For years, I have had the lights running from ~6:30am- 6:30pm. This allowed me to be able to mist the tank or feed the tanks in either the morning or after work. About two months ago, I changed the times for the lights to ~11:30 am-12pm and then a week after I changed the lights again to be ~7pm – 6am.
Now for the 5 reasons I switched to a reverse lighting cycle:
1) Temperature Concerns
- Before I got my newest tank, the split tank was still running on the fluorescent light that came with it. I have since upgraded the lights down the tanks, but there is still my 10 vert. Tarapoto tank that does not have the updated LED lights. At the time I was looking to switch the lights over, the weather was hot and humid and my newly established split tank getting warmer than I would like. A couple of days I was so worried about the temperature in the tank during the middle of the day that I turned off the lights completely and it seemed that reversing the lights would be a better long-term solution in controlling the temperature of the tanks. Maybe come fall- winter time I will switch them back but for now it has worked very well in helping with the tank temperature.
2) Electricity Savings
- This allows me to set our air conditioner at a higher setpoint, without having to worry about the added tank temperature due to the lights. This will save us money on our electricity bill which is always nice.
3) Better Feeding Schedule
- I am able to feed/ mist the tanks at night when I have more time available, instead of having to rush through the morning routine in order to get to work on time. This has backfired a couple nights lately as we have been gone a lot of nights before the lights have come on and come home when its time for bed and I am already exhausted so I wasn’t able to take care of the tanks those nights, but most nights it works out perfect.
- The frogs will be more active when we have guests over at night. Many people who have come over want to see the frogs and if they came over after 6pm the frogs were already tucked into bed. Now they should be just waking up and ready to hunt so they should be more visible to friends/ family. Nothing’s worse than family and friend’s looking in the tank and saying they see nothing, because then they really think I am crazy!
- Vacations don’t seem as long on the night schedule. This may just be in my head, but our typical vacation whether it is a long weekend or a week long, normally starts with us leaving after work and returning some-time mid-day, early evening. With this new light schedule I can feed/ mist the tanks before I leave and when I return, therefore subtracting 2 days off of the days I need to worry about them. For example, on a long weekend we leave Thursday after work and I can feed them before we leave. Then we will return on Sunday early evening and I can feed them once we return. So now I am just left with Friday & Saturday that the froglets are left to fend for themselves, which if I give them a little extra on the other two feedings they will be alright.
Overall, it was an adjustment for the frogs and for me. But I think it is working out well. The new schedule allows me to be able to observe the frogs and gives me more time to watch for any fighting, fly missings and other issues that I can catch early enough for it to not be an issue.