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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
My long term goal was to make a nice planted tank for my newt, Pachytriton labiatus. His water stays in the 60's.
So Since i do not have jobs that pay a lot of monies, i get by with items from other tanks or donated. I am not please 100% with what i have thus far, but it is what i have. I need to go hunting for more large rocks so he has a better area where he can perch out of water when he wants.
Anyways, The plan is to grow a moss wall arround the partition surronding the filter(i had to partition it off, newt wanted to live in it, he likes dark crevices). I was given some random "betta bulbs" that turned it to some lilly pad type things. They are making little plantlets now.

so here is the plant list:
-random "betta bulb" lillypad type plant
-java moss
-fissidens
-algae balls
-string(y) moss
-duckweed infestation
-pellia
-hornwort
-a few sprigs of pennywort(i dont think i got a pic of them in the tank)
(used to have some riccia growing nice, snails tore it up, a few peices in the duckweed)

Initial plan with rock:


Day 1:



Month 1:
Not very pretty head on :/

angle view


he likes to climb arround in the plants



Any idea how to improve this one up, besides filling in the back area with tall plant? I am going to put another of those little pad plants back there.
Good suggestions for plants to improve that will do well in a tank in the 60's?
Mr. newt likes to hide and climb.

More than plant layout, i need a good rock layout. Lare rocks mostly, ones for newt to hide in and arround, and to make a perch like in the week1 pics so he can go out of water if he needs.

oh, axolotl says hi.

They live with some shrimps and do not eat them.

thanks,
AxolotlFarmer -the Planted Salamander.
 

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Pretty wild stuff - tetrapods. Unique tank - just needs a bit of balancing, IMO. I'd move the climbing structure on the left somewhat to the left/center - away from being jammed in the corner. Then, I'd plant that corner with whatever suits your fancy, and tie some of that loose moss to the stones at the base of the climbing structure.

Nice that they don't eat the shrimp.
 

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I like it! He must love swimming in there- nice home for him :)

It would look cool if you make a background with expanding foam (great stuff), but since the tank is already running, a piece of cardboard behind the tank to hide the X-brace supporting your shelf would look nice. We would be able to see your animals better :)

For a perch, you could use "eggcrate", you can also use rocks, but I would use wood! It would be a nice area for him to rest on!
If you use rocks, hope you silicone them so there is no chance that it will collapse or tip over and crush your guy.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Yeah the duckweed was not really wanted. I take out most of it every once in a while but that stuff is invasive.

Yes, i planned replacing it with frogbit one day.

I want to move the rocks arround a a bit. I actually need more. reason they are jammed together is that mr. newt likes small darks spaces. Most aquatic salamanders like small crevices between rocks and caves.

Yoko, Thanks for the great ideas. Glad you like it a bit. I dont want it choked like a jungle like some people scape their fish tanks, The newt does like to move arround.

Just rember guys, this is a low budget tank, and I will never use ferts in a tank with my salamanders.
 

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Pretty wild stuff - tetrapods. Unique tank - just needs a bit of balancing, IMO. I'd move the climbing structure on the left somewhat to the left/center - away from being jammed in the corner. Then, I'd plant that corner with whatever suits your fancy, and tie some of that loose moss to the stones at the base of the climbing structure.

Nice that they don't eat the shrimp.
i like the sound of that
definetly go with the frogbit because that duckweed is like whoa

if you put a black or white background on the tank it'll probably make it look like a whole new tank

nice that they don't eat the shrimp but i still wouldn't risk it, that's just me

edit: if you want more rocks and don't really care what kind, hit up lake michigan
 

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Yes, i planned replacing it with frogbit one day.
Since You don't like the duckweed--I would suggest that you eliminate completely and certainly before adding frogbit---otherwise you'll never get rid of it.

The best, easist method that I have found to get rid of it is: Comet Goldfish. They will get every last spec. But they are plant eaters and will damage any other plants. I just added 3 lg ones to my 55g to get rid of the duckweed before I rescape it. But its mainly an anubias tank--so the plants can suffer the abuse from the Comets and the Comets should go for the easy-pickin's duckweed first anyway.

