Paludarium Components and materials
- Fresh Water Aquarium Components used in Paludarium :
1- Heater .
3- Other equipments and Accessories .
1- Heaters :
submersible water heaters have a long history of being used in vivariums and also in aquariums and can be used in paludarium to raise the ambient temperature.
Water heaters are placed in the water in the false bottom or drainage layer of a vivarium.and in the paludarium will be in accessble hiden area When placing a submersible water heater, insure that it will be easy to remove if the water heater malfunctions or needs to be adjusted. Also, make sure that the submersible water heater will always be underwater – glass water heaters can shatter if exposed to air. Many of the newer submersible water heaters are made of plastic or metal that eliminate the threat of your water heater shattering and releasing dangerous chemicals and metals into the delicate ecosystem of your paludarium .
Usually the water heater will be hidden to avoid bad looking the above is an electrical heater special designed for paludarium or vivarium and the heater installed inside a plastic shell or cover for protection from same , soil or the wood used in the plaudarium ..
Many submersible water heaters are preset to 78F – 25 C this can work in some situations, but acquiring a submersible water heater that can be tuned to the desired temperature is preferable.
For more information on submersible water heaters click here ..
Effective temperature control is essential to the successful long-term operation of a paludarium. Both air and water temperature should be monitored (and, if needed, adjusted) on a regular basis. In some cases, temperature is made to fluctuate in a manner that simulates day/night or seasonal conditions. It may be necessary to apply multiple heating and/or cooling devices-particularly if thermal gradients need to be established between the terrestrial and aquatic sections, or across the terrestrial section itself.
The most simple way of heating the aquatic section is with thermostat-controlled submersible (and preferably shatterproof) aquarium heaters; operating these devices within the reach of amphibians or aquatic reptiles is discouraged, however, as even brief contact can result in burn injuries. Aquarium substrate heating coils may be preferable in that they prevent burns, in addition to benefiting aquatic plant growth. A thermostat-controlled heat pad can be placed underneath, and/or on the wall of, the enclosure. Heat pads are an attractive choice in that they are safe for herps, benefit aquatic plants, and reduce the amount of cords running into the enclosure. Major water cooling will usually require the use of an aquarium chiller. Minor water cooling can be accomplished simply by directing one or more fans over the water surface.
Many of the newer submersible water heaters are plastic, eliminating the dangers of a shattered glass heater.
Interesting natural behaviors of some fish species, such as these archerfish (Toxotes jaculatrix), are best elicited-and best observed-in paludaria. Photo by Erich Sia.
The terrestrial section can, if necessary, be similarly cooled with fans. Heating the terrestrial section, on the other hand, can be much more involving. Air has a significantly lower specific latent heat value (i.e., more readily gains/loses thermal energy) than does water; air temperature is consequently far less stable than water temperature. Efforts to control temperature in the terrestrial section can be complicated by fluctuations of airflow or humidity from within, or from without, the enclosure. Further complicating air temperature control is the need (in certain cases) to simultaneously maintain warmer and cooler areas.
Establishing thermal gradients across the terrestrial section facilitates thermoregulation for herps and other exotherms. During daylight hours, locally heated areas-usually encompassing about a third of the volume of the enclosure-can be provided with incandescent spotlights. Any required nocturnal heating can be provided with infrared-emitting ceramic lamps. Side-mounted heat pads can be used to provide either continual or supplemental heat. All heating devices that are to operate on a daily cycle should be individually controlled by automatic timers.
Wire heater for the aquarium can be used also to hide the heater elements in the water
The Lever to change the termpreature setting
Light indicator when the Heater work
2- Filter :
The same external and internal filters can be used in the paludarium ..
And you can used the discharge from the power head of the filter as a water fall in the paludarium and vivarium using rocks and wiids
This procedure is popular between the hobbyist for almost all paludarium projects .
Using the filter to make a waterfall is can be enhance the water quality also the natural and aesthetic looking of the paludarium .. However this can spray some water droplets on the from glass which will give a bad looking of the paludarium ..
