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Old 02-09-2011, 05:11 PM
Ed Ed is offline
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Default Re: Clay Substrate How-To

Sorry I wasn't clear, I was tired when I typed it.

Originally Posted by flapjax3000 View Post
Does this mean that invertebrates pass on nutrients that have been broken down within their own system or it is in their system not yet digested while they are eaten by the frog?
Actually yes to both depending on the species in question.. for example isopods and snails consume calcium containing substrates due to the increased calcium requirements for deposition into thier respective cuticle or shell while annelids (as an example) contain undigested calcium particulates in thier digestive tract. If you look in the bibliography for the Nutritional chapter in Mader's Reptile Medicine and Surgery, there are some great references (One is a thesis I haven't been able to get ahold of yet) as well as some minor discussion in the text.

Originally Posted by flapjax3000 View Post
Sorry I am little confused. Are you saying the nutrient base will be used up and will have to be replaced, or the addition of nutrients will sustain it over time except for localized areas? I thought microfauna helps to redistribute and free up nutrients.
What I am saying that due to the lack of diversity in the microfauna in our enclosures, we may not see the same level of nutrient distribution or movement as is seen in the wild. This may mean that localized spots in the enclosure end up being nutrient deficient compared to other sections of the enclosure. This is probably going to take a long time to occur as clay based substrates are pretty robust.. so a person may want to take down a tank due to aesthetics as opposed to it actually becoming nutrient poor. Even if you do start to see signs of localized deficiency of nutrients top dressing the site should alleviate the issue.

Does that help?

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