Is my new viv almost ready for my frogs?

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ZenMonkey
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Is my new viv almost ready for my frogs?

Postby ZenMonkey » Mon Sep 15, 2014 12:30 am

Here is the first viv I've designed and built. It's an 18x18x24 ExoTerra with a glass top, for an established auratus trio I'm moving out of a viv not really built for dart frogs. I've been letting it grow in and also futzing with the plants for a while.

The photos are too big so I just put them in this folder. There's a full view, a closer view of the ground, and a closeup of the Peperomia surrounded by two Rhaphidophora vines I have climbing up the back. The lighting is two 13W Jungle Dawn LEDs.

https://drive.google.com/folderview?id= ... sp=sharing

Some things are still missing. In the front left corner there will be a coco hut, currently incubating its folius moss in my terrarium. There will be a second one in the back right, underneath the ledge that three sea grape leaves are currently sitting on. I'm hoping this will help with the aggression that crops up when both females want to lay. In the back left where the Selaginella is resting, there will be another small water bowl. The two water features are solely for the frogs since I'll be pulling eggs for now but they really like having a soak now and then.

Also, there's only a smattering of leaf litter now to help incubate the microfauna. There will be a lot more live oak, covered with both magnolia and sea grape for different kinds of hiding places. I'm going to partly bury the cork tube with leaf litter.

I know it's a little overplanted but the old viv has mostly tall plants and an overly open floor, so I went the other way with this one to create as many visual distractions and barriers as possible. The frogs actually get along quite well; it's just when both girls are ready to pop that they get cranky.

Any suggestions, questions, criticisms, additions, would be very helpful. I'm wondering once I add the stuff I mentioned above, how much longer before the frogs can move in? Obviously the back wall isn't ready but it'll be too long before the vines mature. There's not exactly a time crunch, but I'd sort of like to turn the old viv into a grow-out for four froglets, currently tads who just popped their back legs.
A girl named Joey.

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Philsuma
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Re: Is my new viv almost ready for my frogs?

Postby Philsuma » Mon Sep 15, 2014 11:17 am

Looks good. Not overplanted at all. Pretend you are filling up the entire tank with water. Notice all the 'bare' areas....a fish could swim in those areas but a frog cannot use them. A pool, pond or reservoir is not really called a 'water feature'. Water features are more substantial like 'waterfalls', streams, drip walls...big stuff.

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Re: Is my new viv almost ready for my frogs?

Postby BcsTx » Mon Sep 15, 2014 11:44 am

I would suggest moving and attaching the broms to the background, they will do better and give the frogs more floor space. Other than that looks great.
-Beth

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ZenMonkey
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Re: Is my new viv almost ready for my frogs?

Postby ZenMonkey » Mon Sep 15, 2014 5:26 pm

Thanks both of you! Beth, it's a little hard to see in the photos, but the two big broms aren't actually taking up any floor space. One is attached to the little cork "tree trunk", and the other to the cork tube. Does that change your opinion regarding the floor space? I'm sure you're right about them doing better on the back, but unless they really are blocking too much for the frogs, I'd like to see how they do where they are. (I don't consider plants "disposable," but I'm not hugely invested in these two, which came with a plant package, and I'd like to give especially my climbing fool of a male a little more height before the taller plants grow in more.)

Phil -- of course you're right; I've seen people use the term generally to mean "any water things I put in for the frogs" and sometimes I just use it that way out of habit. :-)
A girl named Joey.

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ZenMonkey
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Re: Is my new viv almost ready for my frogs?

Postby ZenMonkey » Fri Sep 26, 2014 7:05 pm

It was suggested I add some ghostwood to fill the upper space, so this is how it looks now. NEHERP rocks! They sent great pieces with beautiful coloration when they're wet. I think the frogs will love it as a replacement for the tall but horribly invasive plants they jump around on now.

Image
A girl named Joey.

sidney ferrell
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Re: Is my new viv almost ready for my frogs?

Postby sidney ferrell » Fri Sep 26, 2014 9:24 pm

Lovin that ghostwood! Thats exactly what many of us try hard describing to sellers to pick for us :) branchier the better imo.

