August 2012

August 2012

All the information listed here is based on my own experience, please carry out your own research before attempting to replicate anything on this site.


"It's all about lighting and shine"

This update's been a long time coming, but on the plus-side the birthday-shot of my Red Eared Slider stayed on the homepage for a good while! Plenty has been happening, but the one project I really wanted to report some success with was the LED system, which was originally for my Axolotl (Ambystoma mexicanum) setup, however has become a slightly more mammoth task!

My Honduran Wood Turtle enclosure is 3 metres long, with 6 recesses in the front edge, simple due to the design and the way that I contructed the vivarium. Each recess measures 450 x 100 x 40mm. Not only do they make the enclosure look unfinished, but boarding them up or covering them to look neater (as any normal person would do!) I'd be missing out on a challenge. Each of these recesses is so narrow that finding a microhabitat that would work inside them is proving tricky!

columbian colombian rainbow boa brazilian paraguyan argentinian livebearing colubrid epicrates epicrate cenchria maurus maraus LED light emitting diode electrical highlighting aquarium terrarium vivarium reptiles amphibians invertebrates microhabitat enclosure nano Vietnamese golden gecko gekko ulikovski ulikeovskii ulikovskii

As you can hopefully see from the photo, I've began sealing these wooden recesses first with pond liner, then black fablon, and will eventually triple-seal this with yacht varnish, just to ensure there is no water damage to the underlying wood. These recesses are level with the soil layer of my Rhinoclemmys setup, so my idea is to create leaf-litter microhabitats, hopefully for 6 different species of rainforest invertebrates.Each microhabitat is being fitted with a white LED strip, and will be fronted with removable acrylic, or mesh. This should also allow me to grow some low-light plants and mosses.

My Colombian Rainbow Boa (Epicrates cenchria maurus) has returned to her usual, calm self, and I managed to get a nice macro photograph of the irredescent shine that gives them their name. Still no eggs from the Tokay Geckos (Gekko gecko) however they're continuing to get along well. I've also been redesigning my Golden Gecko (Gekko ulikovskii) tubs to include more ventilation, although I still haven't managed to find any females for sale. Quite simply, I cut large holes out of each side using a soldering iron, and covered each with fibreglass mesh using a glue gun - simple, cheap, and it works!

Lastly, I've managed to germinate several Royal Flame Tree / Flamboyant Poinciana (Delonix regia) seeds, which are available to purchase in the shop as ornamental plants. They're not well suited to vivariums but they're a fantastic exotic plant from Madagascan and would look great in any reptile room! I've priced them as young seedlings although they'll grow quick, and all purchases go towards site upkeep and future reptilarium projects.

If you would like any further information feel free to contact me, I've had a few emails over the past weeks asking about reptile health problems and I'm happy to try and help or offer advice if I can!
Paul Edmondson

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