Replace Mesh Shelves With Wood Shelves

Cage Topper with Wood ShelfToday after much begging I got my boyfriend to accompany me to Home Depot to pick up some kiln dried pine and wing screws (4) to replace some shelves in my degu’s cages.

The easiest modification was replacing one of the mesh shelves in the 10-gallon tank cage topper with a wooden shelf. For this, we used a single cut of the board and all 4 wing screws.

The untreated kiln dried pine board we bought was 8″ x 1″ x 6′ so once we got it home we measured the width of the cage: 10″ then we cut a piece of wood a hair smaller than 10 inches and drilled 4 holes in the sides (two per side) then we took out one of the mesh shelves and held in the shelf while securing it to the cage with the wing screws.

What is a wing screw?

Wing screws are like wing nuts that are already attached to the screw bolt.Wing Screw Securing the Shelf

Thus far the degus seem to really like it and this will help reduce the risk of the degus developing bumblefoot. The downfall of the wooden shelf is that it will absorb urine and the little degu poos won’t fall through like they did with the mesh. This means that the wooden shelf will need to be replaced again.

The Final Cost

The kiln dried untreated board was $13 and I could cut about 6 of these shelves from it. Each wing screw was $1.00 but if I had bought more than four I’m sure I could have found a larger package at a lower cost per screw.

Overall it was a great low-cost solution to add some new features to the cage.  Now, if I needed to, I could staple a wheel to the underside of the shelf to get it up off the bedding (the mesh metal wheel in that cage has a really low profile.)