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Arklier 04-17-2005 05:57 AM

Beginner Frog FAQ!
Yes, it is I, Arklier... I wrote a huge spammy FAQ in the Food section, and here I am doing it again! Guess I'm just a glutton for punishment, eh? I'm not going to mention anything about food in this FAQ, because as I said, there's an extensive FAQ I wrote in the Food section further down the main page. Refer to it if you have food questions, cause I'm not going to reinvent the wheel. Now, onward!


1.) General questions.
2.) Simple vivarium construction.
3.) What frog should I get?
4.) Uh-oh... I've already got the frog, now what?

1.) General questions

This is a collection of questions that we see a lot on Dendroboard, they're up front to provide some quick answers to those that might ask.

a.) What do the numbers mean? - The numbers in peoples' signatures and other places refer to the number and sex of the animals being referred to. For instance, I have in my signature: 1.2.0 D. azureus. The first number is the number of males. I have one male azureus, as you can see, so it's a 1. The next number is the number of females. I have two females, so it's a 2. The last number is for unsexed adults or juviniles. Some frogs it's really hard to tell what sex they are, so even if they're adults people will put them in the third catigory. I don't have any unsexed azureus, so it's a 0. If I had two males, three females, and one unsexed, it would read 2.3.1.

b.) Can I keep darts in the same tank with other species like anoles or other frogs? - No, no, no, and last of all, NO! While it is possible to do this, it's not for beginners, and if you have to ask this question, you're obviously a beginner. The reason is that in most cases the different animals may not have the same requirements. In the case of anoles, they require UV lighting, a drier environment, and different food than darts. You would need a very large enclosure to be able to adequately provide for both species. You also run into other problems, with things like one animal stressing out another, and if there's a large size difference, one animal possibly ending up as lunch for the other. Best not to do it.

c.) OK, can I keep two different species or morphs of darts together? - Again, the answer is no, with reservations. Many darts are ready breeders under normal vivarium conditions, and their philosophy is, "If you can't be with the one you love, love the one you're with." They're so closely related, and it is quite possible for them to interbreed, producing hybrids, even if there's a mate of their own kind in the same tank. There are pictures of leucomelas x azureus, auratus x tinctorius, and God knows what other Frankenfrogs out there. Producing hybrids is frowned upon by the majority of the hobby. If you want to throw out every batch of eggs, or keep a group of only males, it's fine. But it's very difficult to tell with froglets what sex they are, and most people don't want to throw out good eggs.

2.) Simple vivarium construction.

The most important thing to remember about vivarium construcion is choosing the materials. Mainly the tank itself, and the plants and features you plan on putting into it.

a.) The tank: If you're a beginner, it's best to start with a smaller aquarium. A rectangular aquarium 10 to 29 gallons is ideal for most dart species. Most medium to large rectangular tanks come in four styles: standard, long, brooder, and tall. There are also specialized shapes like cube, hexagon, corner, and others. Get a glass aquarium if you can. Acrylic can be used, but it scratches easier and can warp. Try not to get a tank that's too narrow front to back. If you're going to be placing plants inside, they'll need room.

The style of tank you want will depend on which kind of dart you're going to be keeping in it. The general rule of thumb is, the bigger the frog, the more time they spend on the ground, the smaller the frog, the more time they will spend climbing. Another rule of thumb is 5 gallons of space per frog, so a 20 gallon tank could (theoretically) hold 4 darts. Of course, if you have a 20 gallon tall tank, and try to fit four P. terribilis in there, it's going to be cramped, because they're big darts and tend to stay on the ground most of the time.

Another option is the Exo-Terra Advanced Reptile Habitat cubes that have shown up recently, but they are still in the 'testing phase' and have some (surmountable) drawbacks for dart vivariums, so I'll add more once they become more widespread.

b.) The first thing you'll have to think about when creating your tank is the background. It's not necessary to have one, but it makes the tank look nicer and gives you a place to mount plants. Here are the most popular types in a list of easiest to hardest. Note that there's nothing to stop you from using multiple methods. I've used panels and expanding foam in the same tank. It's all a matter of getting the look you want.

b1.) Easy: The simplest background is a piece of plastic sheet taped onto the back of the tank on the outside. You can get them in several different styles at fish stores for about $0.25 per foot.