HTH
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Where is good place in the Lake to get rocks? Where I live by there are break walls and I'd probally drown trying to get out some rocks.

I scoop out duckweed quite freequently. As soon as I get another shade plant( i will keep it in a duckweed free tank, i have a few) until i get everything sorted out. Seriously, I cleared some out of a shrimp tank recently. All it takes is one little peice of that plant and it is everywhere.

Guitardude, I think a nice black background would look nice. I think I will work on that soon. As for the shrimp, I dont keep any *special* ones iin there, just some outcast reds. I have had them breed in both the axolotl tank and hte newt tank, both cherries and ghost shrimps at differnt points. I have seen axolotl try to catch shrimps when i first introduce them, butshrimp swim too fast for lazy axolotl. After they realize they cant catch them they give up. I dont really reccomend keeping shrimps with the salamanders because it is not ideal temperature and whatnot for them.
 

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^^^ I know, freakin unreal---

AxolotlFarmer, check out Target or Walmart school supply aisle, they have black and variety of color poster board and it costs under 1 dollar :) :thumbsup:

How long is your newt, by the way?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
It is a leutistic axolotl. Very pretty, very lazy. If you used to fish swimming arround all day, you probably will get bored with axolotl. They just sit there and hide. Good monster to have tho. If one was to get an aquatic salamander, I would suggest axolotl. axolotl is to salamander what dog is to wolf. Axolotl in wild is extremely endangered, but pet axolotl never comes from wild, they have been raised in captivity for laboratory study for way over 100 years. They are so differnt from their wild ancestors, and now have many varieties. There simiply are millions of axolotls living that have never been taken from the wild, they breed very easily, also.

Newt isnt that long, longer than most newt species. Not nearly as long as axolotl. Possibly about 6 or 7 inches?A minimum for an individual is 5 gal. but mine is in a 10. When I get more room and save more money I would probablly but in a 20 long. I have a thing with 20 longs. Its my favourite tank size to work with.This species, Pachytriton labiatus, is agressive for a newt, it is difficult to keep they with a friends, unless the tank is huge with many hiding spots, but even that is risky. This animal was a PetChain resuce my boyfreind made. I am not all about rescue at the chain because they will just order more to sold and die. It was so tiny, kept in a tropical with fishes. Poor dear had an infection. I do not recommend getting a Pachytriton labiatus, for the fact that they are mass harvested from China, and most people would want to mix them with other of the same newts, which is disaster. I don't know of many people breeding them, but there are some. They are sold as "paddle tailed newt" and often mistaken as a fire belly. Differnece betweer these and a fire belly (besides agresssion) is the fact these have smooth skin and fire belly newts are more worty.
 

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AxolotlFarmer, thank you for the informative post, very interesting creatures...

Did you get around to picking up the posterboard for the background? :biggrin:
 

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Here is a cool site for info and purchase of axolotl's
http://www.ambystoma.org/AGSC/
Just so Ya know:

From the website's front page at the Bottom--Bold Added:

Read before you register...
You must be affiliated with an IACUC-sanctioned university or other scientific program to receive animals. No animals will be sold for informal research or personal interest requests.

AGSC DOES NOT SELL PETS
I'm not sure how they regulate that--May just be nothing more than words in print. :proud:

HTH
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I havent gotten posterboard yet. I havnt spent much time fixing the newt's home, I been redoing the axolotl 55 gallon.

as for the paddle tailed newt, he has a glass top with tape arround the back so he cannot escape. Paddle tailed newts are aquatic, and rarely leae the water for land, granted i still have some rock that stas out of the water just incase he needs too. I have had friends who had some newt escape artists, so it pays to make sure any escape areas are eliminated. As for axolotl, they are totally aquatic and would only escape if the tank tipped over and spilled.

as for axolotls, there are many people on caudata.org that sell them. I personally know several axolotl breeders also. Some science/biological supply places also sell them. As for the ambystoma genetic stock/axolotl colony, yes you have to be in a scientific institution or an educator to purchase from them. They have a very sophistaced form of what sort of axolotl, especially in reguard to mutations that are used in the laboratory study.
 
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