This Disappears When Logged In

Your Prefered Method of Keeping Up Humidity and Feeding

Discussion in 'Monitors' started by rockstarbass1, Dec 17, 2013.

  1. rockstarbass1

    rockstarbass1 Member

    Well I have another thread that was going but here I'm looking for only two things is specific. Humidity for starters. Currently I have moist eco earth and an air bubbler hooked to an air pump in the water dish (lizard hot tub lol). My humidity is high enough I'm just interested to hear what everyone else uses (for water monitors). Also the top of the eco earth is moist bit all the way at the bottom it is soupy/pretty watery. I take it thats expected keeping such high humidity. And last feeding. Putting dead rodents (chopped up since the monitor is still very small) emits a foul smell compared to a typical snake enclosure if a whole animal is left uneaten. (Not as warm and humid) now I've got it down how much he eats every day so its fine but I'm the kinda person I rather put too much in vs not enough. (Is there a such thing as too much for a baby?) So anyone have a way to beat the stink about f uneaten prey left in the tank, or is it just nature of the beast and embrace it. Thanks chris
     
  2. murrindindi

    murrindindi Elite Member

    Hi, I think you mentioned in the other thread that the humidity was 65%, but you didn`t say where (in the coolest parts, around the basking area, etc)?
    I`ve never used eco earth, what exactly is it?
    I think one of the problems you will have is that because the substrate is quite shallow it might at times be either too dry or possibly too wet?
    I have a 90 gallon pond which obviously helps along with the substrate to maintain a decent humidity range; around the basking area when the heat bulbs are on it`s usually in the 60%+ range, and between 80 and 90%+ in the cooler parts (the pool`s on the cool side).
    Are you leaving the food items close to the basking area?
    Edit: How big in relation to the monitor`s head and neck are the mice when still whole? At this stage you can pretty much feed as much as the monitor will eat on a daily basis (always providing the conditions support the animal).
    One more edit: I see that eco earth is just coir, I`ve used that in the past to mix in with the soil/sand (thanks Garrett)!
     
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2013
  3. Cap10Squirty

    Cap10Squirty Elite Member

    As murrindindi said, providing a larger pond will help...I didn't realize that he had a 90 gallon pond! You could use a rubbermaid tub, cat liter tray, or if your enclosure is big enough you can pick up the pre-formed ponds from Lowes/Home Depot in the gardening section.

    I'd change out the eco earth (coconut coir) for compacted sand/soil mixture that is firm enough to hold a burrow and stay moist (but not soaking wet like mud) unless the coconut coir is holding a burrow...I find that it usually caves in at least in my African bullfrog enclosure.

    Twice a week I take two one gallon jugs of warm water and douse the entire enclosure to keep the top layer of substrate from getting overly dusty which does happen if the temperatures are kept up.

    Also, if you can warm your pond that would help too. I keep mine around 80-82 at all time and it truly is a lizard hot tub...just need to add the bubbler ;)

    Oh and as far as dealing with left over food, don't leave it in there! I accidentally left a fish one time and after a day it started stinking and my monitor wouldn't have anything to do with it...kind of surprised me as I'm sure in the wild they scavenge around for left overs. Anyway, humidity + meat is not good. You wouldn't want a culture of flies in there....
     
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2013
  4. gothicangel69

    gothicangel69 Elite Member

    I water my soil a few times a month, but thats it. Humidity ranges between 65-95 depending on where in the enclosure it's taken. I rarely check my humidity anymore as it doesn't fluctuate :).
     
  5. rockstarbass1

    rockstarbass1 Member

    Well as of now the monitor is still very tiny.only about 12 inches long total. I'm not feeding whole mice or rats. I'm taking a weened size rat and chopping it in 8 to 10 pieces and putting it in a dish under its hide on the warm side every night. And when I get home from work the next day go back to check it out. The past few days its all been gone but any little remainder of juices or what not in thedish stinks. As for burrows, not sure if it holds or not. Since the monitor is so small and iif provided two hide plenty large enough for him he hasn't made any yet. He made one to exit out the back side of the hide and its holding. And thats what I did with the eco earth I added a gallon of water but like stated the top is moist but the very bottom is very wet and saturated.

    Sorry to jump around on topics. The ween size rat I feed him is about the size of the monitors body almost maybe a little smaller. I'm not worried about the chunk sizes I'm cutting up I know they are small enough. I'm just amazed it eats something thats entire body is the same size (not talking size including tail in either the monitor or rat)
     
  6. murrindindi

    murrindindi Elite Member

    Can you try small fuzzy mice (whole), instead of the weaner rats, I would imagine they`re much smaller?
    They can easily swallow prey larger than their heads (I`m not suggesting you feed that size every time). I think in a few months if you still cut the food up you`ll be used to the smell and won`t even notice it.... ;)
    EDIT: It`s important the substrate at any level is not saturated for any length of time, that can cause many problems healthwise, there must be areas where the monitor can dry off completely.
     
