What is a bioactive set-up and why could it be better for your animal?
Simply put- bioactive vivariums are enclosures that mimic your animals natural habitat. Giving them a slice of what they would experience in nature. In nature animals have options. To do this, you will add all parts of a living cycle- rich, nutritious substrate to support growth, detritivore insects, plants, leaf litter, branches and other nature items.
Our all-natural, hand-blended substrate was created to improve your animal's welfare by replicating the soil that would be found in your animal's natural habitat. Each blend is a wide variety of natural or organic materials that will support this living cycle. In very wet, humid rainforest enclosures a drainage layer and mesh barrier will need to be used to keep the soil from growing bad bacteria. In all others a deep layer of substrate will help your animals feel at home, promote a stable humidity level, and allow your animal to burrow like they would in the wild.
The Detritivore Insects
Detritivores are small, harmless insects that live in the soil or leaf litter and eat rotting, decaying organic material and animal feces. They are commonly called "the clean-up crew". These insect play a key role in your keeping your enclosure clean. With the addition of detritivores you will greatly reduce or eliminate the need to routinuely change bedding and clean up the animals feces. They will do this for you!
Plants provide many bennifits to your animals health and well-being. As your enclosure plants take root and grow they will create an ever changing enviroment for your animal, in turn creating enviromental enrichment. These plants will also alow your predator to hunt for their food as they would in the wild. When choosing your plants make sure they are non-toxic and will thrive in ecosystem you are planting them in.
Leaf Litter and Other Natural Items
Leaf litter is extremely important to a bioactive enviroment. Leaf litter provides a hiding place for your clean-up crew so they are not eaten by your animals. Leaf litter will provide a natural meal to your clean-up crew. Your clean-up crew will eat the decomposing leaves, in turn fertilizing your soil with their feces, feeding the enclosures plants. Smaller terrastial animals will us the leaf litter as a playground, climbing over and under. Natural branches and twigs will provide structure for your growing plants. Make sure that all leaf litter and nature items that are added have been sanitized, so your are not bringing in unwelcomed guest (diseased and harmful insects) into your enclosure.
Providing the proper lighting is as important the plants and animals living in your enclosure as the sun is for wild ecosystems! Reptiles and amphibians need exposure to UVA/UVB to metabolize calcium. Not metabolizing calcium will lead to
Making a BioActive enclosure is not a complicated as you think!
Here are a few things to remember:
1. It is important to keep your animals natural habitat in mind when creating your enclosure. If your not sure what your animals natural habitat is, we have a animal habitat directory to help.
2. Each item you add to your enclosure will play an active role in your mini-ecosystem. Make sure to add items that are free from chemical or could be toxic and full of nutrients so your clean-up crew and plants can thrive.
3. You will not be doing complete substrate changes. Every 6 months you can add our organics replenisher pack and plant boost. Adding nutrients back into the soil your clean-up crew has been eating and organically feeding your plants.