Vote for BP.Net for the 2013 Forum of the Year! Click here for more info.

» Site Navigation

» Home
 > FAQ

» Online Users: 358

6 members and 352 guests
Most users ever online was 6,337, 01-24-2020 at 04:30 AM.


» Today's Birthdays

» Stats

Members: 67,192
Threads: 241,843
Posts: 2,510,429
Top Poster: JLC (31,651)
Welcome to our newest member, Whitney12613
Page 1 of 4 1234 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 38
  1. #1
    BPnet Veteran frankykeno's Avatar
    Join Date
    04-17-2005
    Location
    Toledo, Ohio
    Posts
    19,814
    Thanks
    92
    Thanked 868 Times in 477 Posts
    Images: 33

    A Rat Colony When You Have Little Space...

    Robin has been talking with me about building her rat colony but having a lot of space constraints and since I faced that for a long time (having no basement or big spare room) I thought I'd share a bit about how I dealt with this issue. I choose to not use the more traditional rat racks as I like a bit more interaction with my permanent breeder rats.

    This is the original rat rack I had. I actually had two maternity tanks side by side. The bottom cage was Casanova's and where he lived permanently and the four females I had back then cycled in and out with him. Above was 2 ten gallon glass maternity tanks and above that two feeder bins. It was just a little start but it really helped feed our snakes back then (of course we had a lot less snakes then come to think of it LOL). It wasn't a big start but it quickly cut back on our $100 a month feeding bill from the local pet store.



    This free standing plastic rack is from WalMart and retails for around $18.00, snaps together without any tools needed and is super easy to keep clean. It's dimensions are 33.5 wide x 14 deep x 55 high (68 high with top tank). I've had this same rack in service for over 2 years now and it's never even developed a crack.

    Here's the same rack today. It's currently housing 5 females and their 35 offspring of various ages (some litters are mostly fed off as I need a lot of fuzzies and pups right now). It can easily hold 7 ten gallon tanks though I never put 2 on top as it is a lighter duty rack so I don't trust it being too top heavy.



    A very small footprint really for the numbers it can hold.

    I combine this rack with 4 large tubs that I get from the local dollar store for about $7.00 per tub (plus of course the cost of hardware cloth to ventilate).

    Hardware cloth (about $7.00 for a good sized roll)....



    Here's our breeding tub currently housing 1 male and 2 females....



    One of the feeder/grower tubs (side view)....



    Same tub (top view)....


    These bigger tubs are 19 wide x 32.5 long x 13.5 high. The tubs that actually fit the rack (pictured in the first rack) are 16 wide x 24 long x 12 high.

    When I figured it out for Robin I came to this conclusion. If you had two of these racks side by side they barely take up the room an entertainment unit would.

    You could easily house the following in this relatively small space...

    Rack 1:
    4 maternity tanks (2 side by side on the bottom two shelves)
    1 tub for breeders on the next shelf
    1 spare/overflow tub on the top shelf

    Rack 2:
    2 maternity tanks side by side on the bottom shelf
    1 tub for female feeders above that
    1 tub for male feeders above that
    1 tub for resting females on the top shelf

    This gives you quite a lot of bang for a pretty small space buck. You could have a nice working colony of 1 or 2 males and up to 6 or 8 females and you should have enough tanks/tubs to cycle it quite nicely if you plan the breedings out carefully.

    Considering Robin doesn't need anything larger than a small/small rat and will likely feed off quite a few large pups/weanlings sizes, she shouldn't run into overcrowding issues but that's why I built the overflow/spare tub into the plan (I believe in having a backup tub at all times just in case).

    Hope this was what you needed Robin and it's of interest to the smaller rat colony breeder that doesn't have the ability to spread out in a basement or garage but would still like to breed for the needs of their snakes.

    Oh and just for fun! Here's a shot of old Casanova enjoying his retirement. He might be an old 2 year plus rat but he's still King of the Food Dish! LOL

    ~~Joanna~~


  2. The Following 5 Users Say Thank You to frankykeno For This Useful Post:

    BEasy119 (01-08-2012),Herpking (09-17-2011),nykea (05-09-2013),ss10gotanks (05-05-2011),toyota89 (11-26-2012)

  3. #2
    rhac wrangler mlededee's Avatar
    Join Date
    05-05-2004
    Location
    central
    Posts
    10,536
    Thanks
    710
    Thanked 1,870 Times in 1,162 Posts
    Blog Entries
    2
    Images: 72

    Re: A Rat Colony When You Have Little Space...

    very cool jo. i've been using something quite similar and it does work very well and takes up little space.

    one word of advice though on putting two plastic tubs (aquariums would be fine because of their weight) vertically into the rack side by side--if the tubs overhang the shelves much at all on either end your rats will find a way to somehow make it fall off the rack. :o i put two tubs like that as a test one time and as i sitting on the floor cleaning the tubs below the boogers in one of the vertical tubs managed to make this happen, which resulted in their tub falling on my head, the top flying off, covering me in aspen, water, food and freaked out rats. fun! they must have all run to the edge and jumped up and down or something--i have no idea--but i quickly decided that that wasn't going to be a good idea.
    - Emily


  4. The Following User Says Thank You to mlededee For This Useful Post:

    BeccaBurrr (04-30-2013)

  5. #3
    BPnet Veteran frankykeno's Avatar
    Join Date
    04-17-2005
    Location
    Toledo, Ohio
    Posts
    19,814
    Thanks
    92
    Thanked 868 Times in 477 Posts
    Images: 33

    Re: A Rat Colony When You Have Little Space...

