||Easiest Terrarium Animals to Keep|
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Chinese water dragons do not belong in community Terrariums.
Compatibility: Don’t go by “cuteness” or “price.” You want animals that will get along together today and still get along together next month. This cute little water dragon grows into a spunky, lizard eater faster than you might think. Choose animals that don’t get very large even when full grown.
The Big Eight: Here’s a list of “can’t miss” critters to choose from:
Other good choices include:
Why? The critters listed above will not eat each other. They will inhabit all the areas of your terrarium – at the very top, on the plants and wood, on the shore, and in the water. None of them will tear up your terrarium (like a turtle or large toad). All eat fairly easy-to-find foods.
Heat: All of these critters thrive at room temperature. You need no exotic heating system to keep them alive.
Green Anoles: Critical needs for these guys include small crickets, plants or vines to climb on, and frequent waterings. Anoles will drink out of bowls. A good bubbling filter keeps their water available at all times. They can climb the glass. They prefer to climb plants. Green Anoles are often called American Chameleons because of their ability to change colors between green and brown. They cost one-tenth as much as real chameleons.
Green Tree Frogs: These guys need small crickets, very tight lids, and high humidity. They vary in color from bright green to a rich brown. They sport a white stripe down their sides. You will always find them at the top.
Red-Bellied Toads: These frog-like toads prefer to set at the water’s edge and scope out the territory for bite-size insects. Their bright green bodies with black spots top a bright red belly.
Fire-Bellied Newts: Fire-Bellies spend most of their time in the water, but also enjoy walking on the shore. They eat small crickets but just as eagerly eat the canned floating “turtle sticks.” Fire-Bellies also eagerly eat most frozen foods. Beware the voracious paddletails which look very similar.
Mystery Snails: Put these guys on your clean up crew. They will eat any food that falls to the bottom. If they can reach it, they will eat it. Best of all, they keep eating 24 hours a day. They’re almost as valuable as your filter. By the way, any big snail will work almost as well. If you include apple snails, they will eat your aquatic plants. They will also eat foam sponge filters.
Tadpoles: These cute little guys fare great on fish food – much better than the algae they eat in the wild. Once they turn into frogs, most will eat critters smaller than themselves. Beware of hungry bullfrogs.
Dwarf African Frogs: These picky eaters (brine shrimp or blackworms) demand clean water. They stay small.
Paradise Fish: All right, here’s a pretty fish that needs no heater. The males have longer fins. These guys eat flake or frozen foods eagerly. They come in four different colors: red, blue, black, and albino (white with pink eyes).
Minnows: White Clouds make an equally good choice. They’re a rich brown with a white stripe. Their fins have yellow highlights and red tips. Long-Finned Danios (in blue, stripes, or gold) look good also.
Breeding: All of these species can be and have been bred locally. Of course, any babies born in a stocked terrarium will wind up as lunch.
Bad Choices: Since you want critters that will last a long time, avoid these guys:
Pick your inhabitants from our lists and they will live well and prosper. For ideas on terrarium decor go to Anoles.
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