Paludarium Components and materials
2- Humidity and Precipitation :
Paludaria are characteristically employed to simulate shoreline (that is, wet) environments. As such, elevated humidity levels are usually acceptable, if not desirable. Ideal ranges depend, of course, upon the particular demands of the plants and animals to be kept. Excessively dry air can quickly dehydrate certain plants and animals, while excessively moist air can contribute to the above described animal health issues. Striking a balance between excessively dry and excessively damp conditions requires a certain degree of control over temperature and air circulation. Humidity levels should be regularly monitored with the use of a high-quality hygrometer.
1- Fogger :
One effective (and certainly visually pleasing) way to increase humidity is to apply a fogger. The fog (3-5 micron droplets) they produce is superior to the mist (60-100 micron droplets) produced from hand-held sprayers in that it remains in suspension longer, thereby reducing the threat of unwanted bacterial and fungal growth. There is a wide array of fog generating devices on the market to choose from, though the use of a unit that is specially designed for terraria/paludaria is strongly recommended. Solid-state "ultrasonic foggers" are the usual choice for this application. Most of these are comprised of a water sensor (to detect that the unit is in enough water to function), a small light to indicate that the unit is in operation, and a transducer plate to "break" the water with electrical oscillation frequencies; better units include adjustable output controls and a custom-fitted water bottle.
Internal Fogger : Though an ultrasonic fogger such as this can be placed directly inside the paludarium, placing it instead in a small vessel with clean distilled water will significantly extend the life of its membrane. Photo by Kenneth Wingerter.
Displays containing epiphytic plants will usually benefit from the elevated humidity produced by a fogger. Photo by Erich Sia.
External Fogger: External Fogger used in the outside of the tank and deliver the fog via flexible pipe .. Mainly used for terrarium and also can be used in Paludarium ..
2- simulated precipitation.( Artificial Rain) :
Certain paludarium ecotopes (e.g., rainforest rivulets) can benefit from simulated precipitation. This effect can be created with a rain chamber. A rain chamber is fairly simple to construct and operate, being little more than perforated pipe that is situated at the top of the enclosure and fed by a small submersible pump. Cycling the system water (and, by extension, nutrients) in this manner can help to integrate the aquatic and terrestrial elements of the display. These and similar devices should be used sparingly as to avoid eroding or water logging the terrestrial section.
Fog and rain simulation is best carried out in short intervals under the control of automatic timers.
A simple rain chamber constructed for a nano-paludarium. Photo by Bill Brissette.
In addition to creating appealing visual displays, rain chambers aid in the cycling of nutrients by delivering dissolved nitrogenous compounds to terrestrial vegetation. Photo by Bill Brissette.
- Misting System :
- Puropse :
It is more popular with vivarium systems which used to enhanced the humidity and raise it and also used in dry climate areas where the vivarium installed .
But can be used also in paludarium and specially with those come with large land ( terrarium or Vivarium Areas ) ..
Among the various environmental requirements you should know about any herp you keep is what relative humidity is normal in its native habitat and, therefore, what that should be in its vivarium. Humidity refers to the amount of moisture (water vapor) contained in an atmosphere. Humidity is measured in various ways, but the most common measurement used is relative humidity, which is expressed as a percentage (e.g., 55 percent) to show how dry or how moist the air is.
Pictured is a misting system attached to a water source. Necessary components of any system include the water-storage container, pump, tubing and connectors, nozzles, timer, and hygrometer. Components such as a humidistat, a water-filtration system and an automatic water shut-off device might be optional depending on the situation.
Keep in mind that the purpose of a misting system is to maintain paludarium humidity — not to water the enclosure. or adding the water to the paludarium , You want a misting system that uses as little water as possible and provides as fine a mist or fog as possible.
Misting systems can be generally divided into low-pressure or high-pressure systems. Low pressure is technically less than 100 pounds per square inch, but most low-pressure systems operate with less than 40 or 50 psi. High pressure is technically more than 100 psi, but the most efficient systems operate with more than 250 psi. In general, the higher the pressure of a misting system, the better it is at creating a fog or fine mist to provide the high humidity you want without soaking the vivarium with excess water.
