New PA Woods Vivarium (Gray Tree Frogs) - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 34 Old 12-15-2018, 01:18 AM Thread Starter
A very sad update but not on the tree frogs...

I really didn't want to write this because it's still hard to deal with but a very bad situation occurred in the latter half of the week. After a very big feast for the Toads of the Western PA Woods Vivarium all was normal and I had another quiet week until then.

Everything changed when late Wednesday night I saw Ace sitting on a fern and she had a prolapse. I was so frustrated seeing this and I placed her into a small bin and soaked her in hopes she could kick her organs back in herself but she could not.

The next morning I took her to the vet and the vet got her organs back inside her body. It all seemed like it would work out. Then the next morning again Ace had another prolapse. Again I took her to the vet unsure of what would happen. The vet assured me that this may keep happening unless we performed surgery to trim the organ and put it back inside her as step 1. Step 2 would be to figure out why the prolapse happened. Step 3 would be to take action. Before any further action could be planned the vet told me I would have to sign a consent form in case Ace did not wake up from being put under in the surgery. I assured her I would not blame her should Ace have passed because we did literally all that we could do with the surgery and immediate vet visits.

I waited all day until around 5 pm when the vet called me. She said that Ace had woken up and been active and normal. So she had survived the surgery which is step 1. Ace stayed the night at the vet and I'm going tomorrow to pick her up and we will plan what's next for step 2.

This is a very big deal that she had surgery. I am almost 100% that Ace can never breed now. As many of you know this was a major reason why I came back to the hobby in order to replenish the native frogs and toads. Today critically damaged that goal and was a very big let down in many ways. Ace had already had a seizure months ago from the toxins of a gray tree frog and now had a prolapse. Ace has overcome so much in her life. The will to live is truly a trait that Ace has. She is so strong and tough and I am no where near as tough as she is. She is very special to me and I love all my animals but even before this Ace was just very special. I truly and honestly wanted Ace to be the mother of this goal that a hobbyist can replenish the native species and not just toads. Because she is so special and how much I admire her and how strong she truly is I believed she would mate with her equally as impressive mate Pious and they would create some of the toughest and most impressive toads. I still 100% believe she would produce the most impressive offspring and I'm not sure another female toad can match her traits that she would pass down.

Sadly I do not believe she can mate with Pious now and she most likely cannot be the mother of this goal. It is devastating to me with how much effort I put into it and the hopes I had of making sure her beauty and legacy lived on forever.

I can't continue to update about this because it's still very new and I am not accepting of this just yet but I can say I'm thankful that I have her and I will make sure that I cherish her every moment when I get her back. I will not give Pious another female he is going to live out his days with Ace as long as those two live. I just cannot think to take away her best friend just so he can mate. Those two will permanently live as a couple regardless of what Ace can and can't do.

I believe constipation to be the problem. There can be a few reasons why this makes sense. The main reason I believe this is because while I have water bins for the toads and a fogger that that hydrates the toads, they must not be going to the bathroom in the water because they must not feel safe to or must not like a large bin to use. So I'll try and place a small water bin in the enclosure to see if the other two toads will use it. The other reason is being winter and toads also have a slow metabolism so this means they may use the restroom less then they normally would. So they may not be passing their waste because of the season and metabolism. The other reason may be if a toad eats too much or an item is too large. Well nothing has been too large because the biggest thing I use are large crickets. This leaves the other and much more probable Ace overate and could not pass a bowl movement and instead may have had a prolapse.

I believe the small water dish and season along with slow metabolism may be the cause. So I am also throwing around the idea of getting a laxative from the vet to give to the toads so they all go regularly. I am not sure just yet but we will get this problem solved. Ace is doing great and will remain a focus point of my work.

I will update you all of her condition and step 2 tomorrow.

I am making the next video tonight which will be coming out around New Year's Eve. The Gray Tree Frogs and Dumpy Family will be featured. Sorry for no update on the Gray Tree Frogs but they are connected to the PA Woods Vivariums family. I will have more updates on the Gray Tree Frogs and the Toads tomorrow.

