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Thread: ScubaTalonAWD's 40 Breeder Firebelly Toad Vivarium Build

  1. #1
    ScubaTalonAWD
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    Default ScubaTalonAWD's 40 Breeder Firebelly Toad Vivarium Build

    Hello everyone,

    This is my first vivarium build, and the first time I have kept frogs. My daughter has been wanting a frog for a while now, so I decided to setup the best viv I could for her new pets. I will try to document the whole build process.

    I picked up the tank at Petco's dollar a gallon sale.



    Here is a basic drawing of the concept I originally created for the tank. Note I have learned a few things since this drawing, so the end product will be a bit different.



    The land section will have a false bottom to avoid stagnant water. I want the land section to be self watering, so completely separating the land and water is not an option.

    I started by using a bunch of glass candle holders for the spacers to hold the false bottom up. I used these instead of PVC because I wanted a very uniform spacer. I laid them out and placed the eggcrate separator on top. I put light pressure on the eggcrate, and moved the spacers until I found a placement that evenly distributed the eggcrate. Nothing has been siliconed at this point.



    I then removed the eggcrate and applied silicone to the bottom of the spacers.



    I then placed rocks that will support the land/water separator and applied silicone underneath them. The rocks are flagstone, and are completely inert from what I read. I tested them with vinegar to ensure they would not leach anything.

    I then cut and siliconed down a section of eggcrate to block anything from going underneath the land section.



    That is it for the night. I have to give the silicone time to cure before I add the next layer.

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  3. #2
    BG
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    Default Re: ScubaTalonAWD's 40 Breeder Firebelly Toad Vivarium Build

    I cant wait for next step. Looks good.

  4. #3
    Moderator DonLisk's Avatar
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    Default Re: ScubaTalonAWD's 40 Breeder Firebelly Toad Vivarium Build

    Wow, great start. Can't wait to see more too.
    1.0.0 Red Eyed Leaf/ Frog - Agalychnis callidryas
    1.1.1 Bumblebee Dart Frog - Dendrobates leucomelas
    1.1.0 Dendrobates truncatus - Yellow Striped
    1.1.1 Dendrobates tinctorius Bakhuis Mountain
    1.1.0 - Dendrobates tinctorius - Powder Blue
    1.1.0 - Ranitomeya vanzolinii

  5. #4
    Super Moderator Heatheranne's Avatar
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    Looks great! Excellent planning.
    https://m.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10203589094112277&id=1363241107&set =a.1434844115446.2055312.1363241107&source=11&ref= bookmark

  6. #5
    eocsorymmot
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    Default Re: ScubaTalonAWD's 40 Breeder Firebelly Toad Vivarium Build

    Very very cool... Great minds think alike... I too, just got a 40 gallon breeder from Petco on the $1 a Gallon sale and plan on housing FBTs...

    I will have to start a thread showing my plans though they are quite different then yours!

    I can't wait to see more though!

  7. #6
    ScubaTalonAWD
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    Default Re: ScubaTalonAWD's 40 Breeder Firebelly Toad Vivarium Build

    I waited for the silicone to cure long enough to be structurally sound. Next I added the remaining two layers of flagstone. I must say I am not the happiest with the far edge, but I have a few ideas to make it look better.







    The eggcrate is not permanently in still, but I did zip tie the two pieces together.

  8. #7
    ScubaTalonAWD
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    Default Re: ScubaTalonAWD's 40 Breeder Firebelly Toad Vivarium Build

    While the main landmass is drying, I started on the waterfall. The bottom looks very similar to the bottom of the landmass. I did this to keep everything away from the intake of the filter.



    I then began stacking the rockwork for the waterfall. I will give this time to dry before stacking any higher.


  9. #8
    100+ Post Member Sarosaurus's Avatar
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    Default Re: ScubaTalonAWD's 40 Breeder Firebelly Toad Vivarium Build

    This is looking amazing! I cannot wait to see the finished product!

  10. #9
    Super Moderator Heatheranne's Avatar
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    Great job!
    https://m.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10203589094112277&id=1363241107&set =a.1434844115446.2055312.1363241107&source=11&ref= bookmark

  11. #10
    bobert
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    Default Re: ScubaTalonAWD's 40 Breeder Firebelly Toad Vivarium Build

    wow awesome lol

  12. #11
    ScubaTalonAWD
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    Default Re: ScubaTalonAWD's 40 Breeder Firebelly Toad Vivarium Build

    Thank you for all of the compliments!

