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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I got these tanks last year...maybe around October or November? I forget now. They have been growing in now, in one way or another, for 6 months or so and I recently moved their occupants into them, so thought I would share these two.

These are both InSitu's 'Selva". If you are on the fence about these, I highly suggest giving them a go over an exo terra or zoo med. It's not that much more, with no extra work to be done, and they are absolutely great. Bill, from InSitu, went above and beyond with me due to some shipping damages to send any and all replacement parts...sometimes multiple times! Great customer service.

Both builds use grape branch (I don't mind them deteriorating slowly, I usually redo tanks before they breakdown much at all, ie. ~3-5 years). Some are locked in place, but most can be removed as necessary. Backgrounds are Drylok and spray foam. I tried two different colours, so we will see how they both look about a year from now. I like the darker red one right now (right side). I always use a small dremel tool, as opposed to a knife, in case you were wondering why there seems to be more detail on some of the backgrounds. I usually don't backgrounds like this, but I don't mind how these look.

Substrate is Flourite, with some ABG in certain areas to help plants grow and root. They are the only two tanks I have that actively drain. Works well, but I keep them fairly dry so I don't have a lot of water flowing out to be honest.

Here both of them are:

img_1551_s.jpg

Tank One:

img_1549_s.jpg


Frogs:

6 x Ranitomeya flavovittata "Gold Legged" (2.1.3)
img_1480_s.jpg

Plants:
  • Neoregelia 'Fireball'
  • Vriesea nova
  • Hydrocoytle sp. 'Northern Peru'
  • Philodendron camposportoanum
  • Philodendron aff. Brandtianum 'Peru'
  • Philodendron sp. "Lowland Rainforests Peru'
  • Monstera kartenianum 'Peru' (in the back corner...you can't see it yet!)
    Marcgravia sp ' Burgundy' (Peru) - if it lives, I can never keep this one alive

Tank Two:

img_1553_s.jpg

Frogs:

4x Ranitomeya imitator "Banded" (1.1.2)
img_1530_s.jpg

Plants:
  • Vriesea hieroglyiphica
  • Hydrocoytle sp. 'Northern Peru'
  • Philodendron sp. "Peru Small Leaf"
  • Philodendron sp. "Dwarf Borja Ridge"
  • Philodendron aff. chinchamayense
  • Marcgravia sp ' Burgundy' (Peru)

I had a lot of fun with these builds. I usually do them very fast - ie. within a month of purchasing them they are full setup. It was nice to do these a bit slower, even if it wasn't necessarily by choice! I had two sets of frogs in mind for these. One I was waiting for them to mature, the other, just waiting for them to be available!

Hope you enjoy, happy to answer any questions about the frogs or the builds.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Lovely! Nice tanks and nice frogs!

How do you like the fluorite? I'm contemplating using it for a future build.
I'm not sure. I think @Socratic Monologue used it as well. I originally just had this as my sole substrate, but found some of the philodendrons were not rooting and growing properly, so I added some ABG to certain areas and they perked up a bit. I think the plants, once they get rooted and growing, can utilize the flourite better.

It drains well but also holds a bit of moisture under the leaf litter. I wouldn't outright purchase it for this use specifically - it is expensive. I might use turface or something - or even foam, if you can find it anywhere right now!
 

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Beautiful tanks! I used to have a vriesea hieroglyphica, before I realized how huge it gets. I had it in a similarly sized tank and it had outgrown it before a year was up. It also has a super intense root system that made it really hard to remove. It’s such a pretty bromeliad, I just wish it stayed at a reasonable size.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Yea, most of the Vriesea get pretty big, these were one of my favs though. Fully prepared to hack them down when I need too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Do you have any more shots of those Banded R. imitators? That one photo looks a lot like a Chazuta to me ???
The Chazuta look like all of the other imitators you mean? :) I don't think there is a specific look to the Chazuta's to be honest. They are probably the most variable looking of all the imitators.

My Rapidos look similar to the Banded as well, but typically never quite as refined in patterning. The Rapidos don't seem to ever have any blue on them, just black and yellow.

I think a lot of people think the Banded imitators have this very standard look to them, but the reality is that they are quite variable as well. The most common is for the vertical stripe to appear through the two bands. There is also large variation in how much webbing pattern there is on the legs.

Here are a few shots of the others, to give you an idea:

img_1475_s.jpg img_1559_s.jpg img_1476_s.jpg
 

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I'm not sure. I think @Socratic Monologue used it as well. I originally just had this as my sole substrate, but found some of the philodendrons were not rooting and growing properly, so I added some ABG to certain areas and they perked up a bit. I think the plants, once they get rooted and growing, can utilize the flourite better.
Yep, though as a layer under clay. The few plants I have growing in the clay/Flourite are either in pots of ABG or in a little pocket of ABG.
 

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I’ve seen people mixing fluval stratum with fluorite in order to help with plant growth. Haven’t tried it out yet but I’ll try it out although I might use akadama instead as I think it’ll be cheaper and to my knowledge it’s the same thing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I’ve seen people mixing fluval stratum with fluorite in order to help with plant growth. Haven’t tried it out yet but I’ll try it out although I might use akadama instead as I think it’ll be cheaper and to my knowledge it’s the same thing.
I use akadama to fill in gaps as well, I used it in the front drainage tray of these, around matala mat.
 
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