My. 02. I would mount those bromeliads on tge floor and by tge back onto the ghostwood a bit higher closer to the light. You dont want them to rot incase of bad drainage in soil

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Re: Is my new viv almost ready for my frogs?

Postby ZenMonkey » Sun Oct 12, 2014 8:40 am

Well, I've been treating the viv for spider mites with a "tea" made from spices that a frogger & plant expert friend recommended, and I think I'm finally on top of it, though I can't say whether they're all gone. No dead plants, just leaves. I really want to get the frogs in there because their current viv is really breaking down (not the tank itself) and it's starting to smell bad.

The springtail population might not be as good as it was before the CO2 bomb, but I see them when I turn over leaves in different parts of the viv, so it's at least there. My plan before moving my trio is to mist heavily for a day or so, to wash down whatever residue of the spice tea might be left; pour in more springs; add a lot more leaf litter; and put two cocohuts inside, one at each end so hopefully each female can claim one for herself.

Unless I'm forgetting something, I'm going to try to rescue my three tomorrow or Monday at the latest. They haven't been showing any troubling signs and are very active all day (I even have a new clutch of 10-11 nice eggs!), but I think the sooner they're out of that vivarium, the better.

(And once it's been thoroughly cleaned and disinfected, it'll be reborn as an azureus tank!)
A girl named Joey.

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ZenMonkey
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Re: Is my new viv almost ready for my frogs?

Postby ZenMonkey » Sun May 31, 2015 12:30 pm

Just thought I'd post some pictures of the tank grown in. I've been planning to landscape it a little more, but honestly I like the wild look of it, and in the past few months the frogs have really started using the plants to sit and climb on. At some point I'll probably pin more of that peperomia (?) vine to the back but I'm not in a rush. I also decided not to clip the bromeliad pups and just let them take over from the parent until I really need to deadhead.

0126f5b5c7acb3308e63e0cc2f3a1e9793ccf3c334.jpg


01e405f4287048bff159bf3e611a5677b9a687a64d.jpg


I'm getting the evil eye from the back corner.

0119e9acd5b8809c52afe3b9f3020b61d3ebc26f0a.jpg


Closeup: wondering where the heck the flies are already.

014282c453d5e34927ed4906f61243ddbc67157fa1.jpg
A girl named Joey.

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Re: Is my new viv almost ready for my frogs?

Postby joneill809 » Sun May 31, 2015 12:52 pm

Looking great Joey! How is the trio liking it? Are they climbing a lot? Well done!
Jim from Austin please contact me if you are willing to trade offspring from:
lorenzo - schwinn line|NAIB true sips|fantastica nominant
http://www.oneillscrossing.com/dart-frogs/

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Re: Is my new viv almost ready for my frogs?

Postby Philsuma » Sun May 31, 2015 1:59 pm

Agree. Very nice plant selection. 'Jungle-like' is good. Never enough jungle and if there is...that's what shears are for!

Some true shingling plants on that cork would be nice. Peperomia doesn't shingle too well. Marcragvia has about 5 excellent striking species that are hobby/vivarium proven.

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Re: Is my new viv almost ready for my frogs?

Postby ZenMonkey » Fri Jun 05, 2015 9:35 pm

Thanks Jim! Yeah, the frogs just love it. As it's been growing in they've been using the plants more and more as a, well, literal jungle gym I guess! Lots of jumping from plant to plant, like they used to do in their previous but broken vivarium. They've even been using the ghostwood more as well as hanging out in bromeliads, especially that lovely Tiger Cub on the top left.

Philsuma wrote:'Jungle-like' is good. Never enough jungle and if there is...that's what shears are for!


My thoughts exactly! My feelings about vivarium design are tending very strongly towards aesthetics taking a far back seat to the frogs' preference. Which is why I haven't yet pinned up some of the vines since the frogs are using them as they are.

As far as shingling, you know, I had a whole other plan for that back wall but it seems to have developed a mind of its own! I have some nice "shinglers" in my cutting tank, and I'm definitely going to use those for the azureus viv, which I thought was going to be this year but may not be after all
A girl named Joey.


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