Argentine Tegu Habitat Checklist (Tegu Supplies You Need)

If you’ve chosen to adopt one of these amazing Argentine lizards as a pet, kudos! It’s not every day you decide to share your living space with a creature that’s a perfect blend of quirky personality and prehistoric charm.

But, before you start your exciting journey into Tegu parenthood, it’s important to ensure you’ve got all the essentials to provide a comfortable, enriching, and safe habitat for your new friend.

Tegu Shopping List

1. Enclosure

A comfortable abode is just as important to a Tegu as it is to us! I personally recommend the Essential 8 Foot PVC & Aluminum Enclosure. It offers ample space for your Tegu to move, play, and grow.

Remember, a happy Tegu is an active Tegu. Providing them with a large and safe space to explore is a huge step in ensuring their well-being. Plus, the PVC construction of the Custom Reptile Enclosure is incredibly durable, providing a secure home for your Tegu for years to come.

2. UVB Light

Tegus love to bask in the sun in their natural habitat. So, you’ll want to mimic this experience in their enclosure. The Arcadia Dragon 12% T5 HO UVB, 46″ is my go-to UVB light. I use two of these along with a T5 HO dual lamp fixture with reflector, 48″.

These lights not only help in creating a warm basking spot but are also crucial for their health, helping their bodies produce necessary vitamins.

3. LED Light

In addition to the UVB light, you will need an LED light to mimic natural daylight. The Arcadia Jungle Dawn LED Bar, 34″, is a fantastic choice. This, in conjunction with the UVB lights and the Arcadia PRO Ceiling Mount Ceramic Socket, creates a well-lit environment, crucial for maintaining your Tegu’s sleep-wake cycle.

4. Heat Bulb

Tegus love to bask, and for this, they need a reliable heat source. The Philips PAR38 175w Halogen Heat Bulb is a trusty companion for this purpose. I suggest having four of these in your enclosure to maintain an optimal basking temperature. But remember, Tegus also need cooler spots to retreat to, so make sure to arrange these bulbs strategically.

5. Basking Stone

Since we’re talking about basking, let’s not forget a key feature of any Tegu’s sun-soaking spot: the basking stone. For this, I can’t recommend flagstone enough. Cover about 4-6 square feet of the enclosure with this natural rock. Its flat, smooth surface makes for a perfect sunbathing spot. Plus, it retains heat well, keeping your Tegu cozy even when the lights are off.

6. Automatic Heat and Lighting Control

While it’s super fun interacting with your Tegu and tending to their needs, you can’t be expected to manually adjust their lights all day. For this, I use the Zilla 24/7 Digital Power Center. This handy little device lets you automate the lighting and heating schedule to mimic the Tegu’s natural environment. Now, that’s one less thing for you to worry about!

7. Temperature Gun

Speaking of heat, let’s get technical for a moment. To ensure your Tegu’s environment is spot on, I strongly recommend getting the Etekcity 774 temp gun. This little gadget lets you check the exact temperature of different spots in the enclosure. It’s a must-have tool in your Tegu-care arsenal to help avoid any heat-related mishaps.

8. Thermometer/Hygrometer

Alongside the temperature gun, having a thermometer and hygrometer in your Tegu’s enclosure is essential. These help you monitor the ambient temperature and humidity levels. I’ve had great results with the Zoo Med Combometer digital thermometer/hygrometer, and you’ll need a couple of these strategically placed within the enclosure.

9. Substrate

A happy Tegu loves to burrow, and for that, they need the right substrate. I suggest a mix of organic topsoil (8 bags/8 cubic feet) and Zoo Med ReptiSoil (8 24qt bags), along with washed play sand (8 bags/4 cubic feet). This combo creates a great texture that your Tegu can burrow into, promoting natural digging behavior.

10. Hiding Spot

Every Tegu needs some alone time, and what better place to do that than in a nice, dark hide? I use a 40-gallon opaque storage bin for this purpose. It’s a simple and effective solution that gives your Tegu a secure spot to retreat when they need some solitude.

I’ll pause here for now, but stay tuned for the rest of the checklist! Remember, a well-prepared habitat is key to your Tegu’s happiness and health. Keep up the great work, future Tegu parent!

11. Terrarium Décor/Enrichment

Adding decor to your Tegu’s enclosure is more than just aesthetics – it’s crucial for their physical and mental enrichment. Make sure to include large branches, logs, and tree stumps for climbing and exploring. You can also add large, non-toxic live plants to mimic their natural environment. Remember, these additions not only make the habitat more homey but also provide a fun playground for your Tegu.

12. Food Bowl

Feeding time is an important part of your Tegu’s day. So, let’s ensure it’s done right! I recommend using a large ceramic dog food bowl. These are sturdy, easy to clean, and big enough for your Tegu’s hearty appetite.

13. Calcium Supplements

Just like us humans, Tegus need their vitamins and minerals to stay healthy. That’s where calcium supplements come into play. I personally recommend Miner-ALL Outdoor calcium supplement. Regular dusting of their food with this supplement helps ensure they’re getting their required calcium intake.

14. Multivitamins

Along with calcium, Tegus also need a range of other vitamins for proper health. Herptivite multivitamin supplement has been a reliable choice for me. It contains all the essential vitamins your Tegu needs and is easy to add to their diet.

15. Rubber-tipped Tweezers

If you like keeping your fingers attached to your hand, you might want to consider investing in a set of rubber-tipped tweezers for feeding your Tegu. These 12″ tweezers provide a safe distance between your fingers and your Tegu’s eager mouth during feeding time.

16. Water Bowl

Last but not least, don’t forget about water! A 41qt under-bed plastic storage box makes a great water dish. It’s large enough for your Tegu to climb into and have a good soak, keeping them hydrated and aiding in shedding.

That’s a wrap on our Argentine Tegu Habitat Checklist. But remember, as you step into your journey as a Tegu parent, every Tegu is unique. You’ll learn to adapt and make changes as you understand your pet’s unique personality and preferences. Happy Tegu parenting!

Filled under: Lizards

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