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  #81 (permalink)  
Old 06-05-2020, 06:10 AM
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Thank you for sharing your journey so far! Your modification of the aquarium looks very similar to what I plan on doing with my 20H once finances are in a place to start, though I'm planning on going horizontal instead of vertical, since I'm particularly interested in phyllobates vittatus, another terrestrial-preferring frog!

It's also super cool to see you visit planted tank dot net. I hung out there a lot while researching doing planted tanks, but aquariums ended up being too high maintenance for me. I gave up on the idea of cool nature things indoors until a few months ago when a friend who has some darts opened my eyes to the awesomeness of vivariums and darts. It all seems to be exactly in line with what I was wanting when I dabbled in planted tanks.

Anyway, it's cool to see another beginner go through the process after doing lots of research! I will be in the research stage for quite a bit longer, but this thread has been very encouraging. I hadn't seen the type of background you made before, so that's really appealing to me. I had been planning on going with the tree fern panels, but this looks like it might be a better option. I just know I like both much better than the spray foam backgrounds I've been seeing. 😁

I can't wait to see your future progress!
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Old 06-05-2020, 11:26 AM
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Originally Posted by notsoencrypted View Post
Thank you for sharing your journey so far! Your modification of the aquarium looks very similar to what I plan on doing with my 20H once finances are in a place to start, though I'm planning on going horizontal instead of vertical, since I'm particularly interested in phyllobates vittatus, another terrestrial-preferring frog!

It's also super cool to see you visit planted tank dot net. I hung out there a lot while researching doing planted tanks, but aquariums ended up being too high maintenance for me. I gave up on the idea of cool nature things indoors until a few months ago when a friend who has some darts opened my eyes to the awesomeness of vivariums and darts. It all seems to be exactly in line with what I was wanting when I dabbled in planted tanks.

Anyway, it's cool to see another beginner go through the process after doing lots of research! I will be in the research stage for quite a bit longer, but this thread has been very encouraging. I hadn't seen the type of background you made before, so that's really appealing to me. I had been planning on going with the tree fern panels, but this looks like it might be a better option. I just know I like both much better than the spray foam backgrounds I've been seeing. 😁

I can't wait to see your future progress!
Thank you! The research, building, and planting have all been a lot of fun. Another background method to look into is the "cracked cork mosaic" mentioned in the thread. I think both have a lot of potential long term. I like my background but if I build another tank I will probably do a cracked cork mosaic for ease of planting.

I find a lot of similarities between a planted aquarium and a vivarium so far. The biggest difference being no need for water changes (assuming you have a drain) and a lot easier to grow... well everything heh.
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Old 06-05-2020, 02:51 PM
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Thank you! The research, building, and planting have all been a lot of fun. Another background method to look into is the "cracked cork mosaic" mentioned in the thread. I think both have a lot of potential long term. I like my background but if I build another tank I will probably do a cracked cork mosaic for ease of planting.

I find a lot of similarities between a planted aquarium and a vivarium so far. The biggest difference being no need for water changes (assuming you have a drain) and a lot easier to grow... well everything heh.
Researching stuff is possibly my favorite part of any hobby. I'm glad I'm not alone in enjoying that part, either, haha.
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Old 07-19-2020, 01:04 AM
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Update!

Its been about 2 months since I finished the vivarium and it is time to add frogs!

I have known for a while now that I would be getting tincs but which morph?? I am pretty familiar with a lot of the bigger breeders having researched things the last few months but also from that research I learned its significantly better to buy from a local breeder if you can help it. Not only is it less stress on the frogs, but you also get to make a local connection with someone if you find yourself in a jam one day.

Fortunately there is actually a 'Virginia, DC & Maryland Dart Froggers' facebook group. I made a post there asking around for breeders and was informed that Dr. Sean Stewart lives in Ellicott City (the same city I live in). I had never heard of him before being new to the dart frog hobby. But apparently he has been working with the National Aquarium In Baltimore for some time and is responsible for (among other things) the importation of 'True' Sipaliwini frogs. That he is literally 12 minutes from my house was too cool to turn down. I contacted him through an email on his website and after a little delay (he is a medical doctor and dealing with the pandemic) was able to purchase a producing pair of True Sipaliwini frogs 18 months out of water. I originally wanted younger frogs but ultimately didn't want to gamble on sexes, so I decided to just go with what I knew would work.

