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Thread: Planning on getting a Savannah

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2018

    Planning on getting a Savannah

    Hello everyone new to the forum and to monitors. I've owned several species of reptiles large and small all with great success but I am no means an expert and I have been out of the trade for quite some time now. First I would like to share a quick experience I did have with a baby Savannah I purchased in 2012.

    So I used to be stationed at Fort Bragg, NC. I frequented a local pet store there, Aqua Rama, for my red tail boa and ball pythons food. While paying them a visit one day I noticed a small sav maybe 7inches in length in a horrible looking 10gallon tank. No water, barely 1/3 of the tank had substrate which looked like cedar shavings. The heat lamp was 2 15watt elongated heat bulbs placed in a way to heat the savs home and another reptile next to it. I asked the cashier why this monitor was separated and in such a poorly setup environment and was told they quarantined the animal but can't figure out what was wrong so it was probably going to die. I couldn't just leave knowing this little guy was just waiting at deaths door like that so I offered them 20 and took him home. Now I had no idea what I was doing. I had researched them somewhat but not enough to adequately house and care for one. Got home dumped out a large storage tub and cut out the center of the lid for airflow (wife was pissed but whatevs). Attached a spare heat lamp and a 100watt infrared bulb. Kept a bulk supply on hand for the other family members. Paper towels as substrate and a piece of slate as a basking spot and raised it with some cut 2x4s to creat a hide along with another one opposite for a cool hide. My thought process was they were just going to let him die but atleast I could try to make a difference. Anyhow long story short he began eating the next day on a diet of crickets and really perked up from when I saw him nearly lifeless in that cage at the pet store. Once he was doing better I reached out to people in the area and found him a nice home with a much more experienced monitor owner. Last I heard from the new owner was the little guy was doing very well. Not sure what the petshops issue was that made him get quarantined but he turned out great.

    Now onto my question. I would like to get one of these gorgeous animals but not sure if I will be able to provide the proper care. Inside my house all I have room for is a 40g breeder maybe a 75gallon but the wife is already upset with the empty 40 sitting in our house. So short term 40, long term I need something much bigger. The only alternative is to build a greenhouse type encloser outside. I live in Louisiana and the summer months can get very humid and hot. I have built greenhouses in the past that were very cost effective and easy. Modifying one to safely keep a large reptile wouldnt create too much more hassel, but does anyone know of or done a permanent outdoor greenhouse environment? Winter months would be easy. Batton down the hatches and use a large planter heat pad, and a heat lamp for basking. Sun will take care of heating the ambient temp which can be controlled via adjustable vents. If it's cloudy or on really cold nights turn on the paraffin heater (were the lizard couldn't get harmed by it of course). It's the summer months that have me worried. Sides would have to be raised to allow ventilation but that also means humidity from outside and pests able to squeeze through the small mesh wire to infect the environment. A dehumidifier can only do so much and it wont do anything in an outdoor environment. So how tolerable are these guys to high humidity for 5 to 6 months out of the year? Thanks in advance and all comments are greatly appreciated. Honestly I already feel like it's going to be a huge hassel but this is an animal Ive always wanted to raise. I just want to get it right the first time.

  2. #2
    Super Moderator
    Join Date
    Dec 2016
    Hey and welcome. The link you provided in the other post was pretty nice to add on so thanks for that

    I can't comment much on what it would be for wintering a sav in an outdoor enclosure but summer months would probably be great. Just needs a good range of both heat and shady areas along with achieving the usual basking surface temps with some supplemental lighting. There is a facebook page that is quite a bit more active and I'd join that one - the link to get to the exact one I'm talking about is in the tabs at the top of this page. You'll get to talk to 2 sav keepers in Florida who have outdoor caging (both are women who admin the group there so you'll have a pretty easy time knowing who to look towards to ask questions about it)
    Last edited by Lori; 03-08-2018 at 01:58 AM.

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