The tortoise terrarium

This is basically set up like Terrarium pustynne . However, the floor covering should NOT consist of sand. Tortoises need a large floor area to move around. The substrate has to be covered with an approx. 2 cm thick layer of JBL TerraBark .

A large bent piece of cork can serve as a shelter. Stones and stone plates can be placed in the terrarium, but make sure there aren't any sharp edges.

A heat emitter and a heating stone offer the required heat and will quickly become a favourite spot. A drinking bowl ( Miski i pojemniki ) and a feeding bowl for vegetarian food should be provided in a sufficiently large size.

Lighting for tortoises

Tortoises are sun worshippers. Just a few species live in the rainforest and need less sun and therefore less UV radiation than the wide range of species which live in sun-drenched regions. Therefore the lighting needs to produce heat, UV-A and UV-B radiation. You will find detailed information about lighting here:


Oświetlenie jest jednym z najważniejszych tematów terrarystyki. Czego tu należy przestrzegać?

Heat for tortoises

Most species come from warmer regions and therefore need a heat source. Since a temperature reduction at night is almost always useful, the light source can also serve as a heat source. When the light goes out, the temperature drops too. You will find everything you need to know about heat in the terrarium here:


Jak uzyskać w terrarium właściwą temperaturę? Dlaczego powinny być miejsca ciepłe i chłodniejsze?

The animal size

How large should your terrarium be?

Please remember the terrarium you need has to correspond to the maximum size of the tortoise species you are keeping. With tortoises, of course, it’s not the height but the floor area of the terrarium which matters. A good help is the following formula: shell length (of the largest tortoise) x 8 = terrarium length, terrarium length : 2 = terrarium width. For just a few genera and species you may use the factor 4 (Homopus spec., Malacochersus tornieri, Psammobates spec. and Pyxis spec.). The height should be about 60 cm to prevent adult animals from escaping out of the terrarium.

For further details please refer to all relevant literature and talk to your specialised dealer.