Leading up to my actually picking up the frogs, the vivarium itself has evolved slightly. All of the aquarium plants (anubias, java fern, and amazon swords) got zapped pretty hard when I dried out the vivarium a few days after starting it up. I was concerned about the humidity level at the time and really took things too far lowering the humidity with plants that were just placed. They might not have made it anyway but /shrug its hard to say.

I also took out one of the rabbits foot ferns as it was frankly crowding my background too much. The hair grass 'carpet' on the other hand never really took off. I got it to grow but it didn't form a dense enough mat. I decided instead to try Creeping Jenny and so far that is working great. Its definitely one of those plants that can take over the world so I will need to keep trimming it but that is not a hardship to me. I only have one vivarium after all.

Here is what the vivarium looks like shortly after introducing the froggies:



And here is a close-up of one of the froggies:





The male frog my 3 year old daughter promptly named Oreo. My wife named the female Biscuit. I have been keeping track of them by markings on the top of their head so given the angle not quite sure which is pictured.

-----------

Meanwhile one of the main tasks I had in preparation for the frogs arrival was squaring away my fruit fly supply. I had read on the forum that it was important to get your supply up and running well before frogs arrived so you could get a handle on fly production. This sounded like good advice. I did a lot of research into fruit fly media recipes both on this forum and elsewhere. What I concluded was that there are a LOT of ways to make media. At its core the only things you need to make a media is a starch, a protein, (and usually an anti fungal). Typically the starch is ether potato flakes or oatmeal, and the protein is yeast. This will make a functional fly media but in my research I also came across the idea of a 'nutritious' media to make a nutritious fly. Specifically there was a study that found the addition of carotenoids in fruit fly media increased the successful production of tadpoles. There was a mention in this same study that feeding fish food to feeders of a different species of frog (not a dart frog) had a similar effect.

After reading this I decided I didn't want to just make any ol random fruit fly media but rather a nutritious fruit fly media. At first I planned to buy the various components to add appropriate levels of carotenoids but it quickly became apparent that this was going to be far too expensive. I switched gears and decided to add color enhancing fish food instead (since this already has the very same carotenoids I would be adding in a more pure form). In the end I settled on the following recipe.

1000 ml of Quick Oats
200 ml of Color Enhancing fish Food (I settled on Aqueon Cichlid Food Color Enhancing Pellets)
200 ml of Distillers Yeast (at the time of purchase I could not find regular active bakers yeast due to everyone deciding the pandemic meant baking was awesome)
50 ml of methyl paraben





All of this was ground up in a blender till it was a fine powder.



Here is a look at the 'active' ingredients:



So why do this instead of just buying Repashy Superfly like everyone else?

Well I decided there will always be folks that want to DIY their own media (I being one). I also decided that most diy recipes care nothing for nutrition. This was my attempt at making a DIY recipe that would be nutritious while also trying to save as much money as possible.

The cost breakdown is this. The oats cost me 2 dollars. The fish food cost my 5 dollars. The yeast cost me 10 dollars and the methyl paraben cost me 20 dollars. The yeast and methyl paraben will last me a while though. This produced enough media to last me for 20 cultures. My best guess is that each culture costs me 55 cents. These are 1/4 cup cultures. Through trial and error I have found that 1/4 cup of media plus 1/2 cup of water produces a reasonably dry culture which lasts more then a month. At the end of a month the culture is actually gone, the flies have eaten it all. So far nothing has gone to mold even when I let the cultures go into week 5 or 6. Fly production dropped a lot though (I suspect due to lack of media).

I have been putting my cultures in an open container with diatomaceous earth on the bottom and eggcrate on the bottom as well to hold the cups just above the height of the diatomaceous earth. Here is what that looks like:



So far no mite issues.

And that brings me up to current! In the weeks to come I am looking forward to taking more pictures of the frogs as they become more accustomed to my presence.
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Last edited by minorhero; 07-19-2020 at 02:00 AM.
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Old 07-19-2020, 02:41 AM
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Lovely frogs!
I'll admit I didn't read the fly culturing information lol.

The vivarium looks good. :-)
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Old 07-19-2020, 05:00 PM
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Lovely frogs!
I'll admit I didn't read the fly culturing information lol.

The vivarium looks good. :-)
Thank you!

