What wood to use in a Mangrove type Paludarium... - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-23-2008, 10:57 PM Thread Starter
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What wood to use in a Mangrove type Paludarium...

Hello All. I am new here and I wanted to start off by asking a simple question about a future project of mine.

I want to setup a 65 Gallon Paludarium with brackish water and I would like it to have a mangrove look, with long branches (roots) reaching down from the surface into the water. I'd have some horizontal branches on the top also. I plan on doing a foam background with cocofiber and/or sand applied to it with black silicon and the wood will be secured with the great stuff foam.

I want to have some Archer Fish on the bottom, and maybe a large asian mudskipper (I'll build him a shelf or two carved in to the foam background. On the top I'd like to do some small asian arboreal snake like the flying tree snake perhaps, although I would have to make sure whatever snake I choose is a mammal eater and not something that would try and eat the mudskipper/archers.

Anyway, now to my question, what wood could I use to create the mangrove appearance that wont make the water acidic? Mopani (African Root), Cypres, and the other common aquarium wood will leech tannins and lower the pH. They also dont really look like Mangrove Roots either.

Is there actuall mangrove wood available to use? If not what's a good substitue? Or do I have to go with something artificial?

Any info here is greatly appreciated...
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-23-2008, 11:09 PM
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For brackish you should really use a carbonate substrate (crushed coral or aragonite sand) and it will counter the tannins and buffer the pH. I don't know that there is any mangrove wood available (most should be protected as wetland species), but you can buy mangrove seedlings and they might be interesting to grow too. The manzanita wood looks the most like mangrove to me.

Ime, most snakes will take a short dip for an easy meal.

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-23-2008, 11:34 PM Thread Starter
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For brackish you should really use a carbonate substrate (crushed coral or aragonite sand) and it will counter the tannins and buffer the pH. I don't know that there is any mangrove wood available (most should be protected as wetland species), but you can buy mangrove seedlings and they might be interesting to grow too. The manzanita wood looks the most like mangrove to me.

Ime, most snakes will take a short dip for an easy meal.
Thanks for the reply. I was thinking about Manzanita actually, I was looking at it today in the shop I work in. Not sure how it will hold up in water though.

Was definitly going to use crushed coral or a mix of it with gravel as the base.

The only snake that comes to mind from Asia that I know is a mammal/bird eater is a red tail green rat snake. They are beautiful snakes but I am not sure how they will like not having any solid ground. Even though they are predominently arboreal I would think they would get stressed out if they only had water below them.
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-24-2008, 04:02 AM
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You can just use Malaysian driftwood. Mine dosent mess with my PH, or put any tannins into my water at all. Best of luck!
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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-24-2008, 04:17 AM Thread Starter
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You can just use Malaysian driftwood. Mine dosent mess with my PH, or put any tannins into my water at all. Best of luck!
Hey Nick, Thanks for the recomendation.

The real hard part is to find a place that stocks it where I can pick out some choice pieces. If I wait for the next reptile show I'll probably find some but that's not till the end of February, lol.

Still curious about the Manzanita though. Doing a search on Google, seems it can be used in aquariums, still not sure what effect it will have on pH though. Being such a hard wood and very light colored (other then the bark), I would guess it wouldnt be too bad, especially with crushed coral to counteract it.
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-24-2008, 04:37 AM
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Cypress knees would be ideal and look the part and you can buy them.

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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-24-2008, 06:05 AM
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Don't archer fish top out around 12"? May need something a little bigger if you're doing a paludarium. I can see maybe a 65 gallon full of water. But since it's not going to be 100% full, and since there will be objects in the water, the water volume is limited.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-24-2008, 04:27 PM Thread Starter
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Perhaps I could do a 110 gallon but I am low on available wallspace, lol.

They can reach 12" but I think in captivity the tend to stay smaller. I would only have maybe 2 in the tank, not a whole bunch of them.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 01-25-2008, 02:05 AM
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I was thinking the same fish, for my paludarium when I built mine.
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