8/10/2009

Filtering Pools

Nowadays, it seems like a nice luxury for your land hermit crabs to have filtered pools. Many crabbers are discovering that this option may be easier and the crabs seem to enjoy swimming, too.

Using built-in pools in your crabitat does not require a lot of skill, but it does require a lot of space. I have a 55G and I think my pools are a little too big, but I do like them (and the crabs seem to like them, too).

There are two methods of doing built-in pools, which I call the easy and the hard method. The hard method is to get cut plexi-glass or glass and use aquarium silicone to glue the pieces into the tank. This is not only permanent, it also makes for possible leaks. This is the hard way.
The easy way is to use glass or plastic tupperware dishes and have them filtered. This way, you can take them out if the crabs shove substrate or if they need cleaned. You can easily do this without disturbing the crabs.

As far as filtering media goes, I like to use the Hagen Elite Mini. I browsed other filters online, but this one seemed the best. It's not too big and is quiet and it makes a lot of bubbles so it helps the humidity.

Best of all, it comes with a mesh filter and you can add a little bit of activated carbon, too.
Built-in pools do require some maintenance. I like to change at least 1/4 of my water every week to ensure that the pools are clean and not high in nitrates and stuff. Every month, I do a filter clean-up and where I clean off the filter, and every two months the filter is replaced and everything is cleaned.
The biggest set back to built-in pools is when the crabs push in substrate. To avoid this problem, have gravel around your pools or raise them up higher, with access into the pools. Crabs will be crabs and sadly, it's inevitable.

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