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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 07-31-2020, 02:28 PM
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Default new Nano terrarium

Hi all

today I just received my first terrarium .. an exo terra nano tall!! Quite excited
The tank seems well manufactured. So far for me the only negative thing of this tank is the black plastic vents and door support. With such small tank the black plastic obstructs the view of the inside quite a bit. At least for this tank they could use transparent plastic / Perspex so the visual impact of the vents will be less

I have experience with aquariums but about terrarium/vivarium I'm new.

I would like to set up the nano first as terrarium with nano orchids and other small plants and then introduce a preying mantis or a Brookesia micra ( need to check if is available/can have it in Australia)

I saw a couple of tank here that are similar to what I'd like to do but still have fundamental doubts about what to use to set up this tank.

1) I saw some thanks is "dry" whit only substrate an some other have water

I wouldn't mind to have a corner of the tank with some visible water .. even
if it will be a small corner so I can have some water plant. If i go with
water is a recirculating water pump a mast have? If I don;t install a pump
will I incur in molds and putrefaction? do to the size of the tank find a
commercial one may be challenging so I was thinking to use a car
windscreen pump ..

2) Full synthetic vs combo vs all natural ( not related to engine oil )

few year ago ( probably more than 15 ) when I was looking to set up a
terrarium i remember panel made with coconut fibers were used as
substrate or for the vertical wall. Now in my current research I found out
about EPIWEB and Hydrolon. so mu question i should I use all natural
substrate including drift wood/ brunches /bark/leaf litter or go fully synthetic
using expanding foam and Hydrolon ? I would like to understand the pros
and cons of the two solutions

3) Heater required?

I bought a 5 watt heater pad with regulator. i was thinking to put it under
the bottom to warm up the substrate or water and as consequence the tank(
I'm in Melbourne and winter here is mild). This should help to increase the
humidity in the tack as well. Good or bad?

4) Light

Planning to use a UEETEK 11W LED lamp white light. I saw the are specific
"grow" LED lights but they are red and blue. Is it necessary to install one
of those grow light for the initial setup of the tank (~6 months)

5) Air movement

Planning to install a 4cm PC fan with a speed controller. Is it necessary or I
can avoid due to the exo terra front vents?

6) Fertilizer

I'll use demineralized water for the mist. Should I add in the water every
some time any fertilizer in particular if I go full synthetic? or do I need to
use hard fertilizer capsule when I plant?

.. I'd like to avoid to start in the wrong way ..

Thanks in advance for your help

Ditomagico
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Old 07-31-2020, 04:39 PM
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Default Re: new Nano terrarium

Quote:
Originally Posted by ditomagico View Post
Hi all

today I just received my first terrarium .. an exo terra nano tall!! Quite excited
The tank seems well manufactured. So far for me the only negative thing of this tank is the black plastic vents and door support. With such small tank the black plastic obstructs the view of the inside quite a bit. At least for this tank they could use transparent plastic / Perspex so the visual impact of the vents will be less

I have experience with aquariums but about terrarium/vivarium I'm new.

I would like to set up the nano first as terrarium with nano orchids and other small plants and then introduce a preying mantis or a Brookesia micra ( need to check if is available/can have it in Australia)

I saw a couple of tank here that are similar to what I'd like to do but still have fundamental doubts about what to use to set up this tank.

1) I saw some thanks is "dry" whit only substrate an some other have water

I wouldn't mind to have a corner of the tank with some visible water .. even
if it will be a small corner so I can have some water plant. If i go with
water is a recirculating water pump a mast have? If I don;t install a pump
will I incur in molds and putrefaction? do to the size of the tank find a
commercial one may be challenging so I was thinking to use a car
windscreen pump ..

2) Full synthetic vs combo vs all natural ( not related to engine oil )

few year ago ( probably more than 15 ) when I was looking to set up a
terrarium i remember panel made with coconut fibers were used as
substrate or for the vertical wall. Now in my current research I found out
about EPIWEB and Hydrolon. so mu question i should I use all natural
substrate including drift wood/ brunches /bark/leaf litter or go fully synthetic
using expanding foam and Hydrolon ? I would like to understand the pros
and cons of the two solutions

3) Heater required?

I bought a 5 watt heater pad with regulator. i was thinking to put it under
the bottom to warm up the substrate or water and as consequence the tank(
I'm in Melbourne and winter here is mild). This should help to increase the
humidity in the tack as well. Good or bad?

4) Light

Planning to use a UEETEK 11W LED lamp white light. I saw the are specific
"grow" LED lights but they are red and blue. Is it necessary to install one
of those grow light for the initial setup of the tank (~6 months)

5) Air movement

Planning to install a 4cm PC fan with a speed controller. Is it necessary or I
can avoid due to the exo terra front vents?

6) Fertilizer

I'll use demineralized water for the mist. Should I add in the water every
some time any fertilizer in particular if I go full synthetic? or do I need to
use hard fertilizer capsule when I plant?

.. I'd like to avoid to start in the wrong way ..

Thanks in advance for your help

Ditomagico
1) With a footprint that is only 8"x8" its going to be hard to do a water feature. If you are bound and determined I would skip the pump and instead just be prepared to siphon and refill the water every week to few weeks (depending on how long it takes to start smelling horrible).

2) How you go about building a background or substrate will depend a lot on what you are planning to go in there. If you are planning to do a water feature I would not using something that biodegrades as substrate. Aquarium aquasoil is an easy option with such a small footprint. Expanding foam is popular as a background because it allows for a lot of varied texture without biodegrading as well. Personally the next viviarium I make will have aquarium substrate and a background made of cork bark siliconed to glass with long fiber sphagnum moss stuffed into cracks. This is called a cracked cork mosaic.