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post #12 of 34 Old 12-16-2018, 12:54 AM Thread Starter
A glimmer of hope

So today when I got a phone call from the vet she told me some very good news. So apparently she performed surgery on Ace but she will in a year or so be able to breed with Pious. This was one very good sign that she will be able to live life to the fullest!

When I got her she seemed to be doing good and wanted to go home. I was very happy to have her back. She has gone through a lot of hard times but she is a fighter!

It's been a very high stress weekend so I don't have too much to share because all the attention was on Ace and her condition. I did manage to get all the content I needed to make the next video. I finished deciding on the clips. You will see a lot of Bane, Christian and their special guests the Dumpy Family. There are a lot of really incredible clips and I'm really looking forward to sharing this with you!

I'm just so relieved Ace is healthy and in my care again. I'm very happy that I have something positive to share with you for this update.

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post #13 of 34 Old 12-22-2018, 01:47 AM Thread Starter
Got back from vacation...

I just got back from vacation and was gone from Sunday to Friday night then had to go to work so I only got to check on everyone and go off of updates given to me.

It was nice to get away but man I had to drive 13 hours before sun up and after sun down to work overnight tonight at my job so as the night goes on we will see how things go.

I got an update on the toad as she is healthy and she provided a stool sample for the doctor. It came back negative for worms! This means so far in testing a wild toad is free from parasites as of right now! I had an organic dewormer and used it for a while so maybe it actually worked!

The female toad is doing good from her surgery and will be good to go home tomorrow. I'm very happy for her!

As for the Gray Tree Frogs well they are a little to chubby for my liking. They had a feast and became overweight so they will be on a diet. I am surprised how much weight they put on. Little plump tree frogs it's kinda funny but not healthy so we will get them under control.

To my knowledge the baby tree frogs are doing great and may have grown! I'm very excited to see tomorrow and will let you all know.

I was given a link to the Biopod Grand and I was still thinking between the Grand and Aqua. That's one issue I'm dealing with.

I am also doing the commentary for the upcoming video coming New Year's Eve! You'll see how the Gray Tree Frogs became chubby!

I will be looking to create a guide and detailed article on mixed species first for the next article I'll be writing. I feel that many new keepers have been coming into the hobby asking for care on species that will not work together or are new to the hobby and want to have two species they've never owned just seen in picture and YouTube and are trying to recreate what they saw. I am doing this out of concern, love for the animals, and hopefully to educate new keepers or discourage from unlikely mixed species setups and avoiding them. I feel this may be one of the most important articles I'll write for forums. This I hope other keepers will share when someone has a mixed species setup with judging whether or not their setup can be successful.

I'll have more info tomorrow!

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post #14 of 34 Old 12-23-2018, 01:53 AM Thread Starter
A good and quiet weekend!

So I did manage to sleep at least a little bit since last night and I got a chance to see the babies tonight! They look great and got much bigger! They are still far away from meeting Bane and Christian. The little babies seem to be getting more fond of people and are very comfortable with people handling them. I believe they are actually Cope's Gray Tree Frogs because of the green coloration they display. It's like a plain green which is something that the Cope's Gray Tree Frogs display usually. The difference between them and the adults has helped me to understand that Bane is a gray tree frog not a Cope's Gray Tree Frog. So thanks to these babies for helping settle the debate as to what Bane was. Of course this will be very interesting to see what will happen when Cope's Gray and Gray Tree Frogs meet and live among one another. Will there be a certain species that takes control or will it be whoever the more dominant frogs are? This will be very interesting moving forward.

Bane and Christian are doing great and are chubby. They were slow moving and calm all day today. I cannot wait to show you the video coming out soon of how incredible these tree frogs are! They are absolutely incredible and beautiful.

I am very excited also to create the upcoming article for keepers on mixing species and to give many tips on the subject. I hope this will be offered as something that members will read and offer to newbie keepers that ask the questions of mixing species. This truly is meant to benefit the animals and ensure readers understand the risks as well as the different factors that go into a setup with multiple inhabitants.

