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Old 06-23-18, 07:02 PM   #1 (permalink)
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New to monitors and seeking advice

Hello there,


I hope to begin caring for an Ackie monitor in the near future, and perhaps keep something larger later on. I've been reading and researching the genus: Varanoid Lizards of the World, Giant Lizards, I've subscribed to Biawak Journal and have been researching online as well.



When I was a boy, I captured and kept snakes (Garter snakes, Fox snakes), salamanders (Eastern Spotted and Tiger) and bought and kept several American lizards (Anole, Fence Swift and a Desert Spiny Lizard, with varying successes and failures. The Fox snakes, Anoles and salamanders thrived but I had bad luck with the non-native to my region Swift and desert lizards. I released the salamaders and fox snakes back into the wild before heading off to University.



Now, many years later, my love of herps has been rekindled and I find myself drawn to Varanids in particular. I have begun building my first reptile enclosure, a 4' x 2' x 2' which I hope is a decent minimum size for one Ackie or a temporary enclosure for one or two of them. I'm not a woodworker or a carpenter so this has been a challenge for me which is why I had opted for a very simple enclosure for my first build. I've measured out a max size enclosure that I can fit into my apartment at 8' long by 3' wide and up to 6' high that I intended to build for a Quince monitor, but I think I'll build something in that space for my future Ackies to move into.


I intend to first build and setup an enclosure, get it running with a bio-active substrate and then see if I can maintain an optimal thermal gradient and humidity levels. When I'm satisfied I'm able to do that, then I'll start looking for a young Ackie from a reputable breeder. I expect I'll have a lot of questions and I'm open to all of the advice the users of this forum might have for me. Thank you for accepting me as a new member of the forum.


Kevin
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Old 06-29-18, 03:38 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Re: New to monitors and seeking advice

I don't have experience with ackies but I did have a savannah monitor. Care is similar.

Ackies need 12" of soil in the bottom of the cage. Ackies are big into burrowing, so don't go crazy with layering your substrate, the lizard will just tear it up.

They also need basking spots with a surface temperature between 130 and 150F, so keep that in mind. One end of the cage will be unable to support much plant life due to that heat and it's drying effect.
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