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Marty
10-08-2007, 03:42 PM
A new story entry has been added:

Eliminating Vivarium Pests


Necessity, mother of invention. Below is a description of a method I came up with after my vivarium got heavily infested with millipedes. This will most likely apply to any pests. Read on, you might find it useful.http://www.orchidboard.com/community/gallery/data/510/viv.jpgThis was my 90gal diamond shaped prior to the Operation Jungle Fever . Millipedes got so bad that I could count hundreds of them crawling all over the tank...it was disgusting!!! I did not want to rip my tank apart because I sunk a lot of work and money into making the background and water features, foggers, lights, etc. I embedded tubes and wires in the background, plus things were healthy and well rooted and growing beautifully. I wanted to kill only millipedes and a few slugs, but nothing else. Pesticides and chemicals were out of the questions, since I kept dart frogs in the tank. Eventually they would go back into the tank. I started experimenting with carbon dioxide - CO2. It is heavier then air, thus easy to put into a tank. Any bug will eventually need air, so I figured it will die without any oxygen... Plants love CO2. After the procedure the tank would just need to be vented for a little bit to replace the air. Seemed there would be no downside! I looked into getting a CO2 tank, but it turned out too expensive and not worth the hassle.... I used dry ice, which is compressed, solid form of carbon dioxide.Here's what I did....I'm extremely excited, because my idea worked flawlessly for me and I'd recommend it to anyone with similar problem. You can do the same thing with a single orchid, by either putting it into an empty Tupperware container. No reason, why it wouldn't work. Post back if you try it.I was a bit concerned with using dry ice, because I was afraid it will lower the temp and kill my plants in the process, so I took a few precautions.

cliff_f
10-08-2007, 06:17 PM
Thats a really good idea. I am going to remember that just incase I ever need to do that. I probally would of just tore the tank down, now this might save me alot of hard work in the future.

Marty
10-09-2007, 11:03 AM
The trick is that the tank has to be air tight, if the CO2 leaks out somewhere, then it won't work. It's ideal to do it in an aquarium. Then top it off every few hrs. I've heard that it doesn't work on mites, though I don't know how the person did it. I know it works like a charm on millipedes. BTW, the cool thing is that this article has been published in 2 european dart frog journals, once translated into Dutch and 2nd time translated into Sweedish. I thought that was kind of cool ;)

Bowfinger
11-10-2007, 08:42 PM
Very cutting edge Marty, reminds me of the Reef tank boom, with new ways of thinking. The one thing I would be cautious of is a fungus bloom getting out of hand by a potential dangerous species...i.e. like after taking antibiotics your bodies natural candida can take over. Maybe introduction of a "good" bacteria as part of the process? But all together a great idea, and awesome looking tanks you developed.

Riverside Reptiles
11-10-2007, 11:42 PM
I don't know about in Canada, but here in the US, CO2 is cheap. Just go to a welding/gas supply shop. You don't have to buy the tank. It's like getting a tank of propane for your BBQ grill...you just use the gas and then return the tank when you're done. It seems it would be far easier to work with a real tank of gas than a block of dry ice. You wouldn't need a big tank of it either. The gas is compressed and thus, a little goes a long way.

sports_guy_36
12-30-2007, 11:41 PM
i was wondering how u made that tank setup cuz i am wanting to do something like that for my crested geckos. like what plants u used and how u got the moss or w.e u used to cover the back of the tank

Hking22
02-09-2008, 01:08 AM
Hey Marty, great article. Thats a very inovative solution to a potential headache. Just thought you might want to know, there was an article in the Living Vivarium section of REPTILES Magazine about "Potential Vivarium Pests: Prevention, Management, and Positive Aspects." The article was in the Volume 10, number 11, November 2002 issue of REPTILES Magazine. The article is on page 92 and was written by Rex Lee Searcy.