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post #15 of 34 Old 12-29-2018, 01:33 AM Thread Starter
This was a week I'll never forget but want to...

So I have another update on the continuing story of my toad Ace. While I was on vacation she was doing great then about two days later before I could unpack everything from my trip she had another prolapse. I just thought this would be put back in and things would be normal but on a very sad Christmas Eve the vet talked to me about euthanasia for Ace. I told her no not on Christmas Eve I wanted to wait and give her a chance. The vet thought she would continue to have a prolapse and it was painful for her having them so it would just cause suffering. I had three options left as well as euthanasia.

I could give her more time and see how she does maybe she can recuperate. possibly hibernate her since she was actually on pace to hibernate. If it's a risk of death then there would be nothing to lose. The third option would be to try to run tests on her but other vets may actually put her down so that's not safe. I was somewhere between option 1,2 and euthanasia.

I had a horrible night Christmas Eve and Christmas thinking Ace was just sooner or later going to have to be buried. The irony is I was trying to save her from the thing that was going to kill her. No toad had ever survived a prolapse and only female toads had them for me. I was beginning to wonder if it was still worth it if I was having problems with the females why would I put another through this? Then on Thursday I believe the answer came from an outside source.

We put Ace into a small container to quarantine her and had it next to her home so she could still see it and maybe get some type of motivation. Well her mate and long time tank mate Pious came to the front of the tank and he saw her. He sat and looked at her as she looked back at him. It seems that Ace is doing really good for the moment and Pious appeared to motivate her with his presence. It appears that seeing him was something that gave her a reason to fight and hopefully overcome the prolapses. We are still in the danger zone until Tuesday and we need her to hold her colon inside for as long as she can. If she can hold it from here on out she will be okay.

I couldn't give up on her just yet seeing how she may prolapse but she wants to eat and has high energy and she is alert. She has all the signs of a healthy toad so it's odd this happened to her. Either way Ace could use your thoughts and prayers because this is an uphill battle and she's a fighter. She has a lot of reason to live. I'm going to do all that I can to help her but this is all her doing that she is still alive.

As for the video it is still on schedule for New Years Eve. I've just devoted most money and time to Ace so I haven't had the opportunity to focus on these tree frogs. I've still done maintenance and everything just not been too engaged.

Sorry for a sad update but I haven't even wanted to write this out not knowing what will happen next.

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post #16 of 34 Old 12-30-2018, 02:38 AM Thread Starter
An update a little less dramatic but still important...

These past few weeks has been very difficult on me especially seeing a beloved pet suffering from an unknown reason having a prolapse. It made me very frustrated and I was also not in the best mindset with this situation happening once again. I am still figuring out how this happened and am aiming to avoid this for the future. I had taken some time away from being involved in the forums and such because I just was not thinking positive about the situation and everything involved. I have been able to relax at least for moments this week and understand how these are indeed wild animals so things can happen no matter the care.

That is one thing with working with wild animals they have their own health problems. Another situation is why the prolapse has happened every so often to an animal and specifically female toads. I've never had a male toad prolapse and just about no other animals. I honestly think that there are three things I can do to avoid these situations again.

The first thing is use smaller feeder insects. Small and medium size prey will be easier to digest and I can still keep the crickets in the enclosure. Even if some make it to adults there are other toads that can hunt and eat. Also the odds are not that high many can live long enough to become an adult.

Second is actually the hibernation process and I knew this a long time ago and considered this for Ace. Female toads there is a myth that I personally never have seen debunked that they have a build up of eggs and this can kill the females and it does make sense why I have such a difficult time with the females. But many people may be wondering why others keep females with no problem? The answer could be the conditions like temp, humidity and feedings possibly weather conditions as well. I may have females that have something build up over time like a parasite and could be the killer. The other possible situation is the females eat more and gorge themselves to the point of injury which I hope is not the case.

