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92g Mythical Valley Crabarium (Pics)!

Discussion in 'Say Cheese' started by JediMasterThrash, Apr 16, 2008.

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  1. Hmm, don't think I got around to posting this last fall. We moved and the whole year was pretty hectic. Looks like my last posts were in August, and we moved at the end of August. Well finally a month after moving, I was able to resetup the crabarium. So here it is, be it belated by 6 months:

    92g Mythical Valley Crabarium! (Pics)

    Here's page full gallery of 24 pics of the latest incarnation of my 92g crabarium:
    http://jedimasterthrash.boldlygoingnowhere.org/cornertank/valley2
    A couple samples:
    [img width=300 height=200]http://jedimasterthrash.boldlygoingnowhere.org/cornertank/valley2/images/overhead.jpg[/img]
    [img width=300 height=200]http://jedimasterthrash.boldlygoingnowhere.org/cornertank/valley2/images/front.jpg[/img]

    Please check out my "Lessons Learned From A Deep Clean" post for deeper explainations of some of my choices.

    My normal 6 month deep clean came up in April, but instead of doing a full deep clean, in anticipation of moving, I only did a partial substrate change:
    (can't find link to topic anymore)

    Last month (4 months later) we finally sold our house and moved! I setup a temporary crabitat in my 55g. They lived in there for almost a month:
    http://hermitcrabaddiction.net/forum/index.php?topic=4424.0

    I'm happy to report that all of my crabs survived the move and their month in my temporary crabitat.



    At this point, I feel like I'm running out of ideas for my 92g crabarium! After my
    "Mystical Mountain"
    http://jedimasterthrash.boldlygoingnowhere.org/cornertank/cornertank.htm
    "Mystical Waterfall"
    http://jedimasterthrash.boldlygoingnowhere.org/cornertank/cornertank2.htm
    "Action Platform"
    http://jedimasterthrash.boldlygoingnowhere.org/cornertank/cornertank3.htm
    "Crystal Platforms"
    http://jedimasterthrash.boldlygoingnowhere.org/cornertank/cornertank4.htm
    "Subterranean Habitat"
    http://jedimasterthrash.boldlygoingnowhere.org/cornertank/cornertank5.htm
    "Crabazonian Jungle"
    http://jedimasterthrash.boldlygoingnowhere.org/cornertank/Jungle2
    I'm about out of ideas as well as names. Eventually I'm going to have to start reusing old tank designs!



    To start out with, I decided to go with all sand this time. I got 4 50lb bags of playsand to fill the tank up past 6 inches, and I also used about 30lbs of the old substrate to "seed" the new substrate. I kept the "topsoil" from the previous crabarium, about the top 1in of substrate, because it was the newest substrate (added during the partial substrate change), and had the most diversity in it (coconut husk and moss, along with sand and eco-earth). I mixed the old substrate in 3 layers with the bags of sand, and also covered the topmost layer, so that the crabs would be immediately within an environment they recognized (no shock from the new substrate). You can see the layering in some of the pics.

    I'm hoping that with mostly sand, the "gucking" of the water will be drastically reduced. And I'm also tired of dead crabs being degraded.

    For the pools, I used the same setup as the last time. It works well, and there's not really any other practical arrangements of my two square-foot pools. They corner waterfall one is for fresh water, and the red one for salt. They each have Duetto 50 mini-3-stage-filters in them. I clean the sponge filter once a week, and replace the carbon every month. They still have my plastic mesh so that the small crabs can climb in and out without needing to add sponges. The waterfall is weighted down with rocks since it floats, and the straws still topple it every once in a while anyway.

    And again, I used the mini-cubes for the core structure. They are just simply great. They don't mold, and they're sturdy. The problem is trying to get multiple levels with them. Since the cubes are 6 inches apart, the first level at 12 inches half-way up the tank, and with the next level at 18 inches, it's too close to the top to be able to put anything else ontop of it (or the crabs will somehow figure out how to reach the lid and escape). I've used the "X" shape before to get an inbetween height. But I didn't like having it under the sand because I feared it could trap some buried crabs who can't figure out how to get around it. So this time, I tried something new, and just set the "X" shape on the top of the sand, and then put a basket in at an angle. Also, since I didn't have another platform on the left side, but still wanted some more "3rd level" action, I just put the cubes up the wall along the bonsai so that I could get the 3rd level platform.

    I think the best feature is that, with the "X" structure again, I had the perfect chance to bring back the coco-tunnel! It's been a long time since the crabs have last had their coco-tunnel (which is a cocofiber climbing wall rolled into a tunnel).

    Keeping with the theme of "more cover equals more crabs", I filled in all the floor space with caves, and covered the cubes and edges with artificial fauna.

    For the second level, I again used my favorite round wicker basket, and used it for a shell haven again. And i grabbed one of my wicker baskets that I've never used before for the angled basket. It also has a nice bridge over the front.



    Enough about the tank, now about the crabs! In the temporary moving tank, the crabs loved to bask under the lights at the top of the bonsai. They ended up devouring a lot of the bonsai leaves, but it's still usable. The crabs were out all day basking under the lights and climbing on the plants.

    I always place them into the new tank by putting them on the shell basket, so that they know where the shells are. Usually I get a couple of shell changes right away, but this was like a sale at Target. My jumbo straw switched, a tiny E switched, then another PP, then another E, then a Brevy. And in the middle of the night, finally, "batman" dumped his bling shell. I got batman as an adoptee almost 2 years ago, and the person I adopted him from complained that no matter what he would never dump that batman shell. Well, after probably over 3 years of living in that batman bling shell, he finally moved on!

    I have some pictures of crabs climbing on the shells and 3rd level, and climbing on the wicker bridge, and getting a drink. Enjoy!
     
  2. LilHermieOnes

    LilHermieOnes "Third Molt, A Success"

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    Your crabarium is beautiful and very creative! 8)

    I never thought about using wicker baskets...they look really nice.
     
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