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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 125 gallon aquarium and a 150 gallon aquarium that I would like to turn into viv's. The catch is intend not to fill them with frogs, but with rhacodactylus geckos (IE crested and gargoyle geckos). I wont need/ or be using any kind of waterfall or water-pool. I intend it to be more like a forest floor than a swamp if that helps, but still have high humidity and a variety of plants.

If you could help refresh my memory on the following things:

What type/ brand of black silicone is suggested ?

What is the material that is used to cover the silicone on the great stufff (some sort of coco fiber/ eco earth) ?

What type of wood(s) can I put in here (whatever I put in my old one molded) ?

What type of plants are hardy and would work well? (The only thing Ive managed to keep alive in my current tank is pothos)

What type of soil/ soil mixture should I use to help grow/ maintain the plants ?

What type of lights do you suggest ?

I will be adding sprinklers/ water nozzles (I just think they look cool), dont know if this will make any difference.

Thanks in advance for any help, and I will post photos as I go.

-Nick
 

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I can help with a few of these.

GE Silicone II is the one everyone seems to use, myself included.

As for covering the background I used peat. A big bag of it was less than 10 bucks at my local Lowes. I've seen people also use coco fiber as well, or a mix of the two.

Soil: Everyone uses the ABG mix. Google it and I'm sure you can find some recipes on how to make it or you can buy it from one of the sponsors of this site. I got mine from Joshes Frogs and I have zero complaints so far.

Thats about all I got, I'd rather someone more knowledgeable answer the other ones, haha. :)
 
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I have a 125 gallon aquarium and a 150 gallon aquarium that I would like to turn into viv's. The catch is intend not to fill them with frogs, but with rhacodactylus geckos (IE crested and gargoyle geckos). I wont need/ or be using any kind of waterfall or water-pool. I intend it to be more like a forest floor than a swamp if that helps, but still have high humidity and a variety of plants.

If you could help refresh my memory on the following things:

What type/ brand of black silicone is suggested ?

GE II 100% silicone. I prefer the brown color.

What is the material that is used to cover the silicone on the great stufff (some sort of coco fiber/ eco earth) ?

Many things will work but I've used coco fiber, peat, and tree fern fiber in the past will great success.

What type of wood(s) can I put in here (whatever I put in my old one molded) ?

Most woods without sap or any secretions like that... also no grape wood (gets very moldy). Ghost wood gets moldy too in my experience. My favorite is Manzanita.

What type of plants are hardy and would work well? (The only thing Ive managed to keep alive in my current tank is pothos)

Check out the sponsors pages, many of them carry viv suitable plants. Also do some more searching into this. It would take hours to name all the plants that you could use.

What type of soil/ soil mixture should I use to help grow/ maintain the plants ?

ABG mix is great.

What type of lights do you suggest ?
I prefer T5 but many others will work... ex: T8, CFL, MH (gets very hot though.)

I will be adding sprinklers/ water nozzles (I just think they look cool), dont know if this will make any difference.

Mistking sells great misting systems for vivs.

Thanks in advance for any help, and I will post photos as I go.

-Nick
Answers in red in quote. Hope this helps!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks guys. I just googled grape wood, and thats what I put in my last viv.... lesson learned there.

Another thing about the plants.....

The geckos that will be going in the vivs are about the size of the palm of you hand and can weigh over 50 grams as adults. As I look through the viv build threads I realized a lot of the plants I see (although beautiful) seem to be small. I will likely need larger more hardy plants. Ill keep looking but if anyone has any ideas I'm all ears.
-Nick
 

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I also do vivs for small-to-medium squamates, which typically have different environmental needs from frogs. E.g. they don't often like it as humid, often need it a little warmer, and usually require more air circulation. This, in addition to the need for more-robust plants for larger and sometimes more-destructive animals, makes me think many "frog plants" aren't really very good for 50-g squamates.

For erect, dramatic plants I like Sansevieria (check out the diverse cultivars) and Zamioculcas. Also some of the aroids are good (not always self-supporting though). Some delicate-appearing plants are tough as nails - Ficus pumila and benjamina, and the Nephrolepis ferns, are good, although the ferns could get matted down by active jumping geckos.

I think all these plants will get by in the conditions geckos will desire. I used to keep ciliatus, and used live Sansevieria and sections of timber bamboo to great effect.

Cheers,
Jimi
 
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