    That's a good point Emily and exactly why I only allow one plastic tub sideways per shelf. I too tried to put two side by side and found that they overhang too much and to get two plastic tubs to fit on that rack dimension, they are simply too small too be of any real use other than maternity tubs. That's why I went with a combination of plastic tubs and glass tanks and keep the tanks low on the rack to keep it balanced weightwise.
    ~~Joanna~~


  6. #4
    BPnet Veteran recycling goddess's Avatar
    Join Date
    11-14-2005
    Location
    meditating in the garden
    Posts
    9,785
    Thanks
    36
    Thanked 44 Times in 22 Posts
    Images: 104

    Re: A Rat Colony When You Have Little Space...

    what a GREAT post jo. thanks so much. that really helps me with my "where am i gonna put all these tubs" situation we are just about to start aquiring.

    and i love that you can still see and interact with your rats. our breeders are also our pets... so we want to hold them and hand feed them and play with them... the only thing i don't like about your design... if the lack of hammocks. we are a 'havetohavehammocks' colony... even the mamas love to retire to their hammock when they don't need to sit on their pups... so i think... a mesh on the top with large enough squares that we can clip a closepin onto it (to hold up each of the four corners of our hammocks) would make this absolute perfection for our colony!!!
    in light, Aleesha




    You have 1440 minutes a day... how are you going to spend yours?

  7. #5
    Steel Magnolia rabernet's Avatar
    Join Date
    07-12-2005
    Location
    In the Nest
    Posts
    29,199
    Thanks
    2,845
    Thanked 5,582 Times in 3,092 Posts
    Blog Entries
    2
    Images: 46

    Re: A Rat Colony When You Have Little Space...

    Thank you Joanna! That really does help a LOT!

  8. #6
    rhac wrangler mlededee's Avatar
    Join Date
    05-05-2004
    Location
    central
    Posts
    10,536
    Thanks
    710
    Thanked 1,870 Times in 1,162 Posts
    Blog Entries
    2
    Images: 72

    Re: A Rat Colony When You Have Little Space...

    just a note: i have seen some shelving units at lowe's that are very similar, about the same length and height (they are black as opposed to white though) but that have deeper shelves--i haven't measured but i think that they might just do the trick for keeping two tubs per shelf.
    - Emily


  9. #7
    BPnet Veteran SnakeySnakeSnake's Avatar
    Join Date
    02-18-2006
    Location
    Old Sebilis
    Posts
    1,529
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 3 Times in 3 Posts
    Images: 69

    Re: A Rat Colony When You Have Little Space...

    I designed a rat rack that would work well for small spaces/ people who want to interact/dont have much room.

    It is 2' wide 2' deep and 4' or 6' tall. Using primarly wood, scratch/chew resistant whiteboard, and hardware cloth. The 6' tall version (mainly to conserve space) will have 6 levels about 8-10" tall, room for food to be placed on top of the racks for auto feeding, a hinged wood/HW cloth door with removeable dividers on aluminum rails.

    That leaves the option of having 6 spots that are 2'x2' or dividing them up for mothers to have 1'x2' sections to themselves.

    I am building myself a 4'wide and 6' tall version at the moment and will post pics when I do .


    This is a great post, good job jo!
    bryan

  10. #8
    Steel Magnolia rabernet's Avatar
    Join Date
    07-12-2005
    Location
    In the Nest
    Posts
    29,199
    Thanks
    2,845
    Thanked 5,582 Times in 3,092 Posts
    Blog Entries
    2
    Images: 46

    Re: A Rat Colony When You Have Little Space...

    Sticky worthy, my friend, sticky worthy. This will definitely help a lot of people!

  11. #9
    BPnet Veteran TekWarren's Avatar
    Join Date
    07-07-2004
    Location
    Fremont, MI
    Posts
    1,644
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 6 Times in 1 Post
    Images: 6

    Re: A Rat Colony When You Have Little Space...

    That's about what I'm doing, tubs on a utility type shelf unit. Only I've gone the lazy route and built in a food/water holders that hang from the lid.
    www.ASFRats.info African soft-furred rats information and exchange.

    www.WarrenReptiles.com
    Website Hosting available see site for details

  12. #10
    BPnet Veteran frankykeno's Avatar
    Join Date
    04-17-2005
    Location
    Toledo, Ohio
    Posts
    19,814
    Thanks
    92
    Thanked 868 Times in 477 Posts
    Images: 33

    Re: A Rat Colony When You Have Little Space...

    Quote Originally Posted by recycling goddess
    what a GREAT post jo. thanks so much. that really helps me with my "where am i gonna put all these tubs" situation we are just about to start aquiring.

    and i love that you can still see and interact with your rats. our breeders are also our pets... so we want to hold them and hand feed them and play with them... the only thing i don't like about your design... if the lack of hammocks. we are a 'havetohavehammocks' colony... even the mamas love to retire to their hammock when they don't need to sit on their pups... so i think... a mesh on the top with large enough squares that we can clip a closepin onto it (to hold up each of the four corners of our hammocks) would make this absolute perfection for our colony!!!
    You may have to find something other than clothespins Aleesha as I'd worry about doing to any larger mesh. I know my young weanlings can easily jump straight up and will happily hang from this mesh. I'd worry that they'd start to shove their faces into larger mesh and possibly get caught up a bit in it. I'm sure there's something that would hold your hammocks using this mesh size....just haven't had enough coffee to think of what that is yet this morning LOL. I don't personally use hammocks as my colony chewed through them so quickly and I've reached enough numbers that replacing them constantly just wasn't working for me anymore.
    ~~Joanna~~


Page 1 of 4 1234 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  
Powered by vBadvanced CMPS v4.2.1