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Hey everyone! To start off, I've kept amphibians before, but this whole tropical stuff is a bit new. I have a newly set up vivarium (still waiting on some plants, leaves, and driftwood) that I'll have establish for a few weeks or more. It's a 24Lx24Hx18W exo-terra. I have a clay ball bottom set up. I feel like I'm having watering problems though. Right now, I don't have enough money to spend on a Monsoon or Mist King, so I just use a hand mister, but I never know when I've misted enough (my thermo/hygrometer is in the mail). I don't want to over water the plants, but I still know I need fairly high humidity (people say I should see condensation). I'm also confused about fans and how I should set them up. Thanks, I'm looking forward to an interesting stay here.
 

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No worries. Lets see if I can help.
First, what did use at the top of the tank. Did you cover the screen top. Pictures help

Don't get hung up on a fogger. You shouldn't need one, its only used for cosmetics.
 

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No worries. Lets see if I can help.
First, what did use at the top of the tank. Did you cover the screen top. Pictures help

Don't get hung up on a fogger. You shouldn't need one, its only used for cosmetics.
I'm afraid I have to disagree about the fogger, Pantman. I've been using Walgreens' humidifiers in all of my tanks since forever, and my plants and frogs are thriving. Yes, I do mist before I feed, mainly to see how many flies are still hanging around. You might think it's cosmetic only, but the lack of humidity in most homes tends to pull the moisture right out of a tank. Wintertime is the worst for drying tanks. On the other hand, don't drown your plants, or they will die. At this point, you have a terrarium until you add your frogs.

To the o.p., you are in for an addiction beyond words. Obviously, you've seen the fabulous vivariums and gorgeous frogs on this board, or you wouldn't be here. Please don't let some froggers scare the hell outta you because you messed up somewhere. It happens to all of us. Pantman is correct about the top - is it all screen, part screen/part glass, or all glass? The fans are nice to keep the condensation off the the glass, but IMO, they aren't necessary. I think we're all still trying to perfect the air circulation system at minimal expense.

You're main concerns at this time are 1) getting the hang of culturing your flies, and it's really not hard at all; 2) setting your vivarium up and let it 'grow in'; 3) make sure that the water you use is de-chlorinated (I use drops); 4) set your timers up; and 5) make sure that your newly arrived frogs are quarantined in a separate enclosure with plenty of hides. Nothing wigs a frog out more than being out in the open. There are lots of other concerns, but don't let it overwhelm you. Most healthy poison dart frogs are a lot more resilient than they're made out to be. As long as they are fat and they're eating and doing other frog things, you're on the right path.

All new froggers ask which frog is the best, and they'll get all kinds of different answers. If you want more than a couple of frogs (not a couple of 'types' of frogs), go for Leucs. The males have a very pleasant call resembling a bird and I've found that they breed easily and without human intervention. Also, smaller frogs, like Leucs, are more animated than larger frogs. I have a group and I love 'em. I also have larger tincs and small thumbnails.

You'll get all kinds of advice here on Dendroboard, so don't hesitate to ask. Don't forget that the 'search' function works well, and I'm sure you'll be reminded.

best regards,
kristi
 

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Welcome to the board and welcome to the hobby! The best advice I can give is to find a local frogger, check out their set-ups, and pick their brain to no end!! Thats what I did (thanks JimO) and feel that my collection and husbandry skills are well beyond where they would have been without that local support.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks for the responses everyone! Here are some pictures imgur: the simple image sharer
imgur: the simple image sharer
(Just different lighting levels, and one shows the clay ball bottom.)

I was planning on either Leucs, Azureus, or Auratus (the popular beginners). The right side of the terrarium is where the driftwood is going to go, along with a hide, and there are empty "pots" in the clay background in the right for Ficus Pumilia and some Bromeliad (things may change up in the background, because hey, it's clay!).

Some questions: Do dart frogs ever call at night, because from where I've read, they're diurnal? With the foggers, I've heard they actually are more than aesthetic too and they can help plants, so I may just use one because the misting, I feel, will kill the fern.
 

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Thanks for the responses everyone! Here are some pictures imgur: the simple image sharer
imgur: the simple image sharer
(Just different lighting levels, and one shows the clay ball bottom.)

I was planning on either Leucs, Azureus, or Auratus (the popular beginners). The right side of the terrarium is where the driftwood is going to go, along with a hide, and there are empty "pots" in the clay background in the right for Ficus Pumilia and some Bromeliad (things may change up in the background, because hey, it's clay!).

Some questions: Do dart frogs ever call at night, because from where I've read, they're diurnal? With the foggers, I've heard they actually are more than aesthetic too and they can help plants, so I may just use one because the misting, I feel, will kill the fern.
One of the best things about poison dart frogs, aside from their beauty, it that they ARE diurnal. The smaller the frog, the louder the call. It's weird - I can be hanging my head in one of the tinc tanks with the males calling and NEVER hear a sound. On the other hand, I can hear my male Leuc and my male imitator calling all the time. They're close by and I've never found their music obnoxious.

I think I'm confusing the fogger with the humidifier. Occasionally, I'll have to drain water from the water area when I have the humidifer set too high. So, Pantman, I do apologize for confusing the two.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Thanks for the fast reply! I have a humidifier right next the terrarium already, so I think I might be set there. Wouldn't a fogger and humidifier do the same thing?
 

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No, foggers don't create humidity in the same way. The water isn't really vaporized and settles out quickly from what I understand (though don't take my word alone since I'm not too certain that this is actually what's happening...) Either way "foggers" don't have the same effect as humidifiers.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Oh, alright. I'll just clean up the humidifier I have and go for that, it would probably make a really nice rainforest-like humid atmosphere.
 

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Yep, humidity is a warm and wet affair.

Cool-mist humidifiers btw aren't much better than foggers if that's the kind of humidifier you have (as opposed to warm-mist). Cool and wet just doesn't do much for humidity.

by the way, do you have glass panes or a glass top on your tank? That is invaluable for keeping humidity inside the tank. Once it's more or less sealed, handmisting will be plenty to keep humidity up (even in drier parts of the country).
 

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It's a screen top exo-tera. I live in the northeast of America, so it doesn't get too dry normally(although we had a very dry winter this past year). Also, what is this stuff about fans? Do I just put a small computer fan on the top of the screen directing air out? Does this just help keep mold away?
 

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Yep, humidity is a warm and wet affair.

Cool-mist humidifiers btw aren't much better than foggers if that's the kind of humidifier you have (as opposed to warm-mist). Cool and wet just doesn't do much for humidity.

by the way, do you have glass panes or a glass top on your tank? That is invaluable for keeping humidity inside the tank. Once it's more or less sealed, handmisting will be plenty to keep humidity up (even in drier parts of the country).
Now, I can disagree regarding warm mist. All of my humidifiers are cool mist, and both the frogs and the plants benefit. The lights keep the tanks pretty warm, so I'm sure it's a welcome occurrence when the humidifiers come on.

I live in the south near Houston, and it's as humid as it can get down here. Still, inside our homes run around 20%-40% humidity, and a lot drier when a 'cold' front blows thru. The good news is that termites can't survive inside our homes, but they sure do love a moist wooden exterior. I mention termites because it's one of the foods my frogs truly enjoy. I had a tough time convincing my husband to let me bring them in until I pulled a few from their tupperware dish and they died within minutes.

kristi
 
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