Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

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Don Becker
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Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by Don Becker » February 15th, 2012, 5:08 pm

I have two Gray Treefrogs in an upright 10 gallon tank. Currently the bottom is just gravel, with fake plants as well. The gravel helps the water run away, but keep the tank humid as well. I used to have it as a planted viv, but the frogs would climb in the dirt, and then all over the glass on the in side. Is there any substrate that isn't as messy, or do I just need to stick to cleaning the front glass every day if I switch back to a planted viv?

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by Hornemadness » February 15th, 2012, 5:11 pm

If you use small bark as the substrate they wont track it on the glass as much. You can also plant stuff right in the gravel, if its humid enough and there is water and the bottom of the gravel.

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Don Becker
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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by Don Becker » February 15th, 2012, 5:15 pm

When I had it planted, I had a potting soil mixture in the bottom. The problem came when I put crickets in, and the frogs would follow them down under the plants to catch them. I will try small bark substrate.

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by jayder85 » February 15th, 2012, 5:24 pm

I used to have the exact same problem with mine and i made the switch to hardwood mulch. Worked like a charm!

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by Jimi » February 15th, 2012, 6:53 pm

The suggestions already offered are fine. Basically anything with particles too heavy or too large to ride the frogs to the glass. Definitely nix the bare dirt. I haven't kept many sticky anurans at all but I feel your pain. Thoughts that came to me when I read this:

1) countersink potted plants into the gravel, and mulch the pots with gravel
2) select plants that will be happy just planted right in high-water-table gravel ("lucky bamboo" dracaena, pothos, etc) -
incidentally, you could keep the gravel or swap it out for much-lighter "hydroton" or "LECA" from a hydroponics shop or well-stocked nursery
3) some sort of nontoxic, mold-resistant wood-mulch product (coir chunks, etc); or introduce springtails to eat the mold you'll eventually get on most non-toxic wood mulches
4) have a live-plant substrate if your light levels will allow - bryophytes: not sure if you cool this tank, if not you could use a tropical moss, if so, try anything from the yard or woods, using a buttermilk/moss blender paste on your dirt or gravel; or angiosperms: use a small-leaved creeping vine
5) just go full-on paludarium - a couple inches of water with (unless you plan on very frequent water changes) an airstone and sponge filter, and the gravel-mulched potted plants on top of upended, barely-submerged drain saucers or flagstone pieces or something; maybe add a big cobble to introduce prey items if these guys aren't taking food off forceps or from your fingers; could include some newts or fish perhaps, or aquatic plants if light levels allow

Maybe these random meanders will get the creative juices excited? You have lots of options...native treefrogs are totally under-appreciated, I loved my barkers.

cheers,
Jimi

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by Jimi » February 15th, 2012, 6:55 pm

Ah, kibosh the water idea - forgot you were using a vert. Unless you wanted to "go big", ha ha.

Cheers,
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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by Don Becker » February 15th, 2012, 7:05 pm

I actually do have a small water dish in there right now. I'll try to take a picture of it tommorow to show. It's nothing too fancy though.

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Joseph S.
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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by Joseph S. » February 15th, 2012, 7:26 pm

Leaflitter covering would be ideal-hard to beat for looks. Magnolia/oak leaves work well and take longer to decompose.

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by Don Becker » February 15th, 2012, 7:32 pm

Not a great pic since the top light is off, but you can get the gist of it.
Image

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by AndyO'Connor » February 15th, 2012, 8:09 pm

yeah I find that leaf litter looks the best, and the two mentioned (oak and magnolia) will last a long time. I mixed maple leaves in one tank but they get mushy if wet and trampled often. a mix of mulch, sphagnum, and leaf litter would probably be the best natural looking cover over the soil.

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by KingCam » February 16th, 2012, 7:44 am

psyon wrote:Is there any substrate that isn't as messy, or do I just need to stick to cleaning the front glass every day if I switch back to a planted viv?
My salamanders get dirt all over everything. I just use some distilled water in a heavy duty spray bottle to blast it off the glass. Distilled water doesn't leave water spots all over everything after it dries. I usually only have to manually wipe down the glass every month or so.

