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Hydroballs?

Discussion in 'Humidity' started by puzzlebean, Jan 20, 2011.

  1. puzzlebean

    puzzlebean Elite Member

    Has anyone ever used these?

    Zoo Med Hydro Balls

    I am thinking about getting some and putting a bowl of them in the corner of my corn snake's cage underneath the light to raise the humidity...dunno if it's a good idea or not.

    The other idea that I got here (courtesy of Merlin) was to use a second water dish. These are supposedly meant to be soaked and then keep humidity levels up? Has anyone used them before? I want to make sure they are OK for him to be burrowing in if he decided to...

    Thanks.
     
  2. missabrat

    missabrat Elite Member

    they say they are lightweight, so if he burrowed in them they shouldn't hurt, if they are natural clay I wouldn't see a problem with them.
    May I ask why you feel that you need to increase the humidity? Corn snakes do not need a high level a normal water bowl is normally sufficient. I don't provide anything more than that for either of my corns, one is a juvenile and the other an adult and both have perfect sheds every time.
     
  3. puzzlebean

    puzzlebean Elite Member

    Well, his humidity is at zero percent...we have forced air heating, which makes for very dry conditions. So I am looking for a solution that can keep it consistently at at least 30%.
     
  4. Max713

    Max713 Elite Member

    0%!?!? Woah, you must use a lot of lotion :)
    I'm also curious about the hydro balls
     
  5. puzzlebean

    puzzlebean Elite Member

    yeah it's really dry. We have been spritzing and have it at 20 or so...we are looking for a more permanent solution.
     
  6. missabrat

    missabrat Elite Member

    wow ! how about using a humidifier in the room? It would help the humans as well :)
    I would probably try the Hydroballs, they don't seem like they would be a problem, but read the ingredients on the package first, see what it actually contains, I am picky like that LOL
     
  7. puzzlebean

    puzzlebean Elite Member

    We had a humidifier, but it makes the whole room wet and yucky. What sort of ingredients would I want to watch out for?
     
  8. missabrat

    missabrat Elite Member

    anything that isn't natural, chemicals etc.
     
  9. kriminaal

    kriminaal HH Block Leader Staff Member Premium Member

    If you have a humidifier in the room and have it set for a recommended house setting of 35-40%. It wouldn't be a wet and mucky feeling at all.
    You wouldn't even notice the moisture.
    However, having the room set at 35-40%, the tank wouldn't be at the same level as the basking lights would burn a lot of it off.
    As well, anything you put in the tank to raise humidity will try to equalize with the levels of the room.
    So to increase the humidity in the tank and not the surrounding room, you need to seal or partial seal the tank off the hold the humidity in.
     
  10. puzzlebean

    puzzlebean Elite Member

    Thanks =) I do have the tank sealed off. The humidifier needs to be cranked to make any sort of difference in the tank, because the air is so dry. That's why it makes the room gross, b/c it's impossible to set it at 30% because it doesn't affect the tank. I had the same problem with my fat tail, and solved it by giving him a warm moist hide, which he spends a lot of time in. I think I understand correctly that the humidity in the air in the tank is a bit more important for snakes.
     
  11. kriminaal

    kriminaal HH Block Leader Staff Member Premium Member

    The hyrdoball idea could work, if you put them in a water dish they should slowly evaporate raising the humidity.
    Just don't know if the water from the bowl was drank if it would cause health issues.
    Unless you covered it with a mesh of some sort.
     
  12. puzzlebean

    puzzlebean Elite Member

    Ohh, that's a really good idea! I could totally get a bit of screen from Home Depot and cover a bowl of them. Thanks, Mike!
     
  13. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    The hydroballs are a baked clay product developed for use in hydroponic gardening. They are non toxic and do not break down.
    But just putting them, wet, in a bowl will not likely do much as they will dry out pretty rapidly. They don't absorb the water. They were intended to be periodically flooded and then drained.
    The way they work is they are porous and the water sticks to the surface. So you would have to pull them out and soak them pretty frequently.
    Another thing you might do is to seal up the top of the tank and then run a pipe from your humidifier to the top of the tank venting directly into the tank. Then with a multi setting lamp timer, set it to come on at given intervals. That way you could raise the humidity in the tank without turning it into a swamp or making your house feel like the Amazon!
     
  14. puzzlebean

    puzzlebean Elite Member

    Ooooh. Hrm. This is quite the humidity battle. I'll be going to the store today to try to get something to help. I haven't decided what, but if the hydroballs are not meant to absorb water and keep it for an extended period of time, it will probably not be those.

    Grr.
     
  15. schlegelbagel

    schlegelbagel Frog Lover Premium Member

    yes, you are misunderstanding the use of hydroballs. They are a light weight option (instead of rocks) for a drainage layer under dirt. It helps keep roots of plants from getting soggy.

    What is the top of your tank made out of? I would suggest replacing whatever screen material you have, with a solid wood top with only a hole cut out for your heat lamp.

    DSCN0621.jpg
     

    Attached Files:

  16. puzzlebean

    puzzlebean Elite Member

    It looks like this:

    [​IMG]

    I know the cardboard "substrate" is not helping, I have repti-carpet coming today, which I will be using for a few months before making the switch to aspen.
     
  17. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    Just sealing up the screen top and placing a larger waterbowl under, or over, the heat source will help considerably.
     
  18. puzzlebean

    puzzlebean Elite Member

    Yes, I did this...maybe I need an even bigger one? It raised it to about 30-40% and then gradually dropped back to zero. I am going to try sealing the top better...it's tough because it's a slidey-screen top and I need to be able to get in there easily. And I will get an even bigger water dish and add the repti-carpet and spritz it. That's my next plan of action.
     
  19. Merlin

    Merlin Administrator Staff Member Premium Member

    The carpet really won't make much difference.
    From what I see in the picture the water bowl isn't big enough and it isn't under your heat lamp. Also you have a very large amount of space around the lamp reflector and in the back corner. Try getting some very thin plywood such as luan and cutting it to fit exactly on the inside of the frame of the screen. A little tape around the edges will hold it in place and reduce the escaping air flow. And still allow you easy access to the tank.
    The hole for the lamp should be as close to the outside diameter of the reflector edge as you can make it.
     
  20. schlegelbagel

    schlegelbagel Frog Lover Premium Member

    Is that cardboard up top? try plexigalss or wood. They both do a much better job at keeping in humidity.

    And I also agree, a large bowl of water right under the light will make things much more humid. Try a dog dish or a deep dish pie plate.
     

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