Pros: Cheap, at least you aren't staring at the wall behind the tank.
Cons: Doesn't look as nice as the other methods, you can't grow plants on it.

b2.) Moderate: The next hardest is mounting cork bark panels, tree fern panels, or cocos panels on the back inside the tank. Note that cocos panels are not the same thing as coco fiber or coco fiber mats that I'll talk about later. They're made of finely ground coconut shells mixed with a rubbery substance. I'm lumping these all together because they're all put on the same way: with silicone. GE Silicone II 100% Silicone for Windows & Door is the most common brand used here on Dendroboard. It comes in several different colors (most everyone uses either black or brown), and is readily available at most hardware stores.

Turn the tank over on its back, and squeeze a liberal amount of the silicone on the back of the tank, and I mean a LIBERAL amount. You almost can't use enough. Remember, that the silicone will be supporting the weight of the background, which will not only most likely be saturated with water, but also have plants on it. Once you're done, smoosh the panels in, but leave a gap at the bottom that's about how tall your substrate is going to be. No sense wasting money on panel if it's going to be buried in the dirt. Then let the tank sit for 24 hours, or until you can no longer smell the silicone, whichever is longer. Then it's safe to stand the tank up and move onto the next step.

The downside is that this isn't a cheap method, it's probably the most expensive simply because the material is not cheap. Natural cork tiles are usually $10 each and only cover 12" x 12", for instance. Cocos panels are around 24" x 12" and cost around $11 each from, but you have to buy a three pack. Singly they're more expensive. Tree fern panels are a bit cheaper, since they're often used for growing orchids, but they have a different problem: they're a non renewable resource from an endangered Australian plant.

Pros: Looks great, plants will grow on them, silicone easily available.
Cons: The most expensive method, panels can't usually be found locally, tree fern is a non-renewable resource.

b3.) More challenging: The expandable foam, silicone, and coco fiber method. Most people use DOW Great Stuff brand expanding foam, but some people say you should use other brands due to fire retardants in it. That's an argument I'll leave for other threads. An advantage of using this method is that you can sink your wood right into the background without fear of it shifting or falling out.

The first step is deciding if you want to hide the foam on the sides, and covering them with a thin layer of black silicone and a putty knife, but this is up to you. Next, place the wood and figure out where you want it, then take the wood out and lay down your first layer of foam. It's important to do this in small areas at a time, as if built up too high, the foam will collapse and you'll end up with it where you don't want it. You can speed up the process by laying the tank on its back before you start. Once you have the first layer down and it's dry, you can place your wood and build sucessive layers over it. The foam usually cannot be sculped in wet form, as it has the consistancy of warm chewing gum. You can, however, sculpt it with a knife after it is dry. An extremely important thing to remember is DO NOT PUT IT IN AN AREA WHERE IT CANNOT EXPAND! It can crack tanks if not allowed space to puff out.

After you have it down, the last step is to cover it with silicone and powder it with coco fiber. Again, we use GE Silicone II, but I prefer to use the brown color for this step. Makes it less obvious if you miss a spot. Take a brick of reptile coco bedding (sold under brand names like Bed-A-Beast, Forest Floor, and others) and expand it by dumping it in a bucket of hot water. Then spread it out on cookie sheets and either bake it on low heat in an oven, or put it out in the sun to dry. After it has dried, carve out the look you want in the foam and start laying down your silicone. Pause frequently to powder it with the dried coco fiber, as the silicone will develop a skin within a few minutes and the fiber won't adhere as well.

This is the second cheapest method, Great Stuff and the silicone can be found at any hardware store, and coco bricks are available at most pet stores. Some plants will grow on it, those that won't can be mounted on the wood or set in plastic baskets dug out of the foam once it has dried.