(Also, and I've been considering doing this, you could coat the back and sides with silicone and cover it with coco fiber. This would make your animals feel more secure, you'd have a nice looking background, and you'd only have to worry about keeping the front clean. Use black silicone to make it look decent from the outside.)

Using moss from the woods w/ live sphagnum moss I bought online keeps most of the dirt where it belongs, but tiger salamanders tend to burrow, so there's always a mess to clean up somewhere :P They love finding my best looking piece of moss, digging a hole under it, and then ripping it in half to get out. It's their very favorite nighttime activity.

Aside from that, I just spot clean. I remove feces that I can see, and leave the rest to be decomposed by springtails and pill bugs. For the plants, I just use a jet of distilled water from a spray bottle to clean the leaves. For their water dish, since it's actually planted in the ground, I just vacuum the old water out with a wet/dry vac, wipe it out with a paper towel, and refill with a gallon of spring water.

Image

Image

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KingCam
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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by KingCam » February 16th, 2012, 8:12 am

Oh, and since we're talking specifically about tree frogs I might as well share my actual tree frog terrarium :P

Image

I like custom built cages like this because I can drill holes in the backs and sides to secure potted plants or add/remove features. But the main advantage is that there is only one clear surface that has to be kept clean and the other solid sides make the frogs feel secure.

I clean this enclosure in a similar fashion. I "blast" stuff with distilled water to remove dirt and grime, I spot clean droppings, and for this one I siphon the water out when it needs changed. 4 gallons of water is a bit much for my small-ish wet/dry vac.

For any planted tanks I suggest using natural janitors: springtails, pill bugs, earthworms, snails, etc

Here is an older photo before it was planted, to show the whole enclosure:
Image
Notice the water spots all over the plexi? This photo was taken before I used distilled water in my spray bottle.

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Don Becker
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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by Don Becker » February 16th, 2012, 8:17 am

KingCam wrote:For their water dish, since it's actually planted in the ground, I just vacuum the old water out with a wet/dry vac, wipe it out with a paper towel, and refill with a gallon of spring water.
Depending on what you use for a water dish, set one inside another before putting them in the soil. Then you can pull one out without the dirt falling in around it.

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KingCam
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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by KingCam » February 16th, 2012, 8:28 am

psyon wrote:
KingCam wrote:For their water dish, since it's actually planted in the ground, I just vacuum the old water out with a wet/dry vac, wipe it out with a paper towel, and refill with a gallon of spring water.
Depending on what you use for a water dish, set one inside another before putting them in the soil. Then you can pull one out without the dirt falling in around it.
wow, that's a really great and simple idea! I feel kinda silly for not thinking of that already :lol:

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Kelly Mc
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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by Kelly Mc » February 21st, 2012, 2:03 am

Often with treefrogs especially raising froglets I dont use conventional particulate sub at all. Except whats in the bromiliad or pothos pot. For my adult aussie whites for years I used unbleached paper towels and put a bed of moist sphagnum in their cork log where they both climb in to nap diurnally. There are many surfaces for them on the branches and elevated plates ( I use them to simulate large sturdy leaf planes - of plants I cant grow in there. They sit on them all the time - like patios lol.) When I got them an exo terra I took the cheesy background and cut the shape of their water bowl in it so that it sets flush like a pool and every couple weeks I take it out and give it a rinse , it makes a much better floor then a background.

The plates my aussies like to sit on are meant for serving sushi, I think . I siliconed a fat chunk of cork and on the other a plastic ball on the bottom so that they fit tight into open matrix spaces of the grapevine. One of them - the one by the water pool actually looks and feels like an actual leaf - polished and finely viened botanically - I wish I had more than one of those for them.

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by Kelly Mc » February 21st, 2012, 3:53 am

Magnolia Leaves are one of those reasons where I get to use the word Splendid.

I wish I knew someone with a tree .