Quality high-pressure misting systems typically use pumps that operate in the 250- to 800-psi range, but some pumps operate at 2,000 psi or more. The larger your system is (e.g., a multiple-tank system or an entire herp room), the higher the water pressure should be for efficient functioning. Tubing for these systems should be rated for high-pressure use, such as reinforced nylon or PVC, and affixed with threaded connectors.
Heat and ultraviolet light, which come from the light fixtures in a vivarium, compromise the structural integrity of most tubing materials over time. This can be especially serious with high-pressure systems, so tubing should be checked every few months for cracks and leaks. Even if tubes seem OK, I suggest replacing them at least yearly. To avoid these problems, copper tubing is also good for high-pressure systems, and it often improves the appearance. Some of the components, such as the connectors, have to be welded using a high-temperature torch and a quality solder containing silver, but if you can have this done, or learn to do it yourself (not as difficult as you may think), it will give you a strong, permanent and good-looking system.
Misting nozzles deliver ultrafine water droplets into the vivarium. Most commercial systems use plastic misting nozzles, but some plastic nozzles can be replaced with metal ones. Quality misting nozzles of stainless steel, brass and/or nickel can provide a finer mist, a more uniformly accurate delivery of the desired gallons-per-minute rate, and more reliable long-term service than most plastic nozzles.
The timer turns the misting system on and off. You need the kind typically used for horticultural misting purposes. These allow you to turn on the system numerous times each day for specific, short durations. Ideally, the timer should be capable of durations less than one minute. You must try to set the timer to come on often enough to keep humidity at the desired level. This usually requires some initial experimentation and then ongoing attention as conditions change. In a more sophisticated system, a humidistat automatically keeps humidity at the correct level. Whether you use a timer or a humidistat, include a hygrometer in the vivarium to display humidity. Handy, inexpensive combination thermometer-hygrometers are available.
All tubing must be rated safe for drinking water use. Low-pressure misting systems use plastic tubing, and high-pressure systems require reinforced-nylon, PVC or copper tubing. Various connectors of the same material as the tubing are necessary. Straight-line connectors (couplers), tee connectors (three-way) and L-shaped (90 degree) connectors are the most common.
The pump pulls water from the storage container and sends it to the mist nozzles. Most people prefer one that operates quietly. Quality submersible (used in the storage container) or external, in-line pumps can be used, but the most common, efficient type is an external diaphragm pump.
The water-storage container holds the water used by the misting system. Any container that can be fully enclosed may be used as long as it is rated as safe for food or drinking water use. A typical container is a 5-gallon food-storage container with a lid and snug openings created for the water lines and tubing. In the simplest, most economical system, you manually keep this container filled with distilled or purified water. In systems connected to a water source, this container includes an automatic shut-off device that regulates the water level. The most common shut-off device is a simple ball-and-cock type like those used for toilets and ponds, but smaller, more sophisticated types are available.
Misting systems connected to the household water supply need a good water-filtration system, which might include a basic carbon filter, a reverse-osmosis filter and/or a deionization filter. An in-line particulate filter (1) removes any large particles before the water gets to the other filter units.
Low-pressure systems are less efficient, and they tend to produce more of a coarse spray, or rain, effect. The materials used in these systems are not a significant concern. Plastic, nylon or PVC tubing is OK, and compression or barb connectors are adequate. You simply push the tubing into these.
Only when a rain chamber is the goal would I recommend a low-pressure system over a high-pressure system. Rain chambers are temporary tanks set up for certain frogs and other herps. They simulate a drenching rain to stimulate breeding behavior or to assist in shedding.
-Mist Droplet Size:
The size of the droplets produced by the system’s misting nozzles is important. It indicates the quality of the mist. Droplets are measured in microns, which is one-millionth of a meter or about 0.00003937 inches. In general, droplet sizes of around 5 microns create a fine fog, around 20 microns create a heavy fog, around 100 microns create a fine spray, around 240 microns create a medium spray, around 400 microns create a heavy or coarse spray, and around 1,000 microns create a fine rain or drizzle. Rain droplets measure more than 1,000 microns. If the droplet size isn’t listed in the information on a system you are considering, ask for it.
