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Crab Heaven

Discussion in 'HCRU Crabitat's - Biography's Of Our Crabitats' started by Kali_Ma, Dec 18, 2004.

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  1. Kali_Ma

    Kali_Ma (Small Crab)

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    This is my third crabitat since I started in Oct. 04 -- I pestered my husband to death until he gave me the money to go get my Christmas present early.

    I've had it two weeks. I plan to make some heavy upgrades, but I just wanted to set it up! It's a bear to clean, but it's worth it to me to watch the activity.

    A list of the tank equipment and furniture is below, followed by my list of intended future upgrades.

    120 gallon reptikeeper tank, raised on 3 20 gallon iron aquarium stands. Two ten gallon ISOs to be installed on the bottom racks, once the crabs molting in them have finished. It has two screen tops, 18" wide by 24" deep, with a central glass brace. At the moment the only tops I have for it are 12" x 24" framing glass that I used for a lid on my old 40 gallon crabitat, and black plastic garbage bags to retain humidity. One of the things on the to do list is to upgrade the lids.

    Mylar survival blanket cut to fit back wall as heat reflector and decoration.

    2 11 x 17" UTHs on ESU thermostats, set to 85 degrees.

    ESU 20" combination light fixture with:
    15 watt fluorescent, UVA/UVB day bulb
    100 watt incandescent day heat bulb
    75 watt incandescent moonglow heat bulb
    Fluker's 20" combination light fixture with:
    75 watt incandescent moonglow heat bulb
    40 watt incandescent moonglow heat bulb
    I leave the 75 watt moonglow in the Fluker's fixture on 24/7 and turn the others on if necessary to boost the heat during the day. All the moonglow bulbs are on, and the day bulbs off at night. The incandescent sockets hold bulbs up to 150 watts each, the fluorescent only goes to 15 watts. I swap bulbs out as the temperature rises and falls, as my house is poorly insulated and there is no central heating. My day temperature ranges from 74 to 78 degrees, and the night temperature ranges from 70 to 74 degrees.

    2 TropicAire automatic terrarium misters on a General Hydroponics 4 outlet diaphragm air pump, 340 GPH/3 PSI -- it's enough to run every air device in the crabitat, and more silent than regular aquarium pumps. The misters keep my humidity between 75 and 80%.

    Small dog dish as freshwater pool with large sea sponge.

    Custom filtered acrylic salt water basin, 1/4" acrylic, interior dimensions 6 x 6 x 4 1/2 inches deep, with coral and gravel for access.

    Beach sand substrate -- will be replaced with PlayBox Sand from Home Depot on next deep clean.

    Multiple climbing structures:
    Cork bark sheets and 12" hollow tube
    Grapevine/Jungle vine
    Cholla branches and stumps
    Suction cup plastic plants
    black sea fan
    green mica and zebra aquarium rock
    coral

    @ 3 dozen extra shells, tiny to hefty; mainly turbo, tonna, thai, nautica, murex, babylonia, nerite, etc.

    Multiple coconut huts and terracotta flower pots.

    A huge antique turbo pethiolatus that makes even the huge crabs look tiny and that they love to hide in and climb on.

    I change the dry food dish every other day. It consists of:

    T-Rex Crab Island Food
    Gardner's Tree Crab Food
    Calci Sand
    Julian Sprung's Red Sea Veggies
    Organic sesame seed with sea salt
    Hikari Bio-Pure tubifex worms, Daphnia, Brine Shrimp, Ocean Plankton
    Homemade organic human grade 4-way algae powder consisting of equal parts brown kelp, spirulina, Klamath blue-green algae and Irish moss.
    Bladderwrack
    Crushed cuttlebone/coral powder
    Puffed organic millet

    Wet food changed daily:
    All organic human grade foods only, 1 meat or egg (scrambled eggs with many healthy additives or shrimp, tuna, salmon, chicken, sardines, ostrich, occasionally beef), and 3 to 7 selections per night of dried (or reconstituted dried) or fresh flowers, fruit and vegetables, grains, nuts, pure local honey, mushrooms, seaweed (5 or 6 varieties in rotation).

    Planned upgrades:

    Large cargo net to hang from self-adhesive plastic hooks

    Deeper and new substrate

    Larger filtered salt water basin and marine hermits to keep it clean

    Larger filtered fresh water basin

    Find a way to heat the misters' water

    Custom made glass covers to replace screens and garbage bags

    On order from Black Jungle Terrarium Supply:
    3 foot cypress driftwood log (wet habitat wood, to replace easy molding grapevine)
    2 foot cholla root, and several small cholla branches
    6 inch cork bark tube
    24" x 15" tall "fossil" background rock climbing wall


    My old crabitat is 2 foot by 2 foot by 1 foot deep, 40 gallons. I eventually want to section it off into quarters by fixing glass walls in it and use it as a four chambered ISO. Too many other projects first.
     
