Emperor Scoropion Setup

The Spaz

Arachnopeon
Joined
Jan 28, 2003
Messages
20
I have a 29gal long tank that is housing 4, 3-ingstar emperor scorpions. During the day I have a 100wt bluelight on and at night I have a 150wt redlight. Underneath I have 2 heat pads 1 on each side. Also include are to medium sized caves in the the 2 corners along with 2 small wooden half caves. Also 2 Rock water dishes, The substarte I use is peatmoss, coconut bark and a tropical rainforest blend which is about 3-4 inches deep. The question I have is this a good setup.? Also Seeing my scorpions are still young is this the reason I don't see them out much. Also in a side note I will once in a while drop in a few floating fish sticks to feed the crickets but once in a while I will see my emperors eating them. I know they eat the crickets and mealworms I give them but I just thought this was weird. The conclusion I came up with is that they were taken away from there mom too early. Well I think I have a good setup I just want to hear your feedback. Go Scorpions!
 
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Wade

Arachnoking
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I'd say it sounds like a very good setup. My only concern is the lights you're using. I'd keep n eye on the temperature under them. Emperors will do fine in very warm enclosures, 100f is acceptable, and having an area that gets that warm is probably bennificial. Much above that, however, and you're pushing it. How hot it gets is going to depend on how close the bulbs are. Those are pretty high watt bulbs you're using, I'd probably have them mounted quite high (18" or more) above the substrate or switch to lower watt bulbs. If you have a digital thermometer with a probe, it's probably a good idea to get a read on the temp directly under the lamps. If it's over 100f, I'd make some adjustments. Also, it may not be neccesary to have pads AND lights...most keepers go with one or the other. Also, it sounded like you might have had pads underneath the tank. The general consensus is that pads mounted to the sides are better. Scorpions burrow to get away from heat, but if you have lights on top and pads underneath, they have nowhere to go to thermoregulate. They don't really need to be super warm 24/7. Your best bet is to have a warm area with heat coming from the top or side, and a cool area they can get away to. It's also OK if the temp drops at night. High 60's or low 70's is fine as a nightime low, as long as they have access to higher temps during the day.

The other concern with bulbs is that they tend to dry out the enclosure. You didn't mention how moist your terrarium is. IME emps (especially immatures that are still molting) do best in cages where the substrate is kept fairly moist. Mine usually molt sealed in burrows. The moisture also makes it easier for the burrows to hold together. With those high watt bulbs, you're going to want to keep an eye on the substrate. Misting probably won't make much of a difference, I simply pour water on the substrate, or overflow the water bowl. The great thing about the substrate you're using is that it's easy to tell when it gets dry just by looking at it. It's OK if the top layer gets a little dry, this will help keep mites and fungi in check. The lower layers, however, should remain moist. The scorps should be able to burrow down to where they feel comfotable. The rate of evaporation can also be reduced by partially covering the top with clear plastic...but you don't want the plastic to be under the lamps, of course.

The scorps eating the fishfood surprised me at first, but after I thought about it, I realized that scorps have no problem recognizing non living prey, so why not fish food sticks? I've read that the pectines (the comb-like structures on the underside) are used by scorps to recognize edible material on the ground. I'm tempted to put a dish of some sort of high-protien prepared food in with my scorps and see what they do!

Wade
 
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The Spaz

Arachnopeon
Joined
Jan 28, 2003
Messages
20
Originally posted by Wade
I'd say it sounds like a very good setup. My only concern is the lights you're using. I'd keep n eye on the temperature under them. Emperors will do fine in very warm enclosures, 100f is acceptable, and having an area that gets that warm is probably bennificial. Much above that, however, and you're pushing it. How hot it gets is going to depend on how close the bulbs are. Those are pretty high watt bulbs you're using, I'd probably have them mounted quite high (18" or more) above the substrate or switch to lower watt bulbs. If you have a digital thermometer with a probe, it's probably a good idea to get a read on the temp directly under the lamps. If it's over 100f, I'd make some adjustments. Also, it may not be neccesary to have pads AND lights...most keepers go with one or the other. Also, it sounded like you might have had pads underneath the tank. The general consensus is that pads mounted to the sides are better. Scorpions burrow to get away from heat, but if you have lights on top and pads underneath, they have nowhere to go to thermoregulate. They don't really need to be super warm 24/7. Your best bet is to have a warm area with heat coming from the top or side, and a cool area they can get away to. It's also OK if the temp drops at night. High 60's or low 70's is fine as a nightime low, as long as they have access to higher temps during the day.