- Canister Filters :
Power filters are probably the most widely used aquarium filters - and for good reason. They are very easy to use and provide excellent biological, chemical, and mechanical filtration. They are designed to hang off the back of your paludarium and are the perfect filter for most popular tanks sizes housing a variety of tropical fishes. Replaceable filter cartridges make maintenance simple and convenient. Newer models feature either a biological filter pad or BIO-wheel to provide extra pollution removing power.above all that the water fall which we can make it if we direct the water discharge to a rock arrangment .
Canister or external filter parts and components
Below : Internal filters also can be used fully submersible but you need a flexible hose to make a water fall in the land area of the paludarium .. but tis can be usaful when you don't have or limited space for the external filter ..
Below : Wet/Dry Filters can be also used in Paludarium
Water Quality Control :
Water filtration can be administered in a number of ways. The chosen method and equipment for this purpose should reflect precedence for the wellbeing of livestock over cost, aesthetic impact, etc.
In certain cases, no filtration (aside from that performed naturally by aquatic flora) will be needed. Modest filtration will be sufficient for a system housing a few small fish and/or amphibians and can be achieved with an air-driven undergravel or sponge filter, whereas a system housing turtles or numerous, larger fish will require the service of a remote canister filter, wet/dry filter, or other similarly capable filter unit. An in-sump filter application might draw from a standing pipe (cut to the desired water depth and capped with a strainer). Most paludaria can be simply and effectively serviced by way of a compact, submersible "turtle tank" filter; these units are specialized for paludarium applications, come in a variety of styles and sizes, and are often equipped with integrated water heaters.
Control of environmental conditions (e.g., air/water temperature, air/water circulation, and air/water quality) should be established within a paludarium long before any livestock is introduced. Photo by Erich Sia.
Ideal configurations of paludarium water movement depend largely upon the type of habitat one wishes to represent. Options for the use of water features (e.g., springs, waterfalls, and so on) are many, each bearing its own unique ecological and aesthetic upshot.
In the case of freshwater systems, one of the most basic distinctions to be made is between lotic conditions (i.e., the flowing waters of rivers or streams) and lentic conditions (i.e., the relatively still waters of lakes or ponds). In the former situation, vigorous water movement can be generated by a submersible pump, perhaps directed to the opposite side of the display via PVC pipe as to create the illusion of unidirectional flow; in the latter situation, the sensitive balance between disturbance and stagnation can be maintained with modest air-driven water movement from a bubble wand or undergravel filter.
In the case of marine systems, one might circulate paludarium water via "waves" generated by a small dump bucket or surge device.
Small, "hillstream" fish species, such as these neon gobies (Stiphodon sp.), are ideally suited to the fast, unidirectional flow of a rocky, lotic ecotope. Photo by Bill Brissette.
Hujeta gars (Ctenolucius hujeta) in a lentic ecotope. Come feeding time, large ambush predators like these will appreciate the ample space to safely jump and splash at the surface. Photo by Kenneth Wingerter.
3- Other equipments and Accessories :
Air Stone .. is manufactured from compressed sand .
Air Pump can feed two air stone
Up and below the fexiable air diffuser can shape in any form that hobbyist want
Large Air Pump for commercial used or for multi tanks
Air Pump connected to the pipe and then to Air stone
1- Bigger bubbles will disturb the aquarium and the fishes inside and not good for the aeration process .
2- Mid size bubbles which proper to the aquarium .
3- Small Bubbles also good
All Air pumps works out of the Water for safety Air pump level should be up the aquarium to avoid and water back to the air pump
- Aeration :
One of the oldest method in the fresh water aquarium for gases exchange in the aquarium and it is used in the early stages of aquarium development when the filters yet not invented ..Water movement and circulation serves to oxygenate the water so that fish have the air they need to breathe and survive. However, in an aquarium, the surface of the water is greatly reduced. Therefore, artificial ways of oxygenating the water must be accomplished through aeration. There are several ways to aerate your aquarium and these methods will be discussed in this article.
