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 Post subject: marbled salamander
PostPosted: March 29th, 2016, 6:14 pm 

Joined: February 28th, 2016, 3:48 pm
Posts: 6
I aquired 3 marbled salamanders yesterday. I would like a small cool enclosure for them. Any ideas? I just have them in a Tupperware with some rotten log bark and misted it a little. My house is normally in the 70 to 75 area but i was reading they like 60 to 65. Any info would be greatly appreciated. I'd like these little guys to be happy.


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 Post subject: Re: marbled salamander
PostPosted: March 29th, 2016, 10:59 pm 
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Joined: October 18th, 2011, 12:03 pm
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Location: San Francisco, California
Since they live a long time, if you are willing to spend the money, a low exo terra has alot of cross ventilation. Alot of people make the mistake of keeping temperate salamanders humid. They just need it damp and that's easy - just add water. I like a pressure sprayer - Flo master is the one I use but no matter what make, don't get less than 2 gallon capacity. It defeats the purpose of saving time if you have to refill it too often. The sprayers allow you to control the character and volume of the spray. Keep a wide smooth stone under cover, dry for respite from continual wet. They mitigate osmotic function better with an option to escape constant moisture. They will also gravitate to a dryer site if there is too much ammonia build up in the sub. Its just a good idea to provide that opportunity.

I like to use cork slabs, narrow flat pieces embedded in the sub to make up a percentage of the terra detail. It looks great and simulates grounded branch feature but is resistant to molds and rot. It won't rot at all when wet, which is good in a closed system. Pothos and flower pot half or some other dark shelter. A sunk water feature for a pool, it is best lined up with the level of sub, so that walking into it is effortless. I like to put a couple stones in the water that break surface . If you have more putting them around the edge reduces sub drag in the water. And it looks nice.

If your house runs a little warm, like the fish room did where I kept most of the amphibians, I put them low, it was cooler there than the temps I read standing up. I kept fire salamanders and many American and European species for many years on the lower shelves and they did well. Most of them that way for sometimes years at a time because they were display animals to show environment types.

Its cool that you want to do something nice with them. You may not see them often but who cares - they are treasured.


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 Post subject: Re: marbled salamander
PostPosted: March 30th, 2016, 10:40 am 

Joined: December 3rd, 2010, 12:06 pm
Posts: 1652
The Caudata.org and Dendroboard.com forums would probably give you lots of implementable ideas. I think the sky's the limit - other than your own budget, "handiness", imagination, and free time to learn and tinker and maintain. Ha ha. Seriously though, native ambystomatids are great candidates for fabulous display terraria. You could have live plants, still or running water, 3-dimensional backgrounds making up part of the usable space, etc.

Have fun!


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 Post subject: Re: marbled salamander
PostPosted: March 31st, 2016, 9:59 am 

Joined: June 11th, 2010, 9:42 am
Posts: 351
Location: Utah
One thing that Kelly said that does not get emphasized enough is air circulation. Both top and cross, next to temp I have found that stagnant air and stagnant substrates are the most frequent stressors. Having ideal exchange will also give you more of a cushion if temps get a bit too high for a short period. I have found that my tiger salamander and fire salamanders are much more tolerant of temp fluctuations if there is proper air circulation, this has been important in my area because it could be 75° F one day and 40° the next.

-Thomas


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 Post subject: Re: marbled salamander
PostPosted: March 31st, 2016, 10:38 am 

Joined: December 3rd, 2010, 12:06 pm
Posts: 1652
Good point Thom. Reptile keepers cheat circulation to get temps up, and amphib keepers cheat circulation to get humidity up. The animals lose either way. Radiant heating on the one hand, and automated misting or fogging on the other, are 2 easy technical fixes that permit good air exchange while also providing for the other vital needs to be met.

