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Old 14-10-2009, 01:44 PM
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Default Green Tree Pythons - Setup Help

Hi guys,

This question comes up time and time again so i thought it may help to show potential keepers how i personally keep my GTPs, some variations, and ways to get it right.

Firstly - if your considering a GTP, i say this all the time but buy/borrow/steal/READ Greg Maxwells 'The More Complete Chondro' - worth double the money, i assure you.

Young GTPs
Ok, so youve found your breeder, chosen your snake, made sure its healthy and feeding/shedding/defecating OK and your wanting to bring it home. Make sure youve got your setup cycling for at least a week before introducing the snake. The temperature must be constant, and there must be a perfect balance between spraying and ventilating the setup. The humidity is the most difficult thing to get right, ideally you want to spray it once a day, so the humidity shoots up to 90%+, this should gradually reduce as the day progresses ready for the next day when the humidity should be at about 60%, where you spray again and the cycle continues. If your humidity drops too quickly, you need to reduce ventilation. If your humidity is constantly 100%, you need to increase ventilation. Get your humidity cycle spot on and you will have happy healthy chondros

If your keeping just ONE young chondro this is the method ive had most success with:

I dont use any lighting as i find this stresses young chondros. I dont use heat mats as these really are not ideal for arboreal animals - for the air to be at mid 80sFwhere the snake perches, the sides/bottom where you stuck the mat would need to be well over 100F - and GTPs do wander about on the floor at night - this is obviously not a good idea.

For a youngster you can use a small faunarium or RUB as these are cheap and will only be used for 6-12 months. I cut a square of plastic out of one side of the top, and use epoxy resin to glue in aluminum mesh in place of the plastic square (bought from Halfords or eBay). I then use a ceramic bulb in a holder resting on the mesh to heat the viv - this is, of course, used with a thermostat - the probe is placed in the hot spot.

Substrate can be as simple as kitchen roll or newspaper, but this doesnt really hold humidity well and isnt a great way to show off your stunning snake! Personally i have used orchid bark and eco earth in my small setups. I will explain more about the adult substrate later in this thread.

Perches should be the same thickness or slightly thinner than the snake, and should be positioned so the snake can perch happily in warm and cool areas - it shouldnt have to choose between temperature comfort and security.

A large waterdish can be added, then plants to please the eye and also to increase surface area to spray onto and therefore up the humidity. Live plants are great as these also up the humidity.

Here are a couple of pics to show how simple it can really be:

This was my first 'DIY modified' faunarium, the snake was about 5 months old here. You can see ive put a wet flannel on the other half of the lid to keep the humidity in. The 24 hour cycle really isnt that hard to achieve you just need to tweak it until it works!


About 4 months later i thought the snakie was getting a little big for that faunarium so i upgraded her slightly




Here is the temporary setup i made for my new adult male, it is very simple but functional. (cant wait to get him in something prettier... but his needs are met)










After the colour change i upgraded her into her adult viv. The details of how i made it can be viewed here:

http://www.reptileforums.co.uk/snake...step-step.html

It is essentially the same as the small setup just more specific and on a bigger scale.

The substrate is coir, organic compost, leaf litter and springtails. It is bioactive and really holds humidity well, deals with fungi and waste, and is nutritious for the plants

Heres a pic of the viv as it stands today:



Hopefully that may help some upcoming keepers! Please take note this is not the ONLY way to look after them by a long shot, but it has worked well for me
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Old 14-10-2009, 01:49 PM
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This is a very good post

Although it wouldn't be any time in the near future, I would like a GTP some day, and I'm wondering if it would be acceptable to use an overhead Reptile Radiator instead of a bulb. I use one on my ATB and it does the job perfectly but wasn't sure abot GTPs.
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Old 14-10-2009, 01:50 PM
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Originally Posted by BeckyL View Post
This is a very good post

Although it wouldn't be any time in the near future, I would like a GTP some day, and I'm wondering if it would be acceptable to use an overhead Reptile Radiator instead of a bulb. I use one on my ATB and it does the job perfectly but wasn't sure abot GTPs.

Reptile radiators are BRILLIANT - i use one in my adult setup which you can just about see in the pic?

Obviously wouldnt be suitable for the small tubs for the juveniles but i really really recommend them - worth the money!
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Old 14-10-2009, 01:51 PM
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nice guide, should help a few guys looking into getting a GTP
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Old 14-10-2009, 01:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chondro13 View Post
Reptile radiators are BRILLIANT - i use one in my adult setup which you can just about see in the pic?

Obviously wouldnt be suitable for the small tubs for the juveniles but i really really recommend them - worth the money!
That's fab. I've been really impressed by the one I have now and would like to use them with any future arboreals I might keep. Thanks!
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Old 14-10-2009, 01:56 PM
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Sticky!!
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Old 14-10-2009, 02:10 PM
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What size exo terra bulb holder is that? Also what bulb did you use in it?
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Old 14-10-2009, 02:22 PM
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Just a question regarding spraying - is there any suitable alternative? For example, would a small heat mat (statted of course) underneath the moist substrate or under the water bowl, provide the necessary humidity? Or has anyone experimented using a fogger?

The reason I ask is that if the snake and viv need to be sprayed daily, even going for a weekend away would require somebody to come in daily to spray the snake. My royal and BRB are fine left alone for a few days provided they have water.

I am thinking about getting a GTP eventually once I've read the maxwell book, talked to some keepers and am sure I can give it what it needs to thrive. But from what I've gathered just from browing these threads, the daily spraying could be a problem should we wish to go away anywhere even for a couple of days.
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Old 14-10-2009, 02:35 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by garlicpickle View Post
Just a question regarding spraying - is there any suitable alternative? For example, would a small heat mat (statted of course) underneath the moist substrate or under the water bowl, provide the necessary humidity? Or has anyone experimented using a fogger?

Foggers or an automated misting system would be just as good. lucky reptile do an automated humidity sensor which will activate a mister should the humidity drop outside of a specified range. Personally I would want to see it working for a fair time before leaving it "to it's own devices" as it were.

However, I wouldn't put 100% trust in any automated system unless I had a 100% redundancy backup in place. When I go away, I pay someone to come in daily and sort my reptiles out.
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Old 14-10-2009, 02:46 PM
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When we went to houten last weekend, I heavily sprayed all the GTPs and ETBs very early before the flight, and again 36 hours later when I got home, so basicly extended their humidity cycle by 12 hours. It's done no harm and they are back to their 24 hour cycle no problem. So for the odd night, it's not a problem so long as you prepair for it. If you're intending on going away for longer then I'd get someone in to spray them.
It's my intention to set up a fully auto timered misting system (as well as timered lights) for all my tree snakes in the reptile room once I've sorted the refit (over winter) but even then, if I was going away I'd get someone in to make sure the system was working properly, as I'd like to be able to stick my head in every morning to make sure the system was working properly.
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