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Thread: Understanding & Using Compact UVB Bulbs

  1. #1
    findiviglio
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    Default Understanding & Using Compact UVB Bulbs

    Hi All,
    The technology behind amphibian and reptile lighting has come a long way since I began working at the Bronx Zoo, when “black lights” and the sun were our only UVB (Ultra Violet B radiation) options. Today I’ll review an important herp husbandry innovation, the compact UVB fluorescent bulb (note: bulbs are referred to as “lamps” in technical papers). My experiences have been positive, but some reptile-keepers have raised concerns, so I’ll address them as well. Please be sure to post your experiences and ideas below, as we still have much to learn about this important topic.
    Most heliothermic (basking) lizards, turtles, and crocodilians need exposure to UVB light rays with a wavelength of 290-315 nanometers in order to synthesize Vitamin D3 in their skin. Vitamin D3 allows these animals to utilize dietary calcium. Without D3, dietary calcium is not metabolized and metabolic bone disease sets in. Snakes, highly-aquatic turtles, nocturnal lizards, most amphibians, and certain others can make use of dietary Vitamin D, but most basking species rely on the skin-synthesized form. However, all is not as clear as we once believed. Read the rest of this article here: Reptile Lighting - Understanding and Using Compact UVB Bulbs
    Please also check out my posts on Twitter http://bitly.com/JP27Nj and Facebook http://on.fb.me/KckP1m

    My Bio, with photos of animals I’ve been lucky enough to work with: That Pet Place welcomes Zoologist/Herpetologist Frank Indiviglio to That Reptile Blog | That Reptile Blog

    Best Regards, Frank Indiviglio

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  3. #2
    Moderator tgampper's Avatar
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    Default Re: Understanding & Using Compact UVB Bulbs

    Hi Frank
    Not sure if you are familiar with these sources, but it sure convinced me of the need for UVB for amphibians, but I guess that not all scientists are on board with this idea!
    https://aark.portal.isis.org/researc...tamin%20d3.pdf
    Amphibians and Ultraviolet Radiation
    http://www.pnas.org/content/94/25/13735.full.pdf
    Terry Gampper
    Nebraska Herpetological Society




    “If we can discover the meaning in the trilling of a frog, perhaps we may understand why it is for us not merely noise but a song of poetry and emotion.”
    ---
    Adrian Forsyth

  4. #3
    findiviglio
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    Default Re: Understanding & Using Compact UVB Bulbs

    Quote Originally Posted by tgampper View Post
    Hi Frank
    Not sure if you are familiar with these sources, but it sure convinced me of the need for UVB for amphibians, but I guess that not all scientists are on board with this idea!
    https://aark.portal.isis.org/researc...tamin%20d3.pdf
    Amphibians and Ultraviolet Radiation
    http://www.pnas.org/content/94/25/13735.full.pdf
    Much appreciated, Terry. Important articles...many variables, of course, and some conflicting info (on other species) but it's very promising to see that such good work is being done. I hope all is well, best, Frank

  5. #4
    Geo
    Guest

    Default Re: Understanding & Using Compact UVB Bulbs

    I use 2 EarthTronics t2e CFLs in my Brown Mantella 50 gallon bowfront tank vivarium setup. These bulbs emit a soft white/yellowish light in the 2700k colour temperature range. 900 lumens, 80 CRi colour rendering, 120 volt, 50/60 hz, 13 watts. I have found that these lights offer sufficient light for the plants to grow easily and quickly and it seems that the frogs are quite comfortable with it as they are more visible and less prone to hiding or seeking darker corners. Mold / fungi tend to grow slower in a "warmer light" than in a "cooler" temp light setup as has been my experience. These CFLs also produce less heat than other brand/types of lights available which is an important factor in a small enclosure. I have found that some lights emit a more "cooler" (as in light temperature (k) and not ambient enclosure temp) white light but the frogs seem less active in such. Why that may be is for better minds then myself to figure out. If the light is more warmer (yellowish) they are more active, if it is cooler (whiter) than they are less so but the difference in activity levels may be hard to discern unless you have an obvious understanding of what would be their typical amount of activity / visibility. To the untrained / new frog owner it may not be discernable. Whether this light affects the absorption and usage of vitamin D I cannot say but I do compliment their feed with a sprinkling of reptile related vitamins, minerals and calcium to augment any nutritional shortage in the fruit flies and pinhead crickets that comprise of their regular diet.

  6. #5
    findiviglio
    Guest

    Default Re: Understanding & Using Compact UVB Bulbs

    Quote Originally Posted by Geo View Post
    I use 2 EarthTronics t2e CFLs in my Brown Mantella 50 gallon bowfront tank vivarium setup. These bulbs emit a soft white/yellowish light in the 2700k colour temperature range. 900 lumens, 80 CRi colour rendering, 120 volt, 50/60 hz, 13 watts. I have found that these lights offer sufficient light for the plants to grow easily and quickly and it seems that the frogs are quite comfortable with it as they are more visible and less prone to hiding or seeking darker corners. Mold / fungi tend to grow slower in a "warmer light" than in a "cooler" temp light setup as has been my experience. These CFLs also produce less heat than other brand/types of lights available which is an important factor in a small enclosure. I have found that some lights emit a more "cooler" (as in light temperature (k) and not ambient enclosure temp) white light but the frogs seem less active in such. Why that may be is for better minds then myself to figure out. If the light is more warmer (yellowish) they are more active, if it is cooler (whiter) than they are less so but the difference in activity levels may be hard to discern unless you have an obvious understanding of what would be their typical amount of activity / visibility. To the untrained / new frog owner it may not be discernable. Whether this light affects the absorption and usage of vitamin D I cannot say but I do compliment their feed with a sprinkling of reptile related vitamins, minerals and calcium to augment any nutritional shortage in the fruit flies and pinhead crickets that comprise of their regular diet.
    Hello,

    Sorry for the delay..this slipped by me somehow. Great observations...I think it would be useful to keep notes; we have so much to learn, and detailed observations such as you make are the key. I see you keep Hymenochirus...great favorites of mine; you might enjoy this. Best, Frank

  7. #6
    Geo
    Guest

    Default Re: Understanding & Using Compact UVB Bulbs

    Nice article. I have been feeding my colony of 5 ADFs an assortment of foods including very small (soft) meal worms, tiny pinhead crickets (week old), and brine shrimp. The mealworms and pinheads are enriched with a dusting of reptile vitamins, calcium, vit D, and a crushed mixture I make of various algae pellets and bottom feeder related dried food. I also include in their diet freeze dried fobloodworm and the periodic frog / turtle pellet. They have been very active and healthy for over a year so something is working.

  8. #7
    findiviglio
    Guest

    Default Re: Understanding & Using Compact UVB Bulbs

    Quote Originally Posted by Geo View Post
    Nice article. I have been feeding my colony of 5 ADFs an assortment of foods including very small (soft) meal worms, tiny pinhead crickets (week old), and brine shrimp. The mealworms and pinheads are enriched with a dusting of reptile vitamins, calcium, vit D, and a crushed mixture I make of various algae pellets and bottom feeder related dried food. I also include in their diet freeze dried fobloodworm and the periodic frog / turtle pellet. They have been very active and healthy for over a year so something is working.
    Thanks for the kind words...I use a variety of fish foods for feeder insects as well..crickets, roaches, earthworms all relish many types. Interesting that you are using tiny mealworms...most folks do not go through he trouble of rearing them, so as to have newly shed, soft grubs available. I've had some success in breeding, but not consistently; planning an article soon. Please keep me posted on your group, thanks and enjoy, Frank

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