Pros: Cheaper than panels, looks good, some plants will grow on it and others can be put in baskets, easier placement of wood.
Cons: Time consuming, possibility of cracking the tank, more labor intensive than the others.

c.) Drainage: There's two main types of drainage used by dart froggers, the egg crate method, and the LECA/gravel method. For both of these, you can use fiberglass (NOT ALUMINUM) screen, or my new favorite, coco fiber mats meant for lining wire flower baskets. Something that's permiable to water, but will keep the dirt out of your bottom layer. If you want a pump to run a waterfall or drip wall, make sure to leave an area that's easy to get to in case the pump should fail. I used a 6" diameter pipe cut into quarters with holes drilled near the water level with success using both methods.

c1.) The egg crate method: Egg crate is not the same stuff you get your eggs packaged in at the grocery store. It's a plastic screen used for lighting in office buildings and other large areas where panel fluorescents are used. You can buy it at major hardware stores for around $10 - $15 per sheet, usually 24" x 48", which is more than enough to do several tanks depending on size. You'll also need PVC parts, either couplers, risers, or cut pieces of PVC pipe. I usually use pieces that are 1" - 2" tall.

Cut a piece of egg crate to fit your tank (leaving a hole if you want a pond area), then use our good friend GE Silicone II to attach the PVC parts to the side of the egg crate that's going to be the bottom. Make sure you have enough, otherwise the bottom of the egg crate will start to sag. For small, short tanks, one on each corner and one in the middle is sufficient, but for longer tanks you'll need to place several along the length of the tank. Put the assembly in the bottom of the tank, and you're done.

Pros: Fairly cheap, light, good for square areas.
Cons: Somewhat unsightly, not good for irregular areas.

c2.) The LECA/gravel method: LECA stands for Light Expanded Clay Aggregate, and is used extensively in hydroponics. It's basically a form of clay mixture that's been fired and expanded in a kiln, forming reddish brown balls with a gray center about 1/2" to 1.5" in diameter, depending on purpose. It lasts a long time, is light, and is easy to fit into irregular areas, but doesn't look totally natural. Brand names are Hydroton (cheapest in my experience) and Terra-Lite. Gravel is the same stuff used in the bottom of aquariums, and is available just about everywhere. You can get it in any color of the rainbow, as well as natural colors. It shares most of the same advantages as LECA, with the exception that it's much heavier. You'll need to rinse both of them well before you use them for the first time, LECA especially, since it is very dusty. LECA also floats until it is totally saturated.

Pros: LECA - Light, reusable, good for irregular areas. Gravel: Good for irregular areas, reusable, many styles and colors, readily available.
Cons: LECA - Not readily available except local hydroponics shops or online, not as natural looking as naturalistic gravel. Gravel: Very heavy.

d.) This section is for other stuff that people ask, such as water features, tank temperature, substrates, and other things.

d1.) Water features: A water feature is fairly easy to execute, just a bit difficult in the planning if you're like me and have no vision for 3D sculpture. While you can buy pre-fabricated waterfalls from companies like T-Rex or Zoo-Med, it's usually best to make your own. What you'll need is a fountain pump, some tubing, and some imagination. Fountain pumps can be found fairly cheap at Harbor Freight and other hardware stores. Make a pond area by having a section of the substrate below the water line. Some people make drip walls just by running tubing up through the background.

d2.) Other stuff: It's important to keep the right humidity in a dart tank, and most people acheive this by either limiting the ventilation, or spraying water into the tank via hand sprayer or misting system. There's lots of opinions on misting systems, so I won't go into them much. Suffice to say that the system is usually attached to a reservoir such as a 5 gallon bucket, with a submerged high pressure pump and tubing that goes to sprayers in the tank. Make sure to place the tank in an area where it will not get direct sunlight. Sunlight will rapidly turn a vivarium into a sauna, and while this won't bother the frogs if kept to a minimum, it could stress them out. Normal tank temperatures should be in the high 70s to low 80s Farenheit.

d3.) Plants: Plants are deserving of a FAQ all their own, so I'm just going to touch on the basic types here until I (or someone else) gets a chance to write one. There are many plants that are used in the vivarium, the most popular probably being small bromeliads, or broms for short. Broms are epiphyte plants from the South American rainforests, and darts have been documenting using them in the wild, just as they do in captivity. They are favorite sleeping and breeding places for all kinds of darts. Other types of plants include Ficus pumilia, or creeping fig, pothos, orchids, ferns, pitcher plants of the genus Nepenthes, and tropical houseplants of all types.

d4.) Substrate: Substrate is what you put down on the bottom over the layer of drainage material. Basically, dirt for plants to grow in. Many people have their own favorite recipe. What you put in is dependant on what kind of plants you want. Broms planted on the ground like a well drained mix, so use lots of rough material such as cypress mulch, orchid bark, or tree fern fiber. If your plants like it a bit wetter, add spaghnum moss or lots of coco fiber to your mix.