  2. HermiesRsweet

    HermiesRsweet Hi, I'm New Here!

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    LOL sounds like just maybe you are excited, I got my big tank as an early Xmas present last year and I bet it was after New Years before I finally got everything how I wanted it.

    It looks great! Bet your hermies are having a ball playing in all the extra room. I also do the Light and Dark heated areas, the hermies really seem to like it.

    The one thing I want to add to mine is a filtered wading pool, that's one I haven't tried yet but I think my hermies would like it.
     
  3. Kali_Ma

    Kali_Ma (Small Crab)

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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by HermiesRsweet:

    The one thing I want to add to mine is a filtered wading pool, that's one I haven't tried yet but I think my hermies would like it. <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    A guy on Yahoo hermies has added marine hermits to his salt pool, and they are cleaning it and occasionally coming onto dry land to eat out of the other hermits' food dish! I'm going to do that too, when I upgrade!

    Kerie
     
  4. CudaCrabby

    CudaCrabby "Preparing For First Molt"

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    [​IMG] [​IMG]WOW!!!! Thats awsome!! [​IMG] [​IMG] Kali_Ma, i do say ya got it all down pat and that your hermies are spoiled. I think you have done a outstanding job with your crabitat.. The pics are fantastic and thank you so much for sharring with us.. Keep those pics of your crabitat commin.. [​IMG] [​IMG]
     
  5. moire_eel

    moire_eel "Second Molt, A Success"

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    Oh wow, that sounds awesome! [​IMG] Crab heaven indeed. You must be better at pestering your husband than I was... though I think that accepting a 75 gallon tank was a huge step for my husband that he's still getting used to. [​IMG] I'm still working on gathering up all the stuff I need... before the crabs move in on Christmas day. I think there' s some good ideas on your list for me as well! I have to hold off on filtered ponds though, as our apartment is outlet-poor and the one outlet in that room already has a fully loaded power strip. Too bad, as adding marine hermies would be AWESOME! Oh well, maybe in the next apartment.

    How many crabs live in this palace, anyhow?
     
  6. Kali_Ma

    Kali_Ma (Small Crab)

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    Thank you very much you guys! I just turned 40 and I think this is my midlife crisis. [​IMG] When my husband gets pouty and jealous I remind him that it could just as easily have been a 24 year old golf instructor. [​IMG]

    I tried to edit my post to say how many crabs I had, but it bounced me at the time, so here they are by name (I'm such a crab mom):

    4 PPs: Attila (jumbo), Krusty, Fifi and Spot.
    4 es: Houdini, Peabody, Itchy and Furious.
    2 ruggies: Mothra and Ghidra.
    3 strawberries (middlin to big): Dagon, Hydra and Kong.
    1 Indo: Emperor Norton -- a mercy buy I don't know if he's going to live or not. He's in serious pre-molt and someone at the pet store dropped him and half the top of his shell was missing.

    I've had 2 successful molts, and four crabs currently in ISOs getting on with it.

    I'm heavy into feeding them organic foods, and am doing some research on another forum about foods. I cook for my hermits and someone started trashing me over lipids in a crab's diet, and, well, I got mad. I used to do legal research so I did my magic and found a paper proving that crabs require lipids to reproduce. So, maybe someday, I'll have the first captive-bred hermits in the US! That would be great!

    Have a wonderful holiday, everyone, and it's really great to be here -- thanks for the warm welcome

    Kerie
     
  7. kuplakrabs

    kuplakrabs "Second Molt, A Success"

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    Kerie,
    I was checking out your posts about the foods at CSJ, good information! You seem to have found some pretty excellent supplements for their diets. I think a lot of the reasons we see so many crab deaths and deformities/bad molt are because there is something or combination of things we are missing in their diets. Cuda has mentioned this before too and I agree...

    I hope you continue to visit here often and share your wonderful knowledge with us. All crab communities need to have a good nutritionist. Can your be ours? [​IMG]
     
  8. Kali_Ma

    Kali_Ma (Small Crab)

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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by kuplakrabs:
    I hope you continue to visit here often and share your wonderful knowledge with us. All crab communities need to have a good nutritionist. Can your be ours? [​IMG] <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    I'd love to, so long as everyone keeps in mind I'm still learning and may not have all the answers yet!

    Kerie
     
  9. SuperMom

    SuperMom "First Molt In Progress"

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    A guy on Yahoo hermies has added marine hermits to his salt pool, and they are cleaning it and occasionally coming onto dry land to eat out of the other hermits' food dish!


    WoW, your tank is awesome. I thought about doing a marine crab tank but I like your ideal better.
     
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