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An Interesting Idea (looking for input)

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An Interesting Idea (looking for input)
Old 04-06-2010, 04:57 AM   #11
 
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I might google information on 'Ripariums" these are nice in my view and considering that the water level would be lower,the substrate could be higher on one end allowing a place for the turtle or amphibians to haul themselves out and still be able to control the heat on this basking area so that it is not too warm.
Also seems to provide all necessary needs of plants.
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Old 04-06-2010, 12:32 PM   #12
 
Wow, great comments all.

As far as turtles go, I considered the heat issue and I think that I could mitigate that by using some sort of baffle to diffuse the light on that side of the tank, and install a tiny fan to blow air across the baffle. Taking a page out of my Technology background for dissipating heat, of course.

Further, I've seen TINY turtles at my LPS. Turtles that are surely unable to eat a small fish, like a Neon tetra. Do these get bigger? I have no idea what I'm getting into here.

I am very interested in keeping small turtles and newts. This is a project tank, so I don't mind having to replant it every so often.

Right now I'm keeping a five gal that I'm experimenting with somewhat. It's climate controlled in my office, so depending how long the light has been on, the temp is somewhere between 74-79F. What kind of temps should I expect, water wise, to keep turtles and newts? What other amphibians should I explore keeping?

Keeping in mind, the goal is a large tropical fish tank. Angels, tetras, some barbs, etc. Lots of colors. Lots of plants. The amphibians are a neat diversion from the fish. That's my goal.
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Old 04-06-2010, 04:45 PM   #13
 
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sounds awesome. are those the fish you were already planning? if so, great minds think alike.

I would likeky stick with newts... I think most turtles grow to at least 8 inches across... I've seen snapping turtles at the LFS labelled that they only get to 8 inches, but I've also caught the exact same thing fishing... and they were like a foot across- I had to cut the line and let him keep the hook or he could've bit my finger clean off.

Newts would definately be awesome though... and if your tank was heavily planted the fish could spawn, with the baby fish acting as food for baby newts/salamanders if you decided to breed them.

I would definately research the newts/salamanders heavily- I know turtles will eat things bigger than their mouths by biting chunks off. Frogs generally eat things that will fit in their mouth. I don't know which would be more like a newt though.

Have you looked into snakes that swim? That could be cool too. I would only keep 1 reptile/amphibian species...

and I know (reptiles, dunno about amphibians) would be fine with the water around 78 degrees (typical tropical water heater temperature) but they might need a basking lamp or heat rock...which could affect water temps obviously.
Will also definately need some kind of water movement to keep the water temps similiar throughout the tank, but a canister with inlet on one side and outlet on the opposite might be enough. If not, just put a airstone or something in to provide more water movement...
Airstone would decrease CO2 which might bother the plants a little bit but fish and your other thing would be more important... Just make sure it's a low-light tank, throw some snails, cories, and a single BN pleco (since sometimes they're aggressive towards their own kind) in to handle algae, and you're good. Maybe even some Otto's too.

If the snails go crazy, you'll always have room for a small pack of loaches. I've always wanted coolie loaches but all my tanks are too small.

Remember, the reptile/amphibian should be counted in as added bioload, probably double what a fish would. (since it will be using the bathroom in the water all the time)

I had an idea of screening off the area for the lizard so it can have a higher air temp... attach glass/plastic walls to it's landing, then cut a hole out of the middle... then you can have a light on that side and a fan over the fishes' water... *shrug*

Sounds like an awesome setup... but I agree that it would be more realistic to slant the substrate... Don't think of it as a slant, it can be more like an underwater cliff. (imagine a river- the water drops off in the middle.) You could build terraces to hold the gravel... Or just use the UGF plate vertical and cover it with java moss.

Good luck on your project- we want pics when you're done!
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Old 04-11-2010, 10:34 PM   #14
 
I was down at my lps today making arrangements for the new tank. Have to get the wood on the stand stained an acceptible color for the wife, and have them cut holes into the sides (using the tank as a divider).

Still giving this idea a lot of thought.
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Old 04-12-2010, 05:38 PM   #15
 
I'm so excited, I had to share the update with _someone_. I took the wife to the lps with me to see the setup I'm planing, and she's hooked. The only catch is that we've got to plant/deco it the way the local fish cat explained his vision for it. I'm going to have to kiss my newts goodbye for now.

The tank is something like 56x18x56 on the stand. I'm getting custom stain and holes cut in the side for the Fluval connections for free. Plus, I've been promised all the seeded media I want- gravel, filter scrapes, water, etc.

I need to come up with a deposit of 450$. The second half of the total is due when the tank is ready, 3-4 weeks later.
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Old 04-12-2010, 07:18 PM   #16
 
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Here's a link to a video on Yioutube that might help if you're still looking at a turtle setup. This guy doesn't seem to know/care much about the fish, but he sure does know his stuff when it comes to turtles. He shows the little dry sun bathing area at about :20 seconds in.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sbpMv-WLC5Y

Again, I'd only listen to this guys advice about the turtles. You'd want to stock the fish as if you wanted to keep them alive as well.
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Old 04-12-2010, 09:44 PM   #17
 
Yea, I'm thinking about lowering the water level in my 5gal and adding a couple of newts/ turtles there. Same plan, just on a far smaller scale than I'd originally anticipated. Once I get the set up going, I can move my fish over to the big tank.
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