3.) What frog should I get?

The question of "What frog should I get?" is a fairly common one on Dendroboard, and fortunately, there's a good answer for it, if you ask the right question. The right question is, "What kind of frog do I want?". Some darts are better kept in pairs, some do well in groups. Do you want just a single pair of frogs, or do you want a big bunch of them? Some of them like to hide a lot. Do you want a frog you'll see out all the time, or do you mind not seeing them for days on end? Do you have your eye on a species already?

For the beginner, it's reccomended to buy captive bred darts from an established and reputable breeder, someone who will be there to answer your questions and stand behind their animals. I wouldn't recomend buying farm raised or wild caught darts to beginners.

If you're ordering them sent through the mail, once you have your frog (or if you're buying them in person), there's some things you should look for. A healthy dart has solid black eyes, clear, moist skin, a proportionate body, has no trouble walking or hopping, and sits with the front of the body held off the ground (note that D. azureus likes to hunch over a bit when sitting, but can still move normally).

Look at the frog's posture. Does it sit up and look alert, or does it sit flat on the ground with the front legs not able to hold it up? Is its skin moist, or does it look dry and shriveled? Does the frog react when you come near or open the tank? Once the frog is acclimated to its surroundings (this could take several days), offer it some food. Does it look interested in the food, or does the frog ignore it? Does it catch the food with it's tongue, or does the tongue look too short? Are there any sores or oddly colored areas on the frog? Does any part of the frog look swollen? If so, talk to the person you got the frog from and see what they want you to do about it.

I'll list the various beginner species, and the pros and cons of each. Remember though, these are individual animals we're talking about, and just because I say a certain species is bold or shy, doesn't mean that the frog you might get will be the same. To avoid favoratism, I'll just list them in alphabetical order. D. = Dendrobates, P. = Phyllobates.

a.) D. auratus - Auratus are the first dart frog that was available in the hobby, thus they've been around longest, and are usually the cheapest. They are readily available in green and black, and blue and black. Overall one of the shyer darts, and the blues are supposedly shyer than the greens. This frog can be kept in groups, and grows to be about 1" from nose to vent.

b.) D. azureus - There's some debate on if this is actually the same as D. tinctorius, but early genetic studies point that it is. This is a blue frog, having a sky blue stomach, and a cobalt blue back with black spots. Very bold in my experience. They're one of the moderately expensive darts, just due to demand. They grow to be about 1.5", and should be kept in pairs of one male and one female, or two males and one female. The females fight over the males, and have even been known to kill one another. If you have two females that are raised together without a male, they might get along OK.

c.) D. leucomelas - This is also a fairly cheap species, being a little bit more expensive than D. auratus on average. Leucs are usually plump and have yellow or orange with black stripes and/or spots. They have a trilling, birdlike call that sounds like a cross between a cricket and a canary. Another bold dart that's easily seen and out all day. They can also be kept in groups, and grow to be about 1.25".

d.) D. tinctorius - This is one of the most widespread and various darts, and many different morphs are known. It would be impossible to catalog them all here, but there are morph guides online. Suffice to say that this frog is closely related to D. azureus (at least) and shares the same size and social habits of boldness and femicide. They grow to be about 1.5" (for the larger morphs) and should be kept in pairs or trios of two males and one female.

e.) P. terribilis - This is the largest of the dart frogs, and one of the boldest. They really have no need to fear, because this is one of THE dart frogs, the ones that natives used to tip their darts. The most poisonous amphibian in nature. They are commonly available in mint green, and less often in orange, yellow, or golden. They grow to about 2" (large enough to eat crickets past pinhead size), and do well in groups.

4.) Uh-oh... I've already got the frog, now what?

As much as we frown on it, I don't think any of us has resisted the urge to buy an animal of some type on impulse. Hey, that's how I got into the dart hobby with my first azureus. If you have nothing available at the moment you bring them home, then set up temporary housing with a plastic storage box. The shoebox size is great. Critter keepers are another option. Just use paper towels as the substrate, and wet them down a little with treated water. Careful not to get the water too deep, these frogs CAN drown. Don't worry about ventiilation, darts don't need much. Add some leaves from a chemical free area or a washed plant cutting for them to hide under. They'll be OK for awhile until you can set up something more permanent. Get some fruit flies or pinheads by ordering them online, or picking them up at the local pet store. Petco and Petsmart both sell fruit flies.

