Paludarium 2.5: Small but nice

Yes I admit. I have been building a paludarium without writing about any of it..! So trying to make things right, here is my current setup.

My last post on the current paludarium was around building a new cabinet under “some new paludarium”. Well, that paludarium was actually completed quite a while ago, and here it is!

Paludarium 2019 (or version 2.5). 50x50x120cm, 30cm of water.

So this paluadarium has been running for over a year already, in fact almost two years at the time of this writing. It was inspired by my wife: “Designing something you want will take years. Why not build a simple version that you can enjoy NOW while designing something new?”. And I did just that.

Keep It Simple? Well ehh..

Well maybe not THAT simple: I (re)used many electronics and code I already had build in Paludarium 2015. So I had quite a nice setup almost ready to go anyway. Here is a quick peek on the stuff in the cabinet:

Under Paludarium 2.5. Still quite busy, but it keeps the inhabitants happy 🙂

Taking a look under the paludarium, you can see on the lower left there is a 6L supply of osmosis water with a pump on top. This is for the rain. Top left shows part of the external filter (Eheim Professional 4+ 350). On the right there is a 12V power adapter, a Rapsberry Pi, an Arduino Uno and some relays and IRF540 FET output PCBs (readily bought from Ebay).

All of this magic allows me to control everything I need to for a simple setup: There are three high power LEDs on top (1x warm white, 1x natural white, 1x RGB+cold white). An array of 5x40mm fans on top blow fresh air into the paludarium. All controlled by PWM so I can dim the leds and speed-control the fans.

Even with this simple setup I manage to do nice day and night lighting, and getting the moisture above 90% at night and around 60% during the day.


Inside there is, as always, fish. 20 tetras (Paracheirodon axelrodi), 6 Pygmy Corydoras (Corydoras Pygmaeus), 6 marthae hatchetfish (Carnegiella marthae) and some leftovers from all over 😉

But by far the most interesting addition is creatures living on land. I’ve never had those before and I love them: Red eye Maki frogs! (Agalychnis callidryas):

Red Eye Maki frog stuck to the front window. Usually alseep during the day, but this time he woke up early 🙂
Yes they smile. They do! Notice how wide open his eyes are; when taking this image it was already very dark.

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