Dendroboard banner

1 - 9 of 9 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hello everyone,
So in a few months I'll be constructing a 40-50 gallon paludarium for my fire belly toads, along with some shrimp, snails, and a few fish. I know a few plants that I'll be using such as pothos (a classic), java moss, sphag moss, some various vining plants, and probably anubias and crypts for the aquatic section. Does anyone have any ideas for plants to stock? The viv won't be heated (unless you count daylight lighting/lighting for the plants and a low power heater for the water), and although I might be using a misting system, it won't be timed for frequent misting.

Thanks for reading,
AOA

P.S - several members have suggested that I look for mostly sub-tropical plants, and unfortunately my flora knowledge is limited, so any advice on planting will be greatly appreciated.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
387 Posts
I thought FBT's required semi tropical water temps (77 degrees or so), but I could be wrong. I'm not sure what you keep you home temps at, but unless your home is in the mid 70's it may be a bit too cool for a lot of tropical species of aquatic plants. For the aquatic plants you've mentioned using, are you using the submersed or emersed?

In the case of terrestrial plants, Pothos is by far a great choice as it's next to impossible to put it somewhere it hates as long as it has water. Another good choice would be some type of seleginella as long as the roots are not placed in water logged substrate. I would also think that you'd be able to find some begonias that might work well in your setup.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Discussion Starter #3 (Edited)
Ok, sorry I couldn't respond earlier. For the aquatic plants, they're going to be somewhat submersed, and I think the water section will be around 4 inches deep so most of them will be a bit emersed. Thanks for the other suggestions. I understand that the fbt's are a subtropical species, but to be honest I might end up keeping a few tropical plants in there. I've seen a lot of setups where a more tropical tank was created and the toads looked active and healthy. I don't think slightly higher humidity and heat will harm them, but if they're uncomfortable or unhealthy I'll lower temp and humidity.

Thanks, and other suggestions are welcome!

Edit: When it comes to water temperature, I use a heater that keeps it at around 75 Fahrenheit.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,016 Posts
I hold that is too warm of a water temperature.

If you have daytime temperatures in the mid 70s as a general ambient, the water in the space you state will be the appropriate temperature without any added heat.

It's part of their thermoregatory behavior to refresh accessing cooler water, and replicates normal principles.

They do not live in bathwaterish tropical temperatures.

I have a friend, ukranian herpetologist saw them in the wild, and had a collection permit. We were both excited by the yellow fetlocks of a tiny locality, shown by a few very large adults, clean, Clean Brillant Green. Big symmetrical black parabolas.

They are not tropical animals. But are sturdy and can tolerate much.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
387 Posts
Ok, sorry I couldn't respond earlier. For the aquatic plants, they're going to be somewhat submersed, and I think the water section will be around 4 inches deep so most of them will be a bit emersed. Thanks for the other suggestions. I understand that the fbt's are a subtropical species, but to be honest I might end up keeping a few tropical plants in there. I've seen a lot of setups where a more tropical tank was created and the toads looked active and healthy. I don't think slightly higher humidity and heat will harm them, but if they're uncomfortable or unhealthy I'll lower temp and humidity.

Thanks, and other suggestions are welcome!

Edit: When it comes to water temperature, I use a heater that keeps it at around 75 Fahrenheit.
So when it comes to having plants transition from submersed to emersed beware that you will encounter issues with the plants 'melting' back. You will lose some leaves and possibly the plant if it doesn't transition nicely. What I would recommend to do would be getting a spare aquarium (10 gallon will be fine) and set it up to transition the plants. This can be done simply by purchasing the plants you want (highly recommend tissue culture plants), plastic pots and some aquatic plant substrate. From there you will fill the aquarium around half way to 3/4 up the side of the pots and you will grow the plants in there. Give them time to establish and get a root system. Plants that are transitioning are sensitive and can be very delicate. So delicate that being trampled by FBT's while they are transitioning will most likely kill the plant. Melting plants will add to the bioload in the water and can provide an unsavory smell. Working to get the plants setup and established you will be able to plant them later (this can take months with tissue culture plants, but WELL WORTH the invested time.)

I've gotten tissue cultures of various Crypts over the years and a single cup or package of plants will generally yield 75-80% surviving plants with the method I mentioned above. You can get really in depth in the conversion with custom soil mixes, hydroponic fertilizer, and providing water flow, but this isn't all necessary. You can generate more plants than you need with $10 bag of 2" pots from Amazon, $20 of cheap Aquarium plant substrate, and a $10 Petco 10 gallon tank during a $1 per gallon sale, a $10 piece of glass for a lid and a $20 light on Amazon. So with a $60 investment you can propagate emersed plants till you're bleeding from the eyes with boredom. If you decide you're done with converting the plants you can drain the water out and use the the tank/lid/light setup to grow cuttings of tropical terrestrial plants such as Begonia, Pepperomia, Marcgravia, Ficus (vine type), or Bromeliads. It can seem to some as yet another 'investment' that was not planned, but if you're going through multiple $5-15 potted aquarium plants and they keep dying you'll understand at that point that the investment into converting the plants was well worth it to save you from having to constantly replace dead or dying plants.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,016 Posts
I think I have seen hints around, and am reminded here, of situations where a passion for tropical plants and the desire to keep them in the right heat and humidity is at odds with some animals needs, mostly amphibians. Sometimes reptiles.

I guess I am of the side that conditions should always sway on the side of what is best for captive animalia.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
13 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Alright, I honestly agree Kmc. I have a big desire to grow a lot of tropical plants, but I shouldn't let that get in the way of the toads' health. I think I can still achieve a good looking vivarium and at the same time keep the toads in the right conditions. My house is usually at around 68-70 degrees, so heating won't be necessary.

For Tihsho, thank you so much for the planting advice. I think what I'll do is use the toad's current tank (10 gallon) to grow out plants and then transplant them into the new tank.

Thank you both for informing me more about the art of vivaria. It's still something I have to work on in all aspects; animal comfort and needs, caring for live plants, and so many other factors. I've learned a lot so far and I hope to learn even more on the board. :)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,016 Posts
Just an idea, perhaps the Caudate forum might have ideas for plants.

I really do feel that keeping FBT sort of, unrelentingly warm might keep their metabolic rate and cortisol levels un naturally high. Blurring patterns of activity perhaps in ways that provide at the very least, the stimuli of sensate diversity in what is a pretty closed format. There are sunny patches, deep cool shade, in both terrain and aquatic spaces. Water has gradients of it's own in nature, and temperatures are slower to change.

Usually waterside animals warm up on land and cool in water. Turtles are the most illustrative models of that.

I thank you for the opportunity to engage with you about these guys.

As an inexpensive colorful anuran I was very protective of them where they were also for sale, or were brought in sick or injured. Or just plain wore out in novelty.

You are the opposite of those experiences, stellar lucky toads.
 
1 - 9 of 9 Posts
Top