If you have a pet turtle in an aquarium you need a turtle topper above tank basking platform. Why? Because it lets you keep your tank full for maximum swim space for your little beauty while still giving them a safe place to get out of the water, dry off and bask.
If your just curious (or in a hurry)….
✅ This specific turtle topper is the most popular with our readers.
It’s an excellent value because it fits most standard aquariums or fish tanks up to 55 gallons and includes an enclosed (escape proof) out of tank basking platform as well as an attached turtle ramp and underwater dock for turtle napping (see color choices, check current price and read reviews here).
An above the tank basking platform is superior to the floating ones because there is no way your turtle can sink it. Not only is this safer but it insures your pet can completely dry off and warm up enough to insure proper digestion as well as keeping their skin healthy and fungus free. Very important!
On This Page…
Turtle Topper Above Tank Basking Platform & Dock
DIY Turtle Topper Ideas
Turtle Topper Basking Area
Turtle Topper Above Tank Basking Platform Using A 10 Gallon Tank
DIY Turtle Topper Safety Tip
Turtle Topper 55 Gallon Aquarium For Lots of Room
Enclosed Turtle Topper For Aquarium
Spiffy Turtle Aquarium Topper
Turtle Topper Above Tank Basking Platform & Dock
A turtle above tank basking platform is a must have item for anyone who is thinking about or is currently owned by a delightfully goofy pet turtle. Pictured above is a Penn Plax Decorative Turtle Topper/Basking Platform. It features an underwater dock or bench that turtles love to rest/sleep on at night.
Because it’s underneath the basking platform your turtles feel “hidden” and safe. We have found that the underwater “bench” is a great place for your turtles to hide or nap. They think they are so sneaky bobbing here but you’ll get to watch their antics anyway.
If you’re not a handy or DIY kinda person the Penn Plax Turtle Topper is gonna just make your day. It really is as easy as open the box and pop it on top of your turtles tank. As curious as they are, your turtle or turtles will be climbing up inside to check it out in no time!
Don’t take our word for it. You can read the over 700 detailed reviews with tons of customer submitted photos over on Amazon right here and check out turtles actually using this Penn Plax Turtle Topper in the video below. Enjoy!
Folks are telling us that they “ABSOLUTELY ADORE THIS PRODUCT!!” In fact more than one has been known to say it’s the best product they’ve er bought for their turtle.
The turtles love it and they tend to use the ramp as a slide climbing up only to ZOOM back down into the water just like a they are at a water park. Who knew turtles liked to play? Right?
Note: Our turtle does this (as does the turtle in the video above) and I’m not sure who enjoys it more him or us!
Because this platform fits over the edges of your tank and then is further secured by suction cups there is no chance it will be knocked off or fall into your tank. This also means you can fill your tank all the way to the top for maximum swimming space.
Just be sure to keep the space this topper doesn’t sit on covered in some way. Because, as new turtle keepers quickly learn, turtles LOVE to climb! Again, who knew?
With an tank basking platform you have no filter type restrictions so you aren’t stuck with in inside the tank filter. You are free to get a hang on tank filter if that’s the kind you prefer. We think they work best but that’s up to you. It also makes knowing where to place your lights and heat sources a no-brainer.
✅ The best turtle topper above tank basking area for sale is right here! Check it out and let us know how much you love it!
Penn Plax Reptology Life Science Turtle-Topper Above-Tank Basking Platform (Natural)Penn Plax Turtle Tank Topper – Above-Tank Basking Platform for Turtle Aquariums, 17 x 14 x 10 InchesTurtle Topper Above Tank Basking Platform
This turtle tank setup is completely homemade. Notice the vent holes drilled into the sides and back of the plexiglass the turtle topper is made of. We think this is to accommodate the power cords for the “Hot Rock” or heating pad you know has to be in there. Because without a heat lamp on top to warm the rocks and provide a basking platform you’ll need to have some sort of an underground heat source.
Above tank basking area diy ideas like the one above are real life savers. Because if you’re looking for a ready made turtle topper 18 inch or larger you just aren’t going to find it on the market today. Trust us, we LOOKED.
✅ Best Turtle Topper WINNER <——— This totally enclosed turtle tank topper and basking platform fits standard tanks up to 55 Gallons without any fuss!
Something else we love about this aquatic turtle setup is the aquascaping inside the tank. Not only does it make the turtle house a lovely addition to your home it gives your special pet turtle a lot of things to inspect, rub her shell on and generally muck around with. That keeps his or her mind active which has to enrich their lives, right? It sure makes them more fun for us to watch 🙂
Made of wood and Plexiglass this above tank basking platform is filled with gravel. Please note that if you are adding a substrate to your aquatic turtles tank either in the water or in his tank topper basking platform you have to be sure it’s too big for him to accidentally swallow. Turtles will swallow anything they get in their mouth when they are eating. So you need to be sure the gravel you use is too big for them to accidentally eat. Seriously folks, don’t cut corners here or you very well could kill your sweet turtle.