Will add more when I think of it.

04-18-2005 02:40 AM

Great job! i think this should help alot of new comers, I vote sticky.

Ryan 04-18-2005 04:11 AM


Ryan 04-18-2005 04:11 AM

BTW Great post! Nicely put together!

elmoisfive 04-18-2005 04:13 AM


Originally Posted by GodJockey
Great job! i think this should help alot of new comers, I vote sticky.

I second the recommendation. Good job of covering a wide range of topics.


04-29-2005 12:57 AM

Thanks for the great info. It would be helpful if you could expand on the drainage section a little bit. It seems as though you covered the materials quite well, but i cannot get a picture of how you are installing the drainage materials. For c2, do you just put in the hydroponics balls on the bottom and then gravel and then dirt of your choice on top? If so, how many inches of hydroponics balls, etc? For c1, you glue pieces of tubing onto some type of screen and then sit that in the bottom with dirt on top? Any clarification or links to pictures would be helpful. Thanks so much! I'd also be interested in pictures of the foam background creation. That also is hard to grasp the first read through. Thanks!!

04-29-2005 01:02 AM

Also.. aren't lighting/heating/humidifying important for a basic set up? I know i have no clue what the requirements are for heating and light... Some of us are CLUELESS! Some quick suggestions for basic light bulbs etc would rock. Thanks!! :D

04-30-2005 12:31 AM


Originally Posted by bludaffodils
I'd also be interested in pictures of the foam background creation. That also is hard to grasp the first read through. Thanks!!

There are some great pictures on the foam background creation at Black Jungle

As for the questions about the drainage... I would like more clarification on that as well. I've been having a bit of trouble figuring out how I should work the drainage along with the pump. Also, how is the water kept clean? Do you just syphon it all out once in a while and replace it? How often? Or, do the plants take care of keeping the biological waste under control?

Khamul 05-16-2005 12:58 AM

thanks or should i say tanks.?
Thanks for the info. I am a newbie to darts, and was wondering what kind i should get. Now I have a better idea. Not just that, but now know how many to get of whatever kind I decide. Ex: I was thinking of tincs. I didnt know the best thing was to get two males and one female. But three is a great number. i think I will get Tincs. Now, just what Tincs?
I really like azureus, but am afraid of spending soo much money on my first Tinc.

elmoisfive 05-16-2005 02:39 AM

Re: thanks or should i say tanks.?

Originally Posted by Khamul1of9
Thanks for the info. I am a newbie to darts, and was wondering what kind i should get. Now I have a better idea. Not just that, but now know how many to get of whatever kind I decide. Ex: I was thinking of tincs. I didnt know the best thing was to get two males and one female. But three is a great number. i think I will get Tincs. Now, just what Tincs?
I really like azureus, but am afraid of spending soo much money on my first Tinc.

Azureus are more expensive than some beginner frogs, i.e. G&B auratus, but are pretty hardy PDFs. They also tend to be fairly visible as long as you keep the humidity up and are very beautiful.


DartMan 11-29-2005 06:10 AM

First THANKS SO MUCH for this thread! It has answered a LOT of my research questions.

Noodleboy, thanks for that link over to Black Jungle. I've been reseaching on what to do with my background and I really like that approach! THANKS MAN!!!!

I'm new to this hobby and have been reading a lot trying to put this all inperspective. I got a feeling I'm going to have a few late nights ahead of me reading through this website.

Thanks again folks!

bluedart 12-27-2005 12:20 AM

I have one thing to add. GET BRAND NEW CALCIUM AND VITAMINS WITH YOUR NEW FROG. REPLACE EVERY SIX MONTHS. I used expired calcium on my azureus, and it led to short tounge syndrome, and ultimately to death. It was unfortunate, and I am adding this so nobody else makes my mistake.