OP, you asked about ideas for "small cool enclosures". Here's a link to one that might be a little intimidating, but which can definitely give you some ideas (note its age - lights have come a ways since then, you wouldn't want to use VHO or HO fluorescents for temperate sallies, they put out a LOT of heat). See the bit near the bottom about misting & fogging.
http://www.joshsfrogs.com/catalog/blog/ ... on-how-to/

And here's a you tube for adapting a humidifier for herp use:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pp2XieaYmJ8

Frequently adding moisture to the air like this helps avoid the "need" to frequently soak the substrate, which is a recipe for diverse maladies. Contemporary digital timers allow spray durations down to seconds, and many cycles per day. So you can do a little spritz every hour or two or six, depending on how dry your house is.

cheers


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 Post subject: Re: marbled salamander
PostPosted: March 31st, 2016, 1:16 pm 

Joined: February 28th, 2016, 3:48 pm
Posts: 6
I have a vertical 10 gallon with a small pond. But I had to remove the door. It's a exo terra style enclosure. But with the door on it molds. I added a small fan and hand mist a few times a day now...I know the marbled do not climb and it has little floor space the way I've built it, also it gets 75 to 80 degrees when "closed"


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 Post subject: Re: marbled salamander
PostPosted: March 31st, 2016, 1:19 pm 

Joined: February 28th, 2016, 3:48 pm
Posts: 6
I wanted small critters for it. But can't get it growing right yet..also any ideas for something that looks nice that would grow and cover the back wall.


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 Post subject: Re: marbled salamander
PostPosted: March 31st, 2016, 11:29 pm 
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Joined: October 18th, 2011, 12:03 pm
Posts: 3948
Location: San Francisco, California
There's something else going on with it besides the presence of a glass door. Narrow tall spaces aren't suitable for many taxa, if we are talking about a 12X12 upright dimension, no matter how "tall" it is. Good for small arboreal tarantula or mantids, but for herps it can be restrictive, per living style and attaining a gradiant of principles.

They are one of the most popular sizes because they are least expensive - and they are also the commonest size seen discarded and empty.

Easier to work with and better for animals 18" in square dimension but most serviceable of exo terra for smaller terrestrial taxa is 24 long by 18 wide.
Very small arboreal neos I have started in a 12X12 diameter space but the set up was simplistic, transitory, and aided by the ambient favor of the room.

Low profile (shallow) tanks with screened tops Non exo terra are also accommodating to sufficient air exchange in the temperate taxa/warmish circumstances scenario.


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 Post subject: Re: marbled salamander
PostPosted: April 2nd, 2016, 9:10 am 

Joined: December 3rd, 2010, 12:06 pm
Posts: 1652
Quote:
something that looks nice that would grow and cover the back wall


creeping fig would work (especially if you gave it something to "grab" likke a smear of silicone on the vertical glass), but you'll be trimming it quite often once it establishes

don't - DO NOT - release it outside, it can be a rampaging monster

some cultivars are especially attractive, e.g. "oak leaf": http://www.neherpetoculture.com/vines which is also not quite as boisterous as the parent

I agree completely w/ Kelly re: the unsuitability of that particular enclosure for these particular animals - a 10-gal vert would be BAD for a single marbled, let alone 3. You and they would be better off with something like a 20-gal "long" or "breeder" with a screen top and a humidifier setup like in the youtube I linked earlier. Such a setup would be easy to light for plants too.

Your "LFS" (local fish store) may periodically have sales of used tanks like this (a 40-gal would be even more fun, for interesting substrate/background/water/plant/props combinations). A buck a gallon isn't too cheap to hope for. Low-sided tanks with a lot of floor space have many, many applications. They're also much easier to get into, both for routine maintenance and complete tear-down, than something taller that isn't front-opening.

Alternatively, if you're just a little handy and have a little workspace, you can go to a glazier with some measurements and have them cut you 5 pieces of glass (and sand the exposed "top" edges of what will be the 4 sides). Take them home, clean the glass thoroughly so the silicone will adhere perfectly, and assemble them. This is a nice way to go if you have a particular table or stand - or light fixture - you're looking to use. You can custom-fit. Some people just hate the look of the plastic trim that factory-made glass aquaria come with - truly all-glass tanks are very sleek and modern-looking. Of course, for some animals (not necessarily terrestrial sallies though!) you'd need to make your lid...back to that handy/workspace question. Anyway, my point is, aquarists & herpers & even some plant growers make their own glass tanks all the time, it's not a very big deal. Google DIY glass aquarium, if you don't have a LFS. Everybody has a glazier pretty close by, we all have windows, shower doors, mirrors etc.

cheers


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 Post subject: Re: marbled salamander
PostPosted: April 7th, 2016, 1:55 pm 

Joined: February 28th, 2016, 3:48 pm
Posts: 6
Do these marbled salamanders actually drink water or get it from the insects and worms it consumes? I just wonder cause I have them in a plastic container with a small amount of water in a slope 1/4 inch water at best in one side. But the water is dirty etc from the rotting bark and leaves dirt.


