Merten's water monitor information

Discussion in 'Australian Lizards and Monitors' started by Northbank, May 14, 2012.

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  1. Northbank

    Northbank New Member

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    Hi all,i've have a new merten's about 4 months old have put monitor in to a 6ft x 3ft x3ft wooden enclosure which is kept in the lounge room,have kept eastern water dragons before and have been told there around the same to keep in the way of lighting and heating except humidity needs to be kept higher.Have been to some shops to find out about keeping mertens and have been told different things as the monitor is in a new enclosure and i'm stuck on what to do next.Looking for help on heating and lighting and alround husbandry.Have been told the cold end can be anything from low 20's to low 30's and the midpoint of vivarium about 30deg's and the basking area can be as high as 50deg.Also have been told just worry about the basking site,once you get 34deg at site thats all you need as the monitor will move when it's ready.Some monitors enjoy climbing and some enjoy being on the ground and digging,have had plenty of ground area and haven't seen much movement from monitor and have put a couple of branches for climbing and also told to put in some hiding spots(work to well as monitor is in the all the time) as the monitor is new we dont see much movement in the tank,have put some pinkies in a shallow bowl and in a couple of hours just walking past there gone,have put crickets in a seen a couple get eaten but the monitor just seem's to be hiding all the time and on some days you need to go looking for him,haven't picked him up but like anyone i'm starting to wonder if the tank set up is not right,or does monitor need time to settle in,or have i over fed or not fed enough.Have sent a photo of enclosure.
     

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  2. Icarus

    Icarus Well-Known Member

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    a water monitors tank should have at least enough water for it to fully submerge itself, preferably enough for it to swim.
     
  3. timmy82

    timmy82 Active Member

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    totally agree
    i have my enclosure set up with two basking spots one is around 40 degrees with other is round 60-65 degrees
    they move around on the branches to get different temps as well and they spent about 90% swiming round chasing fish in the water which is heated to 26. they are also very active and on the go
    this is a pic of my hatchie set up for the mertens
    [​IMG]
     
  4. I've never kept Mertens, but, while your temps seem Ok (could be a bit warmer at the hotspot) , I'm guessing that enclosure set up is unsuitable for a water loving monitor. I'd be getting more substrate in there ( say 200mm of cocopeat), more hide spots throughout the enclosure and a larger water body to increase humidity and provide some environmental enrichment. You could them add some fish and yabbies as a supplement to a insect and vertebrate diet. I'd also be feeding chopped adult mice rather than pinkies as there's very little food value in pinks. Also, keep handling to a bare minimum and don't be to concerned if you don't see it for a few months, as long as the foods dissapearing on a regular basis.

    Grab a copy of K&B Australian Lizards, or have a search for some Merten's care sheets on the net.

    Nice monitor species, good luck:)!
     
  5. MathewB

    MathewB Very Well-Known Member

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    Also check out the Scales and Tails article that was in their last magazine
     
  6. Northbank

    Northbank New Member

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    Have got a bigger water bowl for monitor will put that in,i didn't think that was the problem of him hiding all the time and shy when eating,have got scales and tails issue 23 and my temperature and uv lighting is around that and will add more substrate and insert a bigger bowl for swimming.A couple of photo's of outdoor enclosure that will suit water monitor i built for water dragons and bearded dragons with a couple of turtles,mertens will be his own. View attachment 252122 View attachment 252123 .
     
  7. dozerman

    dozerman Active Member

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    Great monitors. I ditched cocopeat/ tea tree mulch in favour of sand in my mertens enclosures as I found the cocopeat/ mulch fouls their water too quickly.
    Also I dont think the S&T mertens article mentioned anything about hotspots, only ambient temps. K&B Aussie lizards gives more comprehensive info.
     
  8. richardsc

    richardsc Very Well-Known Member

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    ideally you want there water bowl to be heated,preferably mid to high 20,s,25 to 26 is ideal,they need warmer temps than water dragons,especially over winter,they probably spend more time in and out of the water,but they do well set up similar,just note where they come from,mertens across the tropical north,water dragons down the east coast,generally subtropical to temperate areas
     
  9. MrMertens

    MrMertens Active Member

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    Mate they need water and lots of it.... hot spots of over 40c and high uv. mine spend half their life swimming, they along with rustys and mangroves are very aquatic.
     
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