planning to setup temperate salamander vivarium
Ill start with what I have on hand that I can take from my used stuff.
i am going to use either a tall 38 gallon tank or a wide 38 gallon, the wide one with more floor space has a crck in it that I can cover with plexiglass and hide with plants. haven decided yet which im going to use. I have water filters 10 through 80 gallons, aquarium heaters, air pumps, fluorescent lights, plants, peatmoss, dead and live sphagnum moss, white silica play sand, potting soil, driftwood, plexiglass, and ultrasonic fog maker(common Halloween type) that I can build into something im sure.
anything big I'm missing that is a must have? like a misting machine of some sort? I was thinking a heating pad wouldnt be needed for a temperate setup? I live in zone 9 but ofc its never going to get near freezing in my house though it does get pretty cold.
I hope to get blue spotted salamanders (Ambystoma laterale), and set it up like a temperate redwood forest/rainforest habitat
I have questions
1for the top would I want it mostly sealed to keep in humidity or would I need some type of electric mister or fogger,
2would I need some type of fan ventilation to keep it from getting stagnant or would a semi-open top be fine. OR would I have a closed top with the air pump line in the tank, most likely in the water .
I plan on having it mainly terrestrial since blue spotted salamanders are mole salamanders. I read that you have to remove the substrate and clean it out, then I read if you have a planted substrate or moss carpet you can just mist the feces into the dirt and let the ecosystem recycle it, and do real substrate changes a few times a year if that. I was hoping to setup an ecosystem that self sustains for the most part so I dont have to tear it apart all the time to clean, because i want it to be heavuly planted SO
3 is that possible and if so how would I go about doing that? just add plants soil and moss and give it time to build a nitrogen cycle similar to an aquarium?
I had a brilliant thought that i am hoping will work. putting bonsai redwoods in the tank. If I buried the pot of a coastal redwood bonsai , since my setup is going to be pretty similar to its home would it be ok or would it rot or something?
5 my summers get pretty hot. summer temps indoors it stays around80 but on rare occasion can jump to high 80s -90f if someone forgets to turn on the ac
would this be a problem? would I need to get a small ac to keep in the room the terrarium is in?
sorry for so many questions but im sure ill think of more
thats all for now
any info helps thanks!
(posted this in the herp forum aswell but it seems pretty dead in there)