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Planted Tadpole Tank Substrate?
#1
Well, I'll be setting up a 20L for my vittatus tads and id like to plant it. I've already got the plants I'd like to use. The only thing I can't figure out is what type of soil would be appropriate to use. It will be like a mudskipper tank, with a landing on the left half for them to morph out onto. I'll probably have about 1/4".of sand onto of the soil that will make for easy basting out of waste. So, any ideas on what type of soil to use? My LFS has pond soil for $20 for 10lbs. That's outrageous. I wouldn't pay it. So I'm not looking for anything that expensive. They'll much sooner get an unplanted tank with some java moss and sone almond leaves.

Thanks for your help.
Mark
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#2
Hi Mark,

Everyone I know, uses a VERY simplistic graduated enclosure, otherwise called a "Morph out tank". When tadpoles pop their front legs, the need a slope to get out of the water and if one is not available, they can drown.

Most people use a simple plastic or 10 gallon size enclosure to transfer all their tads to, when the fronts pop. It does not take long after that point, that the tail disappears and they go right onto land. They are very skittish at this stage and you will NOT see them. It looks like you may be planning a tank with observation in mind, and if so, I can assure you, that you will NOT see much if any activity. They are very skittish at this vulnerable stage.

The other consideration is easy of cleaning. Most people like the sparse, non gravel or substrate. Easier to clean and catch new metamorphs. I use leaf little and some bark pieces....stuff like that. Hope that helps...
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"Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana".
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#3
Well, the plants I planned to use would just be for the frogs to hide in and to help with the nitrates in the tank. I assume the water will turn brown and unappealing anyhow with the almond leaves and leaf litter on the ground portion. S, it's not really for me to see. But that slope is exactly why I ask. I don't know what to build it out of. What substrate would be safe to use for these guys. I don't want to build the slope with anything that ma hurt the tads. The tank I had planned would be fully aquatic on the right 3/4 with some plants like mosses and 'bushy' rather than stemmed plants, and some almond leaves. The other 1/4 would be the land portion for them to morph out on. Id like a slope going up from the right to this land portion, but i don't know what to build it out of, substrate-wise. Ideally, I would use a 10g, but I already have a 20L on hand. A couple, in fact. So, I'm not really worried about it being beautiful. I just want it to work as best as possible for the tads. I figured the plants would help dramatically wit the nitrates in the water.

Thanks for the help so far. I always appreciate it.
Mark
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#4
No worries then, Mark. There's nothing you have written that sounds like a "fail" ect. I'd say, go for it. I would just add that I would not use any aquarium fish or plant substrate that contained any plant fertlizers or ANY organics ect. 'd make sure it was just plain ole rock and gravel.
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https://twitter.com/DartDen


"Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana".
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#5
What do you think about high desert sand? I have about 75 lbs of it left over from my axolotl talk. Never used. Already washed.
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#6
hmmm....don't see why sand would be a problem. It would be hard to make it form to a slope without sliding into the water, wouldn't it ?
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"Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana".
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#7
I would have it in the water as well. Since all of the sand will be wet, it will be pretty much compacted into shape. I'll try to get a photo from a friends skipper tank I set up for him. It worked well for that, and is still up and running. It's kind of like building a sand castle. Well, thats what ill do then. If you can think of anything wrong with that plan, please let me know and watch for updates in my vittatus journal! Big Grin

Mark
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#8
Mark,

Try to get some pics in a thread of the skipper tank ! TONS of us like skippers.....and crabs.....but seriously, I'd LOVE to see me some mudskippers.
https://www.facebook.com/dartden/

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"Time flies like an arrow, fruit flies like a banana".
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#9
I know I've got a photo of the finished tank around here someplace. He's stationed in ND now, so no ongoing thread, but I can ask him to try to send me some photos to post here. I forgot how miserable it was to get plants to grow in such a miserably nutrient-barren environment. Hopefully the ones I've got will uphold!

Mark
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