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post #1 of (permalink) Old 01-31-2013, 07:34 AM Thread Starter
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Join Date: Feb 2010
Location: FoCo, CO
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Viva La Vivarium #Update April 8. Frogs are in :D

It started as an obsession over 2 and a half years ago when me and my friend Saumya started sharing the
pictures of PDFs on messages and all we could do was to just get amazed at their beauty, because sadly
they are not shipped to our country. And then began long periods of google-ing and understanding
vivarium, terrarium, paludarium differences, then things necessary for frogs survival, its food, supplies
needed to keep one.. and understanding all of this I badly wanted to make a tank.

So I bought a 10gal tank with glass top, light, 10gal tankless kit form Joshs Frogs, tree bark background
from an LFS. I also ordered additional plants form Joshs Frogs .
Here's a complete list of all the stuff-
Aqueon 10G tank
Aqueon 10G glass foldable top
Aqueon T8 light canopy for 10G tank
Josh's 10G tankless kit (which include ABG mix, Clay balls, wood, substrate separator, sphagnum moss)
Tree bark sheet for the Background
exo terra coconut fiber substrate
Aquarium silicon
Plants from Josh's- 2 Bromeliads, 2 Ferns, 1 vine
Hand mister/ sprayer
humidity meter

Then I started putting everything together.

I glued the wood bark background with silicon and left it overnight-

Then my kit arrived. I first put in Hydroton layer, flattened it-

Hydroton is nothing but balls of a very porous material which have amazing water soaking ability. So they will take care of the extra water. But, since this is a long term project, and water may get trapped in the bottom, i have placed a PVC pipe in the back left corner with slit cuts. So I can drain the excess water from that PVC pipe.

Then on top of it I placed a piece of cloth substrate separator. Hydroton is porous material which
retains water. If the cloth is not used, tiny particles and dirt from the substrate above will fill up and
clog its pores, thus killing its water retaining capability. This would result in soil saturated in water which
would ultimately start rottin-

Then I put in ABG mix. The ABG mix is 2 parts tree fern fiber, 1 part peat moss, 2 parts coco fiber, 1 part
charcoal, and 2 parts orchid bark. ABG mix was perfected by the Atlanta Botanical gardens of Georgia,
Atlanta. This material is capable of lasting several years if used properly. This substrate supports the
population of micro fauna while allowing plants to thrive-

On top of this I added coco fibers to give strength to roots of the plants and will hold humidity-

Then we did a little hard-scaping and plantation. We tied sheet moss to our tree branch and also put
some of it on the tree bark in the background-

Then we laid a layer of sphagnum moss. It is best to retain humidity for long periods-

Over this we put in some sea grape leaf litter. These are the best leaves for a vivarium. They are very
thick and last longer in very humid conditions such as the one in our vivarium-

For lighting I used T8 6500k. It is connected to a timer for 8 Hours photo period.

And here's the Exo Terra Mister. It is really awesome when it comes to making Mist. It doesn't spray, it makes mist-

Full Tank Shots-

Isopods and springtails culture are yet to be added. Once I stabilize the ecosystem in the tank I will order
frogs. I have decided to keep Dendrobates auratus 'Nicaraguan Green & Black' or Dendrobates auratus 'Costa Rican Green & Black'. Here's a picture from Josh's frogs-

Update- April 8/2013
Its been long that I haven't updated this thread. So here are the updates

Got my Auratus from Josh's frogs. The first time I saw them and I kept looking at these beautiful delicate creature. God must have taken longer than usual animals to paint these lil cuties. haha..
Here are the photos-

Enjoying moss like a boss-

checking out the temp and humidity

Here's a FTS-

The other day when I placed second coco hut in, he immediately came to inspect it :P

Thanks for looking. It was a Superman's presentation

Last edited by sumer; 04-08-2013 at 04:42 PM. Reason: Updates
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