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  • 1 Post By fishingguy12345
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Old 04-26-2020, 03:52 AM
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Default Waterfall paludarium build for dart frogs

Hey everyone, I’m nearly finished my 18x18x24 waterfall build for my two dendrobate auratus Costa Rican frogs! I have a rattlesnake calathea to add on the left hand side and I’m working on covering the background with moss & creeping fig. I’m also adding bromeliads when I can get my hands on some.

What do you guys think?

https://i.imgur.com/oDuJ0z3.jpg
https://i.imgur.com/q122JCN.jpg
https://i.imgur.com/foDpPeg.jpg
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Old 04-26-2020, 11:11 AM
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Default Re: Waterfall paludarium build for dart frogs

I really hate to burst your bubble, but unless the camera angles are REALLY deceiving, there is very little floorspace in that vivarium, and almost no cover/hiding places for the frogs.

Dendrobates auratus are terrestrial frogs, they will value floorspace more than height, and the design you've made takes up valuable floorspace, both with the "root" and the pond area. They also prefer to have choices of hiding places.

Were you planning to add more leaf litter? Abundant leaf litter makes frogs feel more secure.

Also, the sphagnum moss on the ground is unneeded and likely more harmful than helpful. There have been a number of threads discussing this lately on this forum.

Just doing some visual math, you have maybe a 12x12" ground area for the frogs, that's not very much space for large-bodied, terrestrial frogs.

I love the visual look of the design , you clearly have design/build skill, but the setup is not going to set Dendrobates auratus up for success.
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Old 04-26-2020, 11:55 AM
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Default Re: Waterfall paludarium build for dart frogs

I agree with fishingguy. You've built a beautiful paludarium, but just like the last equally beautiful build you posted here it is built for you, not for any frog.
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Old 04-26-2020, 06:34 PM
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Hey Fishingguy, the ground space for my frogs is actually 18x15 and like I said I have bromeliads, a calathea and more items to add so hiding spots and ground space is not an issue for me. Thanks for your concern though, camera angles and pictures can be very deceiving! My frogs in particular seem to appreciate their vertical space. Their current tank a much smaller one, has many levels for them to climb and they love to spend most of their time there so I’m pretty confident they will be enjoying this new one a big upgrade for them 🙂
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Old 04-26-2020, 06:52 PM
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Default Re: Waterfall paludarium build for dart frogs

You're going to be hard pressed to get anyone experienced to agree with your build. It is almost entirely wrong for dart frogs.

There are many threads here and on the interwebz that detail how a proper enclosure should be constructed and the hazards and problems associated with too much water area ect.

If you stick with the hobby, after time and if you research and learn, you will come to find this out.
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Old 04-26-2020, 07:18 PM
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Thanks Socratic Monologue, my design inspiration is to make it as natural as possible. I live between Canada and a tropical country so I am very familiar with their natural habitat. My tank is most definitely for my appreciation just as much as my frogs!
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Old 04-26-2020, 07:34 PM
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Default Re: Waterfall paludarium build for dart frogs

That is a semi-aquatic set up for a semi aquatic animal.

While you perceive that, your frogs especially, "seem to appreciate the vertical space"

They are actually oddly trapped by situ and have no other option.
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Old 04-26-2020, 08:34 PM
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Default Re: Waterfall paludarium build for dart frogs

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Originally Posted by [email protected] View Post
Hey everyone, Iím nearly finished my 18x18x24 waterfall build for my two dendrobate auratus Costa Rican frogs! I have a rattlesnake calathea to add on the left hand side and Iím working on covering the background with moss & creeping fig. Iím also adding bromeliads when I can get my hands on some.

What do you guys think?

https://i.imgur.com/oDuJ0z3.jpg
https://i.imgur.com/q122JCN.jpg
https://i.imgur.com/foDpPeg.jpg
Reed frogs would love this setup, dart frogs not so much.
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Old 04-26-2020, 08:41 PM
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Default Re: Waterfall paludarium build for dart frogs

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Hey Fishingguy, the ground space for my frogs is actually 18x15 and like I said I have bromeliads, a calathea and more items to add so hiding spots and ground space is not an issue for me. Thanks for your concern though, camera angles and pictures can be very deceiving! My frogs in particular seem to appreciate their vertical space. Their current tank a much smaller one, has many levels for them to climb and they love to spend most of their time there so Iím pretty confident they will be enjoying this new one a big upgrade for them
There's no way your ground space can be 15"x18" on a single level surface. The tank is only 18"x18", and you've lost the space for the water area, and the tree/bark thing.

Ground space might not be an issue for YOU, but it probably will be for YOUR FROGS in the long run.
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Old 04-26-2020, 10:43 PM
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Thanks for your comment Philsuma, but I am not on here looking for validation nor am I here to entertain anyone telling me this tank cannot hold frogs. I have made it for my dart frogs and as I mentioned this tank is a work in progress. I am taking my time to work on this tank to ensure it is safe and will make my frogs happy so refrain from making one sided negative comments. Thank you to everyone voicing their concerns but don’t stress out so much about my tank 🙂 I have decided to discontinue posting updates because I have found these responses not only negative but very unhelpful.
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Old 04-26-2020, 10:47 PM
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Default Re: Waterfall paludarium build for dart frogs

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Thanks for your comment Philsuma, but I am not on here looking for validation nor am I here to entertain anyone telling me this tank cannot hold frogs. I have made it for my dart frogs and as I mentioned this tank is a work in progress. I am taking my time to work on this tank to ensure it is safe and will make my frogs happy so refrain from making one sided negative comments. Thank you to everyone voicing their concerns but don’t stress out so much about my tank 🙂 I have decided to discontinue posting updates because I have found these responses not only negative but very unhelpful.
I think we were all simply answering your question, and are being helpful in pointing out what experienced keepers of darts have found to work, and not work, for keeping frogs. If you're not looking for validation, it is really unclear why you'd get upset about experienced people giving relevant advice.

