will be large wood. I think the only way I can attempt to sterilise is is to use a steamer.

    I hope I can run it in for as long as possible but building it took already longer than expected. But yea. Generally I donít care what haters think. Each to their own.

    Either it works or it doesnít. Worth trying though.

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  18. #10
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    Background stuff sorted


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