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Less is sometimes more

By Leonard Ho - Posted Jan 14, 2014 10:00 AM
Water, that is. Who says a glass box needs to be completely filled with water? Paludariums (vivariums that incorporates both terrestrial and aquatic elements) can make for extremely beautiful and dynamic displays.


A masterful paludarium aquascaped/landscaped by Andreas Ruppert as reported by Team Aqua Rebell.

The boundary between water and land is often some of the most unique and vibrant ecosystems, yet palaudriums are poorly represented in the world of vivariums where aquariums dominate.  We hope to inspire you to consider a paludrium as your next glass enclosure exhibit.

Paludariums are usually the domain of freshwater because there's simply not many terrestrial plants that will grow around saltwater.  But that doesn't mean you couldn't create a saltwater paludarium hardscape such as a extremely shallow coral reef and/or tide pool display.  Take, for example, the unique "Volcano Reef" of Kyle Verry, one of the few saltwater paludariums we have seen:



Adventurous souls may even want to experiment with active tide simulations to recreate dramatic exhibits that mimic tropical tide pools or reef ecosystems such as these Acropora during low tide at Lizard Island (Great Barrier Reef).  Maintaining high relative humidity in your enclosure and finding suitable shallow-water corals likely presents the biggest unique challenges.



But as we said, freshwater is a lot more accessible because of the variety of flora available to hobbyists.  You can create some extremely lush tropical gardens with some imagination and not a whole lot of money.  Here are two videos of spectacular freshwater palaudriums to whet your appetite.

Author: Leonard Ho
Location: Southern California

I'm a passionate aquarist of over 30 years, a coral reef lover, and the blog editor for Advanced Aquarist. While aquarium gadgets interest me, it's really livestock (especially fish), artistry of aquariums, and "method behind the madness" processes that captivate my attention.


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