KeroKero 12-27-2005 03:33 PM

The beginners list of species seems kinda lacking to me. For one thing, E. tricolor was THE beginner frog back when PDFs were picking up steam - they fell out of beginner popularity due to availability. I vote they should be put on the list.

Also, P. bicolor is just as easy to care for in my mind as P. terribilis. P. auroteania has also come highly recomended as a beginner frog. I see no reason to have these guys left out!

Another thing to think about is morphs of the species - most of the species listed have incredible variety of morphs in the hobby, and some are better than others as beginners for various reasons. You don't have galacs as beginner frogs (which I understand, they can be a bit tricky) but there are some tinc morphs and what not that are just as tricky. Might be best to have a list of which morphs are best first time around, or rather (for a shorter list) what morphs of the species to aviod as a beginner (I woudn't recomend GO/Reginas as a beginner frog, yet they are a tinc...)

As for what blue dart has mentioned, keeping fresh suppliments is definately important, but the stuff like STS can stay out of it. Ed wrote a nice blip on FrogNet about "STS" which might have more to do with Vit. A than calcium - but its still a bit unknown.

12-30-2005 06:07 AM

all i want to say is; well put! as a beginner i knew i would need patience, that was a good way to welcome newcomers. thanks :wink:

Arklier 01-01-2006 01:37 AM

I only posted about frogs that I have either kept personally, or get a lot of talk about in the forum. I haven't kept tricolors, and they don't seem to be a commonly kept species at this time. So if you want something added to the FAQ, PM me a paragraph with the pros and cons of the species, and I will add it to the FAQ.

abarrera2 09-17-2006 05:08 AM

good stuff...

bstorm83 07-17-2007 06:59 AM

When using gravel for drainage how are you filtering the water. and how are your replacing it? This method is the method i would like to use so i am very interested on it.

defaced 07-17-2007 11:35 PM

It isn't filtered. It's drained off as it fills up. The water isn't replaced per se, but it accumulates from misting the tank. Draining it off is just part of the maintenance cycle.

bstorm83 07-18-2007 05:11 AM

ohhh the hole in the tank reduces the water level and all i would be doing is adding more water by misting. So i wouldn't need a filter if i didn't have a water feature. But I am planning to have some type of small pond

Zerandise 11-24-2007 07:44 PM

thanks much this is a great thread!!!

A_O 11-30-2007 03:30 PM

I've been holding off on the viv I made to find out what the temps were like in my apartment during the winter. Needless to say, it's pretty chilly.

What do you do for heating purposes?

Khamul 11-30-2007 04:31 PM

how chilly is chilly?

A_O 12-02-2007 04:18 AM

It was in the 50s when I got home from Thanksgiving with my parents.

One of the heaters on my fish tanks fried and the tank water was running about 55, I think. Luckily, the tank contained a cool hardy species that encounters temperatures a little lower than usual for several months during the year, but this was really pushing it.

Greg 12-26-2007 09:30 PM

dart frog starters
This is helpful, I got a mating pair of D. azureus as a Christmas present, so I was not really prepared and didn't have a chance to be ready ahead of time. I need to learn a lot about these frogs real fast and this site is great for that :D .

bbrock 12-26-2007 10:03 PM

Nice job on the FAQ. I agree with Corey that the "beginner frogs" list could use some development. Although I've frequently recommended all Phyllobates as beginner frogs, after talking with quite a few experienced terribilis keepers, I'm thinking they don't belong on the list anymore. For starters, it seems that acquiring anything but mints will require a substantial waiting period which says something right there about their difficulty. I think P. bicolor or P. vittatus deserve to be on a beginer's list before terribilis.

While on the subject, I'm still not clear why all thumbnails seem to be off limits as beginner animals. Sure, some are more delicate. And some require small foods. But if you can successfully rear enough ff to raise tincs, then you can certainly raise enough to rear imitator. Not all thumbnails require tiny food as wee froglets.

But overall, I think the faq looks nice. Any chance of including links to some of the more informative threads? For example, somewhere I think I've seen maybe one or two posts about mixing :wink:

Edit: BTW, the last section is VERY nice. Kudos for acknowledging that frogs first, planning later, is a fact of life in many cases.