Also note this turtle topper has grating (like what’s called “egg crate” for a roof. This allows for the use of under gravel heating OR a heat lamp to warm up the gravel making for a good basking spot for your turtle hang out and catch some rays. Please, please please don’t forget that heat is only half of what your turtle needs when he’s basking. As important as his heat source is to his metabolism and digestion his UVB bulb is equally important to his health. Without a constant source of UVB light rays he won’t be able to properly use the calcium you are so carefully making sure is in his diet and your turtle can develop soft spots on his shell which can be deadly!
OMG: we found a really nice uvb/heat lamp combo made just for aquatic turtles and it’s very inexpensive. Usually you can’t find one of these for under $75 but as I’m writing, this one is less than $40! Don’t know how long it’ll stay that cheap so if you’re setting up a turtle tank we suggest you take a peek.
We also love the turtle ramp diy project with the above turtle topper. It’s so cool how gravel has been glued to the plexiglass ramp giving excellent traction for your turtle. If you want to make a ramp like this for your turtle we suggest using aquarium silicone. Just be sure to let it fully cure before putting the ramp into your turtle tank.
These folks have placed a 10 gallon aquarium on its side on top of their larger tank. The new tank toppers “bottom” is covered in a layer of gravel making for a nice thermal layer for your heat lamps to warm up. This is probably the simplest way to make a DIY above tank basking platform to make for your turtle.
HOWEVER: Note how the sides are completely open. Remember that turtles can not fly!!! Depending on the size of your turtle this can be quite dangerous because turtles are VERY inquisitive and will do their best to “go walkabout” and fall out of the tank. These folks have made sure that the ramp is in the center of their tank and their turtles are still quite small so it probably won’t be an issue for them until they can replace this with an enclosed turtle topper or add some guards to the side of their above tank setup.
DIY Turtle Topper Safety Tip
If you’re going to put together a DIY turtle topper like the ones pictured above please note that there is no protection to keep the turtles that live in these tank from falling over the side of the tank when accessing their basking area. Turtles are naturally curious creatures and will launch themselves over the side if given the chance. Presumably the turtles in the tanks above are too small to bridge the gap between the ramp and the edge of the tank. This will change as the turtles mature and steps will need to be taken to keep them from falling to their doom.
This is a very nice do it yourself tank topper for turtles. It has good light in the basking box and an interesting background to it as well. Notice how there is no way the turtle can climb or fall out of this tank?
We found out the hard way that such precautions are necessary. Who knew that turtles not only can but like to climb? Luckily for us, our turtle was still quite small and his tank was sitting on a carpeted floor at the time so no harm came to him. We however, suffered quite a shock. Do yourself a favor and be sure you have an enclosed turtle tank setup. Your heart rate will thank you.
A lovely diy turtle tank topper and enclosed aquarium. Notice how this 55 gallon tank has it’s aquarium lid in place on one side and is totally enclosed by the above tank basking platform on the other. Very safe, as far as it goes. The drawback we see is that there is no lid on the basking platform itself. Our turtle is a determined climber and would escape this if given the chance. Now I’m betting that the turtles that live in this tank are still on the small side so we’re sure they are safe in here for now.
Down the road these folks should put a screen top on the basking side to insure the safety of their pet turtles. That would make this an ideal diy turtle tank basking platform for any aquatic turtle to call home.
Exo Terra Screen Cover, 20-29 GallonR-Zilla SRZ100011441 Fresh Air Screen Cover with Center Hinge for Pet Cages, 20-3/8 by 10-1/2-Inch, BlackR-Zilla SRZ100011875 Fresh Air Screen Cover with Hinged Door for Pet Cages, 30-1/4 by 12-7/8-Inch, Black
This homemade plexiglass diy basking platform turtle topper has very high sides so even though it has no lid your turtles will not be able to climb over. However it does not have walls that extend past the platform that would protect your turtles from scuttling off the side while climbing their ramp up onto the platform. Depending on the size of your turtles this could become a hazard.
Another thing to note is that turtles, like most critters, want to feel protected and safe. Honestly, I’m not sure our yellow bellied slider, Tuttles, would really enjoy the above basking area. We note he prefers to be a bit more hidden. We call him our sneaky turtle, LOL. Anyhoo… if you are going to the effort to make a diy above tank turtle basking area for your “stealth turtle” we recommend not making them totally see thru or at least putting some decorations (like these economical faux vines) on the walls.
Zoo Med 25157 Reprising 10.0 UVB Compact 13W Fluorescent Lamp, MiniZoo Med 25156 Reptisun 5.0 Uvb Compact 13W Fluorescent Lamp, MiniE27 Reptile Halogen Spotlights Warm Basking Full Spectrum UVA UVB Bulb by My Toots
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We hope you have been inspired by these turtle tank setups and above tank turtle basking platform ideas. And, if you’re new to turtle keeping, that you’ve gained a little insight into some of the dangers your turtle can face as he or she determinedly explores her world. When we got started we had no clue how important having a turtle topper above tank basking platform & dock was for the health and safety of our turtle. Hopefully, we’ve given you a bit of a head start.