The hibernation process however would benefit the females regardless what situation it is the females suffer like this. Giving their bodies a rest for 5-6 months will prevent the long-standing gorging of food and would pass the eggs assuming the toads mate and may help to fight off the parasite. Like I said it's not going to be a freeze it will be kept in the 40's just below the toads active range in the 50's. So you see this is still a risk but could be the answer to my problem.

Third I will use small water dishes so the toads will go into them. I was thinking maybe the toads are not using the water bins and are getting dehydrated but I actually think this may have been debunked today! Pious the male toad I saw for the first time went into the water and soaked in the larger bin. His mate Ace the female who has been struggling with a prolapse also soaks. So I am beginning to think these toads specifically do not suffer from this. Not all toads will soak actually they may use a water bowl something small with water like a toilet for humans but Ace and Pious both will utilize a large water area as I exposed them to this when they were young and this may be a fading possibility!

So seeing life change so fast from me saying how healthy and special these toads were and the healthiest toad suffering in the blink of an eye and being challenged once again by the prolapse problem all of this made me think maybe I should just switch to exotic animals because for some reason the animals I know the most about the toads I can't seem to keep the females more then 4-5 years.

I had considered the switch but there was just a few problems. I love the toads too much and all the native species too much to give up. The toads, frogs and even skinks are some of my favorite animals and just because the toads are the most work I enjoy them just as much as their maintenance. I need to find a way through what's going on not give up because many others could be going through this as well.

As for the tree frogs let me say that they are chubby and act as if they are in a retirement home lol they sleep and soak in water and bask. Sometimes they eat but remember they are on a diet. Bane and Christian are the perfect pets they are so easy and laid back. The baby Cope's Gray Tree Frogs are coming along. They are doing great and all 3 are growing. They are very laid back as well. I can't wait to show you all how Christian and Bane went from curious and active frogs to casually hanging out.

The video will be coming very very soon!

Ace the toad is day to day and tomorrow is another big step so keep her in thought and prayer we are getting closer to being safe again. I will not be putting her down but if I have to I'll hibernate her and if she passes she does in her sleep not because of euthanasia. I don't want to make this a bad end to the update but this is what we are facing. Watch out for a weekday update coming soon!

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post #17 of 34 Old 01-01-2019, 04:36 PM Thread Starter
Checkout the new video featuring The Tree Frogs!

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post #18 of 34 Old 01-05-2019, 01:56 AM Thread Starter
State of the PA Woods Address...

Idk where to begin with this update. It is a rollercoaster of a story! So to continue the story of my toad Ace. She had another prolapse on New Year's Day and I knew my vet was going to say it's time to put her down. I was so exhausted and tired and felt I gave a lot of time and money to my toad and this would be it. I actually found every clip I have of her on my computer and I bought a small pet tombstone as I was preparing to put her to rest because the vet couldn't do anything more. She said I could contact the Pittsburgh Zoo and I did. I asked her first if she could fix the prolapse and allow me to have some time to record her and take pictures. I called the zoo and spoke to a biologist. He actually told me he knows a vet that could help Ace. At this time I had nothing to lose and I reached out to the vet and there was an odd and long story that led me to another vet. They believed they had a vet that could save Ace. They oddly enough had an appointment the next day but it was a 2 hour drive. I did it anyways I made the appointment for Ace. I figured that it was time to get some answers about why I had problems with female toads. Boy I'm happy I went.

I spent an arm and a leg but I found a vet who is one of a few hundred in the country that specializes in frogs and lizards and etc. She turned a situation where I thought Ace would be euthanized to a situation now we are medicating her and expecting a hopeful recovery. She gave me the solid answers I've been searching for. She is going to make the PA Woods Vivariums even better for the animals and for us. They will be the healthiest as well. She worked with or works with Ripley's Aquarium and multiple zoos. So there you have it. It took not giving up and not accepting the current circumstances as being the only circumstances. Even if she dies Ace got answers for future generations and she selflessly endured illness so the others around her can get help and to eventually thrive. Ace will hold a special place in my heart being so tough but she will be responsible for saving the lives of all the animals around her. She in a way endured suffering for them so hopefully all the animals I own now will not suffer from problems of the past. I will inform everyone how Ace does moving forward and I am very hopeful that she will survive.

