I’m a firm believer in not only sharing my experience in animals’ husbandry, but also the equipment and tools used to make my hobby/business successful. Over the past few years, I’ve seen dramatic changes in how we not only view our investment and hobby animals, but the steps we take to ensure their health and longevity. The standard “fish tank and water bowl setup” is not being substituted with high-tech rack systems, electronics, and monitoring systems. When I hear of more people learning and evolving with the new equipment available today, it makes me happy to know the hobby is evolving as well. I share with you some of the equipment I have become quite fond of in recent years, and hope this provides some insight to how I provide husbandry for these amazing creatures.
Thermostats and Electronic Equipment
I’ve been recently using many of the Herpstat (http://spyderrobotics.com/) thermostat units, and frankly they are some of the best in the business. For the rack systems I use (ARS) they do a wonderful job of retaining temps accurately and safely.
Note: There are more and more electronics now being introduced to herpetoculture, especially in the thermostat electronics. Many of these electronics bring greater enhanced monitoring and temperature adjustment capabilities than in the past. While this certainly has its advantages, sole reliance on these electronics may prove disastrous without ‘on hand’ interaction and monitoring.
Guardian Elite 20KW External Power Generator
To ensure power supply is never a concern, I installed a Guardian Elite 20KW External Power Generator outside my home. This generator is not only capable of supplying power to the snake rooms, but also my entire home as long as required.
Cages and Rack Systems
I use a combination of caging systems because each system has its advantages and disadvantages. I’m fond of the plastic caging products manufactured by AP Plastics (www.animalplastics.com) because of their quality and ease of cleaning. Humidity is never a factor for these cages, and they retain their heat extremely well. I also like the AP Plastics cage systems for my boas because of their uniform construction, durability, and sizing options.
I also like some of the ARS Caging (www.arscaging.com) caging systems, especially their rat and mice systems.
Note: I’ve used other brands of caging in the past, some with honorable mention and others without. The bottom line is, you don’t have to spend a fortune to get the results you want; you just have to be aware of what you need to succeed.
Multiple security systems are used to protect my home. I use a combination of infrared cameras with live monitoring, lighting enhancements, and other means to secure my home, I’m proud to say I’ve taken the steps to make sure my home truly is my castle.