Zilla Vertical Tropical Kit Review

The Zilla vertical tropical kit 12x12x18 is designed for small tree living reptiles. The kit includes a tall glass terrarium along with the accessories you need to create a comfortable and natural habitat for your pet. Complete with background, bedding, food bowl and more, this kit offers a value for money solution for the new reptile owner, the breeder, and for those looking for an urgent and easy to set up quarantine / hospital tank.

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  • Suitable for small tropical and tree living reptiles.
  • Easy to set up guide
  • Deep base, can hold up to five inches of water.
  • Tall tank, front door opening, hinged screen top to reduce risk of escape
  • Locking latch on the front door for added peace of mind.


  • There are better quality accessories available which you may want to consider at a later stage.
  • UVB Lighting to be purchased separately
  • Hide and plants are not included

What is Included in the Kit?

The Zilla vertical tropical kit comes with a hinged screen top, front locking latches, glass front door, and textured background. Lighting includes a mini halogen dome, 25W mini halogen bulb, feeding dish, gauges, bedding, and more.

This Zilla vertical tropical starter kit is ideally suited as an entry-level terrarium that offers everything you need in one box to bring your new reptile home. From the sleek and stylish design to the glass panels, this terrarium offers a wonderful habitat for your pet, while offering you the opportunity to observe their antics and character with ease. It includes:

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Glass Terrarium 12” x 12” x 18”

This terrarium can hold up to five inches of water in the base. It comes complete with front opening glass doors, front locking latch, a locking pin, and a hinged screen top. Made from glass it is able to hold humidity levels while providing an easy to clean tank. The tall tank is ideal for tree climbing tropical reptiles and amphibians, offering a natural habitat where they can feel comfortable and at home, promoting overall health in the long run.

Zilla Mini Halogen Reptile Dome

The Zilla Mini Halogen Reptile Dome is an aluminum reflector dome designed to provide a focused light and heat into the terrarium. The mounting spring clips help to keep the dome in place, including when you remove the screen top to gain easy access for decorating and cleaning. The dome offers a low profile and compact design to save on space, complete with six-inch power cord with on and off switch. The dome offers a reflective surface to focus visible light and daytime heat.

Zilla Mini Halogen Bulb

These bulbs come in three varieties. The 25 watt mini halogen bulb is equivalent to a 75 watt incandescent bulb offering up to 250% more efficiency. The thicker glass and strong filament can provide more than 2000 hours of use, providing essential heat and light for your reptile. The bulb features G9 technology, so simply push into the socket. Ensure the wattage offered will provide ample heat and lighting for your reptile. The bulbs are available in 25W and 50W with blue, white and, red lights available. Halogen offers benefits of standard incandescent bulbs including the high output, improved energy efficiency, and health light and heat it provides to ensure the best overall health for your reptile.

Zilla Terrarium Dish – Feeding Dish

This is a value for money food dish, designed specifically for the reptile terrarium. The walls of the dish are low to ensure easy reach and reduce the risk of drowning in small reptiles. The glossy ceramic finish makes it quick and easy to clean. The kidney shape makes it easy to blend into your tropical landscape. The dish is only 0.8 ounces in weight, measuring 4” x 1.8” x 0.8”.

Zilla Coconut Husk Brick Reptile Bedding

Zilla coconut husk bedding is made from 100% organic coconut fiber. It is highly absorbent, retaining moisture, making it the ideal choice for a humid tropical enclosure. Provides up to 2 inches of bedding, which can easily be removed and replaced with ease as and when needed. This bedding is suitable for toads, rainforest geckos, and chameleons. Coconut husk naturally expands providing a soft cushioning for jumping reptiles. It provides a soft texture and packaged in compressed blocks. Simply follow the easy step by step instructions that comes with the coconut husk bedding to provide your reptile with a comfortable and safe substrate.

Zilla Temperature and Humidity Gauge

This is an affordable analog gauge that will help you monitor your temperature and humidity in the enclosure, ensuring you are achieving the levels your reptile needs to remain fit and healthy. The gauge easily measures both temperature and humidity with temperature readings ranging from 60 – 120ºF and humidity levels from 0 to 100%. The gauge comes with easy suction cups for quick installation. The temperature and humidity gauge is ideal for an entry level terrarium where you need to monitor levels to reduce the risk of disease and improve activity. The dial is bright and easy to read and it can be removed for tank cleaning.

