Turtles

AnamCara

Chameleon Enthusiast
Has anybody created a Bioactive Paludarium? I am interested in how water functions. Does it still need swapping out, or can you get away with a bulky filtration system?
 

janjan20

Chameleon Enthusiast
I don’t personally but there is a guy on YouTube named Serpa Design that has a lot of videos on that kind of stuff.
 

Rst_Cham

Chameleon Enthusiast
Has anybody created a Bioactive Paludarium? I am interested in how water functions. Does it still need swapping out, or can you get away with a bulky filtration system?
I have sort of a paludarium for my fire bellied toad enclosure. No soil aspect, so it’s more of an island setup with half-submerged logs and rocks serving as the “island”. It is heavily “planted” (River rock bottom, no real substrate) with aquatic and semi aquatic plants (anacharis, Java moss, swords, Anubias, peace lily, and pothos.) I also run two small in-tank reptifilters filled with charcoal, filter floss, and bio balls. At first, I had to charge the water out really frequently, with 50% water changes twice a week. However, once the biological filter was established and the plants had time to root, I rarely have to change water now. I just add a few gallons per week to maintain water level due to evaporation. I monitor the ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, and Ph levels using an api water test kit and it is always pretty perfect and has been setup for a year. It’s crazy how little maintenance my tank needs and even though it’s in a window, I have zero algae. I use RO water, treated with Joshs Frogs RO Rx and I have a dual T5 UVB/6500k light plus a Sansi 24 watt grow light for the frogs and plants.

I know I have frogs, not turtles, but I have had turtles before and I’m pretty sure that this kind of setup (but on a much bigger scale) would have worked with them. The main thing to do it to let the water “cycle” for a month or two to get biological filtration established before adding in animals otherwise the bioload might throw things out of whack. Google “how to cycle a tank” if you are interested but unfamiliar with the process. Also, the plants themselves are wonderful filters.
 

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AnamCara

Chameleon Enthusiast
I have sort of a paludarium for my fire bellied toad enclosure. No soil aspect, so it’s more of an island setup with half-submerged logs and rocks serving as the “island”. It is heavily “planted” (River rock bottom, no real substrate) with aquatic and semi aquatic plants (anacharis, Java moss, swords, Anubias, peace lily, and pothos.) I also run two small in-tank reptifilters filled with charcoal, filter floss, and bio balls. At first, I had to charge the water out really frequently, with 50% water changes twice a week. However, once the biological filter was established and the plants had time to root, I rarely have to change water now. I just add a few gallons per week to maintain water level due to evaporation. I monitor the ammonia, nitrite, nitrate, and Ph levels using an api water test kit and it is always pretty perfect and has been setup for a year. It’s crazy how little maintenance my tank needs and even though it’s in a window, I have zero algae. I use RO water, treated with Joshs Frogs RO Rx and I have a dual T5 UVB/6500k light plus a Sansi 24 watt grow light for the frogs and plants.

I know I have frogs, not turtles, but I have had turtles before and I’m pretty sure that this kind of setup (but on a much bigger scale) would have worked with them. The main thing to do it to let the water “cycle” for a month or two to get biological filtration established before adding in animals otherwise the bioload might throw things out of whack. Google “how to cycle a tank” if you are interested but unfamiliar with the process. Also, the plants themselves are wonderful filters.
Yess I knew someone here had good info thank you so much!
 

jamest0o0

Chameleon Enthusiast
You will absolutely have to change water with turtles, even with great filtration. All water should/would need to be changed at some point unless you have literally nothing in it producing waste. Turtles are particularly messy, I used to have a bunch. Go into expecting regular water changes.

I second RABS. Best place for bio info on anything.

Serpa is also a great resource with his videos, funny I just found out he lives in the same area as me lol.
 
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