Position of Lights, Timing and Safety
There should be no barrier between any UVB source and your turtle. Glass and plastic are treated to block the passage of any significant amount of UVB rays. For safety measures, and to prevent adventurous turtles from climbing out, a screen is highly recommended. The screen should have at least a grid spacing of 1/2”. Do not rest lamps on top of glass since that will cause a serious fire and electrical hazard.
Depending on the manufacturer and strength, fluorescent UVB lights should be positioned about 10-12” away from the basking area, while UVB heat lamps should be about 18-24” away. These are rough estimates and you should carefully follow the manufacturer’s instructions. They should be positioned and directed over the basking area, which is where your turtle would be out of the water and able to fully absorb these rays.
It is recommended that you mimic your turtle’s lighting with your area’s season. Therefore, the lights should be on longer during the summer than the winter. A simple electrical outlet timer will make it easier for you to maintain a photoperiod and thermoregulation in your turtle’s environment.
Purchasing UV LightsDespite some complicated information, it is relatively simple to provide the necessary lighting and basking conditions your turtle needs. There are a number of different ways and here is a quick look at some recommended combinations you can use for an indoor setup:
Measuring UVB OutputContent coming soon.
Further ReadingThere are plenty of other sources of information regarding UV light and basking for turtles and other reptiles. Here are some recommended sites:
Understanding Reptile Lighting Systems http://tortoisetrust.org/articles/lighting.html
Lighting and heating for Reptiles http://www.anapsid.org/liteheat.html
UV-lamps for Terrariums http://www.testudo.cc
ATP Turtle Care: Lighting http://www.austinsturtlepage.com/Care/care.htm#Lighting
Reptile Lighting: A Current Perspective http://www.anapsid.org/gehrman2.html
Mercury Vapor Heat & UV Lamps http://www.anapsid.org/mercuryvapor.html
UVB Output of Various Bulbs http://carolinapetsupply.com/uvb_output_of_bulbs.htm
Reptile Lighting http://www.anapsid.org/uvtable.html
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This page updated: 2011/01/28 Copyright © 2005-2011 Red Ear Slider. All rights reserved.