It is best to select a droplet size that allows you to get the effect you want with the shortest possible misting duration. To create high humidity while adding hardly any extra water to the vivarium, you want to have a system that produces a fog or fine spray, so you usually want a droplet size less than 100 microns. A fog with droplet sizes in the 20-micron range hangs in the air for about 100 times longer than a heavy spray with droplets in the 400-micron range. A fine fog with droplets in the 5-micron range may still be lingering in the air of a tall vivarium a half-hour after the system has shut off. To create high humidity and a light coat of moisture on leaves and other smooth surfaces (which provides drinking water for some herps and moisture for certain kinds of high-canopy tillandsias and orchids), a mist with droplet sizes in the 100- to 240-micron range is good. For a heavier coating of moisture for certain herps and moisture-loving tillandsias, bromeliads and orchids (which like to get wet but dry out between mistings), a coarse spray with droplets in the 400- to 600-micron range is good. However, care must be exercised here. The time between mistings must be long enough to allow the vivarium to dry well between mistings.
The type of misting nozzle also plays a role in the type of mist produced. I recommend quality nozzles of stainless steel, brass and/or nickel for a high-pressure system. High-pressure pumps combined with metal, low-volume misting nozzles tend to produce nice fogs or fine mists. Low-pressure systems and high-volume nozzles tend to produce heavy sprays and use more water.
- Volume Output :
The output of misting nozzles is measured either in gallons per hour or gallons per minute. Gph is often used for high-output nozzles intended primarily for irrigation use. Gpm is more useful for low-output nozzles intended primarily for humidity-creating purposes, so the quality nozzles you seek for a vivarium misting system will probably be rated using gpm. Nozzles should ideally be designed to deliver only a fraction of a gallon per minute when operating under high pressure.
- Water Quality :
Most municipal (tap) water contains various minerals and chemicals that can cause problems. It could jeopardize the health of vivarium herps and plants, clog misting-system components (especially nozzles), and deposit minerals that create an ugly, hazy film on tank glass and fixtures. You want to eliminate as much of the chemical and mineral pollutants from the water as possible, and there are two ways to get purified water.
One way is to purchase distilled or purified water, and use it as the source for your self-contained misting system. If you do this, then you will not need any water filtration with your misting system. However, you will need to make sure your supply container always has enough water in it for your misting system to operate.
Another way is to incorporate a water-filtration system into your misting system, and this route is mandatory if you connect your misting system to a faucet, hose or other municipal water source. A basic carbon filter is the minimum requirement. It reduces the amount of some of the most harmful compounds. A reverse-osmosis filter removes most of the minerals from the water. A deionization filter removes the chemicals the other filters missed. For the vivaria my company creates, we always use a high-quality filtration system containing all three components. To be really safe, add an in-line particulate filter to remove any large particles before the water gets to the other filter units.
Misting system consist of :
High Pressure Pump
Misting system nozzles :
Mid nozzle which connect with two pipes
End nozzle in the End of the Point
One nozzle with Two Heads
Above the basic misting system connection - courtesy to Mistking.com
Below Manifold to distribute the water to several tanks
Below Misting system at work , courtesy to mist king .com
This system is merge of the tank with pump in one enclosure
courtesy to : Exo-Terra
below a video for this device :
Mist king system at work .. courtesy to mistking.com
Pipes to nozzles
-Degree of Automation :
Just by eliminating the need to mist with a spray bottle, any misting system helps with vivarium automation, but some systems are more automatic than others. If you connect your system directly to the household water supply, then you eliminate some tasks, such as checking the water-supply container and refilling it. Include a humidistat, and it automatically runs your system to maintain the humidity you set. A really good programmable humidistat even adjusts the humidity levels from day to night and season to season.
-Humidity and Air Circulation Balance :
Simply reaching the correct humidity level is only half of the job. The other half involves maintaining that humidity while achieving proper fresh-air circulation. Paludarium humidity for the land section is a difficult issue for most vivarists primarily because increasing humidity usually involves limiting exposure to the outside air to keep moisture from escaping. But restricting air exchange between the vivarium and the outside disrupts the gaseous composition of the air. Among other changes, the percentage of carbon dioxide can increase to a dangerous level, and percentages of airborne matter, such as dust, fungal spores, bacteria and viruses, can reach unnaturally high levels. Poor air quality inside the vivarium is the result. A quality, efficient misting system can monitor the paludarium humidity and turn on numerous times each day for specific, short durations, so it can keep the humidity level up even with more fresh-air circulation being allowed into the paludarium ..
