Discussion in 'HCRU Crabitat's - Biography's Of Our Crabitats' started by Eric, Feb 6, 2005.
i have mixed up calci sand with EE anbd they love it.
Hi. I am a new hermie owner. Most of sites I read recommended EE for subtrate. I placed it in my crabitat still moist about 1 and a half weeks ago. Shoul I have dried it out first? I'm now noticing mold growing along the sides of the tank (glass with glass top). The EE is great for the humidity level but I don't want to risk making the hermit crabs sick from mold. How often should EE be replaced and is there anything to prevent the mold?
I have found that preparing the EE with salt water has definitely helped. I have used the same EE since October of 2004 and have not had any problems with mold. It is also very important to have proper air circulation in your tank as well...try propping the lid open a little bit-or you could also get an aquarium pump (with adjustable flow) and run the line into the tank to move the air around inside. You may need to do a bit of tinkering if you choose this method though. I would only recommend it for a larger tank-since smaller ones seem much harder to keep stable with regard to humidity and temperature.
You may be wondering why in the world I have had the same substrate since almost a year ago...well I have done a lot of reading over the past year and have come to the conclusion that there are indeed a number of beneficial bacteria that are present in our tanks. These bacteria help break down waste and spilled food. I have replaced about 1/4 of the substrate every other month and then mixed it into the remaining substrate. My substrate actually contains more than just sand and EE, but I don't usually want to complicate thing for the newbies . I also have composted oak leaves, worm castings (worm poo) and humates-all of which contain natural micro organisms that help maintain a clean tank. Keep in mind that I also have booklice (not harmful to humans or crabs) in my tank as well-which also helps to control the mold. The booklice are a result of having organic matter-like the leaves and natural driftwood- in the tank and really are not a bother to me.
I'm not sure how you prepared your EE, if you prepared it by the actual directions and didn't squeeze out enough water, it can stay quite wet for a while. You may want to read this post on preparing EE
Preparing Eco-Earth per brick
Can you tell me a little more about booklice? Where do you get them? Also composted oak leaves? Do you just take them from your yard? And where do you get worm castings? Sorry about all the questions!! I haven't had any problems with mold but I will be getting a bigger tank soon and it seems that this may be something that could help me maintain a cleaner tank. Thanks!
The booklice weren't intentional LOL, I think they came in on my corkbark, but none the less, they are welcome in the tank. Here is some information about them.
Post about bugs on corkbark
The oak leaves were simply clean dried oak leaves from my yard (with no pesticides and no indication of bugs) composted with EE. Read this post for more info on the worm poo LOL
Worm Casting Post
info about castings
There isn't any scientific proof that my substrate is any better than just plain EE or sand, just that my own research has led me down this path
i have a 55 gallon.half gravel,half sand
So you can bake substrate?
>I have a 120 gallon tank. When I need to >replace my substrate (if I get sick of baking >it),
Just don't let it get TOO hot and make sure it cools before giving it back to the crabbies. Otherwise, bake away. It's a good way to kill bacteria and mold (and bugs).
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