Before discussing specific methods, it is important to address the surface area of the water in your aquarium. The greater this surface area is, the more water that is in contact with the air at any given moment. This leads to greater oxygen absorption by the water. Therefore, you should try to maximize the surface area in your aquarium. This issue is particularly important to consider when you are thinking about the shape of a tank – standard tanks are rectangular with a greater width than height but some tanks come in “tall” sizes with walls that are taller than they are wide. Many people mistakenly assume that you can keep the same number of fish in a 20-gallon standard tank as you can in a 20-gallon tall tank. However, the 20-gallon standard tank actually has a larger surface area due to its length and width dimensions. You need to be careful with tall tanks or irregularly-shaped tanks (such as hexagons), as the water surface can be fairly small. This smaller surface limits the stocking capacity of the aquarium.
Oxygen/Carbon Dioxide Exchange Basics:
As your fish breathe, they absorb oxygen from the tank water and their bodies convert it into carbon dioxide which is then exhaled. Oxygen and carbon dioxide are also exchanged at the water’s surface -- carbon dioxide is released from the water into the air. This is important because your fish would die if the CO2 was never allowed to escape into the atmosphere – it would simply build up in the tank, causing your fish to slowly suffocate.
Air pump , pipes and diffusers :
Usually bignner hobbies or casual hobbies or any fan with limited budget normally go for air oump .. Air pump is the devise used to generate bubbles in the water ..flexiable pipes used to transport the air to the aquarium and air stone or air diffusers responsible to generate the proper bubbles .
The Chiller Connection to the tank :
1- suction pipe to chiller .
2-Return water to the Tank .
3-Pump for water intake
x - Distance from wall should be minmum of 20 cm
In the better models of chillers, the heat exchanger and compressor are held rigidly together, NOT with a flexible connection. The two metals most commonly used in the heat exchanger are titanium, and Teflon-coated copper. Titanium is expensive and is not a good conductor of heat, however, it is impervious to the saltwater that can corrode many other types of metal. When using coated copper, routinely perform a visual inspection of the unit. Any crack in the coating can expose the copper to the saltwater and result in increased copper levels in the water, with possible toxicity and death of the inhabitants.
Types of chillers:
- Thermoelectric Chillers
Quiet, energy-efficient thermoelectric chillers are intended for use with smaller freshwater and saltwater aquariums (less than 55 gallons) and insulated bait/specimen tanks with a slow water flow. Thermoelectric chillers are not effective on large aquariums with a fast water flow.
- In-Line Chillers
Intended for use on larger systems with in-line filtration, in-line chillers cool already-filtered water, and are used primarily with saltwater reef setups. In-line chillers are available in several sizes (from 1/5 to 1 HP), and therefore work with several sizes of aquariums. These chillers require plumbing, and should be incorporated into the overall aquarium plan prior to execution.
- Drop-In Chillers
Drop-in chillers have a probe that is placed directly into wet/dry filters or any filter with a sump, and are used primarily with saltwater reef setups. Drop-in chillers are available in a variety of sizes (1/5 to 1/3 HP) and are ideal for systems with minimal space and the need for easy setup (since they require no plumbing).
Factors to consider when choosing a chiller
When choosing a chiller, consider the size of your aquarium and sump, your aquarium setup, and additional equipment and the heat it generates. An estimate of the maximum temperature your setup may produce and the temperature requirements of your aquarium inhabitants are also very important considerations when choosing a chiller. In order to choose a chiller, you will need to calculate the amount of "pull-down" you will need. To do this, subtract the temperature at which you want your aquarium to be from the maximum temperature you think will be produced in the aquarium during the peak heat during the summer. Here is an example on how to determine pull-down:
desired aquarium temperature - Desired aquarium temperature = Pull-down
Example: 90°F – 75°F = 15°F pull-down
Choose a chiller that effectively cools your aquarium water in the space and setup you have allotted. If your cooling requirements are on the upper end of what is recommended, choose the next largest chiller to ensure an adequately cooled aquarium and healthy inhabitants. Using the table below, if you have a tank size of 225 gallons and you need an estimated pull-down of 15°F, the 1/5 and 1/4 horsepower units would be too small; you would need a 1/3 hp unit. Some expert aquarists recommend to always get an over-sized chiller since it may save on electricity by not needing to run as long.