Another way to help maintain humidity and air quality in the paludariums and vivariums vivarium is to use as many live plants as possible. As part of their natural metabolic process, plants remove carbon dioxide and other toxic gases from the air while adding oxygen and humidity. How much toxic gas is removed and how much oxygen and humidity is added varies depending on the species of plant, but most tropical plants, especially those with large, smooth leaves, are very efficient.
Now that you are familiar with these eight fundamentals, you’re ready to hunt for the misting system or parts right for your paludarium. Herpkeeping and horticultural magazines, the Internet and perhaps some reptile stores are good sources to begin your search for a commercial misting system. So do yourself and your herps a favor. Buy or make the best misting system you can afford, and combine it with a good drainage system, ample fresh-air circulation and plenty of beautiful, live plants.
3-Other equipments and Accessories :
- Ventilation :
Air Circulation :
Though its importance is frequently understated, the free movement of air to and from the enclosure is essential to maintaining a healthy paludarium environment. Particularly in a densely stocked system, stale air might produce foul odors, promote the growth of mold and mildew, and/or lead to respiratory illness of reptiles and other creatures.
In properly ventilated enclosures, fresh, cool air is drawn in as warm air rises, expands, and escapes. At least 10% of the lower one-third back or sides of the enclosure should be opened by perforation or grating. Fully, or nearly, airtight enclosures will most likely need one or more fans. Directing airflow from fans towards the face of the enclosure can improve viewing by reducing condensation on the front panel. Case mount "computer" fans with protective grills can be built directly into the enclosure walls. Small "house" fans can be used, and may be positioned to blow across an open or screened top. Creative use of oscillating house fans can confer aesthetic, as well as environmental, benefits to a display by generating gusts of "wind" that rustle foliage and send small ripples across the water surface.
Fans and Ventilators :
It is rare to find a complete fans and ventilator system design for paludarium , usually using the same for terrarium and paludarium ..
It is popular now to use the PC ( computers ) fan and with simple DIY you can install it in the paludarium ..
Very few companies marketing the terrarium and vivarium fans which is already accepted to apply in the paludarium .
courtesy to : lucky reptiles
A DIY ( Do-it-yourself ) combination of fan and pipes to instal the fan outside the tank ..
Inside the tank
Outside the tank
A top view of lighting hood and fan a lot of hobbies try to hit two targets by using fans : get rid of the light bulbs heat and use it to warm up the paludarium or terrarium and vent there tank .. ..
Above is a schematic shown the fan in the top of the lighting hood or terrarium cover and how circulate the air insie the paludarium .. You can use the fan to exhaust or deliver air to the tank .
Usually waterfalls is a part of paludarium set-up , the components for that is a power head and pipes .
Also there is Some Ready made waterfalls which can be purchased and installed inside the tanks.
Above : A readymade waterfall which comes in different sizes , colors and finishing ..
Below : The main important is to match between the color of the waterfall and the background or surroundings decoration of the tank
- Hygrometers & Thermometers :
For monitoring terrarium temperature levels.
For monitoring terrarium humidity levels.
Its Essential for you to know what is happen in your Paludarium , knowing the degree of humidity and the temperature is very important in daily basis to know if the animals feel comfortable .. Also to control the these two important factors and the difference in summer and winter or increase the warm levels to met some important behaviors for the animals like breeding season ..
Different sizes and shapes and models of devices for measuring the humidity and the temperature , the most common is the dual devices which can measure both temperature and humidity
- Decoration materials :
Several types of materials used in the paludariums we can devide it to two types :
1- Natural materials :
Which collected from nature , like bog , drift cork wood , sand and rocks , some plants stems .. etc
2- Artificial materials :
which manufactured in factories using plastic and rubber ..
Artifical plants , rocks available in most of the pet shop or can be ordered on-line
Below : Some of hobbyist can collect the natural materials from their environment or travel to the forest, desert or farm to collect, woods,rocks or plants for their projects
Environment can provide a lot of materials that can be used for paludariums also it is a good inspiration resource for new ideas to decorate and terascape and aquascape the paludarium.