Chorus Frog Paludarium with Water Feature

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Wy Renegade

Aquarium Advice Addict
Jan 31, 2008
So no build pictures on this one. It evolved fairly quickly over the course of the school year as two different groups of students worked on it. This one is dedicated to our native Boreal Chorus frogs, which I've housed in some of the other paludariums previously. The others are big enough that the little Chorus frogs tend to disappear, so I wanted something small enough that they would be fairly visible.

The tank is a 15 gallon, since our goal was a paludarium setting, the tank will only be about 1/3 full of water. To provide for the waterfall and stream, we will drill the large driftwood for our return line.

Filter: Natural plant filtration and regular water changes
Water Flow: Repti Flow 200
Lighting: Aqueon LED Freshwater aquarium light (currently on 3 hours per day)

The tanks scape was created using a combination of silicone, Great Stuff Pond foam, River rock, PVC pipe, eggcrate, fiberglass screen, landscaping fabric, and driftwood.

Aquatic: assorted sized river gravel and cobbles, and a few pieces of aquarium wood I had for now – so that if the salamanders go fishing, we don’t have to worry about them swallowing sand.
Terrestrial; organic potting soil that will be covered with dried leaves and dried spagnum moss and a nice cottonwood cave.

Invertes: scuds to start, additional varieties will be added as they are acquired

Vertebrates: (not yet acquired)
Boreal Chorus frogs
Fish will most likely be White Cloud Mountain minnows

Emergent: Java moss, Duck weed, and later some Forget-Me-Nots
Submergent: Java moss and some bladderwort
Terrestrial: baby tears, clubmoss, and a fern

Set-up: The tank ended up being about 2/3 terrestrial habitat and 1/3 aquatic. We cut PVC pipe to the desired height with cross-cuts in the feet to allow for water movement through the pipe. A piece of cottonwood was added to create a hidden pump chamber and drilled for our 1/4 hose line. Eggcrate was then broken to fit, creating an area above the water line. We zip tied the fiberglass window screen to the eggcrate, then laid a layer of landscape fabric over the screen. River rock was siliconed to the tank and Great Stuff pond foam was used to fill the cracks and create a border over the eggcrate - since we wanted water flow below the terrestrial area, we didn't concern ourselves with trying to get anything water tight. The wall dividing the aquatic portion was curved and sloped to allow the frogs access to and escape from the water. Once the pond foam cured we used Titebond wood glue to cover the foam with coco fiber. I considered painting the foam, but I'm hoping that Java moss will grow emergent on the coco fiber. The remaining portion is aquatic with a gravel substrate. The terrestrial portion contains a small waterfall and flowing stream.

So since I know everyone likes photos, here are a few shots of the tank with the water feature flowing:

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