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 Post subject: Re: marbled salamander
PostPosted: April 7th, 2016, 2:55 pm 

Joined: February 28th, 2016, 3:48 pm
Posts: 6
Also if anyone is in the west columbia area. Id give 2 of them away ;)


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 Post subject: Re: marbled salamander
PostPosted: April 8th, 2016, 9:02 pm 
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Joined: October 18th, 2011, 12:03 pm
Posts: 3948
Location: San Francisco, California
How did you get the salamanders?


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 Post subject: Re: marbled salamander
PostPosted: April 10th, 2016, 6:05 pm 

Joined: February 28th, 2016, 3:48 pm
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I got them from a buddy when I moved from n.c. to s.c. most likely wild caught.


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 Post subject: Re: marbled salamander
PostPosted: April 19th, 2016, 7:25 pm 
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Joined: October 18th, 2011, 12:03 pm
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Location: San Francisco, California
Like all amphibians salamanders have permeable skin and absorb water. This makes them very sensitive to unhealthy factors so keep the water clean. The water should be de chlorinated and contain a normal amount of total dissolved salts and minerals. Most places tap water is suitable and can be treated with a de chlorinator you can find in any pet store for fish.

The rotting leaves and debris seen in natural pools and puddles do not serve as an example for water in a closed system. In a small amount of water subject to captive by products, blooms of microbial life can cause disease. There are some handy tricks to servicing a small water feature to keep it clean and healthy w/ minimum disturbance to situ and animal, or some people go for fostering a nitrogen cycle in an enclosed body of water that more or less mimic the dynamic of a natural system, but your guy just needs a clean puddle type feature.
Although some people just keep a salamander in moist sub, they do better with an option to immerse in clear water, just as an option or corner to get "less moist" somewhere easily is also good to have.


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 Post subject: Re: marbled salamander
PostPosted: October 5th, 2016, 6:32 pm 
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Location: San Francisco, California
Im inadverently bumping this sallie thread pretty much to comment on exo terra vivariums. i just got through doing my little evening check with my collection, and so its fresh in my mind, but its always something Ive been meaning to mention.

The front opening glass doors are really the most favorable feature of this product. In zoo or museum collections there is often a room behind the displays, and the enclosures open from the back, which is the same diff, a great advantage ergonomically in most - but not all animal circumstances.

One of the advantages in servicing an environment at/in an animal integrated level is a calmness of charge, as opposed to coming from above, with also the racket that often accompanies top openers, moving lights, the cheap plastic latches that create a jarring percussive, etc.

Its not just a courtesy, but I often want to be unobtrusive for practical reasons as well, offering perishables, or new food items . I would rather food quietly appear than run in tandem with a panicky dash.

Of course this applies to reptiles and not so much amphibians, however their reluctance and trepidation in startle does exist as well, just more inscrutable.

There is much I wish were different in the design of exo terras, especially the top, the mesh grade and the general quality of the plastic frame. But the full opening front is why I have some.


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 Post subject: Re: marbled salamander
PostPosted: March 6th, 2017, 10:57 am 
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Joined: January 1st, 2012, 7:14 am
Posts: 369
Location: Pike County KY
Kelly Mc wrote:
There is much I wish were different in the design of exo terras, especially the top, the mesh grade and the general quality of the plastic frame. But the full opening front is why I have some.


I especially like the hinging to the side. Doors that drop down can easily create a ruckus. As can a sliding glass panel with something stuck in the track, in front of or under the glass. I have a variety, but keep drawing myself to the Exo Terra and the Vision cage. Something that can be opened via a hook is paramount with my hots, as well as something that can be locked without a degree in engineering.


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