This weekend I came up with another way to make my second level. I originally was using a plexiglass(acrylic) floor held up with suction cups. With the suction cups its hard to get them level first of all and they don’t hold much weight. While brainstorming on how to make a maze of tunnels for my hamster I came up with another solution. 3 inch PVC pipe! So I bought a 10 foot piece of thin pvc for $5.49 and had it cut in three pieces to make U shaped base in my tank. Then I laid the plexiglass on it and it works perfect. Its very sturdy and stable. Now the hermies can crawl in the pipes as well. I am going to paint them brown and green like tree logs. I also plan to cut holes in the cross piece so that the hermies can crawl in there too. I have not decided if I want to wrap the pipes with netting or glue some small rocks on them to make them climbable surfaces too. Right now it sits behind the lengthwise pieces. I could have cut that back section shorter so there was no overlap but I didn’t want to give up my corner strength. With this configuration you could add additional levels by simply repeating the setup, especially if you have a 20 high instead of 20 long. If you wanted a higher floor and didn’t mind compromising the crawling in the tubes, you could have the pvc cut shorter and stand it on end in the corners to make four wide sturdy posts.
I am building a second floor for my hamster in this manner. But since the second floor won’t be holding as much weight for him I cut the pieces shorter so they are all accessible and there will be another set of pipes on the second floor for him too. I was able to get pieces for this project from that same 10 foot section of PVC I bought. Very good deal 😉
Also available at the hardware store are t shaped connectors for these pipes but that would be more hamster related than hermie.
Pictures of the new second floor can be views in my gallery.