The other concern with bulbs is that they tend to dry out the enclosure. You didn't mention how moist your terrarium is. IME emps (especially immatures that are still molting) do best in cages where the substrate is kept fairly moist. Mine usually molt sealed in burrows. The moisture also makes it easier for the burrows to hold together. With those high watt bulbs, you're going to want to keep an eye on the substrate. Misting probably won't make much of a difference, I simply pour water on the substrate, or overflow the water bowl. The great thing about the substrate you're using is that it's easy to tell when it gets dry just by looking at it. It's OK if the top layer gets a little dry, this will help keep mites and fungi in check. The lower layers, however, should remain moist. The scorps should be able to burrow down to where they feel comfotable. The rate of evaporation can also be reduced by partially covering the top with clear plastic...but you don't want the plastic to be under the lamps, of course.

The scorps eating the fishfood surprised me at first, but after I thought about it, I realized that scorps have no problem recognizing non living prey, so why not fish food sticks? I've read that the pectines (the comb-like structures on the underside) are used by scorps to recognize edible material on the ground. I'm tempted to put a dish of some sort of high-protien prepared food in with my scorps and see what they do!

Wade
Thanks for your response. My light is sitting on top the gage which is about 16 inches from the bottom of the tank. I mist a couple times a week and also let the water dish overflow a bit. The one water bowl is made out of rock so it gradually filters out and into the growund that is not either drank or evaporated. Should I get any plants to go in the cage? This may aslo help to create more humidity if so do you know any types to get. I don't want to get any that may harm the scorpions. I knew that the emperor scorpion was social but it seems they always follow eachother. Thsi is probably due to the fact they have always been together since I bought all 4 together at the pet store when they were sbout 1-1.5 inches long. Well I hope to hear more comments soon. Go Scorpions!
 

Wade

Arachnoking
Old Timer
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Messages
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I'd still check that temp under the light...not the air temp, but the temp directly under. It just seems like 100 watts is going to really heat too much, but I can't be sure without checking it myself. I only use bulbs that size on my larger reptile cages. You probably don't even need a light at night, especially since eyou've got pads as well.

Pothos is a good plant to use in vivariums. It's very common and cheap, available just about anywhere plants are sold. The thing to worry about is insecticides that may have been used before you bought the plant. I'd throw out the soil the plant came with and thouroghly rinse the roots and leaves. You can re-pot it with soil you know is clean...or you can plant it dirctly in the scorpion substrate provided it's moist enough (as it should be for emps anyway). If you're really worried about pesticides, you can buy a pothos plant and cut off a length of the vine and stick stem in a bottle of water. From that cutting you can grow a new plant, right in the bottle of water. You can even keep it in the bottle, just bury it in the substrate! Pothos is increadibly hardy, provided it has at least some water and some light. I have it growing in a number of my reptile cages and when I need it in a new cage I just trim it from one of the existing ones.

Wade
 

Advocatus

Arachnopeon
Joined
Dec 4, 2002
Messages
42
If placed in a 10x10x10 cm box, a 100 watt lightbulb will produce 90 degrees Celsius ( science project ).
 

The Spaz

Arachnopeon
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Jan 28, 2003
Messages
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The dimension of my tank are 18in high 30in long and 12in wide. I am getting a new thermometer later to find out what exactly the temp is. Go Scorpions!
 

XOskeletonRED

Arachnodemon
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Jan 6, 2003
Messages
707
Just to let you know, red lamps provide more visual light in water, etc., as well as hold a higher temp for longer distance than the blue lighting does. At that distance, blue (100W) should barely breach around 80-85F, whereas red (100W) should breach 90-96F. I would recommend you switch to a smaller bulb for the red. Any way it goes, a 150W (should be nearing 100-110F and possibly more, even at that distance, not mentioning if you keep a solid top on the tank) is a little extreme, but if it does keep your temp properly maintained, stick with it. If you have good succes, let the rest of us know. We, or some of us, might try it. *grins* This also varies on the temp in the room and how much air is being regulated in and out of the tank per every minute gone by. As also spoken about a 100W bulb (this is probably a standard bulb and not UV, blue, or red), it will reach 90F on the surface. Perhaps he'll give more info on the bulb used for this science project.