P.S. The article did have anexcerpt about millipedes but he stated that the only way he knows about getting rid of them is to pick them out. He also states that if any body knows of a species of herp out there that will readilly eat these millipedes to please contact him. Well I think you found a better solution Marty.

dfourer
10-14-2008, 01:33 PM
I also had a big vivarium that was full of millipedes. I figured that the population boom would end when the food supply ran out. Millipedes were probably living on mould that was abundant until the mould ran out of food. That is what happened. Jusy like the real world, I see population swings of tiny creatures, usually very tiny worms, snails, arthropods, etc. In time all of them fade away. My reccomendation is enjoy the diversity and let it go away by itself.

lacplesis2
12-07-2008, 05:02 AM
It has to be said! That is pure genius! Well done. And thanks for showing us how it's done.

RFB2
12-07-2008, 10:03 AM
It is funny. Although I have only been a member here for a few months I have been visiting the site on and off for a few years. I have been giving people this same information that I had read some where. LOL I did not realize that this was where I had learned it. Thanks Marty your CO2 method has helped me a dozen times or so. I will be sure to give you and geckos unlimited props in the future, now that I remember where I got the info.

Thanks,

Rob

Marty
04-07-2009, 09:54 AM
no problems, it was also cross posted on VivariumForum.com Dendroboard and OrchidBoard and featured in European dartfrog publications. I come across it often on various forums, it's kind of cool - though rarely I see the credit is given. No biggie though

Marty
04-07-2009, 09:57 AM
Hey Marty, great article. Thats a very inovative solution to a potential headache. Just thought you might want to know, there was an article in the Living Vivarium section of REPTILES Magazine about "Potential Vivarium Pests: Prevention, Management, and Positive Aspects." The article was in the Volume 10, number 11, November 2002 issue of REPTILES Magazine. The article is on page 92 and was written by Rex Lee Searcy.

P.S. The article did have anexcerpt about millipedes but he stated that the only way he knows about getting rid of them is to pick them out. He also states that if any body knows of a species of herp out there that will readilly eat these millipedes to please contact him. Well I think you found a better solution Marty.

I know I read that too and thought to myself...pick them one by one... good luck!

Helmeted gecko
10-24-2009, 12:59 PM
That was a good idea! :cheer: :cheer: :biggrin:

robb frost
01-23-2010, 05:54 AM
im new to the thought of millipedes growing in my cages i understand completely your method of riding them sounds ingenious i just dont understand how they would get there in the first place maybe its because im in the u.s. or maybe im just uneducated as to how millipedes boom in population within a cage of insectivores idk. was it a form of substrate or cork bark or some form of addition that caused the amount of these insects? idk i myself am going through a fruit fly growth in my cage but i can understand that and am thinking of adding pitcher plants to the vivaria send feed back its appreciated the cage has two vietnamese golden geckos a breeding pair which at the current moment im recording the mating call of the male
sincerely
robb frost

Marty
01-23-2010, 11:06 AM
I must have brought them or their eggs in potted plants. They feed on decaying stuff so proliferation in the tank wasn't a problem. Dart Frogs don't eat millipedes so, plenty of food, lack of predators = population boom

Roxyrox
02-04-2010, 08:53 PM
Old thread I know, but someone mentioned getting CO2 in gas form for this application. Dry ice contains the CO2, and is heavier than air. Gas from a compressed tank is still heavier than air, but you can't see it. I think the dry ice makes this article a slam dunk because you can see the gas. I suppose you could also take those co2 cartridges used for air guns and emergency bike tire refills, crack 10 of them and throw them in the tank.

Also a word of advice, don't let that dry ice touch your tank. Instant crack. And for god sakes wear gloves.

Riverside Reptiles
02-05-2010, 11:53 PM
Old thread I know, but someone mentioned getting CO2 in gas form for this application. Dry ice contains the CO2, and is heavier than air. Gas from a compressed tank is still heavier than air, but you can't see it. I think the dry ice makes this article a slam dunk because you can see the gas. I suppose you could also take those co2 cartridges used for air guns and emergency bike tire refills, crack 10 of them and throw them in the tank.

