Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Got Wood?

First off, as promised, the pics of my new swag loot that I got the other weekend:

I did a bit of research into the mopani wood, since I want to learn how to get rid of the sap once and for all. I guess, from what I've read, I just have to keep soaking it and boiling it.

More disturbing are the horror stories I'm coming across of how the tannins can cause fungal grows, psychological disabilities in the animals, and a mess of other things. But then I read posts from people who've been using this stuff for decades. I think it's a case of improper preparation, personally.

Still enough to worry me though.

Side Note: I am still looking for a decent-sized pot to boil my wood pieces in. Got them soaking for now, but I want to boil them a couple times before siliconing them in place. I just wish I knew how much OSAP I'm getting this year! It's kind of my limiting factor as to what I can and can't buy. With all the (long) extra hours I've scored at my job, I should have enough spare cash to really trick out my tanks, at least if my price estimates are decent.

So my question today is this: 

Is mopani wood dangerous for reptiles, and more specifically, crested geckos?

From what I've been reading on Reptile Forums UK and Herp Center, it should be fine. Lots of people use it, and have been using it for years without any incident.
To be fair, the stories I read about where the animals developed neurological symptoms were talking about different species of geckos. And in all honesty, it doesn't seem unthinkable that some species have different reactions to different types of plants or wood.
My greatest fear is that once I've foamed my wood pieces in places, something will occur that will force me to remove them, along with my entire background. It's not like these tanks are cheap to decorate, so I want to get this done, and get it done right.


Next on my hit list is a bromeliad plant! Maybe a crawling vine too. I also need to repot that jade pothos, in order to remove as much of the fertilizer as possible.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

So many goodies!

I just got back from Ottawa today with a couple bags of funky stuff for both my terrariums. At Big Al's, I found some nice little pieces of mopani wood that I'm going to use as accents for both my tropical and arid terrariums, along with some Malaysian drift wood. On my way back across the plaza, I stopped in at Rona's garden center and was really surprised by this young guy there who was quite savvy about tropical houseplants. I bought a jade pothos plant, though I could have bought a lot more! They had snake plants and a whole mess of everything. Lastly, on my way past PetSmart, I stopped in for the heck of it and found a cork round. All in all, a pretty decent haul, and all of it for under 40$! I think I'm good for wood now. All I need is some fake rocks which I plan to make myself, some substrate and a couple other miscellaneous goods and I will be ready!

Also, I got my new top in from Stacey's, which I ordered a week and a half ago to replace my rusting one temporarily while I mod it up a bit. It looks like the tops I've been using up till now were Exo-Terra's older models, as this one isn't exactly the same. I'm hoping it will still fit, just to use it as a temporary lid. It was only 15$, after all, so I don't feel that bad. If it doesn't I can always return it.

Pictures to follow.