HP SuggestedTank Min/Max Maximum Tank Size for Degrees
Size(in gallons) FlowGPH of Pull-Down Needed
10°F 15°F 20°F 25°F
1/5 55-225 360-900 225 120 80 55
1/4 80-320 480-1200 320 175 110 80
1/3 125-475 600-2100 320 175 110 80
- Water Chiller :
Sometimes refer to this equipment as an optional but it will be mandatory when the aquarium installed in the hot climate or Air-conditioning system not work in the room that contains the aquarium .. Before install this devise be sure if you need it or no by knows if the Air condition unit work permanently or not and weather it will be set on 25C , Usually aquarium Acquire the same air temp. Surrounding.
A constant, appropriate water temperature is vital to keeping your aquarium inhabitants healthy. A sudden temperature change can place undue stress on your aquatic life, increasing their susceptibility to infection and disease.
Aquarium setups, reef aquariums in particular, often employ equipment (lighting and water pumps especially) that produce enough heat to raise water temperature. Without a chiller to decrease water temperature, aquarium water can warm to a point where it no longer holds enough oxygen to sustain the inhabitants.
If you need a chiller, plan to install it into your system as early as possible. Chillers are external units that often require plumbing and always require adequate space and sufficient ventilation. They give off significant amounts of heat when in use - in fact, you should avoid placing your chiller in an enclosed aquarium stand, because it can give off enough heat to raise water temperature. It may also cause the chiller to overheat and not work as effectively.
The word "chiller" may be a misnomer. A chiller does not create cold, but actually removes heat. The ability of a chiller to remove heat is measured in BTUs (British Thermal Units). One BTU will raise one pound of water (approximately one pint) 1°F. A unit with a higher BTU is more efficient and will remove heat faster than one with a lower BTU. A chiller operates similar to a refrigerator or air conditioner. The refrigerant gas picks up heat from the aquarium water and then delivers it to the radiator as the gas pressure is dropped. A fan then dispels heat from the radiator.
Below the UV Connection With External Filter
1- UV Lamp . 2-Electrical cable. 3-Water in 4- Water Out
How is a UV sterilizer installed?
The UV sterilizer should be the last piece of equipment in the system before the water is returned to the aquarium. It should be preceded by the biological and mechanical filters, and any chemical filter or heat exchanger in the system. Follow the manufacturer's directions on installation. Most units use hose barb connectors to attach to the appropriate water pump or are designed to allow add-on connectors as a PVC slip fit or hose barb attachment.
What is the proper maintenance schedule for UV sterilizers?
The quartz sleeve will need to be checked monthly and removed and cleaned with rubbing alcohol. Some larger UV sterilizers have wiper mechanism units installed for easier maintenance.
For most units, the UV bulb will need to be replaced after 6 months of continuous use, however, this time may vary so be sure to follow the manufacturer's recommendations. When installing or changing a bulb, never look directly at the bulb when the unit is turned on. Doing so can result in permanent damage to your eyes. (The damage can occur without you feeling any discomfort.)
Always disconnect the unit from the electricity when performing maintenance to protect against possible shock. When turned on, the bulb becomes especially hot when in the air and submerging it in water may cause it to break.
References and Further Reading
Fenner, RM. The Conscientious Marine Aquarist. TFH Publications, Neptune City, NY. 2001.
Tullock, JH. Successful Saltwater Aquariums. Energy Savers Unlimited, Carson, CA.1994.
Manufacturer/Model Watts Maximum Gallons Maximum Flow Rate
Aqua Ultraviolet 15 500 700
Angstrom 2537 30 500 750
Double Helix 36 500 500
Emperor Aquatics 65 400 952
Emperor Aquatics 80 400 1049
UV sterilizers are NOT a replacement for good biological and mechanical filtration, regular water changes, and proper control of the nitrogen cycle.
In which types of systems should UV sterilizers be used and what are the benefits?
A UV sterilizer may be used in any aquarium, however, in smaller aquariums (less than 24 gallons), the cost of the unit may make it impractical. UV sterilizers are most helpful in multiple tank systems that share a common filter. In a single tank system, they are beneficial in controlling the spread of an infectious disease if one occurs. This is especially true in heavily stocked tanks and those with large amounts of live rock and corals that could make catching and isolating a diseased fish difficult, or the use of certain medications contraindicated. Disease control is especially important when adding new fish to an established aquarium, since 98% of the hobbyists do not use a quarantine aquarium.