So moving on to the state of the PA Woods Vivariums

So there are mostly good things and some things many people will be surprised about.

Learning from this Vet there are some changes I need to make for the updated PA Woods Vivariums especially for my toads and it will take a while to get all this stuff set up to be done the right way. So the toads enclosures will most likely not be finished by the end of the summer or they will be finished around the time the toads must hibernate. So 2019 will not see the updated PA Woods Vivariums 125 Gallon Western PA Woods and 75 Gallon Pine Creek PA Woods, but the New PA Woods Vivarium with the Gray Tree Frogs will continue to carry the native side of the content. Because I have a lot of updating to do and I have to treat many animals like the entire PA Woods Vivariums animals and the exotic animals it will take some time to get them all through to be together in the setups. The toads will be first that's why they will sit out this year. I may show some pics and give updates though so you know of the progress.

How do you feel about the toads sitting out of the public eye for a year? This is what I thought would be the biggest shocker. Maybe the toads will make an appearance for Frog and Toad Week in July

As for the Gray Tree Frogs they are going after the toads to be checked but will not hibernate this winter that is why they will still be around. We can do some Swarms Battles with the Gray Tree Frogs and we can focus on them more this year. I plan on attempting to purchase the Biopod Grand for them and setting up my version of a native Gray Tree Frogs habitat. I will try to purchase this enclosure by the fall because it's $1k so I'll have to save A LOT.
I will try to document the build as well so many other Gray Tree Frog keepers can see what I'm doing. I believe Bane and Christian can hold down the native side of the PA Woods Vivariums. We will be searching for two females to accompany Bane and Christian so there will be more joining them. Let's not forget about the baby tree frogs waiting and growing patiently to join forces with the two males currently. That will be big news. The Gray Tree Frogs will not have a mixed species setup it will be just them as we focus on how incredible and amazing they are. There are many great things about them and I look forward to displaying them for you to see. I have come up with a name for the group of Gray Tree Frogs when they will all be together. There were not many name suggestions so I went with one I thought fit the most. I'll give you a small hint. What scientific classification is a group of frogs called? Like a school of fish and pack of dogs what are frogs?

So there you have it. What is to come in 2019 will be the year of the Tree Frog. They will be the summer stars. Let me know your thoughts on 2019 for the PA Woods!

Please keep Ace in your prayers also. She still has a lot of work to do getting healthy again.

Make sure you checkout the State of the Five Lined Dumpy Family as I'll be writing that up tonight also!

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post #19 of 34 Old 01-06-2019, 12:54 AM Thread Starter
Another update on the animals....

So after taking some time to think about it I decided that I needed to be more aggressive and make a decision that will cost a lot of money now but will benefit later down the road.

So after taking some time to think about it I decided that the next vet visit for my toad Ace I will also bring Wellsboro in so he can be helped. If you remember he was having trouble putting on weight and I believe this is the best decision to make because he just like all my animals matter and it's a public sign that I believe in him and I'm not giving up on him. I am going to be in more debt but I'll have very healthy toads hopefully after all this.

I've just struggled and been so upset about the possibility of death for one of my animals and I am just tired of having to feel this way. My toads by no means are at the end of their lives. So they have a lot of living to do and I'm tired of having death on my mind. I'm at the point where I'm going to get more aggressive and treat the animals and not wait and do one at a time.

Plus it will make it easier setting up the two enclosures if I have the toads treated and can go right into the setup.

On the other side of the PA Woods Vivariums the Gray Tree Frogs are doing great. I can confirm Christian is the frog who is calling. I have not been able to document it but I will as soon as I can.

I believe he is doing this to claim dominance because it's not a mating call and it's not a distress call. I can't wait to document this so you can hear what I do and see how unusual this is.

The baby tree frogs are growing I saw the poop is about double what it was which is impressive because the change hasn't happened in a long period of time. It has taken a while for the frogs to grow but recently I am seeing them grow at a faster rate.