Yeah I am treating this thread as a means of documenting my build for my own memory and use as much as anyone else :-P
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Old 08-11-2020, 05:18 PM
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Quick question folks, how much to feed?

I know its been answered a bunch but more precisely, when should the frogs run out of flies? I am seeing varying answers on this. I feed within an hour of misting usually before 11am. My frogs are both adults so I am feeding about a teaspoon of dusted mels every other day. This is enough that the frogs eat the majority of the flies somewhere within the first 24 hours but there is definitely some flies that manage to make it to the next day. By the next feed all the flies are gone. I thought this was optimal but I am seeing some folks say all the flies should be gone before 24 hours?

I am trying to keep my frogs physique trim without the chub chub some folks have if that makes sense.

And just for giggles here is a picture of Oreo my male:

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Old 08-11-2020, 07:10 PM
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The frog looks very healthy so your doing fine 🙂 I always have some fruitflies wandering around in the vivs..
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Old 08-11-2020, 07:51 PM
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Dont align yourself too avidly with what could be considered dietary anthropocentricism.

There is no data to support moderate yet visual adipose pad accumulate is a health deficit.

Novel fats ingest, chronically applied, like feeding heavy mammalian prey to primary insectivores inducing pancreatic and liver problems - arent same as caloric abundance of normal lipids.

When you are feeding appropriate non-novel food items you have plenty of time and wiggle room to amend over provision.

Its not an emergency.
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Old 08-11-2020, 08:11 PM
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I went with Rapashy after disappointment with another "brand" and noting the astute, well founded "not over the top' nutrient composure of the media.

Retainment of values in justaposition with media breakdown over time, decomposition, microbial fecudity, ammonia, plus the fact that the flies are going to be freshly coated with all necessary supplementation per Rapashy protocol mere seconds before feeding to my subjects, made putting too much effort into making a super duper DIY media formula something that seemed not relevant, even as I actually lean generously that way, toward my feeder colonies.
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Old 08-11-2020, 08:20 PM
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It may sound crazy but ive relied on pinhead crickets at my last job feeding darts and mantellas.

Pins to FF, 80 to 20% on a moving scale.
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Old 08-11-2020, 11:23 PM
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The main reason I try to avoid the stragglers, minorhero, is that I want them getting mostly recently-dusted flies rather than be consuming mostly less-dusted flies over the next couple of days til I feed again. I am sure there is a large variation in how much vitamin powder our frogs consume. I also think it's likely that one could, theoretically, feed so many flies that a lot get away and the balance of freshly-dusted vs. not as dusted flies becomes less favorable. If you come back to your tank and you are just seeing a handful of them crawling around, I doubt you are anywhere close to the unfavorable point. tl:dr - keep doing what you are doing :-)

Oh yeah, I have been meaning to say that if you use the "large thumbnail" option in Imgur, the pictures won't force the text to be in super-wide columns that need to be scrolled horizontally to read. Might just be on my computer that this happens, though...

Mark
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Old 08-12-2020, 02:02 AM
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Oreo looks as energetic as you are Minorhero.

Beautiful & Exciting for frog set up. I like the manzanita, its under used pretty wood.

Are there going to be draping lovelies of some sort someday? I dont know much about plants - even without dressing such a clean, pretty wood.

Your FF media would make a good human breakfast, i aint gonna lie.
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Old 08-12-2020, 11:09 AM
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Originally Posted by Tijl View Post
The frog looks very healthy so your doing fine 🙂 I always have some fruitflies wandering around in the vivs..
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kmc View Post
Dont align yourself too avidly with what could be considered dietary anthropocentricism.

There is no data to support moderate yet visual adipose pad accumulate is a health deficit.

Novel fats ingest, chronically applied, like feeding heavy mammalian prey to primary insectivores inducing pancreatic and liver problems - arent same as caloric abundance of normal lipids.

When you are feeding appropriate non-novel food items you have plenty of time and wiggle room to amend over provision.

Its not an emergency.
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The main reason I try to avoid the stragglers, minorhero, is that I want them getting mostly recently-dusted flies rather than be consuming mostly less-dusted flies over the next couple of days til I feed again. I am sure there is a large variation in how much vitamin powder our frogs consume. I also think it's likely that one could, theoretically, feed so many flies that a lot get away and the balance of freshly-dusted vs. not as dusted flies becomes less favorable. If you come back to your tank and you are just seeing a handful of them crawling around, I doubt you are anywhere close to the unfavorable point. tl:dr - keep doing what you are doing :-)

Oh yeah, I have been meaning to say that if you use the "large thumbnail" option in Imgur, the pictures won't force the text to be in super-wide columns that need to be scrolled horizontally to read. Might just be on my computer that this happens, though...

