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Enrichment, Enclosure Fails

Enclosure, cage, nest box, building and enrichment ideas for any species.

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Enrichment, Enclosure Fails

Postby minervasden » Sun Jan 31, 2016 2:03 am

As a main purpose of of this board is the sharing of knowledge, I thought it would be good to share our fails in order that others may learn. Whether it was a safety hazard or your plans/materials just did not work, please share.

I couldn't build a cage or enclosure to save my life so my fails probably have been so insignificant I don't remember them.
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Re: Enrichment, Enclosure Fails

Postby TamanduaGirl » Sun Jan 31, 2016 2:38 pm

Failed bottle enrichment. I tried to make up for length by putting a bunch of ants in there but I think she didn't like that kind
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lfkT0xqkwVc

When looking for the other this one popped up and would count as en enclosure fail since my room is their enclosure and it's funny. I later added a stepping shelf to make it easier then after Aurora still had problems with that added a safety hammock between the two shelves.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7IDYDWhlMC0

Then there was the rope bridge fail. Considering Pua once did this when a teeny bopper I thought a rope bridge would be fun but it was a fluke they don't like things moving under them.
ImagePua tight rope walking by TamanduaGirl, on Flickr

While there was some enrichment from poking at the knots no one wanted to go on it
ImagePua pulls on a rope by TamanduaGirl, on Flickr

Also I had trained her to pull a rope to get a treat on the end so she may have kept pulling at it in hopes for a treat
ImageI want my cheese by TamanduaGirl, on Flickr

So I tried a braided rope so it would move less. It was actually a fail too despite this photo. Stewie was scared to death of it but managed to eventually bribe him onto it for cheese.
ImageTake the pic, blood's rushing into my head by TamanduaGirl, on Flickr

I used doggy x-pens to build their cage and Stewie once pulled a bar off while on time out and squeezed out.

Had some misjudgment fails with the fennec wheel but it's not a total failure yet. First I bought the wrong type of tubing for the rims. Tried it without the rims but it needs them to hold it in a perfect circle. Look for the kind people recommend to use to make hula hoops if you do it. I just bough garden tubing thinking it would be the same but was too soft. So I made my own rims but that wound up making the wheel 34" outside diameter and the space is 34" tall and had to remove the caging I put up to get it in and then it was a tight squeeze so wont work as it needs room to move on a base, doh. This partly happened as I assumed the levels would have 18" of space but due to some of the 6' being taken by shelves and the support posts top and bottom they are smaller and due to the placement of their holes for the shelf supports they are not all the same space either. But if I trim the rim short or switch to tubing it should work with the wheels mounted directly on the floor shelf. Just made more work for myself by not double checking the sizes of everything once put together.
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Re: Enrichment, Enclosure Fails

Postby Ash » Sun Jan 31, 2016 9:27 pm

Great post to make. Hope more people chime in so I don't feel like a bad owner! LOL.

Fox enclosure made out of chainlink. Fable could pull apart the diamonds on the bottom because the diamonds themselves were not secured as often to the lower bar--especially around the tension bar. To correct this, I got thick wire, and I wound every other diamond down to the lower bar so that he could not pull up on the mesh at all. He was able to get out several times until I finally did this to his whole enclosure. Fortunately, I had a secondary barrier (the actual walls of the garage) so he never truly escaped.

Fox enclosure in a large garage. I still don't know how she did it exactly, but Ifrit managed to get up on the top of the opened garage door, despite it being about a 18' high ceiling. She got on top, and then slid off and fell outside of the enclosure onto the driveway. She had a hay day zipping all over the place as my family tried to catch her. They did after about 2 hours. Thank goodness I was not there at the time. I would have been panicking. I learned after the whole event was said and done.

Fox enclosure outdoors. I thought 2' worth of pavers would be enough to prevent a fox from digging to get out of the enclosure. I thought they would dig at the corners like they did in the garage (and thus wear down their nails) as opposed to 2' away from the actual wall of the enclosure. The 2' of pavers did not deter their digging whatsoever. And I had to keep filling in holes with boulders (well, large, heavy rocks). Nobody escaped because I corrected my mistake immediately. If they had gotten out, I have a perimeter fence that likely would have kept them contained. But still definitely not worth risking it.

