Lets make a list of bulbs that work by cage


I have an idea that I think we can all get on board with. I think the most common question that new owners ask and need to know (myself included), is the size of basking bulb and such. Obviously the Answer to this question varies because of several factors. However, I believe that with the coMmunity’s help and because of the diversity of the enclosures within the community, we can take all the different factors into account when making this list. So to make this list, we have to take into account the following factors (and the format of the list can follow this order as well). Factor 1. Enclosure construction. Factor 2. Enclosure dimensions, especially height. Factor 3 cage vents/venting, Factor 4 (maybe not important) location you live/environmental factors. For example, with me I can say I have a Melamine cage, with x dimensions and x height and I live x, so I would look on the chart and find a melamine cage with my dimension and location (again location probably isn’t important other than humidity) and say, ok I need x wattage bulb for my setup. am sure there are other factors as well but we can start with these for now. With everyone chipping in by stating what had been working for them and including the above info, we can make a list of recommended wattages and types that we can then sticky and refer people to when they ask. I did see the lighting article but I from what I remember it didn’t have anything like this list in it. What does everybody think? Thanks.


BD.org Sicko
Staff member
I have a glass Exo Terra 36x18x18'' with the mesh top off. Basking light is an 80w GE PAR38 halogen flood in an 8'' dome suspended over the tank at about 22'' from the floor. It is controlled by a Herpstat 2 dimming thermostat. The enclosure is not near a window and is in a room that has A/C in the summer and remains in the 60s. In the winter the room is usually high 50s-mid 60s Fall/Spring are kind of in-between. In Iowa the summer temps outdoors are usually mid 80s up to around 100f and the winter temps are usually between about 0-40f with some colder bursts. I can give you more data about my setup and environment if you'd like.


BD.org Sicko
Staff member
This will be a really hard task but I'll add what I use in my tanks for what it's worth.

In my 4x2x2 plywood tanks I use a 40w BR halogen that gets me a basking surface temp of around 105. And a cool end temp of around 80-85 depending on room temp. It is simply in a ceramic socket affixed to the top of the tank.

In my 40x18x20 I use a 50w globe incandescent (the type of spherical bulb you'd use in a bathroom vanity light fixture). It is in the same ceramic socket that I use in my 4x2x2's no reflector. Provides temps of around 108 basking, and 80 cool end dependant on room temp.

In my 40g breeder which is an open top glass tank, I am using a 75w exoterra intense reptile basking spot bulb but in a standard aluminum reflector fixture. Basking surface temps of 108 and cool side temps usually 80.

So many variables to account for, and many more that matter that I didn't even list. But that's what I have in my tanks.



Gray-bearded Member
I'm currently running a GE 80W Halogen flood (indoor/outdoor) @ 18" above basking rock--mostly because it was the only thing I could find locally. Tried a Phillips BR40 65W indoor flood, but that wasn't cutting it. I have a lot of flexibility in distance, both vertically, and horizontally, so it was just a couple days of trial & error.

I expect some more T&E when he moves into the big enclosure permanently.

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This is Atlas, he's my 3 year male leatherback. i don't know whether to be worried as he has no femoral pores what so ever, not even small ones! i always thought they would come with age but he is getting a bit older now and i'm starting to worry. here are some photos of his lack of pores. if someone could let me know if this is healthy that would be greatly appreciated!!
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Hmmm.... May make a dress for her lol

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