Mark
Thank you guys! I'll leave things be then. Just wanted to make sure I was keeping things optimized.

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Oreo looks as energetic as you are Minorhero.

Beautiful & Exciting for frog set up. I like the manzanita, its under used pretty wood.

Are there going to be draping lovelies of some sort someday? I dont know much about plants - even without dressing such a clean, pretty wood.

Your FF media would make a good human breakfast, i aint gonna lie.
I have some Peperomia Rotundifolia 'planted' on some mossy spots on the branches. They are flowering but not really growing much yet. the plan is to have the branches draped in cascading peperomia but... we will see how it goes ;P

I like the idea of oats as a media base over potatoes, whether it actually matters is a different story ;P Other then the nutritional content the next most important thing for me is that the media doesn't smell. I haven't had mold issues or smell issues (beyond what it smells like at the start) even after 6 weeks. Thanks to the addition of the fish food though it tends to smell a lot like... fish food, so you know, not great but there are worse things. I'm glad I keep them in my unfinished basement.
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Old 09-04-2020, 04:01 PM
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When I bought my frogs they were 18 months out of water and a producing pair. So I have been on the lookout for eggs since day 1.

I have a petri dish in the tank and an epoxy coated monkey pod.

They still decided to lay their clutch on a brom leaf

I scooped them off with a metal spoon after a few days and here is what I got!



3 good ones and 3 bad ones. The good ones have the unmistakable sign of a developing tadpole (though that might be hard to make out in the picture). These will be F4 from the original 'True' Sip imports and I am pretty excited.
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Old 09-04-2020, 04:54 PM
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When I bought my frogs they were 18 months out of water and a producing pair. So I have been on the lookout for eggs since day 1.



I have a petri dish in the tank and an epoxy coated monkey pod.



They still decided to lay their clutch on a brom leaf



I scooped them off with a metal spoon after a few days and here is what I got!







3 good ones and 3 bad ones. The good ones have the unmistakable sign of a developing tadpole (though that might be hard to make out in the picture). These will be F4 from the original 'True' Sip imports and I am pretty excited.
Congratulations!!!!
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Old 09-08-2020, 04:03 AM
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Great journal! Glad to see another MD'er in here!
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Old 09-08-2020, 10:53 AM
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Great journal! Glad to see another MD'er in here!
Thank you and likewise! It's a fun hobby and while the frog hobby is not so numerous as the aquarium hobby in Maryland there is a few of us wandering around.
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Old 09-16-2020, 04:32 PM
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About 2 weeks after the first clutch was laid I found this on yet another brom leaf:



Sadly it looks to me like none of this clutch is fertile. That said I ended up with 2 tadpoles out of the first clutch. One hatched a few days ahead of the other and after a couple of days in a cup to make sure he could swim on his own I added him to official tadpole rearing tank:



The tadpole is in the center of the image. The other critters are some freshwater shrimp that were already in this tank.

In other news, I got my first proper mushroom! I would have preferred for my froggy to actually sit on top of it to pose but you take what you can get ;P

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Old 09-16-2020, 04:50 PM
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Great update! Viv looks great. I love the last picture, great composition!

As for your rearing tank, interesting to keep shrimp in there to keep up the tank. I'd be worried about amano's being overly aggressive to the tads. They seem to try to touch everything that sits still for a second. Looks like you have a solid colony of blue neo's going as well.
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Old 09-16-2020, 07:19 PM
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Great update! Viv looks great. I love the last picture, great composition!

As for your rearing tank, interesting to keep shrimp in there to keep up the tank. I'd be worried about amano's being overly aggressive to the tads. They seem to try to touch everything that sits still for a second. Looks like you have a solid colony of blue neo's going as well.
Thank you! I raised local frogs in this tank earlier without issue (same inhabitants) so while I can't promise there won't be an issue it seems unlikely. Meanwhile all the plants in this tank should give the tadpoles plenty of cover from each other so hopefully they don't go cannibalistic.
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