I am excited to see both adults and babies join forces and come together to make up the Gray Army. That's right the name for these guys is the Gray Army.

My exotic animals have group names and the native animals only have their enclosures named. The reason the Gray Tree Frogs will have both is because they are an independent group. I could easily make their setup and care more towards the exotics but I am not sure I want them to join the exotics side of the PA Woods.

While they may bring balance causing me to highlight the exotics more then I have in the past. They will leave behind their tank name though if added to the exotic side.

Honestly it doesn't matter as much for their care and requirements it's just what do I want them to live with. I am not opposed to changing them but I want to see what you all think? Should I make a new thread and ask the question? Would you want to see me design a more tropical looking enclosure for the Gray Army? This would make a difference with the exotics of the PA Woods Vivariums.

What do you think?

What is the best hygrometer that you recommend?

What UVB light fixture would you recommend?

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post #20 of 34 Old 01-12-2019, 01:17 AM Thread Starter
A wild shakeup for the PA Woods Vivariums!

I have been diligently spending time researching what I need for the Gray Army and the other animals of the PA Woods.

I have researched lights to soil to feeders to plants and so much more! I am glad to say that wow is the PA Woods going to be different. I have found the missing information I believe to be able to build a true ecosystem for plants, predators and prey. From feeding the insects inside the enclosure to maintain their nutritious content to having a spot for UVB and even designating plants as the focus point of the enclosure. I have been asking this vet so many questions that I didn't have answers to. I am glad to say that she will be able to help me with keeping these amphibians and with helping the forums to get care.

Not only will the goal of displaying hibernation and breeding be in the PA Woods Vivariums but now being an example of proper health and diet will be another focus point.

Ace is doing great she ate a little today and is alive! Bane actually had a prolapse but got the care he needed just hours after it happened so he's in better shape. Good thing I found this vet because the old one would have put down Ace and Bane. But they can come back from this and live!

Bane was dewormed this week but needs to go back this Thursday for a follow-up. Ace if she eats can be dewormed but not as intense. So after Bane is done in maybe a month or two Christian will be next so the adult Gray Tree Frogs will be complete and can be finished. Then my toads I will attempt to complete. So the Gray Army will be ready to go when the time is theirs. Plus at the end of summer they have an upcoming build that will be a big part of the channel. But what side will the Gray Army be on when the build is finished?

I say that because I am considering more the idea of the Gray Army being in a more tropical forest instead of a PA Woods. Trust me I am very focused on creating the PA Woods but I just think it might be a better direction for the Tree Frogs. I'm actually 50/50 with what I will do but just know this is for the best interest of the animals not for me. I will have 2 PA Woods Vivariums which is still awesome! The Gray Tree Frogs will be referenced by their nickname not the name of the enclosure. When I have made a decision on what environment they will have I'll make a new thread for them. I think I may do a thread for two years and then start another one to show the progress but not have 10k posts from years back lol

The Western PA Woods will actually be finished before the Pine Creek PA Woods. Both toads assuming Ace lives and is able to breed will have a leg up with a complete pair of toads and they have a lot more of what I need I don't have to buy quite as much. I am also moving away from the 75 gallon aquarium. I will in fact use the Tetrafauna 75 gallon Viquarium. This is like a terrarium with doors and a good lid but also a drain at the bottom so I can empty the water from the fish. This is more suited towards what I want to do. See I actually wanted this first but settled for the 75 gallon. So I'm actually going for it. With the purchase of this means it will in fact take me a while to build around this time probably next year I'll have most of it done. The summer will be focusing on the rebuild of the Western PA Woods Vivarium.

So a lot will change with possibly the Gray Tree Frogs joining the animals of the exotic side and the Pine Creek PA Woods being built in a new enclosure. There is a lot going on!

The state of the PA Woods is changing and there is a lot of exciting new information. Get ready for a wild 2019 and the rebuild of the Wild Wild West. The Western PA Woods Vivarium that is.

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