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What do you guys think?
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Old 04-26-2020, 10:50 PM
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Default Re: Waterfall paludarium build for dart frogs

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What do you guys think?
People are just giving you what you asked for. Seems like the opinions have been pretty respectful- just too honest.

Edit: SM beat me to it.

Last edited by Broseph; 04-26-2020 at 10:53 PM.
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Old 04-27-2020, 12:19 AM
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Default Re: Waterfall paludarium build for dart frogs

Alex, there are behavioral and stress factors to how an environment works out for its subject that really count and can cause harm if they are misunderstood.

Avoidance behavior is not the same as favor,as an example.

At that tight range, unavoidable pops into water are energy expenditures that can chronically exhaust the frogs, and put them at risk of becoming stressed and thin, at worse immersion injury and those are only the mechanical harms.

Putting foothold in the water does not make a walker into a plopper.

Some frogs arent having a good time when they suddenly find themselves having to swim. Its important to know that.
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Old 04-27-2020, 01:42 AM
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I am frustrated with these “experienced” people try to tell me that my frog tank is not a frog tank. I have intentionally made this for my frogs with plenty of valuable feedback from people who I actually know are successful with dart frogs. I posted these photos asking what people think, not asking what other animals this tank is suited for. That to me is irrelevant and not helpful. I’d like for everyone to consider that beyond the hobby, these frogs live in nature. Nature is unpredictable and far less forgiving than a glass box.
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Old 04-27-2020, 02:15 AM
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Default Re: Waterfall paludarium build for dart frogs

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Nature is unpredictable and far less forgiving than a glass box.
That's false. Keep animals for a couple decades and you'll realize that captivity is hell on living things.

Animals in situ can escape temperature extremes, excessive moisture, assertive conspecifics, and nearly everything that nature throws at them because they have choices. In a box that is three cubic feet the inhabitants can't escape anything because all those choices are taken away.

It is understandable that your feelings are hurt. I'm pretty thin-skinned myself. But hopefully you swallow your pride and at least try to understand what all these experienced people -- who have seen a lot of animals die, some of whom have worked in the pet trade and heard it all, some of whom are zookeepers, for Pete's sake -- are trying to say.

We're not trying to be harsh -- folks in this thread are really reining it in, I can tell -- but no one here is going to sugar-coat anything about animal care. I'm sorry you're hurt, but that's up to you.
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Old 04-27-2020, 03:07 AM
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Socratic Monologue, I respect your opinion that you think animals in captivity are living in hell. I however believe that if you take the time to create a small scale (as realistic as you can) ecosystem they can successfully live their life in captivity. You most definitely have to make sure their conditions are safe and comfortable for them.

I am not hurt nor am I offended in the slightest. I simply do not care for these irrelevant comments.

People were very quick to voice their opinion that this build cannot and will not successfully host dart frogs. The tank is nearly finished, not finished. These statements people made do not open opportunity for discussion. Ultimately this just leads to frustration because I have dart frogs, this tank is for my dart frogs. I’m not asking what animals go well in this setup. Keep in mind these are photos, not even great ones! There are many details unknown by people. I was hoping to share knowledge with others and discuss different ways of doing things. Anyone with experience on having dart frogs knows this is a lifetime process of learning with many adjustments along the way. I guess I’d much rather have conversations on this with people in person 🏻
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Old 04-27-2020, 09:44 AM
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Default Re: Waterfall paludarium build for dart frogs

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I was hoping to share knowledge with others and discuss different ways of doing things. Anyone with experience on having dart frogs knows this is a lifetime process of learning with many adjustments along the way. I guess Iíd much rather have conversations on this with people in person 🏻
That's the thing, the reason why we are advising against this particular build the way it is now, is because we want to help you jump ahead in this learning experience up to the point where new things can be learned without danger of potentially repeating past mistakes.

I have a big viv with D. auratus and I have never had any water feature in it simply because these frogs don't need it and frankly wouldn't even like it. I see my 6 auratus every single day and they are currently very happy (a part from the unfortunate fact that they are all males)

I also currently have two vivs with a water feature: one with a waterfall that drains into in a kind of small bog area and one with a small pond. Neither of them house Dart frogs because it would not work for them. They house a Mantella species and a Reed frog species. The reed frogs need the water feature for egg deposition and for the Mantella the sound of the waterfall mimics the sound of a stream in the wet season (it's switched off during their dry season).

Your build holds a lot of potential and I could see it working well for auratus, just not with the waterfall and pond. Should you scrap the water area and use it as floorspace, suddenly your frogs have more room to move around and gain more hiding spots under the "root" area. Add some more leaf litter and you've got an excellent viv for D. auratus.
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Old 04-27-2020, 10:34 PM
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Default Re: Waterfall paludarium build for dart frogs

OP, you had asked a direct question when asked for thoughts.

Considerable energy, time and collective experience came to a consensus.

Thorough explanations of why were provided in each response, along with a good amount of positive commentary about your skills and set up.

It seems you did not reflect on any piece of input, there was no indication that you did as it was you who didnt discuss, just repeated how unuseful it all was, because it didnt align with your plan.

You probably arent reading this, but it was you who closed down knowledge exchange, discussion.

If you are reading this, read the posts again, plain and with a positive eye because every word that was typed earnestly had your frogs well being in mind with a warm focus that could only be equaled by you, as keeper of said frogs.
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