Habitat - Indoor :: Advice on new tank

Turtle tank setups and other indoor configurations.

Post Posted: Mon Feb 16, 2015 3:27 am   Advice on new tank

Hi guys

I've just bought a new habitat for my RES. I got a fairly good sized tank but I need advice on the setup I have so far. I know I'm still missing a lot of stuff but where I live (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia), supplies are extremely difficult to find.

My RES is about 4" long and I have the tank filled now at 15 gallons until I get a proper basking dock or anything that will make up for it as I can't find the ready made ones here at all!

I have a UVB bulb (6%) installed but no heat lamp yet. You also may notice that I have no heater in the water. Temperatures here stay high anyway (this is what the store guy said) but I do have my doubts. Water is staying at about between 78 and 80 degrees.

I'm also having doubts about the filter. I have to get a more powerful filter than the one supplied by the store.

Please give me your comments about the setup (pics attached-they're not much as I just set it up late last night and I went directly to work this morning-will put up more when I get home) and any advice you have at all.

Thanks
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Smekky1234
 
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Post Posted: Mon Feb 16, 2015 8:57 pm   Re: Advice on new tank

Like you said, you will want to get a stronger filter. Preferably a canister--are there any places near you that sell one or could special order one? It should be rated 2-3 times your tank volume. For example, a turtle with 40 gallons of water would do well with a filter rated for 80-120 gallon tanks. Note that tank "rating" is different from gallons per hour.

Your turtle won't benefit from the UVB bulb without a dry basking area, which I don't see in your pictures. A simple one can be made with PVC, some light diffuser/"egg crate", and tile. Your light is also a bit too far from the turtle to give any real benefits. Any other barriers between the bulb and turtle (i.e., an acrylic cover on top of the tank or beneath the light hood) will filter out the useful UVB rays.

78-80 is a little warm, but it's better than being too cold. Optimal RED temperatures are 75-77F. It should cool down when you fill the rest of the tank. What are the night temperatures?

Finally, as your turtle grows you should consider removing the gravel. It can cause impaction, if swallowed.
Jeremiah
 
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Post Posted: Tue Feb 17, 2015 1:47 am   Re: Advice on new tank

Jeremiah wrote:Like you said, you will want to get a stronger filter. Preferably a canister--are there any places near you that sell one or could special order one? It should be rated 2-3 times your tank volume. For example, a turtle with 40 gallons of water would do well with a filter rated for 80-120 gallon tanks. Note that tank "rating" is different from gallons per hour.

Your turtle won't benefit from the UVB bulb without a dry basking area, which I don't see in your pictures. A simple one can be made with PVC, some light diffuser/"egg crate", and tile. Your light is also a bit too far from the turtle to give any real benefits. Any other barriers between the bulb and turtle (i.e., an acrylic cover on top of the tank or beneath the light hood) will filter out the useful UVB rays.

78-80 is a little warm, but it's better than being too cold. Optimal RED temperatures are 75-77F. It should cool down when you fill the rest of the tank. What are the night temperatures?

Finally, as your turtle grows you should consider removing the gravel. It can cause impaction, if swallowed.


Thank you very much for your info. Here's a little update on what I've done so far:

Yesterday I bought an extra filter which has double the capacity of the current one. I assume it would work well along with the one I currently have as I will fill the tank more to double the volume. I'm guessing this as I've noticed that over the past 24 hours or more the water is actually getting cleaner with the current volume of water and filter(or is it my imagination? :) ). I don't know what the rating for it is but it says around 1200L/h I think (300G/H - have to recheck)

I've also noticed that the temperature did drop during the night so it may cause a problem when I fill the tank and it gets cooler at night or when we use the AC. So, I've bought a 150w heater for the tank which says that it can heat up to 300 liters (80 gallons) to better control the temperatures.

The reason why I was not filling up the tank like I said was that I couldn't find a proper basking dock or materials to use. Fortunately yesterday I found a shop (after a mess of running around the city searching) that has cork bark :D So I bought a piece. I will clean it up and install it right away.

There is still the problem of the heating bulb. Would a normal 100 watt spot light bulb work? This is what I plan on installing and raising the water level to be closer to the light.

And finally, yes, I have planned to remove the gravel and will at least lessen the amount until the turtle gets bigger then I'll remove it completely.

