My baby blood python, Mina, is growing fast, and I’d like to order a PVC enclosure for her pretty soon, since I know there can be lengthy wait times. However, before I place the order, it would be helpful if I could decide on what sort of heating I want to use, since that will affect what sort of add-ons I want with the enclosure.
Currently I’m using UTHs and/or CHEs for my two snakes, and they do the job fine, but I’m curious about radiant heat panels and deep heat projectors, and if those might be better than what I’ve been using. I’ve never used either RHPs or DHPs before, so I’d love to hear from some folks who have used them. How do they compare to one another, and are they superior to UTHs and CHEs (especially for something like a blood python, where I need to maintain moderate ambient temps without having a super warm hot spot)?
I wish i had an answer but im so new to snakes. Maybe the people that manufacture them may have knowledgeable people if you can’t find answer here, but im sure the people here definitely know more.
As far as heating options go che are the bottom of the list. They get dangerously hot, dry the air out and are fairly inefficient.
If you’re using a heated room belly heat (heat tape, heat mat, etc) will work fine in most instances.
Now the heaters that shine in almost any setup are radiant heat panels and deep heat projectors.
Dhp provide the most natural heating. But have the caveat of eventually burning out (arcadia told me expect about 2 to 3 year life span when used properly with a thermostat.
Rhp are next up. But Trump dhp in life span, durability and being out of the way.
Yeah, the dryness created by CHEs are why I’m not to keen to use one for my blood python. I use one with my sand boa, which is fine since she likes it dry (and it’s used externally, so no risk of her burning herself), but so far I’ve stuck with heat mats for my blood (also because she currently lives in a plastic storage tub, and heat mats are the easiest to install).
Do DHPs produce any light? The info I was reading on them was a little unclear about that fact. I don’t want anything that produces light. And can they be used with a normal lamp housing, like what you’d use with a CHE or basking bulb, or do they require a more specialized housing? Also, would you need to use a bulb guard/cage to protect the snake from burns of it was mounted inside the enclosure? Just trying to figure out the best way to mount/install it. Do they require a specific type of thermostat?
They do not produce visible light. They use the same fixtures as che and heat bulbs. You will want a cage as they do get hot similar to che, but not as hot and don’t dry the air out like che (they will still burn anything that touches them). The thermostat you’d be best to use would be a dimming one, like you’d use on a heat bulb.
Awesome, thanks for the info. I’m thinking that I would like to try the DHP, they sound pretty snazzy. I’m thinking that I’ll just get a screen cut-out on the PVC enclosure and mount it in a simar way to how I have my CHE for my sand boa (with the DHP in a fixture right above the screen). Would that be all right, or would it be better to have a fixture inside the enclosure with a bulb guard? I’m always a little nervous about putting anything hot enough to cause burns inside the enclosure, so my preference would be to use it externally.
I’ve been planning to upgrade my thermostats for a while. I was planning to get either one of the Herpstat or VE units with both pulse proportional and dimming, so I’m assuming that would work fine with a DHP.
I would go with a screen to set it outside the cage instead of insided the cage. I had a cage that originally had light inside the enclosure with a cage built around it but my burmese python was always trying to wrap herself around it. This was a hard metal mesh covering and I was afraid she might cut herself on it so we modified the enclosure with a screen to have light outside the enclosure.
I do know a lot of PVC cage makers have specifics on which elements are safe with their own enclosures or different configurations for the top of the enclosure so you can customize for the lighting and heat you intend to use. It’s definitely worth deciding what you want to use to help your animal be the healthiest, then talking with the makers and seeing what they can do to make that work safely. THey’ve often got some impressive customizing options.
Yeah, I’d definitely prefer to have it outside the enclosure through a screen, it just seems a lot safer. And with an adjustable lamp stand, that also gives me more flexibility on adjusting the height of the lamp, which is nice.
I’m currently leaning towards getting an enclosure from Animal Plastics, which seems to have good prices on the size I need and options for customizing the enclosure, and I’ve heard great things about their overall quality. I’m thinking that getting a decent-sized screen cut-out on top is probably the best option and will give me the most flexibility in terms of heating and lighting. I may also get some sort of lighting options mounted inside the enclosure (like LED lights or a fixture for a florescent UVB bulb, in case I ever want to try putting some live plants in there).
I’m super excited to get the enclosure ordered and get Mina’s adult enclosure project underway. I’ve been doing some research on how to make cool backgrounds, so I may try my hand at some sort of foam background for her. She’s such a beautiful snake, and I can’t wait until she has a beautiful display enclosure. She’s still probably 6 months or so away from being large enough to go in her adult enclosure, but the wait times on these enclosures are pretty significant, so I want to get it ordered soon.
I ordered her enclosure last night. Animal Plastics T11 (48"x24"x18"). Only add-on I got was a screen cut-out on top. I figure that would allow me to use a DHP and perhaps a UVB bulb on top of the screen, or I can install my own LED lights, which would save me a little money over getting them pre-installed.
I’m super excited! Now comes the looooooong wait.