In ponds, UV sterilizers are one of the best ways to control free-floating algae, allowing the pond owner to see and enjoy the fish. The UV sterilizer will also kill free-floating bacteria in the pond water.
What are the limitations and potentially harmful side effects of UV sterilizers?
UV sterilizers are NOT a replacement for good biological and mechanical filtration, regular water changes, and proper control of the nitrogen cycle. A UV sterilizer should be considered as an insurance policy.
UV sterilizers will be ineffective against string algae or other nuisance or disease-causing organisms that are not free swimming in the water.
While the UV sterilizer will usually do no harm, it should not be used when first cycling the aquarium, as it may kill beneficial bacteria before they attach to the bio-media or gravel.
Many medications can be "denatured" by the UV light, so the sterilizer should be turned off when using medications, especially chelated copper treatments. The UV light will "break" the bond of the chelating agent, and the aquarium will have a sudden, lethal concentration of ionic copper.
The UV sterilizer can be used to control parasites, but the flow rate required is so slow that it is somewhat impractical on larger aquariums, unless larger (40W+) UV systems are used.
UV sterilizers can heat the water as it passes through, especially if the unit is larger than necessary for the tank size. A chiller may be necessary to keep the aquarium water at the appropriate temperature.
What styles of UV sterilizers are available?
The styles of UV sterilizers relate to their orientation when in use (horizontal or vertical) or their position in the water flow (in-line or hang-on). All vertical units must be used vertically, while some of the horizontal (Rainbow) units can be used vertically as well as horizontally. Some styles can be used in-line or hung on the back of the tank. Specialized units are designed to be used in outdoor/pond applications.
A newer style of UV sterilizer, called the "double helix," increases the contact time between the water and the UV light because the water makes a double spiral pass over the tube.
Models may or may not have a quartz sleeve. Those with a sleeve are sometimes called "dry bulbs." Cold water systems must have a quartz sleeve to maintain the proper output of UV light. A sleeve makes periodic cleaning and bulb replacement easier.
According to Robert Fenner, a well-known aquarist, author, and speaker, features of a good UV sterilizer include:
A separate (remote) ballast unit that can be positioned in a place free of heat and water damage
An indicator light to check for "on" operation
An "automatic on" feature to turn the UV unit back on in the event of a temporary power loss
Couplings that are easily fitted to your system
A quartz or teflon sleeve at little or no additional cost
All noncorrosive water-contact surfaces
Acceptable guarantees and warranties
How is the correct size of a UV sterilizer determined?
This is about the only "complicated" part to the use of a sterilizer. For proper use, the UV sterilizer must be matched to the proper flow rate to ensure an efficient "kill dose" for the organisms you wish to eliminate. This flow rate must be matched to the size of the aquarium to ensure the proper number of "turn-overs" of the water. Most manufacturers will provide a table that recommends the maximum aquarium size and appropriate flow rate for each model they make. When comparing manufacturers, realize ratings may differ as to whether they take into account:
Bulb efficiency: Some use 100% efficiency, others a lower efficiency (e.g., 60% observed towards the end of the bulb life)
Organism to be killed: Bacteria/algae or protozoa
Water clarity: Clear or turbid
Transmission loss through the quartz sleeve
These differences make it very difficult to provide general rules of thumb. Check with the manufacturer if you are unsure on how the ratings are calculated.
The table at the right compares several manufacturer's recommendations, which vary considerably. The wattage recommended by Emperor Aquatics are dramatically higher because they apply a 0.45 absorption coefficient factor for water clarity, factor in a 20% transmittance reduction for the quartz sleeve into the formula, and represent the lamp's operating performance when new and at the end of useful life (60%). This compensates for loss of UV radiation traveling through turbid green water and the sleeve's glass, while also taking into account lower efficiencies of older bulbs.
- UV :
What does a UV sterilizer do?
A UV sterilizer is used to control infections by stopping the spread of microorganisms from one fish/coral/invertebrate to another through the water. It is also used in pond applications to control free-floating algae. When operated correctly, free-floating microorganisms will be killed by the UV light. Note that the organisms must be in the water that flows to the UV sterilizer. The UV light has no residual effect and will not kill organisms attached to fish (e.g., adult stage of ich) or rocks (e.g., algae).