    Unfortunately, life has been really busy lately. I did not do a good job of getting pictures of every step of my stand build, but here it is. It is 10" tall to accommodate easy viewing for my daughter. I built it using 2 2x12s for the base, using a few scraps underneath to screw them together, and a 2x10 skirt around the edges. I painted with Rustoleum paint with a stone like texture. I used this so it would show from underneath the glass on the water portion. Here it is!





    Now I just need to get the screening on the eggcrate, gravel and coco husk in, and build a canopy.

    I will keep everyone posted.

  13. #12
    ScubaTalonAWD
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    Default Re: ScubaTalonAWD's 40 Breeder Firebelly Toad Vivarium Build

    To continue, I cut the screen, and layed it in the gap I left in the front. I used gravel to hold it down.



    I then began laying gravel down along all the edges, and cut the screen down to size.



    I then finished placing all the gravel. The gravel I used is 3/8" river rock from a local landscaping yard btw. Much cheaper than aquarium gravel!



    I then filled it with water.



    Lastly, I powered up the filter/waterfall.



    Unfortunately, to get the filter to prime, I had to fill the tank with about 1/2" more water than I intended. I will have to figure something out to leave enough room to avoid the coco husk from sopping up to much water and getting drenched.

    All in all though, I am excited to be almost ready for the toads!

  14. #13
    ScubaTalonAWD
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    Default Re: ScubaTalonAWD's 40 Breeder Firebelly Toad Vivarium Build

    The inside is now complete!

    I drained 1/2" of water out, and the filter kept it's prime with no issues. I think the internal pump just needed to relieve an air pocket. I actually drained it down about an inch just to check what would happen after a little evaporation, and it still ran just fine.

    Next I added the coconut fiber. I have a little over 1inch. I was surprised when I used an entire 7 quart block of it. I thought I would only need about half.



    Next I added river rock to the top. This is intended to prevent the toads from picking up the coco fiber and spreading it into the water. When I add plants I will allow the stem to go in between the spaces between rocks.







    As you can see, the water has turned into tea right now. The filter is empty at the moment. I just wanted to circulate water with it. I am hoping that once a cartridge is added, the water will clear up. If not, I am sure a few water changes and time for the coco to release everything will make things better.

    Next, plants and the canopy!

  15. #14
    Badger
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    Default Re: ScubaTalonAWD's 40 Breeder Firebelly Toad Vivarium Build

    Nice! looks awesome, Plants will make it look even better. Especially water plants

  16. #15
    Super Moderator Heatheranne's Avatar
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    Very nice!
    https://m.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10203589094112277&id=1363241107&set =a.1434844115446.2055312.1363241107&source=11&ref= bookmark

  17. #16
    JennTigercat
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    Default Re: ScubaTalonAWD's 40 Breeder Firebelly Toad Vivarium Build

    that looks really good.

  18. #17
    ScubaTalonAWD
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    Default Re: ScubaTalonAWD's 40 Breeder Firebelly Toad Vivarium Build

    After a lot of questioning and research, I went to buy plants today. I ended up going to a local nursery. Here is what I came home with. This is after I removed all the dirt I could and washed them off.



    Here is my tank fully planted.













    I am not the best with plants unfortunately. I did my research before buying, but now that I have them at home I have no clue what is what. If anyone can ID a few I would appreciate it.

    I have the following left over. If anyone wants to trade plants, I would be happy to via USPS. I am looking for Donger, Pothos, and Broms. Just send me a PM.


  19. #18
    Super Moderator Heatheranne's Avatar
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    Very pretty! Nice selections.
    https://m.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10203589094112277&id=1363241107&set =a.1434844115446.2055312.1363241107&source=11&ref= bookmark

  20. #19

    Default Re: ScubaTalonAWD's 40 Breeder Firebelly Toad Vivarium Build

    That is awsome ill bet you could put 10 fbt's in there.

  21. #20
    ScubaTalonAWD
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    Default Re: ScubaTalonAWD's 40 Breeder Firebelly Toad Vivarium Build

    Thank you, I think I will keep it down to 5 though.

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