Cleaning and Maintenance
We perform the following routine cleaning and maintenance on our main facility:
Drum filter: filter is changed once a year by Aquatic Ecosystems
Picture 1 : Drum filter inside housing
Canister filters: monthly or when pressure reading rises above high limit
Picture 2: Canister filters
Tanks: larger tanks are changed out at least monthly or as needed; 0.75 liter wet rack tanks changed as needed. Dirty tanks have the drain components removed(they will warp the tank in the dishwasher). They are then sprayed with a 10% bleach solution, allowed to sit 20 minutes, and put through the dishwasher. None of our tanks are autoclaved, as we find this significantly shortens the life of the tank, and does not seem to be necessary.
Gutters: Cleaned monthly concurrent with change out of a whole rack of tanks. Also done as needed between monthly cleanings when we notice the water level in the gutters beginning to rise.
Piping: drain pipes are snaked once a month. The intake lines to the pumps are removed, cleaned, and snaked annually.
Sump: The biological media is removed from the sump yearly, the sump is thoroughly scrubbed and cleaned, and media returned.
UV lights: Changed annually by Aquatic Habitats. If we notice an increase in problems with frog health, such as cases of bloat, we may order bulbs and replace them ourselves in the interim. We believe the bulbs are very important in keeping a healthy disease free colony, so find it worth the extra expense. Be sure your are changed at least annually, if not more often.
RO Water System: Maintained once a year by Millipore through Aquatic Ecosystems, which order the parts, and arranges the service. Note: Our RO water maintains a pH near 5 -6. If we perform any manual topping off of water in the system, additional sodium bicarbonate is added to maintain the pH. Our system pH is normally 6.7 to 6.8.
Picture 3: RO Water system
Dosing system: Checked annually by Aquatic Ecosystems
Picture 4: Dosing system
Animal behavior as a clue to water quality
The behavior of frogs and tadpoles is an important clue to the condition of the water. Adult frogs may be overly excitable or extremely lethargic when water condition is unfavorable. Tadpoles quickly display symptoms of distress when water quality changes, including gasping, floating at the surface and loss of equilibrium. These signs should prompt immediate checks of water quality and system operation.
Picture 5: Happy tadpoles
Ethyl alcohol for disinfecting items such as brushes, nets, overflow drains and other items. Be sure to rinse items well, or allow them to dry thoroughly before reuse.
Rubber and latex gloves, soft sponges, bottle brushes, toothbrushes, various size brushes (be sure they are will not scratch acrylic).
Water and air temperature thermometers, pH meter, simple manual siphon devices (from hardware store).
Extra large binder clips (plastic ones are available) are useful to secure lids, and for a variety of other miscellaneous uses.
Small nets used only for a certain tank or shelf of tanks. These nets are cheap and easily replaced. The nets are disinfected with ethyl alcohol.
Feeding Supplies - Plastic squirt bottles for Sera Micron, funnels for delivering food through holes in tank lid, measuring spoons: 1/8, 1/4, 1/2, 1 tsp., 1 tbsp.
Nitrate/nitrite/ammonia strips (fresh water test kit)
Rubber boots, buckets, hoses, floor squeegee, wet/dry vac.
Equipment and supply Sources
Supply recirculating systems, provide materials and supplies to maintain systems, as well as service and service/maintenance plans.
1767 Benbow Court
Apopka, FL 32703
A variety of aquarium and aquaculture supplies, including Jungle Quick Dip test strips we use.