Safe Varieties Of Wood For Enclosure

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Feb 2, 2014
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Hi there,

I'm currently looking at building my own enclosure for my pair of Ridge-Tailed Monitor Lizards or modifying an existing television cabinet for them to live in. Was just wanting to get some insight on which varieties of wood would be safe to use for the enclosure. I know that pine and cedar are a definite no as they can cause health issues. As far as I know Tasmanian oak and melamine are fine to use though.

Does anyone have any other recommendations or can someone tell me if recycled Oregon timber is safe to use?
Any timbe is fine if you sealing it, lots of people use pine and plywoods when sealed.

I used melamine for my ridge tails, siliconed all edgings and ive had no issues when i soak there enclosure.

Hey, I'm planning on getting a pair or a trio of ackies soon and I wanted to build a melamine enclosure but after some research I found out they need relatively high humidity levels and require humid substrate. One member wrote that every melamine terrarium he used got destroyed after max 18 month. If ill put silicone around the edges there shouldnt be a problem with the humidity ackies need?

Also, I know it not very related but I might as well ask, how much ventilation do they need? should I use a standard panel or three of those smaller ventilation circles would do the job(keeping in mind that humidity and temp should be relatively high)?

Thanks in advance!
Over winter i block my ventilation so i can keep the heat up. I have 3 100mm round vents on the top rear and 4 40mm round vents at the front bottom. Ackies dont need it moist all the time but they appreciate humidity to be between 35-70%, any less and they can have shedding issues and any more could cause RI.

Can I only place ventilation at the back of the enclosure? I heard they need high front piece (the piece of melamine on which the doors are mounted) because they require deep substrate, I read that the recommended hight is 30 cm+4 cm vents+3cm+- from under and over the vent, thats aprox 40 cm while standard is 10.
Because they dont need too much ventilation maybe just the back will be enough? or do the opposite, high vent in the front and low in the back?
And is 30 cm front a must or 20cm for example will be good as well?

sorry if its abit off topic...
A lot of breeders I've seen have a 10litre or so tub full of sand in there ackie setups, while the substrate is only 2-3 cms deep.
Mine has a 20cm piece front, have between 15-20cm of sand for them. I will be suppling a seperate lay box for them when the time comes so they arnt laid all around the enclosure, nothing worst then hunting for eggs in 60-80kgs of sand.

Thanks for the answers! What do you think about the vent placement I mentioned before?
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