Textured Background

The tropical design textured background comes in natural colors to blend in with your enclosure design while offering a three-dimensional finish to your enclosure. Further, the textured background offers a place to hide any cables and wires.

Setup Guide

The setup guide that comes with the Zilla tropical kit is ideal for first-time reptile owners that are setting up their enclosure for the very first time. The guide offers quick set up instructions, offering step by step methods to ensure the safe introduction of your new pet.

What Else You May Need to Complete Your Setup

Analog gauge accuracy is always questionable. Digital thermometers and hygrometers are more accurate over the analog versions provided in the kit.

You need to buy some decorations such as hides and plants. The realistic-looking branch and green rainforest plant provide your reptile with a place to climb and hide.

Different reptiles require different UVB levels. Zilla also provides some solutions for UVB light.

UVB Lighting

Zilla tropical fluorescent UVB/UVA bulb is an energy-efficient UVB/UVA bulb that is ideal for reptiles that need UVB to absorb calcium and reduce the risk of metabolic bone disease. This bulb offers 6 to 8 microwatts of UVB and should be placed at 12 inches from the basking area. Suitable for snakes, frogs, and nocturnal geckos.

The mini heat and UVB fixture from Zilla offers a great value for money solution to ensure your pet receives the essential UVB that they need to reduce the risk of metabolic bone disease and ensure long term health.

Digital Thermometer and Hygrometer

Zilla Terrarium Digital Thermometer / Hygrometer monitors your temperature and humidity with a large digital LCD display. Track temperature ranging from 23ºF to 122ºF and your humidity levels from 30 to 90%. Two probes with 57” lead wires. LR44. 1.5V battery included. Monitor your humidity and temperature in a single glance. The digital thermometer and hygrometer come with suction cups for easy installation. The thermometer measures 3.8” x 7.5” x 2.3” and weighs 0.8 ounces.


The jungle vines are a wonderful addition to your rainforest terrarium. These are waterproof and bendable vines, which you can use to create a natural habitat for your reptile. Available in a natural color, they are suitable for lizards, tree frogs, and chameleons, along with snakes, geckos and other reptiles. The vine is made with metal inside, ensuring the best of flexibility. It is very easy to clean. The length is 47 inches with a 0.4 inch root. Create a 3D habitat by twisting the vines together.


The focus of Zilla vertical tropical starter kit is to provide a quick and easy setup solution for first-time reptile owners, breeders, and those that need a hospital or quarantine terrarium in a hurry. Installation can be completed in eight easy steps:

  1. Choose the location of your tank and place the terrarium on an even surface out of direct sunlight. Inset the background.
  2. Prepare the substrate as per the instructions and add it to the bottom of the enclosure.
  3. Design your enclosure, play around with the décor to create a natural and comfortable habitat for your reptile. Insert the food dish.
  4. Install your hygrometer / thermometer so you can monitor temperature and humidity with ease. When placing the thermometer, ensure you place it in an easy to read position.
  5. Push the mini halogen bulb into the reflector dome and clip it into position. Prepare any other lighting you may have, such as UVB lighting. Turn on all lighting.
  6. Insert the locking pins
  7. Double check your temperature and humidity to ensure it is ready for your new pet.
  8. Introduce your new reptile to their new natural tropical habitat.

Is the ​Zilla Vertical Tropical Kit Good Value?

Looking at how much it will cost to purchase each item individually, not to mention the time it will take to source the products you need, you will find the Zilla tropical kit offers great value for money for first-time reptile owners, breeders and those needing an urgent hospital or quarantine tank.

What we like:

  • Complete kit – everything you need in one box
  • Affordable – save money not buying each item individually
  • Save time and energy sourcing all the products you need.
  • Easy installation

What we don’t like:

  • Not all the products included are the best quality. You may want to introduce more quality items at a later stage
  • You will have to buy some additional items to complete your set up

Who Should Buy the Zilla Vertical Tropical Kit

The kit is best suited for beginner reptile owners who wants to provide a tropical habitat for small tropical amphibians and reptiles, including crested geckos, tree frogs, and more.


Overall, the Zilla Vertical Tropical Kit 12″ x 12″ x 18″ has proven to be a great value for money option for the first-time reptile owner that wants to set up a tank from scratch. Save yourself time, energy, and money when it comes to your tropical terrarium set up.

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