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Discussion Starter #1
I was going to set up an extra viv for eventual froglets, or an impulse buy, etc. My son's toad viv has a base layer of pea gravel. This darn viv out produces all my other vivs in regards to springtail (re)production. I was truly considering making a 10 gal grow out for frogelts using pea gravel as the base layer topped with dead leaves. I have seen many many pics showing darts(particularly Phyllobates) being kept on pea gravel, and I wonder what the benefits and draw backs may be. I am fully aware that this method will result in a very heavy viv, hence the thread title.

Any other thoughts?

All my thanks!

JBear
 

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In the past, I have made a couple of vivs with gravel topped with leaf litter. There really is not much of a difference except the weight, The plants do well in it, and it is easy to drain with a turkey baster or something. However once I made a viv with a false bottom, I did not want to go back to a hard to carry viv....
 

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Discussion Starter #3
In the past, I have made a couple of vivs with gravel topped with leaf litter. There really is not much of a difference except the weight, The plants do well in it, and it is easy to drain with a turkey baster or something. However once I made a viv with a false bottom, I did not want to go back to a hard to carry viv....
I appreciate the input! I would like to make clear that this build would have a FB in place under the pea gravel. It would be a FB lifted approximately 1-1.5" off the glass floor. There will be an equal layer of gravel(1-1.5") on top of screening. Then a good layer of oak leaves. Other than it being quite heavy, what are some things to worry about/consider?

All my thanks!

JBear
 

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I have my azureus on pea gravel and ll, I have noticed no particular benefits or drawbacks. Microfauna production is good. I have a couple tanks with charcoal over gravel, then ll and those tanks are seriously rocking the bugs.
 

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Yeah if your worried about the plants, they like it just as much as soil etc, if not more because gravel drains very well, especially if there is a fb under it. Also one thing to note that is a plus for gravel is that gravel does not deteriorate like peat,cocofiber,sphagnum would.... atleast not nearly as fast :rolleyes: so it is easier to make the viv a more "permanent" arrangement.
 

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Thats funny. My toad's viv uses pea gravel and the spring population is booming ! It would be nice as my plants thrive, but it is a heavy SOB to move.
 
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Using Turface would keep it a little lighter, would drain very nicely, would be very bug friendly, keep it cheap at about $10 for a 50 lb. bag from a John Deere Landscaper, and would provide some of the benefits of a clay substrate. If you used Turface, I would still use a false bottom.
 

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Using Turface would keep it a little lighter, would drain very nicely, would be very bug friendly, keep it cheap at about $10 for a 50 lb. bag from a John Deere Landscaper, and would provide some of the benefits of a clay substrate. If you used Turface, I would still use a false bottom.
Would a 2" layer be appropriate? I have no desire for pools/streams/waterfalls/etc. I like very simple, natural environments. Any viv pics you have using Turface? I would like to see it employed...

All my thanks!

JBear
 
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