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Old 02-12-22, 10:19 PM   #1
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Bioactive?? Or, no?

Just allowed my first snake into the house. My daughter was given a 16in (juvenile?) King snake two weeks ago. He came in a 10 gallon tank. I just bought a 48x18x22 glass enclosure. I was thinking that a bioactive (expensive) setup would be cool, but not sure if it is worth it. Any advice would be much appreciated. I want to get him out of that 10g asap.
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Old 02-13-22, 04:34 PM   #2
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Re: Bioactive?? Or, no?

I am not super familiar with bioactive enclosures but it should be fine to run it with a king snake. They shouldn't knock over sturdy plants or dig them up.

To be honest, the snake would be fine in a 10 gallon for a bit but I understand moving it up.
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Old 02-15-22, 06:56 PM   #3
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Re: Bioactive?? Or, no?

So the day I bought a used 48x18x22 glass tank I found this forum and learned about APcages. For $150 more I could have bought their 4x2x2. Oh well.

I’m just trying to determine if I want to spend $550 on all the bioactive stuff. What do you use for the substrate? I have Apen in there now.
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Old 02-15-22, 09:28 PM   #4
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Re: Bioactive?? Or, no?

I wouldn't worry about doing a "true" bioactive with a kingsnake. Kingsnakes burrow and they'll mess up the layering system in a bioactive setup.

You can use a mixture of reptichip and coconut coir/eco earth for the substrate. That'll be adequate to support a pothos plant, which should be sturdy enough to survive the snake's burrowing.

Bringing a couple handfuls of clean, pesticide free oak or maple leaves will seed the tank with springtails or similar invertebrates to act as a clean-up crew. Depending on your location, later this spring or summer you should also be able to find some isopods/roly polies to add as well.

If you don't mind finding the occasional dried up worm in your house then you can add some red wrigglers (fishing bait worms) to the tank as well. (I personally do not recommend adding the worms.)

I have a Japanese rat snake in an enclosure with the substrate and plants I listed above. He seems to be doing very well in there and the plants are hanging in there so far. My corn snake managed to kill its pothos plants.
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