Thank you again for your time
Smekky1234
 
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Post Posted: Tue Feb 17, 2015 8:48 am   Re: Advice on new tank

A100 watt incandescent bulb will work fine for heat. That's what I use to use.
Tobi a RES born in 2012
1 dog, 1 teenager, 3 aquariums filled with fish, snails, shrimp and a bit of algae
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ljapa
 
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Post Posted: Tue Feb 17, 2015 11:51 am   Re: Advice on new tank

I would infest in a dock and fill that tank more. Turtles love to swim and dive that water is too shallow right now. it needs a dock to bask

1 Female RES named Raphael
75 gallon tank :D
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butterflygirl921
 
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Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2015 5:58 am   Re: Advice on new tank

Another thing guys:

I can't really make what the temp of the water is ... I have a strip thermometer and I have no idea what to make of the reading ... it's giving me blue on 80 and brown on 82 ... but it seems high to me which is not logical since I'm not using the heater .. I tried using the heater (it is set on 78) and it shows that it's heating meaning the real temp should be lower ... help?!
Smekky1234
 
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Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2015 10:51 am   Re: Advice on new tank

Smekky1234 wrote:I've noticed that over the past 24 hours or more the water is actually getting cleaner with the current volume of water and filter(or is it my imagination? :) ).

So, I've bought a 150w heater for the tank which says that it can heat up to 300 liters (80 gallons) to better control the temperatures.

There is still the problem of the heating bulb. Would a normal 100 watt spot light bulb work? This is what I plan on installing and raising the water level to be closer to the light.


No, it's not your imagination! Higher water volume takes longer to get dirty.

Is your heater adjustable? Given your daytime temperatures, you might want to turn it off during the waking hours. You may not even have needed to buy it, as long as the temperature drop isn't too big!

I'm not really a spot light fan, as they focus heat into one restricted area, decreasing thermoregulation opportunities. Like others have said, though, standard incandescents (preferably frosted) are great for heat (not UVB).

I would recommend getting an actual aquarium thermometer (a glass one), as the strip type doesn't give overly accurate or holistic readings.
Jeremiah
 
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Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2015 2:46 pm   Re: Advice on new tank

Hey guys

First of all I want to thank all of you for the great feedback and advice. It's been really helpful

I'm posting my final setup for the tank and showing all the missing stuff.

My final inquiry would be about how much time does my RES need heat light and the UVB light? Meaning do I turn them off at a certain time in the day? after a certain duration? or what exactly?

Also, is the basking area too hot now? once I installed it my RES just dashed right away to the basking area and stood there for hours!!

Thank you again
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Is this too hot??? It reads around 100!
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Smekky1234
 
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Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2015 3:00 pm   Re: Advice on new tank

Thats much better. I personally keep my basking area around 90 degrees. What wattage is the heat lamp right now? I personally turn my lights on when I get up and turn them off right before I go to bed.

1 Female RES named Raphael
75 gallon tank :D
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butterflygirl921
 
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Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2015 3:42 pm   Re: Advice on new tank

Wattage is 100. Should I get a weaker bulb?
Smekky1234
 
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Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2015 3:46 pm   Re: Advice on new tank

Your best bet for a photoperiod is 10-12 hours a day.

It's great that your turtle is basking, but it looks like the basking spot is at 100F. Butterfly Girl is right about trying to keep it at 90. You can go a little over, but not that much. Keep an eye on that bulb, as it seems to be in its burn-in period. Don't change it yet, it may even out.

It's also good that you have more filtration going on, but you might consider an external model. Having an internal filter might stress the turtle out.
Jeremiah
 
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Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2015 4:51 pm   Re: Advice on new tank

I will keep the filter issue in mind. So far these filters are remarkably quiet and since they are submerged I positioned the flow of water downwards and no strong currents are happening so it's a fairly calm environment so far.

Thank you for all your tips Jeremiah.
Smekky1234
 
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Post Posted: Wed Feb 18, 2015 8:11 pm   Re: Advice on new tank

You're welcome! Re-positioning the filters was a good idea. Keep up the good work--the tank looks great!
Jeremiah
 
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Post Posted: Thu Feb 19, 2015 8:39 am   Re: Advice on new tank

You can put your lights on a timer. I set mine to come on at sunrise and turn off at sunset. I have to adjust this several times a year but its easy to do. I would also recommend a canister filter. Looks nice!
1 Male Mississippi Map/Mississippi
1 Female RES/Slidy.
1 DBT White Concentric Female/ Lucky
1 DBT Male/ Spots
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300 gallon indoor stock tank, FX6 & FX5 filters. Mega-Ray 100w UVB bulb.
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Kansasslider
 
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Post Posted: Thu Feb 19, 2015 8:40 am   Re: Advice on new tank

Yes, another cork convert! Can you post a picture of the strip thermometer? Usually the brightest part is the reading, I keep one as a back up. If you use a glass one, you can take it out when not in use. Avoid those with the little wired probe.
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