3) The only reason to have a heater is if the animals going in (or plants) need it. Most of us here are concerned with dart frogs and regular room temperature is pretty good for them.

4) You definitely do not need a blue/red led. Those things are holdovers from when LEDs were brand new and not very efficient. Now they exist mostly because people expect them to exist. Anyway any 5000-7000k led bulb will work fine with most people targeting around 6000k.

5) Whether you need or want a fan depends entirely on what humidity you are targeting and how you are achieving it. I don't know what a mantis needs to live but have seen folks 'free ranging' the adults on desks so I am assuming they don't need much in the way of special humidity. That leaves the plants and what they need. Again no idea what you are trying to target.

6) This depends on what the plants require. Most folks here have frogs pooping in their tanks and springtails/isopods to break down leaf litter into fertilizer. I would think at a minimum you would want springtails in your tank, beyond what they can produce I don't know what fertilizer you might need, you will want to look up the individual plants to figure it out.
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Old 08-02-2020, 06:21 AM
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Default Re: new Nano terrarium

Hi minorhero
Thanks for the reply. Much appreciated. In your opinion what's the benefit advantage of using Cork bark instead that the natural fire like coconut?

Also any suggestion about nano orchids species and other nano plants I could use for my nano ?

Australia is quite strict on overseas fauna and flora imports so hopefully I won't have trouble to source the species.. Otherwise I may need to go down the path of planting only Australian native from the North tropical regions..
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Old 08-02-2020, 01:03 PM
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Default Re: new Nano terrarium

Quote:
Originally Posted by ditomagico View Post
Hi minorhero
Thanks for the reply. Much appreciated. In your opinion what's the benefit advantage of using Cork bark instead that the natural fire like coconut?

Also any suggestion about nano orchids species and other nano plants I could use for my nano ?

Australia is quite strict on overseas fauna and flora imports so hopefully I won't have trouble to source the species.. Otherwise I may need to go down the path of planting only Australian native from the North tropical regions..
Cork has 2 advantages, one is aesthetics. Cork is not perfectly flat so it will always look bumpy and textured breaking up the flat plane of glass. The second reason is that it decomposes very very slowly. coconut fiber sheets will be flat and will decompose a little quicker, in that they will start to fall apart after a couple of years (by report, I haven't used them that long personally). They are easier to work with of course but the aesthetics alone decides me against them. Just my 2 cents, your mileage will vary of course.

For plants... no idea. I am not much for plant names. Personally I decide on plants based entirely on what is available to me. For me that means either buying at local plant nurseries, or going to terrarium supply companies online/ebay and buying from them. If you are not sure of your supply I would definitely go that route anyway.
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Old 08-02-2020, 03:11 PM
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Default Re: new Nano terrarium

Quote:
Originally Posted by ditomagico View Post
Also any suggestion about nano orchids species and other nano plants I could use for my nano ?
Searching here will give you the most comprehensive list of options by far. I mean, hundreds of possibilities.

Try search terms like 'tiny orchids': https://www.dendroboard.com/forum/gt...=tiny%20orchid

'tiny vine': https://www.dendroboard.com/forum/gt...?q=tiny%20vine

flowering plants in general: https://www.dendroboard.com/forum/pl...-blooming.html

Vendors such as Glass Box Tropicals also have good enough descriptions of their plants that you can figure out the size and growth habit, then cut and paste the species name into the search bar here to find out what folks have said about it, good or bad.
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Old 08-03-2020, 09:36 PM
Kmc Kmc is offline
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Default Re: new Nano terrarium

ditomagico,

You are so enthusiastic and, I dont want to be a grey cloud, especially since you mentioned brookesia micra in passing. As an acquisition potental for your Nano.

It makes me wonder if specimens were indeed available, would the sellers tell you that your Nano was suitable for subject environs? That actually would be my concern. Not your zeal and enchantment with the species.

I will state that my experience is not with Brookesia sp but Riepeleon I dont go out on much of a limb here, acknowledging principalic parallels in husbandry. I provided vivaria and acclimation advice to ship shocked confiscated subjects at the request of the Ca Academy of Sciences. The rep who came to me had a zoology degree but no idea how to keep them alive.

The container known as the Exo Nano, is not suitable for brookesia.

Air exchange, microclimate zones, basking and thermoregulatory nuance options are not possible in such a space.

However it is possible for subjects to survive in such a container longer than 30 Days, making the "Breeder" un accountable.

Last edited by Kmc; 08-03-2020 at 10:05 PM.
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Old 08-05-2020, 02:05 PM
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Default Re: new Nano terrarium

Hi Kmc

thanks for your reply . I really appreciate your reply and I I said I join this forum to learn and to receive info from people more expert then me on this matter
I'll not consider that species then.

Do you have any suggestion about any other species like gecko or small lizard that may suit my terrarium?
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Old 08-05-2020, 04:42 PM
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Default Re: new Nano terrarium

Im afraid there is no vertebrate I would suggest in that space as a permanent environment.

there are some small spiders I would consider.
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Old 08-05-2020, 04:48 PM
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Default Re: new Nano terrarium

I trust Kmc's judgement, though many knowledgeable people keep the smaller Sphaerodactylus in vivs that size. I have never kept them, though.

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Old 08-10-2020, 10:19 AM
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Default Re: new Nano terrarium

Thanks Socratis ,

will look for their availability here in Australia.
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