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I am ... very happy with your plans, the organization that you have put into it and I am extremely happy with the response I have gotten from you when I have encountered a problem.
It sure does save money. At the same time it allows me and others like me to experience making the cage for our animal (animals) that we care so much about. I think that when someone takes the time to sit down and make something like this for their animal it really shows how much they care for them and respect them.

With your plans you can also alter the cage to each and everyone's specifications, or needs. I think what you are doing is wonderful and I want to thank you again.

Robert Hansford


"This is going to make an 11 year old and his lizard Rex very happy".


Spent $108.00 at Lowes, another $65.00 at Home Depot buying things that Lowes didn't have..... Spending time with my son in a hardware store.... PRICELESS!"


"Overall, the best thing I have found from the cage designs... is that:
They work!!!!

They allow you to view and touch your Iguana from all sides, This is a must!

Once you have the material list you don't go back to the hardware store.

Just follow the instructions and it comes out perfect.

Your maintenance will be much easier.

Your iguana will thank you

Once again, you will have built something cool. "

Regards and best to all our Green Iguana friends, Lance and Joey Portwood Glidden, Texas ".


"Very well thought-out designs"



How much ventilation should I have for my reptile cage?


I am in the design stage now and your book talks about ventilation, types of vents and need to not over ventilate. However, there is no formula. Is there a formula to figure out how many you need and what size by the volume of the tank?


There is no hard and fast rule or formula. It depends a lot on the local climate and the room temperature that the cage is kept in. Two or three of the 5"x3" vents for a 4' cage would be sufficient. I only have two on my cages. I know of 7ft high cages that have only two of the larger vents near the top and three or smaller vents lower down. That's a big cage with not a huge amount of ventilation but it is still sufficient. Or, if you have the smaller circular vents (about 1'' diameter) you would have 3 or 4 at one end and 3 or 4 at the other. I have 6 small vents along the top of one cage (3'x18"x18") but I think I would do it slightly differently next time and three on the lower on the cooler side and three on the upper on the warmer side. Basically you need to have ventilation taking place so that there is an exchange of air occurring naturally.

This means that a vent/s lower down at the cooler end of the cage and a vent/s higher up at the warmer end of the cage, allowing air to flow naturally through the cage as the warmer air rises. Some people have one half or all of the top of their reptile cage open and let the warm air straight out the top. I do this with the bearded dragon's cage but his cage is stacked on top of two others and hence gets a lot warmer as the heat from the lower cages rises up.

Other reptile cage designs have a mesh ventilation strip at the back of the cage, near the top that runs the length of the cage and is 2'' to 3'' high.

Don't stress about it too much, just as long as there are vents that allow some exchange of air over time without creating a wind tunnel and loosing all of the heat you generate with light and/or mats. Reptiles have fairly low metabolic rates so as long as the air is replaced over time they seem to cope quite well. Also, the doors themselves let air in so they inadvertently become part of the ventilation system, including every time you open that cage some fresh air is let in.



Mark Chapple is the Author of "How to build enclosures for reptiles"
Find out how to build these terrestrial and arboreal cages for snakes and lizards. Full color pictures, detailed diagrams and easy to follow, step-by-step instructions.


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