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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I’m new to this whole terrarium thing. Just got a chameleon from petco and scammed by this zoo med kit. So threw away everything except the cage and thermostat. Little guys doin pretty well.
Vertebrate Reptile Water Organism Terrestrial plant

so I used to have a fish tank when I was little. i Don’t like to talk about what happened but I will say this, the tank busted. We had a giant bristle nose pleco, some glow fish, and a gourami. I was a kid so I knew nothing about scapes and stuff so the typical 10 gallon, rainbow gravel, fake plants, and the hob filter. I wanna get back into the hobby but my parents are kinda paranoid. I showed my dad what a paludarium is and how it works. He didn’t want to do water changes. I explained, less water, less changes. He didn’t get it. so I drew up this sketch of what it would look like ( I know it’s terrible)
Plant Rectangle Gesture Line Font

It’s bad but basically egg crate false bottom, liner on top, bunch of eco earth, little foam lip, the scape, pump ( I still don’t know how to hide the wire but we will see) pump is hidden with wood, vinyl tube so create a waterfall, some sand in the water, couple of live plants, water scape, and that’s pretty much it. I dont want it too expensive cause I’m paying so simple paludarium. Any thoughts comments, or tips?

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Is the paludarium for the chameleon? If it is, you should research whether that is a habitat that can work for them at all. I know very little about chameleons but what little I have been told was that they are super sensitive to humidity which is why their enclosures are all screen. A paludarium with an open water source would seem to be the opposite of what they need.

If this is not for the chameleon, then check out some of the build videos by Serpa design on YouTube. He has a number on how to build this kind of thing. But bottom line is that you will either need to make your land portion enclosed by a waterproof barrier (such as siliconing glass dividers or use only aquarium safe substrates like fine gravel, aquasoil, sand, etc.

Regardless of what it's for, any body of water exposed to light strong enough to grow plants is almost certainly going to need a 50+% water change once a week. Just plan ahead to make that as easy as possible.

Good luck!

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Little words of wisdom:
Less is more. Simple is powerful.

I kept reptiles for about 7~8 Years. And I do have couple of momths of experience with veiled chameleons. (it wasn't my animal)

Chameleons don't really benefit from having a body of water.
That will help with humidity but so will misting. And chameleons will always prefer water drops than pool as drinking water.
So even if you build paludarium, you'll still have to mist the enclosure.

Its not connected; entire system doesn't come together as a whole.
If its about chameleons, then build enclosure that is focused on chameleons.
You should focus on things that are higher in priorities that will have more influence on husbandry.
For example, real plants are actually better for them.

Paludarium does little in giving the best for your animals. To me, it is just unnecessary.
It increases maintenance load and adds another thing that can go wrong.
You should really consider paludarium when you keep amphibians or semi-aquatic species that actually benefits from flowing body of fresh clean water.

If you want "Simple", then go for actually simple setup.
Especially when you just got your animal from PETCO.
(I strongly recommend finding a reputable local breeder next time you shop for reptiles.
They will be happy to help you and share what they know as long as you are polite and passionate about the animals.)

Simple setups are not wrong.
They give more control and usually more sterile.
As long as the requirements are met then animals will still be healthy and there will be less stuff that might go wrong.
Its easy to maintain and see things clearly.
Its especially better when you have animal that probably had less-than-optimal care in general pet store
Or when you are first timer for that species.

I babbled a lot..anyway my advice:

1. Paludarium should be low on your priority list.
2. Eliminate anything that can go wrong for now.
3. Spend few months with your chameleons and look for any problems.
General pet store animals have higher chance of getting sick.
(To me they don't look that bad. Just make sure they are hydrated and eating well.)
4. If everything runs smoothly, then you can consider upgrading their enclosure into larger and better ones.
By then hopefully you will have more budget to make it real good.

Have fun with them. I find chameleons fascinating.

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thank you guys, this paludarium is not for him, but I do love SerpaDesign. He’s actually what inspired me to get back into the hobby. my parents kinda don’t like when I turn it on because they don’t like his voice. But I think is voice is soothing and calm. By the way, don’t mind If I call the chameleon Camo because I decided on that name. He turns dark Camo colors at night. I do plan to upgrade his enclosure. Right now it’s a 16”x16”x30”. he’s eating a strict diet of medium crickets, I tried mealworm, but he was disgusted.

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I heard you can buy and sell on this forum. I was thinking maybe I could buy some plants from aquarium co op And just sell them To raise money for my paludarium.
most people here are pretty savvy and I doubt you can make a profit reselling plants you buy from elsewhere because why woudn't people just go buy from Aquarium Co-Op directly? People usually sell stuff that grows to excess in their own tanks and most people give very competitive/ decent prices because they're not looking to make money but rather to rehome their excess plant babies and help out fellow aquarists. You can try selling stuff locally if you can find any people who want aquarium plants but don't know how to google things, I guess?

Don't forget that when you're selling living things you also have to learn a ton about shipping/ packaging/ heating/ cooling/ making sure the thing makes it alive to the other side, issuing refunds for things that are dead on arrival, etc etc.... also you need a certain forum rank to be able to sell and buy stuff, I don't know exactly what it is but I know I don't have it yet, can't even post in the buy/sell section.
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