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Short on Space? Best Exotic Pets for a Nano Terrarium

Tiny green tree frog on a fingertip

Photo courtesy of David Clode

Not everyone has a lot of space to devote to exotic pet keeping. And that can be a no-go for some types of reptiles and amphibians, especially those that are larger or more active than others species.

Fortunately, some pets fit into fairly small spaces.

So if you’re short on space, you can create a nano terrarium that fits almost anywhere. Of course, you’ll need to know which reptiles and amphibians can live comfortably in these tiny habitats.

Here are some pets that will work for you if you live in an apartment, have roommates, or still live in your bedroom at your parents’ house…

Dwarf tarantulas

Tarantulas come in a variety of sizes, and the size of tank they need depends on the species. Smaller tarantulas can be kept in a nano terrarium. Your spider should have room to move around and climb or burrow (depending on the species).

When you’re looking for small tarantulas, look for the word “Dwarf” at the front of their name. This typically indicates a species that stays fairly small, around 2 or 3 inches in leg span.

You can see some dwarf tarantula species in this video by Tarantula Kat:


Beetles are not the most common exotic pet, but there are plenty of interesting species. In particular, Blue Death Feigning Beetles make a good candidate for keeping in a nano terrarium. They’re only about half an inch to an inch in length.

Aquarimax Pets has an excellent unboxing video that shows Blue Death Feigning Beetle activity:

Dart frogs

Dart frogs are another tiny pet, coming in at about .5 to 2.5 inches in length. These are often called “poison dart frogs”, but the ones you find at an exotic pet shop are not poisonous to you and are actually safe for you to handle.

In the wild, dart frogs get their poisonous features from the diet they eat. In captivity, they are not eating the foods that give them this effect.

That being said, you should keep handling to a minimum because it’s not super healthy for your frog. Click here to find out why it’s harmful to handle frogs too often, as well as some other exotic pet tips.

Green and black dart frog

Tree frogs

Like tarantulas and beetles, tree frogs come in many different species. Some are just too active to keep in a nano terrarium, but others would do well in a small space.

Here are tree frogs to consider for a nano terrarium habitat:

If you’re purchasing a nano terrarium for a tree frog, purchase the taller nano tank so that the frog has room to climb.

Although tree frogs are often perfectly happy to live in groups, you should not put multiple specimens into a nano terrarium. At that point, they’re going to need a bigger space.

Red eye tree frog on a leaf

Now that you know which species can potentially be kept in tight quarters, keep in mind that almost any animal is going to fare better in an environment with more room for them to move around and perform natural behaviors.

Check out terrariums of all sizes at the Tye-Dyed Iguana in Fairview Heights.

Diedra Blackmill is head copywriter and content marketer at Telepath Writing Services. She specializes in writing blog articles, newsletters, and scripts that generate more revenue for businesses. Hire Diedra for your online content.