Minois 12-28-2007 03:52 PM

Freezing Vitamens
I am currently freezing my dry media and vitamins. My neighbor said that would increase the life of the vitamins. Is this correct? I made 8 MONTHS worth of dry media so it seems like a waste to dump it if it goes bad. How do I check if something went bad? Is it like milk where it seems funky? I mean, my dry media seems bad already, will it turn like, good smelling when it decays? He he...

bbrock 12-28-2007 04:08 PM

Re: Freezing Vitamens

Originally Posted by Minois
I am currently freezing my dry media and vitamins. My neighbor said that would increase the life of the vitamins. Is this correct? I made 8 MONTHS worth of dry media so it seems like a waste to dump it if it goes bad. How do I check if something went bad? Is it like milk where it seems funky? I mean, my dry media seems bad already, will it turn like, good smelling when it decays? He he...

I'm not sure about freezing. Freezing can destroy the structure of some molecules but can't speak to how it affects vitamins. In theory, refrigeration can either extend, or shorten the life of your supplements. The main problem with refrigeration (and freezing) is that when you open the supplements, moisture condenses on them which will cause them to go bad in a hurry. The best storage is in a cool, dark, and dry place because high temperature, light, and moisture will all shorten the shelf life. I live in a very dry climate so I do store my supplements in the refrigerator as there is not enough humidity to reach dew point when I open the container. But in a humid climate, it could be an issue. This may be overkill, but I would say that if moisture condenses on a glass of cold water set in the room where supplements are handled, then take the supplements out of the fridge and store them someplace cool, but not cold.

Unless you supplements mold, you won't be able to tell when they have gone bad. Not all of the compounds in the supplement go bad, and the ones that do, won't all go bad at once. But trying to save a couple bucks using up all the vitamin powder is not worth finding an $80 frog qivering on the ground unable to eat or move because the vitamin A or D3 in the supplements has gone bad. Just pitch the vitamins when they pass their expiration date regardless of how they are stored.

Fruit fly media is a different story. Although the vitamins in the media are subject to the same issues as supplements, the consequences of their going bad are not as severe and you can always add a little nutritional boost at the time you mix it. Eight months storage should not be a problem. I typically buy new media only once a year.

disiwolf 10-12-2008 06:42 AM

Re: Beginner Frog FAQ!
thanks Arklier
i learned alot

eLisborg 10-13-2008 12:55 AM

Re: Beginner Frog FAQ!
Really well done arklier, it did a great job covering a lot of subjects that beginners may have questions about.

Ziggi 01-26-2009 02:37 PM

Re: Pool area for water
I also have similar questions as the people on here.
Either using the LECA/Gravel Method or the egg crate method how is the water kept clean? If I leave standing water for more then 2 days usually it gets slimy.

I don't plan on having a waterfall feature or filtration system but I do like to have a pool of water.
Any ideas on how I could keep this clean for a longer period of time.

fraser2009 01-26-2009 03:16 PM

Re: Beginner Frog FAQ!
if you add some fast growing plants like frogbit or a few aquatic plants they will help keep the water area clean and help stop the water going bad

Ziggi 01-26-2009 03:20 PM

Re: Beginner Frog FAQ!
Does java moss or riccia help keeping the water clean if some of it is placed on top of the pool area?
Where does someone get all these plants you speak on on the forum like frogbit for example. I searched walmart and home depot last night and didn't seem to find what I was looking for.

fraser2009 01-26-2009 03:26 PM

Re: Beginner Frog FAQ!
they will help but might be a little slow check ebay and legality in your area but check your local fishshop and ask for some fast growers

eLisborg 01-26-2009 03:31 PM

Re: Beginner Frog FAQ!
Plants are the key to keeping the water clean. For most of my frog tanks I clean the water maybe once a year. Java moss, ricca, or even creeping fig will filter the water. Plus, darts poop isn't like treefrog poop where it fouls the water, it more like dirt so it just provides nutrients to the plants.

Ziggi 01-26-2009 05:16 PM

Re: Beginner Frog FAQ!
Good news then, I will have everything set up before getting the frogs so I'll have some time to let the plants grow in and all before adding the water and frogs.
When you buy the plants off ebay do you only buy the seeds or the plants themselfs?
Highest success rate?

DragonSpirit1185 02-16-2012 02:10 AM

Re: Beginner Frog FAQ!
This should be a sticky thread...
Better than the ones up there right now

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