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by ohioherpercountryboy » February 21st, 2012, 6:11 am

[Ive took care of grey treefrogs before and have learned to just use all gravle and sand. you could put a small log and twigs. if you need feeding tips, try small crickets and or other soft bodyed insects. febuary 21st 2012.ohioherpercountryboy

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by Kelly Mc » February 21st, 2012, 5:08 pm

Ohioherpercountryboy - Grey tree frogs are beautiful! I read somewhere on here that you are also very familiar with chorus frogs - they are my all time favorite small frog . Such active tricky little frogs . I never saw them in the wild though

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by Don Becker » February 21st, 2012, 5:30 pm

There is a chorus frog in with my treefrogs. He is usually hiding but comes out and sits on the log now and then. I've kept plenty of both over the last few years. Both take crickets readily. The grays will dive bomb the crickets to catch them.

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by jayder85 » February 22nd, 2012, 7:29 am

With a little patience, i found that it doesnt take long to get Gray Treefrogs to eat the canned crickets. I started by hand feeding them, which they take to pretty quickly. After time i just got to the point where i could put them on a small plate and they would come down and eat them.

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by Paul White » February 22nd, 2012, 8:56 am

How's the nutrition on the canned inverts compare to live ones?

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by KingCam » February 22nd, 2012, 8:58 am

I'd very much like to house a few chorus frogs. Are they pretty easy to keep? How much land:water do they need? Do they sing in captivity frequently? I assume if they'd take crickets they'd also take small roaches?

Thanks, and sorry for derailing the conversation :P

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by jayder85 » February 22nd, 2012, 9:44 am

Paul White wrote:How's the nutrition on the canned inverts compare to live ones?
Nutritionally there isn't really much difference between the two. They may even be a little better. I liked them because of ease to store, no pain of taking care of a large number of crickets, no frequent 45 minute run to the nearest petstore to get a bunch, and you can dust them just like the live ones before you feed. They also dont run into hidden areas of the cage where the animals cant reach them, and they dont hop into the water and drown.

I also varied the diet with mealworms, grasshoppers, earthworms, etc. Whether you prefer live or canned, a solid cricket diet will do okay, but for best nutitrion, a good vitamin dusting is a great thing to practice regardless of what you feed.

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by jayder85 » February 22nd, 2012, 9:49 am

KingCam wrote:I'd very much like to house a few chorus frogs. Are they pretty easy to keep? How much land:water do they need? Do they sing in captivity frequently? I assume if they'd take crickets they'd also take small roaches?

Thanks, and sorry for derailing the conversation :P
I have kept Spring Peepers, Mountain Chorus Frogs and Upland Chorus Frogs. For their size they are pretty hardy little guys. The trick is finding insects small enough for them to eat. If you have that then you will have no problem. I kept mine in a densly planted viv. They really prefer to hide instead of sitting out on a bare branch. A viv that maintains good humidity with a small water dish is all that you need. I dont know how small of roaches you can get, but they require very small insects. Mine did well on pinhead crickets with a vitamin dusting.

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by Paul White » February 22nd, 2012, 9:59 am

I'll experiment with canned crickets when I get my geckos then. I HATE live crickets. They woudln't be the only food source--crested gecko diet and mealworms would also be in there--but damn that'd be nice.

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by KingCam » February 22nd, 2012, 10:21 am

jayder85 wrote:
KingCam wrote:I'd very much like to house a few chorus frogs. Are they pretty easy to keep? How much land:water do they need? Do they sing in captivity frequently? I assume if they'd take crickets they'd also take small roaches?

Thanks, and sorry for derailing the conversation :P
I have kept Spring Peepers, Mountain Chorus Frogs and Upland Chorus Frogs. For their size they are pretty hardy little guys. The trick is finding insects small enough for them to eat. If you have that then you will have no problem. I kept mine in a densly planted viv. They really prefer to hide instead of sitting out on a bare branch. A viv that maintains good humidity with a small water dish is all that you need. I dont know how small of roaches you can get, but they require very small insects. Mine did well on pinhead crickets with a vitamin dusting.
Thank you very much for the info! I have unlimited numbers of newborn-sized lobster roaches, which are comparable in size to pinheads.

