Crabitat lid/lighting

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BettaCrew
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Joined: Sun Dec 02, 2018 9:45 am
Location: Central Texas

Crabitat lid/lighting

Post by BettaCrew » Sun Apr 05, 2020 8:18 am

I am trying to redo my crabitat lid. 


I have 4 ballasts that came with the tank (purchased through offer up) as well as the stock lid. 


I thought of doing plexiglass in 2 rectangles and cutting a hole that allowed 2 of the ballasts to sit on top of so that nothing was between the ballasts and the crabbies. I think the problem may be that over time, the warmth of the lights will warp the plexiglas (happened to my small fish tanks when a light was suspended 6 inches over the square piece with no holes). Because of that, I'm thinking of a replacement lid from either Aqueon or TopFin. 


The problem with the replacement glass lid is that the lights would have to go completely in the back and I would have to remove all of the plastic that is in the back area where filters/ cords/ tubes would go for a fish tank. The light ballasts are not air tight so that would be a source of humidity leak. 


My other option is to use the glass replacement lid and attach lights inside the tank. Can I use T8 grow lights then since they are there only thing I already have that are light enough to maybe stay up with double sided tape? The problem with mounting inside is that my height is dramatically reduced which would lead to escapes. 


Any ideas anytime on these two questions/ issues?

The attached picture is my crabitat as of this morning. I am working on adding another inch of substrate per day for approximately the next 2 days. I have slightly less than 6" in some areas because of restructuring by the crabs. It is a 250g.Image

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Motörcrab
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Re: Crabitat lid/lighting

Post by Motörcrab » Sun Apr 05, 2020 11:56 am

I use a plexiglass lid on my 75 with a 6.5" hole in the center for a dome lamp with an UVB light. The downside is I can't hold humidity in the winter months and need to use my glass to then. It does bow over time, but I just flip it every few weeks. You could probably beef up the sides with some 2x2's for support. To make it a little more air tight you could also get use some foam insulation like you use on doors and windows.
Coenobita Curiosities offering crabby decor
https://www.etsy.com/shop/CoenobitaCuriosities


Topic author
BettaCrew
Posts: 51
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Location: Central Texas

Re: Crabitat lid/lighting

Post by BettaCrew » Sun Apr 05, 2020 1:00 pm

I have one center brace that would allow me to use two pieces of plexiglass. Would it bow as much then? In theory, the sides of the ballasts (long boxes on top of the tank in the pic) would sit on the plexiglass with the light being maybe 1in from the plexiglass. That's why I'm concerned about bowing. I definitely could flip it though. With the lights sitting on the plexiglass, would humidity suffer as much? I would think it's going to suffer some but it has never been airtight since I was using the original fish tank lid.

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Topic author
BettaCrew
Posts: 51
Joined: Sun Dec 02, 2018 9:45 am
Location: Central Texas

Re: Crabitat lid/lighting

Post by BettaCrew » Sun Apr 05, 2020 1:02 pm

I definitely can't beef up sides with wood or styrofoam... it sits beside my dining table and I like pretty. lol

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Re: Crabitat lid/lighting

Post by Motörcrab » Sun Apr 05, 2020 2:02 pm

Here is the piece I have on top of my tank. The plexiglass measures about 22 x 16. I just put this lid on within the last week again because my humidity has been rather high.

Heat and humidity is the toughest thing to get right. One goes up the other goes down. Once you figure out the tricks to manipulate each you will be able to adjust your conditions. Humidity is also easier to keep in check if the relative humidity outside of the tank is higher.

I specifically had this top made so my strawberries get UV lighting. If there is anything between the bulb and the crab it will block most of the rays. It was about $30 for the shop to make this. It is only one side of the tank. If you make the lids yourself you can save some money instead of having someone to do it.

Unless you are using the lights for heat or UV lighting I think it would probably be best to just order glass lids and rest the lights on top.


Image

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Coenobita Curiosities offering crabby decor
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Topic author
BettaCrew
Posts: 51
Joined: Sun Dec 02, 2018 9:45 am
Location: Central Texas

Re: Crabitat lid/lighting

Post by BettaCrew » Sun Apr 05, 2020 2:07 pm

Hmmm, I though the same about light needs but then I've since found other information that states UVB is needed for all crabs as well as a red light at night. Im trying to not break the bank but also want to do right by them. I'm considering a UTH for the back of the tank at least with a thermostat. I have no idea which thermostat to get.

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Re: Crabitat lid/lighting

Post by Motörcrab » Sun Apr 05, 2020 2:28 pm

There has only been a little research done with crabs needing UVB lighting. From what has been researched there has been some documentation that it does increase activity and crabs prefer UVB over standard lighting. Red lighting at night is only needed for viewing your crabs at night.

If you want some information on lighting I suggest reading our lighting guide. It goes through all different options and will be a really good crash course.
viewtopic.php?f=26&t=92543

Courtney Iriss Karr AKA: The Cholla Queen, did extensive research with her hermit crabs. This is here presentation presentation from Crab Con 2019. If you go to the 18:30 point in her video that is when the lighting portion begins. I really love this video. Watching this is what made me want to upgrade my water pools. The entire video is worth a few watches.
https://youtu.be/4ZvBcrxy8Ic

This is the thermostat we use on all five of our tanks. We get them on Amazon for less than $20 each. We have been using these for about two years now and haven't had any issues with them.
https://www.amazon.com/iPower-40-108-De ... r=8-2&th=1

What type of UTH were you considering purchasing?
Coenobita Curiosities offering crabby decor
https://www.etsy.com/shop/CoenobitaCuriosities


Topic author
BettaCrew
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Location: Central Texas

Re: Crabitat lid/lighting

Post by BettaCrew » Sun Apr 05, 2020 2:50 pm

Yay! Right now I'm removing crunchy substrate from my top layer of substrate (weird sensation when shoveling with my itty bitty crab shovel). I'll take a look after that.

https://www.reptilebasics.com/ultrather ... th-11-x47/ or 11x35. I like this because it's removable. I live 8in central TX and certainly don't think I need it year round as my house stays at least 73-78 unless I have company that's used to only cooler temperatures.

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Motörcrab
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Re: Crabitat lid/lighting

Post by Motörcrab » Sun Apr 05, 2020 4:15 pm

Good call with an Ultratherm. The 11 X 47 is what we use on our 75 and 55 gallon tanks along with smaller heaters on the side for the winter. I always like to go a bit overkill with heating. It's a lot easier to lower temperature with the thermostat than to raise it. Since your house stays in the safe zone you can probably go with a smaller UTH maybe all the way down to an 11 X 17.

Heating is always very difficult to recommend because it can really vary based on location. I really don't want to give the wrong suggestion to where you spend more than what you need to, or don't get enough out of on that is too small and have to order an additional UTH.

Based on my experience an UTH that covers the entire back of the tank and covered with insulation it will raise the temperature around 8-10 degrees. My house is usually around 70 so using the two UTH's I can bump my 75 up to 86 degrees. With your house being in the safe zone (75-85) it wouldn't take too much to bump the heat to keep it between 77-82 degrees all the time. It may even increase your hermits activity.
Coenobita Curiosities offering crabby decor
https://www.etsy.com/shop/CoenobitaCuriosities


Topic author
BettaCrew
Posts: 51
Joined: Sun Dec 02, 2018 9:45 am
Location: Central Texas

Re: Crabitat lid/lighting

Post by BettaCrew » Mon Apr 06, 2020 10:06 pm

The tank is against an outside wall. Unfortunately that's the only available wall that fit the tank.

I'm about to watch that crab con thing. So excited! I totally wish i could go to those things.

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