sSNAKESs : Reptile Forum

Go Back   sSNAKESs : Reptile Forum > Enclosure Creation Forums > Natural Vivaria (Plant) Forum


Closed Thread
LinkBack Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 02-22-18, 10:04 PM   #1 (permalink)
Join Date: Feb-2018
Location: Tampa Bay Area
Posts: 200
Question Going BioActive

I'm currently getting my ducks in a row to convert my Red Eyed Tree Frog hab (an Exo Terra 18x18x24) to bioactive and I have a question about bugs. Teeny bugs.

Between springtails and isopods: which is better for a tropical, rain forest viv maintained between 70 and 100% humidity? I plan to use Zoo Med ReptiSoil over the drainage layer with cypress mulch on top of it.

Also, I was unable to find the bio drain mesh in an 18x18 size. Can I use several smaller pieces to cover my hydroballs or does it need to be unbroken?

Finally, can I also put the teeny bugs in with my ball python?
phenyx is offline  
Login to remove ads
Old 02-23-18, 10:00 AM   #2 (permalink)
Boa Lover
SnakeyJay's Avatar
Join Date: Sep-2010
Location: Hereford
Age: 31
Posts: 2,632
Re: Going BioActive

Firstly, I’d go with both springtails and isopods too as they will both get to work quite well and even if the frogs eat the isopods the springs should pick up the slack...

As for the bio drain mesh, personally I use plain old weed liner designed for the garden... far cheaper and does the job just fine. It can be bought in small amounts direct from a garden centre and folded/cut to a sufficient size.. I use that for my 8 cave geckos and they’ve been bio for a couple years now..

Good luck, and don’t forget to update us with how it goes!
Cheers, Jamie.
SnakeyJay is offline  
Old 03-16-18, 08:50 PM   #3 (permalink)
Join Date: Feb-2018
Location: Tampa Bay Area
Posts: 200
Re: Going BioActive

So far my bioactive, live planted frog viv project has been a disaster. Nothing has worked right.

It's an 18x18x24 Exo Terra front opening terrarium. Initially, I layered 2 inches of hydroballs, an exo terra bio drain mesh and then 2 inches of reptisoil with damp "terrarium moss" over that. Because my order of terrarium plants got delayed by the seller, I only had two home-rooted pothos plants with which to start planting, but I put my artificial plants back in to fill the bare spots. I added water to the aquifer and once the damp reptisoil wicked up its share of water, I was left with about a half inch of water in the aquifer.

I thought I'd have a more humid viv with the natural aquifer and the soil but that never happened. In fact I had way more trouble keeping any sort of humidity above my household ambient level than I had when I just had cypress mulch as substrate.

So, I increased the duration of misting periods from my monsoon solo. Still no sustainable humidity. So I increased them some more and covered probably 90% of the screen top not covered by the light hood. By earlier today I had a full aquifer, muddy reptisoil and standing water on top of saturated, stinky moss. It was completely saturated all the way to the bottom and still the humidity won't maintain over about 52%.

I added another 2 inches of reptisoil tonight to soak up the extra water and planted the plants that finally arrived. I had seeded springtails and dwarf purple isopods in there but I'm pretty sure they've drowned by now or got tossed out with the moss. I've got plenty more springtails but I'm not sure if my remaining isopod culture reproduced at all.

Misting raises the humidity of course but it doesn't last and, I ended up with a flooded viv. I don't heat the viv, it stays around 74 degrees during the day. It's lit with 2 13w fluorescent UVB bulbs. What am I doing wrong? Why am I not seeing better humidity levels?
0.1 Normal Ball Python - (Nagini), 1.0 Brazilian Rainbow Boa - (Jerkface), 0.4 Cats, 0.1 Dog, 1.0 Husband, 0.1 Daughter, X.X Nonbinary Kid.

Last edited by phenyx; 03-16-18 at 09:01 PM.. Reason: Clarification & Spelling Errors
phenyx is offline  
Old 03-17-18, 07:16 AM   #4 (permalink)
Join Date: Dec-2016
Posts: 716
Re: Going BioActive

You should put in both tropical isopods and spingtails... isopods take quick care of waste, spingtails deal with the finer pieces, including isopod poop.

Your soil choice is important too... ReptiSoil, Cypress, they don't maintain bugs... use topsoil/playsand/bark/sphagnum/leaf litter mixes.
TRD is offline  
Old 05-03-18, 11:26 AM   #5 (permalink)
Join Date: Oct-2017
Location: Oregon
Posts: 169
Send a message via MSN to Shauna0522 Send a message via Yahoo to Shauna0522
Re: Going BioActive

There is a really good group on Facebook that has a lot of great information for going bioactive it is called, Reptile and amphibian bioactive setups. This is where I got all my information from for my bioactive setup that I am in the process of putting together for my BRB.
1) 1 Brazilian Rainbow Boa (Sapphire), 2) 2 Dogs, 1 Rotterman (Chewbacca) 1 Dachshund (Cricket) 3) 2 Horses, 1 Arabian/Paint (Sierra) 1 Tennessee Walker/Paint (Oakley)
Shauna0522 is offline  
Login to remove ads
Closed Thread

bioactive, isopods, springtails

Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are On

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 06:25 PM.

Powered by vBulletin®
©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Copyright © 2002-17, Hobby Solutions Inc.


SEO by vBSEO 3.1.0