I'll probably opt to collect a few eggs or tadpoles rather than adults. Will the tadpoles do okay if I treat them like grey tree frog tadpoles?

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by jayder85 » February 22nd, 2012, 10:42 am

Paul- I think that you would really prefer them. I dont even think that dusting the canned ones would be totally neccessary, but i gave mine a very light dusting. A little light sprinkle. If you put them in a bag of dust and shake them you will actually get too much dust because the canned insects are pretty moist and you would almost get a dough on the crickets. So be very sparing with any dusting. Other than that, they are great. I love to use them. I have a Bearded Dragon that i have had for years and he would eat a can and a half if i let him.

King Cam- I never raised any Chorus Frogs, but i am sure just from the size of the adults that the neonates would be TINY. I have seen many newly transformed Gray Treefrogs and they are so small i dont even know what they eat in the wild.

To all others- sorry for taking this thread in another direction!

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by KingCam » February 22nd, 2012, 12:12 pm

jayder85 wrote:King Cam- I never raised any Chorus Frogs, but i am sure just from the size of the adults that the neonates would be TINY. I have seen many newly transformed Gray Treefrogs and they are so small i dont even know what they eat in the wild.

To all others- sorry for taking this thread in another direction!
Well if baby roaches are too big I also have a springtail culture. If those aren't small enough I don't know what is! :P

Thanks for the info guys. Also, I like to second jayder's apology: sorry for hijacking the thread!

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by ohioherpercountryboy » February 26th, 2012, 4:12 pm

[they do love crickets then.Ive never seen mine dive bomb them before though.Any more questions on your treefrog habitat?

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by ThatFrogGuy » February 26th, 2012, 6:00 pm

KingCam-I raised a couple chorus frog eggs a few years ago, and the metamorphs are TINY. I ended up letting them go because I couldn't find anything small enough. I've raised gray froglets on fruitflies, but even they were too big for the chorus frogs. Springtails or white worms are probably the only options.

-Zach

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by Don Becker » February 26th, 2012, 6:34 pm

ThatFrogGuy wrote:KingCam-I raised a couple chorus frog eggs a few years ago, and the metamorphs are TINY. I ended up letting them go because I couldn't find anything small enough. I've raised gray froglets on fruitflies, but even they were too big for the chorus frogs. Springtails or white worms are probably the only options.

-Zach
I raised some metamorph chorus frogs, and fed them newly hatched crickets.

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by KingCam » March 6th, 2012, 9:04 am

ThatFrogGuy wrote:KingCam-I raised a couple chorus frog eggs a few years ago, and the metamorphs are TINY. I ended up letting them go because I couldn't find anything small enough. I've raised gray froglets on fruitflies, but even they were too big for the chorus frogs. Springtails or white worms are probably the only options.

-Zach
Hmmm. okay thanks. I have a springtail culture, I just figured they would be too small. I guess not :P

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Kelly Mc
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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by Kelly Mc » March 6th, 2012, 9:37 am

psyon wrote:
I raised some metamorph chorus frogs, and fed them newly hatched crickets.
Yeah totally - if they can cram it down they Will and they Can . Froglets are meant to eat Big and grow fast. I find it better to give them up to capacity than assume its necessary to go micro tiny . They see and catch the prey easier, its less apt to vanish in env. I havent run into many neo anything that couldnt handle new hatched crickets

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Re: Best way to keep planted treefrog viv clean?

Post by Kelly Mc » March 6th, 2012, 10:14 am

For newly morphed froglets of all species a dusting of fine calcium powder inhibits the mobility of the pinhead crix helps the babies . In combo with a 5.0 uvb bulb within range enhances growth as well - even for red eyed tree frogs (growing more then twice as fast than groups raised without uvb)and other nocturnals . In nature many arboreal nocturnal geckos and frogs rest in a way where their bodies will strategically contact daylight . Its virtually unescapable, and the conversion realities of sauria and chelonia , while dramatic and well documented per its absence, arent the only animals that respond to its impacts - however discretely and "unresearched"

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