My information is not from my studies, but rather a lighting professional. Thanks to the scientific forums on this one.
 
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Wade

Arachnoking
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Originally posted by XOskeletonRED
As also spoken about a 100W bulb (this is probably a standard bulb and not UV, blue, or red), it will reach 90F on the surface. Perhaps he'll give more info on the bulb used for this science project.
Actually, Advocatus's experiment was measured in Celsius, not Fahrenheit.

90 Celsius equates to 194 Fahrenheit! I'd say that's a bit too warm! Of course, he was using a very small box. In Spaz's case, he said it was 16 inches from the bottom of the tank...so you have to subtract the depth of the substrate to get an idea of the surface temp. We'd also have to know something about the ambiant temps. If the room was on the cold side, a 100 watt bulb may be appropriate! Personally, I probably wouldn't go higher than a 60, but my bug romm is fairly warm to begin with.

I think the bulb Spaz is using is reptile heat lamp...while some brands do have a blue tint, the light cast isn't blue, at least not noticably. It probably influnces how far the heat transfers, but probably not by much. I also prefer red bulbs over others, however.

Wade
 
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Advocatus

Arachnopeon
Joined
Dec 4, 2002
Messages
42
The only reason I said it was to give sort of an aspect of how warm it really gets. And yes, it was a regular bulb. Personally, I wouldn't use anything more than 40 - 60 W, but the again my invert room holds 75 F constantly.
And both those "extreme" bulbs and heating pads could get a little warm, but thats offcourse depending on what temperature your room is normally.
 

The Spaz

Arachnopeon
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Jan 28, 2003
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My tank is located in the corner of my house near the wall by a window! That is probably why it is keeping it at around 80-85 farenheit. I am using as 150 watt red bulb it is truly red not just tinted it is from zoo med. Also at night I use a 60 watt zoo med red bulb. It seems to be doing the job. I am in NJ right now so it's a little cold right now. I belive this is a good setup. If not let me know.
 

XOskeletonRED

Arachnodemon
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Well, while the lighting i was refering to was probably spot light styled also, so this would make a huge difference, as also, you mention the bulbs were true red, rather than white with coating, this will dissapate heat more also. You should be about good. Difinite. *grins*

I prefer fluorescent styles personally, but only due to the UV during daytime for plants, moss, etc. They seem to have a wider range of spreading light around the tank. Though it could be a bad thing if used incorrectly.

I just might try it soon though, as I have been using other lighting sources for quite some time now for my bearded dragons an snakes.

later.
 

XOskeletonRED

Arachnodemon
Old Timer
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Oooo... pretty.:D
I recently aquired a 75 gallon and am planning on keeping a rainforest species in it. Not sure which species yet. I took pics of a few of my tanks a couple weeks back, but most didn't turn out too good. The only one you can even see anything on, is the new 75, which I just recently set up. I am probably going to search for a less burrowing species with more tendencies to climb, to keep in it though, as I have many descent sized stones in this tank and would not like to injure my little ones. I'm sure you know what I mean.
As for my substrate differences to yours, I always keep my substrate unlevel so the heat will be more dissapated on one side of the tank. It assists me to give a wider variation of temp when sides of the tank are compared to each other. If I can ever downsize the pic enough, I'll post it for you. Perhaps it'll give someone some ideas.
As for heating, here's my ideas for temporary use... It would be probable to place a pair of heat pads on one side. I'll probably also use a lower wattage blue bulb and red as per the time of day/night, for higher temp during breeding (daytime lighting will be on for 8 hrs and nighttime for the other but turned on about 30 min after the others turn off to allow faster cooling when needed. I currently am running a pair of UV bulbs overhead of the tank (for plants), which I have set on a timer already for an eight hr (on) schedule.
This is the one I hope to use as permanent... I'm currently working on a method to slowly decrease the temp a little better by working in a dimmer to the heat lamps and UV bulbs to allow for more natural cooling to nighttime temps as well as a slower rise to daytime temps. Lighting is also a problem if just set on a timer to me. It seems to cause stress if the scorps are "caught in the sun" rapidly and this will hopefully, be eliminated by attaching a dimmer to them as well. I'll probably use a clock motor to rotate the switch I'm working on for it. I'm trying to make a 360 degree switch. It'll be perfect by keeping the time, etc... if I can ever figure it out. So many contemplations. *lol*


edw.=D
 
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