How do UV sterilizers work?
The UV sterilizer utilizes a germicidal fluorescent lamp that produces light at a wavelength of approximately 254 nanometers (2537 Angstroms). The water with the bacteria/algae passes over the bulb (or around the bulb if a quartz sleeve is used) and is irradiated with this wavelength. As the light penetrates the bacteria/algae, it mutates the DNA (genetic material), preventing growth/multiplication of the organism.
What factors influence the effectiveness of UV sterilizers?
Size and type of organism: Theoretically UV radiation can kill viruses, bacteria, algae, and protozoa. In general, larger organisms, such as protozoa, require a higher dose of UV radiation than smaller organisms, such as bacteria. But there are also differences between various organisms of the same type: some bacteria are more resistant to UV radiation than others.
Power of bulb: The amount of UV light produced by the bulb is reflected in the wattage of the bulb. Bulbs with a higher wattage produce more UV light. The ability of the germicidal fluorescent lamp to produce UV light decreases with age, and in most cases, the bulb needs replacement every 6 months. UV light is best produced at temperatures of 104-110ºF; cooler temperatures will result in less output.
Organism* Killing Dose of UV light
(Microwatt seconds per square centimeter)
Bacteria 15,000 - 30,000
Algae 22,000 - 30,000
*Note: These are generalities; some specific organisms in these groups may require more or less of a dose than indicated.
UV penetration: If the UV light can not penetrate the water, it will not be effective. Higher water turbidity will decrease penetration. UV sterilizers should be placed after the biological and mechanical filters so the water is as clear as possible when it enters the sterilizer. Salinity also affects penetration; UV light penetrates freshwater better than saltwater. Finally, cleanliness of the lamp or sleeve is important. If a film or mineral deposit covers the lamp or sleeve, the light will be partially or totally blocked. The distance of the lamp from the water also influences the effectiveness. UV light will only penetrate clear saltwater to a depth of 5mm.
Contact time: The longer the amount of time the water is being exposed to the UV light, the more killing power is available. The contact time, sometimes referred to as "dwell time," is influenced by flow rate of the water: slower flow rates increase contact time. The length of the bulb also affects the contact time; with a longer bulb, the water is in contact with the UV light for a longer period of time. Another variable to consider is the turnover time (amount of time required to have the entire volume of water in the aquarium pass through the sterilizer). Since the "sterilized" water constantly mixes with the water in the aquarium as it returns, it is impossible to "sterilize" all the water in the aquarium. That would only be possible if all the water would be removed, sterilized, and then returned to the aquarium at one time. This may result in sterilized water, but would certainly raise havoc with the aquarium inhabitants! Calculating turnover time is mathematically difficult, but can be approximated with the following formula
- Toys :
You can use several types , shapes with different colors of moving toys which move by air pressure from Air pump instead of air stone .
But is this natural it is safe? the answer is No .. Some of them have a sharp edges and others can disturb the aquarium .. Nowadays it is less spread among the hobbyists..
In the Fresh water Aquarium part of the paludarium : Tank, Heater, Filter and lighting are essential
Several types of electronic equipments used to moniter the aquarium and for multy functions..
-Electronic devices :
The revolution of electronics enter everything in our life , Aquarium also have a volume of it , usually use to monitor the aquarium or test the water , Understanding what is happening inside your aquarium is vital to ensuring that the aquatic life remains healthy. This revolutionary water monitoring device allows you to continuously track the changes in the water parameters, alerting you to the problems before they affect the fish. It is optional and used for advance hobbyists and for some hard and unique projects and aquariums..
You can build a beautiful and realistic Paludarium using background of the aquatic part and the land part together
Unleash your imagination for different types of backgrounds which replicates the real under water environment
Posters to be used out of the aquarium
- Aquarium Background:
It is normally that the rear glass sheet of the aquarium will be covered by a proper poster, some of them are inside the aquarium, other are outside aquarium, and also you can make a three dimensional background using foam board and foam spray , and colored by cement color to reflect the natural colors of rivers and lakes bottoms .. Also you can paint the back glass with Blue color from outside ..