• Hello guest! Are you a Tegu enthusiast? If so, we invite you to join our community! Our site is specifically designed for you and it's a great place for Tegu enthusiasts to meet online. Once you join you'll be able to post messages, upload pictures of your Tegu and enclosure and have a great time with other Tegu fans. Sign up today! If you have any questions, problems, or other concerns email [email protected]!

Outdoor housing in AZ

Shadowgamer21

New Member
I have been interested in Tegus for some time now, since I saw one several years ago. I recently moved to the Pheonix area of Arizona and was thinking about getting one. Biggest issue would be cage/enclosure and I wanted some opinions about an outdoor one with the weather here. It averages about 70-75 here during the winter and the hottest months of summer get to about 120ish. The colder days maybe drop to the 60s but mostly the 70-75 range. On rare occasions it might get below 60 like this past winter's cold snap that hit the entire U.S. it got down to about 30 degrees here which I believe might have been a record low. Also more of a factor I think is the humidity here which is very low being an arid desert. I know they need high humidity for shedding, would a humid hide and a misting of the substrate be enough? If not, would setting up misters to go off several times a day work? Also does altitude affect them at all? I know I could feel the difference moving from sea level in CA to 1000 feet above sea level here in the Pheonix area. I might have to just make an indoor cage but it seems like an outdoor one would be cheaper for me and bigger for them. So if anyone has tips/recommendations/opinions I would love to hear them.
 

Toby_H

New Member
1,000+ Post Club
5 Year Member
My first suggestion to every Tegu owner (or potential owner) is to monitor the weather in Northern Argentina... It's so simple very few think of it ;)

I keep my Tegu outdoors during the summer here in Charlotte NC and he does great. In the hottest parts of the days he avoids direct sun and often burries himself back in the mulch. His favorite seems to be morning sun but he is also active in the evening sun.

I've given up on keeping my Tegus environment "humid" and have found that providing A) moist mulch for burrowing & B) a large enough water "dish" for fully submersing himself. Both of which I think you could easily provide in Pheonix.
 

NogarD

New Member
Another thing to try...do you own a tempgun? If so measure the surface during one of the 110 degree days we get here. It will be 140+ in the shade even though the air is only 110 in the shade.

Certain monitors do okay outside here, with tegus it is just to dry. Even misting would be negated by the heat. During the summer our average humididty is only around 8 percent or so.
 

Shadowgamer21

New Member
I didn't even think of looking up the weather down there, lol. Temp wise it it doesn't differentiate much compared to here. It actually gets a little colder spikes during the winter and from what I read looks like they get a couple weeks during their hot season where it averages at about 113. Now I'm mostly worried about the dryness here. I haven't been here long enough to experience the summer but what if I shaded like three quarters of the enclosure during the 100+ days? I wont be getting a tegu till after summer anyway so I'll be able to experience the heat myself.
 

NogarD

New Member
August-september......110 is a good day! I have worked on days when its 117.....its miserable.

Another thing is around that time its 100 plus at 7am.
 

Toby_H

New Member
1,000+ Post Club
5 Year Member
I think it would be very important to have a water source and a damp area. I'm picturing a plastic tub surrounded by mulch... and a water hose on a timer feeding the tub. Set it up to top off any evaportation and overflow the tub by 2~10 gallons as needed to keep the surrounding mulch moist. Naturally this moist area should be shaded at least through the hottest part of the days.

You would also want to set it up so that there is ample shade throughout the heat of the day but ample direct sunlight in the early morning. My Tegu much prefers morning sun to evening sun.

Arizonia certainly is not their native climate, so logical planning and design is surely a critical requirement. I would plan it well and try to think it through in every detail, but it sounds like something I would try. Set up some samples this summer without the Tegu and see what happens.
 
Top