  7. rockstarbass1

    rockstarbass1 Member

    He can on top of his hide thats under the basking light. Or the hide on the cool end or on the branch I have on the hot side.
     
  8. murrindindi

    murrindindi Elite Member

    That`s not enough, the monitor may well not want to sit on top of the hide under the basking spot which I assume will be quite exposed, as will the branch? That means either in the cool end hide or under the very wet substrate. The animal must be able to pick a spot at times almost anywhere in the enclosure that`s relatively dry.
     
  9. Darkbird

    Darkbird Moderator Staff Member

    Maybe cut up a smaller rodent for it so it eats it all every time and put a dish with some dubia or crickets in so it can munch at it's leisure. Might help if the dish is sitting somewhere where the monitor will be able to eat without being seen.
     
  10. rockstarbass1

    rockstarbass1 Member

    I'm confused... how have dry substrate but have 70% or more humidity? No way just a giant pond water dish or pool will create this with dry substrate. And someone else said they mositen their substrate with a gallon of water every so often. Now I'm confused.....
     
  11. gothicangel69

    gothicangel69 Elite Member

    The top of the substrate should be relatively dry, but an inch or so down it should be moist enough to hold a burrow. It sounds like there's a leak somewhere in the enclosure if you're having a hard time maintaining humidity without soaking the substrate.
     
  12. murrindindi

    murrindindi Elite Member

    You don`t have a deep enough substrate for there to be somewhat dryer areas, and if the top is moist and the underneath is soaking wet there`s nowhere to dry off other than the small exposed places you mentioned. They DO need a higher humidity in parts, but that doesn`t mean soaking wet through right to the bottom and throughout the whole enclosure.
    You say no way will a relatively large pool create a humidity level that high, but of course it will, the moisture is drawn into the air because of the heat (it`s called evaporation)! ;)
    It`s now 11.30p.m in the U.K, the main heat bulbs are turned off, this is my monitor`s basking site, as you see the humidity is at 80%, it will obviously drop in the morning to around 50 to 60% when I turn the lights back on, but at the other (cooler) side of the tank where the pond is it will still be at the high end of the range (and similarly underground), but nowhere is all the enclosure soaking wet through.

    http://farm6.staticflickr.com/5480/11426682555_246f61d008_z.jpg
     
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2013
  13. Cap10Squirty

    Cap10Squirty Elite Member

    I use a gallon or two of water due to the top layer evaporating after a few days. There is a lot of air space in my enclosure (about 5 feet of air from the top of the dirt (which is two feet deep) to the ceiling. Also, my enclosure is pretty big compared to what you're housing your monitor in so it's necessary. There are air leaked but its ok because the shed that I keep the lizard in also houses all of my tropical roaches which need some humidity.

    Also, where I keep my temperature and humidity probe, which is two feet above the ground, and two to three feet away from the hottest spot, it's nearly always at least 70% humidity.

    Play around with the setup until you get what Murindindi is suggesting. It'll work and you'll have a happy monitor that eats his food, sheds its skin, and poops regularly :)
     
  14. murrindindi

    murrindindi Elite Member

  15. rockstarbass1

    rockstarbass1 Member

    Ok cool sounds like I don't have near enough substrate. I figure small monitor so a few inches would be good for now. Since its winter here in Ohio and the ground is frozen and I'm not going digging anytime soon where can I buy some dirt? Or what am in looking for? I might might the eco earth with it? Also thanks for the pictures! Any chance you can provide some more of the inside of yours so I can get some ideas as I'm building this other one?
     
  16. Darkbird

    Darkbird Moderator Staff Member

    Go to your local big box home improvement store, go out to the garden area andnlookmfor the cheapest bags of topsoil they have. Buy around 3 bags of this and one bag of ordinary playsand. Or at least that's the mix ratio I use to start with. Make up enough of this to get a 8" to a foot in your tank, and pack it down good. You may need to let it thaw in your house for 24hrs before using, its usually kept outside. And it will likely be plenty wet enough to start off with. This has always worked well for me.

    Edit:forgot to add that yes you can mix in the eco-earth, you might just need less sand in the mix then. Remember that you want this stuff to hold a burrow when packed down.
     

Share This Page