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Fauna for Open-top Habitat

Discussion in 'General Construction' started by ChunkofWhat, Apr 16, 2014.

  1. ChunkofWhat

    ChunkofWhat Member

    I am in the planning phase of constructing a shallow, open top riparium with a land feature. The water component will likely contain around 40 gallons and the land area will probably be about two square feet, but this is subject to change, perhaps pending your advice.

    The two aspects of this project I am pretty set on are
    1) The water feature will be shallow (12" at most)
    2) The entire enclosure will be open top.

    Here's a rough sketch of what I'm thinking so far:


    And here is a picture of the mosaic plant, which I would like to heavily feature in the water area:


    I would be pretty comfortable with having this just be a big fish tank with some land area to grow terrestrial plants, but if anyone can think of any amphibious critters that would not be able to escape from a shallow, hoodless habitat, and that would not mind the variable humidity of a New York apartment, please let me know!
  2. Thalatte

    Thalatte Elite Member

    Axolotl? not terrestrial but would be interesting in the tank.
    Salamander? Some will go on land and might work.

    Originaly I was going to suggest a fire belly toad but then I remembered they climb the corners of the cage and can escape.

    Though I think you may just want to stick with fish. Oh unless you want a small turtle like a mud turtle? I think they max out at about 4in so if you dont mind them eating all the fish this would work. though you would need to incorporate a basking lamp.
  3. ChunkofWhat

    ChunkofWhat Member

    Can't salamanders and turtles escape?
    Also, correct me if I'm wrong, but I believe there are some pretty harsh restrictions for aquatic plants with turtles.

    If salamanders can't get up glass, then I would be very interested in that option. What are the hardiest breeds? I have fish and reptile experience, but I have never owned an amphibian. Aren't they sort of temperature/humidity fussy? Could salamanders thrive in an open top (i.e. room temperature/humidity) environment?

    Here are some updated designs for the riparium:

    This is my favorite so far:

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