Will this outdoor vivaria work?

sde

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Hi all,

So I am planning a outdoor vivaria for some S. s. terrestris, juveniles of mine. And I am wondering if this setup would work? It might be a little hard to read in the picture ( plus my handwriting could be better :/ ). Basically it is all going to be below ground level, and then within the vivaria there would be a very large hibernacula that goes underground. There would be a water bowl, some plants ( more than in the picture ) dirt substrate, moss, leaves ( as the season permits ), hides, ventilation to the hibernacula, wood structure with holes in the bottom and mesh to allow drainage, mesh lid, and maybe a log. I am hoping to set it up soon and out the salamander in in a year or so, that way the bug like and overall vivaria can get settled in.

I am wondering if wood would work as the structure? Would it eventually rot? Oh, and also there would be a slightly different entrance/exit to the hibernacula, to allow them to go in or out easier.

Any info, ideas or concerns are appreciated! -Seth
 

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jAfFa CaKe

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I think you are right about the rotting wood idea. You could go for a plastic maybe, be sure it won't leach any yucky stuff into the soil. Other then that it looks all good, I'm sure you know that you will need a very secure lid to keep them inside.
 

bellabelloo

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Rather than use wood, I used pond liner to line the enclosure, this had holes added to allow drainage. I didn't put holes in the section where the water is.
With my first outdoor enclosure I made the mistake of making the hibernaculum inaccessible for me to check on the occupants. I am still plotting my tigers outdoor enclosure to allow access to the hibernaculum if needed.
As your whole enclosure is below ground level, you may need to make sure that it does not get flooded or hold water.
 

areynoldssr

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I didnt see drainage in your design. With it being under ground you need twice the area for drainage. which should be at the side and at a lower level.:D
 

sde

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I think you are right about the rotting wood idea. You could go for a plastic maybe, be sure it won't leach any yucky stuff into the soil. Other then that it looks all good, I'm sure you know that you will need a very secure lid to keep them inside.
I decided to use wood and seal it with water/UV seal. it might rot eventually but it should work for several years I would think. Yes I know it would need a secure lid.

Rather than use wood, I used pond liner to line the enclosure, this had holes added to allow drainage. I didn't put holes in the section where the water is.
With my first outdoor enclosure I made the mistake of making the hibernaculum inaccessible for me to check on the occupants. I am still plotting my tigers outdoor enclosure to allow access to the hibernaculum if needed.
As your whole enclosure is below ground level, you may need to make sure that it does not get flooded or hold water.
Hmm, I will see if I can figure out a way to make the hibernacula accessible. Thanks for pointing that out.

Yes I thought of the flooding problem, I was going to do it in a place that was wet, but then I realized that problem. It is now going to be in a much drier place that I doubt think will flood. I drilled lots of holes in the bottom ( 25 ), and some in all the sides.
 

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Quick initial thought, what is to keep the whole thing from becoming a lake during the first heavy rain? What is the approximate total size?
 

sde

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Quick initial thought, what is to keep the whole thing from becoming a lake during the first heavy rain? What is the approximate total size?
Haha, good question. Well it has dozens of holes throughout it for drainage, plus I think I might have it under a tree, but I keep changing where I want to have it so I am not quite sure. But anyway, the soil will absorb the water, and then it will slowly drain out.

It is 5 feet long, 20 inches high, and 28 inches wide.

The wood frame and construction is almost done, I will post about it after a while.

I changed my hibernacula plans to make it accessible, which messed everything up, but now I got it all figure out....I think ;) -Seth
 
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