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Discussion Starter #1
Hi Everyone,

Here is my first attempt at creating a dart frog terrarium. I just planted everything today and will wait at least a month until ordering frogs. I'm planning to put a group of Ranitomeya Imitators in here. Please share any feedback. Below is the list of items in it.

Zilla Front Opening Terrarium 30"x12"x16"
Styrofoam back with mopani wood attached and planter created using spray foam
mopani wood center piece
manzanita branches
hydroballs
ABG soil
springtails
white dwarf isopods
Starter plant pack from Josh's Frogs: ferns, begonias, ficus, bromeliads, + I added a Chinese Pilea and air plant
live moss and live moss slurry from NEHERP
Monsoon Multi misting system
LED Aquarium lights
I also have leaf litter that I haven't added yet


Video Link
https://www.youtube.com/embed/J8c1zRA1PpM



 

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Hi Everyone,



Here is my first attempt at creating a dart frog terrarium. I just planted everything today and will wait at least a month until ordering frogs. I'm planning to put a group of Ranitomeya Imitators in here. Please share any feedback. Below is the list of items in it.



Zilla Front Opening Terrarium 30"x12"x16"

Styrofoam back with mopani wood attached and planter created using spray foam

mopani wood center piece

manzanita branches

hydroballs

ABG soil

springtails

white dwarf isopods

Starter plant pack from Josh's Frogs: ferns, begonias, ficus, bromeliads, + I added a Chinese Pilea and air plant

live moss and live moss slurry from NEHERP

Monsoon Multi misting system

LED Aquarium lights

I also have leaf litter that I haven't added yet





Video Link

https://www.youtube.com/embed/J8c1zRA1PpM







Looks like a great start.

The drainage layer, I don't see it in your pictures. You'll want to make sure that your have separation between water draining at the bottom and your substrate.
 

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It does look like a good start.

Imitators would really appreciate many more climbing structures (they are arboreal, really), and much more cover (plants mostly, placed up high to make the substrate shady) and a good selection of hiding spaces (either medium-ish leafed vining plants, or more hardscape like cork tubes and nut pods).

I don't see any leaf litter in there. Thumbnails love leaf litter, lots of it.

I can't tell -- is there some provision for adjusting top ventilation on that viv?

Imitators are not a great choice for a group, and it isn't always easy to pull out frogs once they are sexable.
 
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Discussion Starter #4
Looks like a great start.

The drainage layer, I don't see it in your pictures. You'll want to make sure that your have separation between water draining at the bottom and your substrate.
Thanks. Yeah, you can't really see it but I have about an inch of hydroballs and a substrate barrier. I tucked the barrier a little in front just for looks. I can see the balls on the side to check for any water build up.
 

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It does look like a good start.

Imitators would really appreciate many more climbing structures (they are arboreal, really), and much more cover (plants mostly, placed up high to make the substrate shady) and a good selection of hiding spaces (either medium-ish leafed vining plants, or more hardscape like cork tubes and nut pods).
Ok, that's what I was worried about. I really want to see how all the plants in there grow out. I do have some more branches and cork but was worried it might suppress the plants.

I don't see any leaf litter in there. Thumbnails love leaf litter, lots of it.
Yup, I have two bags of leaf litter, but didn't want to add it in case I wanted to do rearrangements after getting feedback.

I can't tell -- is there some provision for adjusting top ventilation on that viv?
Yes, the entire top is in screen sections and it came with clear plastic inserts. With all the inserts in there's about two inches all along the back that is open screen.

Imitators are not a great choice for a group, and it isn't always easy to pull out frogs once they are sexable.
I'm glad you mentioned this. I originally was going by the descriptions off of Josh's Frogs, but just found more sources that agree with you. I'll do more research.
 

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Here's just the video I linked in the original post, but embedded. Still figuring the forums out and I can't edit the original post.
 

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Ok, that's what I was worried about. I really want to see how all the plants in there grow out. I do have some more branches and cork but was worried it might suppress the plants.


Yup, I have two bags of leaf litter, but didn't want to add it in case I wanted to do rearrangements after getting feedback.


Yes, the entire top is in screen sections and it came with clear plastic inserts. With all the inserts in there's about two inches all along the back that is open screen.



I'm glad you mentioned this. I originally was going by the descriptions off of Josh's Frogs, but just found more sources that agree with you. I'll do more research.
Ghostwood and manzanita, especially my favorite...Ghostwood, can offer some great jungle gym structures to make all the Negative Space usable, without supplying so much shade that it interferes with shading plants out. Keep in mind, if you wait, it may be too late. You want your plants to grow around your structures, as if your structures have been there for many years. You don't want your structures placement, dictated by how your favorite plant has grown.
Finishing the Hardscape should always be first.
And yes, I totally agree with Socratic. You have wasted Negative Space. Your imitators will absolutely explore every inch, of every structure, you put in there. Leaf litter, too. Leaf litter can be so easily pushed to the side if you need to change things up. If some gets left behind, or pushed/mixed into the ABG, all the better! Those buried leaves will decompose faster, and become isopod food faster.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. Here is my idea of using your negative space about as well as you can for Imitators and Pumilio.
https://www.dendroboard.com/forum/members-frogs-vivariums/334946-jungle-gym.html
 
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Ok, I removed all the plants and did a hardscape update. I added a piece of ghost wood, another mopani, and a spider wood piece.




 
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