Also a word of advice, don't let that dry ice touch your tank. Instant crack. And for god sakes wear gloves.

CO2 in gas form is really not very dangerous. People use it all the time for beer kegs, hydroponic gardening, welding, etc. That's why there's no license of any sort needed to obtain it. You can simply walk into a welding supply shop and buy any sized tank you want. Dry ice is fine, but it's a lot harder to find, it has a very limited life (unlike a tank where you can just use what you need and turn it off and save the rest), and as you mention is amazingly cold and can crack your tank, burn your skin, etc. So IMHO, I think the slam dunk is for the tank not the dry ice.

volcomsurfer777
09-09-2010, 12:14 AM
Thank You so much Marty! I just received an already set up vivarium with the two mossy leaf tail geckos i bought from the last expo in Kansas, and realized that there is some serious infestations going on in the bottom under the top soil. Thanks to you, and of course this forum, I can get rid of these pests and still retain the beautiful arrangement within the tank!

Marty
09-09-2010, 11:55 AM
Win win for everybody !!! :D Make sure you take the geckos out :shock:

Snakeguy101
09-30-2010, 10:26 PM
I have actually done the same thing before in the bottom of my iguana tank. A brick of dry ice in a bowl of water and let it fog up the bottom where there fruit flies were. It killed them all plus the eggs. Great method.

TVDG
12-10-2010, 04:16 AM
Brilliant idea Marty, a great contribution!
Thanks for sharing.

carl_can
01-12-2011, 09:50 AM
A new story entry has been added:

Eliminating Vivarium Pests




Nice one. I am impressed! How did you come up with that? Where did you get those ideas? Wow great thinking.

jdegnan
05-17-2011, 09:15 AM
Hi Marty - I work with Penguin Dry Ice and we noticed your great use of dry ice - would you mind if we featured it on our blog?

Usually when we feature someone's idea we send them one of our dry ice vintage tees so message us through our GU site profile and we'd love to send you one!

Best,
Jared

target1911
06-30-2011, 10:38 PM
You can also get CO2 tanks at your local paintball store. Most of them have used tanks for cheap.

I built a co2 chamber to prekill my mice/rats for feeding my snakes and i paid all of $30 for all of my equipment....filled tank...hose and regulator.
A 12oz tank should be enough to gas a tank.

Marty
08-15-2011, 01:21 PM
Hey, cool! I got a Cooler than Ice shirt. Thanks Jared. I see it's featured in your blog too Safely Rid Your Terrarium of Unwanted Bugs with Dry Ice (http://dryiceideas.com/household/safely-rid-terrarium-unwanted-bugs-dry-ice)

you may want to correct though

"The non-toxic C02 gas formed by the sublimation of the dry ice will safely and easily eradicate any unwanted terrarium guests or plants."

plants will be unharmed. Will actually get a boost from the CO2 bath.

matthubley
04-12-2012, 11:53 AM
The trick is that the tank has to be air tight, if the CO2 leaks out somewhere, then it won't work. It's ideal to do it in an aquarium. Then top it off every few hrs. I've heard that it doesn't work on mites, though I don't know how the person did it. I know it works like a charm on millipedes. BTW, the cool thing is that this article has been published in 2 european dart frog journals, once translated into Dutch and 2nd time translated into Sweedish. I thought that was kind of cool ;)

WARNING!!!! :yikes:PLEASE!!!! Do NOT make your viv airtight with dry ice inside. CO2 weighs more than oxygen and it will naturally sink to the bottom and displace the air inside, even if you place the dry ice containers above the viv and let the CO2 fall into the tank, or put the ice inside the tank with ventilation on top, either way the air will be displaced by the weight of the CO2. But PLEASE for heavens sake, DO NOT!!!! put dry ice in your tank and then seal it air tight!!! The pressure created will cause your tank to EXPLODE. You will have a huge mess on your hands and your poor vivarium will go the way of the dinosaurs.