Snake rack. I have no clue how some of this happened, but I have had snakes getting out of their racks despite there being like... no space for them to fit, lol. Bad luck maybe? Either way, I had an adult ball python "Jones" squeeze through. Found him at the other end of the basement and he had a giant bruise down his back from where he had squeezed, poor fella. And then more recently, my CA kingsnake "The Baron" got out of the same rack system. The Baron also escaped the Repti-house and got loose in the garage. It was frigid in the garage, so I knew he could not have gotten far, though it could have been possible for him to have escaped to the outside. My sister found him beneath a giant stack of 2 x 4 x 12 boards, huddled up. I now have no faith in rack systems, lol, especially having heard of other escapes friends have experienced. I now use locking sterilite tubs for my snakes. If they get out of those, then I will know my snakes are capable of pushing through solid walls of plastic, haha.

Using stuffed animals, rope toys, and plastic toys as fox enrichment. While these toys worked great for Fable, they did NOT work so well for Ifrit. Ifrit has pica, meaning she will eat anything she can, including rocks. So I had to change out lots of my fox enrichment items for things she could not fit into her mouth, or were able to be digested. At one point she ate Fable's harness right off his body... Fortunately, she passed it as well as everything else she had ever eaten. Even in her enclosure outdoors, I'll see her chewing on rocks. She used to eat little pebbles, but I have not seen her actually eat any rocks for a long time now. Coming up with enrichment ideas for her will always be tricky. I use cardboard a lot, and lots of times I give them their regular food frozen. So I'll toss them some whole rabbits and they'll just work on them for a long time (also helps clean their teeth).

I can't think of anything else right now. I'm sure I've made more mistakes than this (everybody does!), but these are the biggies. But overall, no fox escapes other than the mysterious garage door escape, and then the two snake escapees.
3 red fox, 4 pectinata iguanas, nile monitor, BW tegu, sailfin dragon, leachie gecko, 6 snakes, 2 salamanders, 3 tarantulas
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Re: Enrichment, Enclosure Fails

Postby TamanduaGirl » Mon Feb 15, 2016 5:36 pm

Stuffed pine cones. The only fail I think is she's just too spoiled, she refused to lick/pick the treats out of the cracks.
https://youtu.be/-E1Y7yFaLUg

ImageEnrichment Fail by TamanduaGirl, on Flickr
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Re: Enrichment, Enclosure Fails

Postby Ana » Mon Feb 15, 2016 10:26 pm

Thought an inch of concrete flooring would be sufficient to keep Corso from digging out of the back patio.

Put him on the patio once when he broke the kitchen gate, just long enough to get the work done to repair
the kitchen gate? He got crazy anxious, dug the concrete out, left the backyard, in the pouring rain, went to
the front porch, climbed the brick of the house, then proceeded to beat and claw wildly at the front door in
a raw panic.

There have been so many different failures! I'll have to really wrack my brain! :D
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Re: Enrichment, Enclosure Fails

Postby minervasden » Mon May 30, 2016 2:46 pm

While I was at the pet store last week I picked up one of those small boxes of 'nesting material' from the bird aisle. There were no pictures or list of contents and the box was sealed. I thought I remembered them being dried grass or horse hair or something. Wrong! Just pieces of white household cotton string so a shopping failure for me. The pair of Diamond Doves weren't and aren't impressed so enrichment failure for them.
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Re: Enrichment, Enclosure Fails

Postby minervasden » Thu Nov 03, 2016 12:10 pm

Brought home a pizza takeout box a couple days ago. The cats wanted nothing to do with it. Wouldn't even walk near it. Opened the lid and sprinkled cat treats in before I went to bed. Still no action in the morning. This is not how my cats usually react to new items-they check out (and often steal) most everything.

They must have thought it was a setup or maybe upset no pizza for them ;)
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Re: Enrichment, Enclosure Fails

Postby Ash » Fri Nov 04, 2016 6:53 pm

This wasn't really a fail, but I was 'disappointed' by the reaction.

I put some extra sticks and branches in with my sailfin so that he could climb on them and be able to get closer to his lights and heat to better thermoregulate. I was hoping it would make him be more "out and about" so he'd be funner to watch. The iguanas usually check out new stuff I put in, smelling and tasting it. But did little Nogo the sailfin? Nope, lol. He just hides beneath them all, ha. He's a little guy, so still in the schizo-lizard stage though, heehee.
3 red fox, 4 pectinata iguanas, nile monitor, BW tegu, sailfin dragon, leachie gecko, 6 snakes, 2 salamanders, 3 tarantulas
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Re: Enrichment, Enclosure Fails

Postby TamanduaGirl » Wed Jan 04, 2017 8:17 pm

Pua likes licking the pollen out of flowers so I thought bee pollen might be liked. Nope. She would not lick it up unless mixed with something else so disguised. She did give it a good sniffing but then was done with it from then on.
ImagePowdered Bee Pollen, nope by TamanduaGirl, on Flickr
ImageSnorting Bee Pollen, Yeah by TamanduaGirl, on Flickr

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