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What type of Substrate?

Discussion in 'HCRU Crabitat's - Biography's Of Our Crabitats' started by ReganShaw, Oct 11, 2004.

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  1. Brandee

    Brandee Hi, I'm New Here!

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    I am totally confused after reading these posts. I am new to hermies having gotten my first two fro Christmas. What the heck are you guys talking about with all the initials??? EE and such???? I am only using beach sand now, but I want to change it up. I have a 25 gallon tank to movem y hermies into and i need some ideas> I love your tank, HermiesRsweet and if you don't mind, I would like to use some ideas from it. What types of floor covering do you guys suggest??? Please be specific for me. I lovemy hermies and plan on getting a couple more, but again I have no idea what kind to get. One of mine is medium size while the other one is quite small. They seem to get along great, but what size should I add to my crabitat??? I also plan on doing a second story, but I am not sure how. I noticed in some of the crabitats I looked at that there were ivy's in them. Are those ivy's real??? Do the hermies eat them?? what other live plants can be used?? I love plants so that is an awesome addition to me. Can you take shells and make the huts or are the natural ones more liked by hermies??? i am so full of questions taht I could go on for days. I will stop for now though. Feel free to email me with any suggestions or comments. Thanx Brandee crazydog@awesomenet.net
     
  2. SuperMom

    SuperMom "First Molt In Progress"

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    Hello Brandee, first of all I would like to say welcome we are glad to have ya and hope to see lots of you. [​IMG]

    As for as subsrates go it is all a matter of opion. I would recommend experimenting.

    Here is what I did. When I first started crabbing I had half gravel and half Calci sand.(My opion only gravel was aweful the hermies couldn't dig in it and the calci sand was so messy it doesn't absorb water well so it sticks to the hermies and mine had trouble getting around)
    Then I went to playsand cheap and I did like it used it for about a month the crabs could dig in it and it didn't stick to them.
    Then tried the EE: Eco-Earth (coconut fiber bedding)I love it it is the easiest to take care of it smells like tree looks great and soooo easy for the hermies to dig in.
    I did want to experiment more though even though I loved the EE so I mixxed it with the sand. That was alright but I still liked te EE better.
    I finally decided to try the marine sand. Now let me tell you it is beautiful in a tank, but I personally wasn't crazy about it. It is very fine so it too sticks to the hermies and I think it smells(I have tried it a couple times cuz I love the way it looks in my tank {at first anyway}) So I went back to my EE.

    A lot of people will tell you the bad side of EE is mold, and yes I did have mold ONE time in 8 months and it was a dime size spot around the food dish. If that happens you can just scoope it up and pitch that spot. I did a complete change just because it was the first time I ever had mold in the EE. However I also had mold in the sand once, and a strong mildew smell.

    I also wanted to say the EE is very cheap also here is a link to were I get mine.
    Echo Earth

    Anyway like I said it is matter of opion. The next person to post in this thread could love playsand, calci sand, marine sand, or moss(which I have tried to and again went back to the EE)

    So just experiment and watch your hermies.
    Hope this helps. [​IMG]

    PS
    I did want to say that I have had more than 35 successful molts in the last 6 months with EE. [​IMG]
     
  3. Ally

    Ally (Micro Crab)

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    I have a mix of playsand and EE in both of my tanks. Mostly sand though, probably a 70/30 mix.
     
  4. kuplakrabs

    kuplakrabs "Second Molt, A Success"

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    Brandee,
    As Tricia has said, it is a matter of opinion. I think the best advice I received when I started crabbing was from GertrudeSnicklegrove (another very knowledgeable HCRU member-who along with the wonderful Aviate, has also published a book about hermit crabs). She basically told me that you need to take a look at their environment in the wild. They walk along the sandy beaches, climb on rocks, burrow among soil, just to name a few. I chose to offer my crabs different areas with different substrates. A small area of gravel around the food dish (with EE underneath-prevents them from dragging too much EE into the dish), a large area of EE (my crabs love to dig and molt beautifully in it) and a medium size area of sand.

    I do not put dividers in to separate the different substrates because I believe it allows them more freedom to move around and tunnel from one to the other if they prefer to.

    Please do not worry about asking questions, that is why we are all here. And it is also how we learned how to care for our hermies as well.

    Cali-Sand will be expensive and does not retain water very well. Others have reported that it smells when the crabs get it wet. However, I do provide a small dish of it in the tank and frequently see the crabs eating it.

    Play Sand-silica free, is very inexpensive and works well to retain humidity. The crabs can dig and make tunnels easily if it is moistened.

    Coconut Fiber Bedding such as EE (Eco-Earth) or Bed-a-Beast, works wonderfully to retain humidity and the tunnels that they make retain their shape. I only pay 3.89 for a 3 brick pack at my local pet store. There are instructions on how to prepare EE in the "Hard-Drive, Carved In Stone" forum.

    Gravel is more expensive initially, but is easily cleaned and reused. Many crabbers have had crabs dig and molt in gravel. Mine did not start digging until I switched to EE.

    As far as our abbreviations, go up to the top of this page, click on FORUMS and then above that there is another line...click on LEXICON and scroll down to the end where there is a list of the common abbreviations used on the boards.

    If you are interested in purchasing a fantastic book, click on this link. I highly recommend it to beginners as well as veteran crabbers. You will find everything from a crash course in the biology of the land hermit crab to tank set up to molting. You even get over 60 great recipes so your crabs will never be finicky again LOL! It is a great addition to your reference library. http://www.petdiscounters.biz/customer/product.php?productid=1141031&cat=278&page=1
     
  5. Brandee

    Brandee Hi, I'm New Here!

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    I want to thank everyone for their kind words of wisdom and support on this new venture for me. I am looking forward to a wonderful friendship with everyone here and also some fun with my Hermies. I am getting my new 60 gallon tank tomorrow and will begin setup. I will post pics as soon as I can get it ready and presentable. I will also post pics of my 2 hermies as well. I think one is a PP, but not sure about the other one. maybe some of you can help when I post the pics. Thanx again. Brandee
     
  6. kittykat

    kittykat Hi, I'm New Here!

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    i just got three new babies, and i also got some fluckers (? flugers) spanish moss. i already put it in, is that okay? one of my new ones already buried himself in it, and i can't see him anymore. should i look for him, or should i leave him alone and see what happens? the crabs seem to really like the moss, the guy at the pet shop said it was okay for crabs, just wanted to check with u all. now i have gravel at one end, moss over the sand in the other end, and sand in the whole middle of my thirty gal tank.
    danielle
     
  7. pblove

    pblove (Micro Crab)

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    I don't know about the spanish moss, did read that you should use the natural moss, not spanish moss, but do not know the reason behind it?
     
  8. AllCrabedOut

    AllCrabedOut Hi, I'm New Here!

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    I use sand, (calci, and sometimes vita) i also use FB every now and then [​IMG]
     
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