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talk to the frog / Setup / Vivarium Maintence....
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Hoss
Member
24 posts
24 posts

# Posted: 17 Oct 2007 16:19


Does a live vivarium ever need to be completely broken down? Or just need water changes? Also what is the biggest problem with live vivariums?

KittenClaw22
Member
4924 posts4924 posts
# Posted: 17 Oct 2007 17:06 · Edited by: KittenClaw22


The biggest problem depends on what type of live vivarium. Usually it is getting the vivarium set up in the first few months after planting it to hold up temp and humidity in the right range. There are several easy fixes for this, but that seems to be the most common complaint.

You shouldn't have to break the enclosure down. You will have to spot clean, possibly remove branches to clean them, and wipe down the glass. You will have to search for dead crickets and keep the tank tidy.

It also depends on the type of frog you have. Live vivariums don't work very well for burrowers because they tear apart plant roots and generally mess up the substrate. Also if you have a large frog species in a small vivarium you can have ammonia build up and need to replace the substrate.

In most cases with frogs like poison dart frogs, small tree frogs, etc you never have to replace the substrate, just change the water as necessary and spot clean. If you have an appropriately sized enclosure for large frogs you rarely have to change the substrate as well.

If you have one set up with a buried pump you may have to disassemble the tank to work on the pump or replace it.

If you have a mite problem, or a dreadful illness you may have to take the tank apart to clean everything.

You may have to replace plants that outgrow the vivarium over time (several years) or you may have to replace dead plants.

I read that you are looking at green tree frogs. A 20 tall for 2-3 green tree frogs that you plant well shouldn't have to be broken down. I have 2 green tree frogs in a 20 tall that I have had set up for about 3-4 years and I have never had to replace the substrate or etc.

If you are interested in green tree frogs you may also like gray tree frogs or barking tree frogs. They have similar requirements but totally different appearance. However, they are so common and easily found in the US that it is very hard to find any captive bred. There just isn't a market for captive bred babies when you can get wild caught babies for less than $1 wholesale.

Warning: IF you end up with males when they get to barking it can be very loud. I can hear my green tree frogs anywhere in the house and over most of the yard. They call daily.


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KittenClaw22
Member
4924 posts4924 posts
# Posted: 17 Oct 2007 17:16


PS: Are you going to name your frogs Ben and Adam Cartwright? You have Little Joe already


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Hoss
Member
24 posts
24 posts

# Posted: 17 Oct 2007 18:58


LOL Actually my dog's name is Hoss and I want my frog to be named Hopsing...By the way I LOVE your kitten pic...he is so fierce! hehe Thank You for your info Kit. I want to do this right so I have been reading a ton on Vivs and Tree Frog habitats. I like the Chinese Fire Bellies also but I know they require a pool of water in this case I would want to install an outside canister filter...This is funny I started out wanting to own a "dry" climate tank but looking at the vivs and how nice one can be I am getting into the whole plant thing also. Vivs are so beautiful.

omiga13
Member
808 posts
808 posts

# Posted: 17 Oct 2007 19:35


Im proud of you kitten!


Keep trying ! You'll see how it feels when you get it.

1.3.0Dendrobate Auratus
1.0.0Hylaboans Pugnax
1.1.0RETF
KittenClaw22
Member
4924 posts4924 posts
# Posted: 17 Oct 2007 21:27


Firebellies are really great little frogs and they are very active and entertaining. Much more active than tree frogs, but the toxins need to be taken into perspective.

Firebellies produce a lot of toxins and their toxins can build up very quickly. Even in a way over sized enclosure you would have problems with the soil and water having toxins build up in it and have to replace it. Most people just use a sloping bank of smooth river rock to make a 50/50 land/water enclosure. Sometimes people use as much as 75% water and 25% land because these toads sure love the water.

Like this:


Even with the filter you still have to change the water every week or two because the toxins build so fast. If you don't have a filter sometimes you can actually see the toxin build up floating like an oil slick on top of the water. It can cause skin irritation, redness, swelling, and it will burn like the devil if it gets in your eyes or in a cut.

You can still make a very beautiful paludarium with aquatic plants and you can place plants that prefer drier soil in pots in the sloping bank and bury the pots. The pot protects the roots from root rot and makes the plant easily removable if it gets badly damaged or dies.

Here is a website with some really great advice on building a partial land/water vivarium.

http://members.tripod.com/~Tropic_Cove/aquariums/p aludarium.html

http://members.tripod.com/~Tropic_Cove/aquariums/t otgb.html


[img]http://www.danasoft.com/sig/kittenclaw22.jpg[/img]
Hoss
Member
24 posts
24 posts

# Posted: 18 Oct 2007 05:12


The poison Dart frogs are very attractive and seem to be less maint. I like the Dendrobates a lot. They seem active. I read they must be kept in pairs...so that maybe an issue for me to consider as I understand they are very hard or impossible to sex when young. Also are they climbers or mainly bottom dwellers? and is it ok to put a water feature in the Viv.? Thank You Kit! I know I have a lot of newbie questions but the more I take in the more questions I have LOL...So thank you for your time!

KittenClaw22
Member
4924 posts4924 posts
# Posted: 18 Oct 2007 17:06


You don't have to keep all species in pairs. The reason that is advised is sometimes you can have an extremely dominant female stress a less dominate female, so male/female/female will not always work well. If you don't plan to breed you could do 2 unsexed juveniles. If you went with a more social species you could do 3-4 unsexed juveniles. Most people never experience trouble with a dominant female, but you do get the horror stories of one female sitting on another and drowning her in a water feature. If you do end up with a trouble frog you could always remove her and sell her at a profit, having an adult sex frog.

Many people do shallow water features in their dart frog enclosures. A couple suggestions I can make would be not to bury the pump and make the pump/filter relatively easy to get to.

In an ideal set up where money wasn't an issue I would use an external canister filter to set up a water fall in a drilled tank with a custom background, stream and small pond.

Here is a sheet I wrote on how to make a moving water feature, such as a stream, inexpensively: http://talkto.thefrog.org/index.php?action=vthread &forum=14&topic=8225&page=0#1

The paludarium link above will be helpful, and this has been much discussed so a forum search may prove profitable as well.

D. Leucomelas are great little frogs, they are so active and entertaining. Also, as far as I know there is less social dominant behavior in this species than in some other species. They are my favorite frogs, and I love mine to bits. They have a very pleasant, low call, unlike some treefrogs which sound like they have bullhorns.

D. Leuc also like to climb so they would use the up-space more than many species and a 20 tall would be very suitable.


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Hoss
Member
24 posts
24 posts

# Posted: 19 Oct 2007 19:50


Yes Kitten I think you have helped me come up with an answer! The D. leucs in a nice viv...I am in no hurry and will start soon on the tank...I will post pics of the project...Thank You Kit, Hoss

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