Eating substrate

dimitra

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Hello, I was advised from the care sheet and a few people on the forum to purchase orchid bark and coco coir as substrate for my Russian tortoise. He was fine at first but then he started eating the orchid bark so I removed it and tried him on only coco coir and he’s still trying to eat it. There’s always food in his enclosure is there anything I can do to stop him from eating it. He’s got a uvb bulb and a heat lamp.
 

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Yossarian

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It is not unusual for them to try eating a new substrate. They will stop pretty quickly. Neither Orchid bark or Coco should cause any problems.
 

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If he does not stop eating it, it could be lack of fiber- an easy fix
No.
But it's sometimes a lack of minerals. Depending on substrate type.
Are you providing supplements?
Are you feeding store bought "spring mix"?
Do you have a RED light bulb?
 

harrythetortoise

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Just to add - looks like the coco coir is too loose - try packing it down with your hands. It will be less messy that way too.
 

dimitra

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No.
But it's sometimes a lack of minerals. Depending on substrate type.
Are you providing supplements ?
Are you feeding store bought "spring mix"?
Do you have a RED light bulb?
We grow our own veg and flowers for him. We bought dried food but he’s not too keen and doesn’t like pellets. He gets calcium 1-2 a week and nutrobal once a week. His light is blue should it be red?
 

Yossarian

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We grow our own veg and flowers for him. We bought dried food but he’s not too keen and doesn’t like pellets. He gets calcium 1-2 a week and nutrobal once a week. His light is blue should it be red?

It should not be red or blue, it needs to be full spectrum. The coloured lights can confuse them by making things that are not food, look like food.
 

dimitra

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It should not be red or blue, it needs to be full spectrum. The coloured lights can confuse them by making things that are not food, look like food.
I made a mistake it’s not blue it’s a uvb and a heat lamp
 

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dimitra

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I agree.
And is that the only lamp or heat source?
Is there no UVB lamp?
Yes there is it’s a uvb and heat lamp in a double zoo med dome lamp and both the lights are brand new. He gets nutrobal and calcium but he’s still eating his substrate got any ideas on how to stop him
 

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Yes there is it’s a uvb and heat lamp in a double zoo med dome lamp and both the lights are brand new. He gets nutrobal and calcium but he’s still eating his substrate got any ideas on how to stop him
If it's a screw in UVB. Its either an MVB or a compact CFL.
Neither is acceptable
 

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So what’s the best thing to get
A T5 HO uvb for uvb
And an incandescent bulb for daytime heat and/or a CHE for either day or night heat.20200219_145404.jpg
I'm not in the UK and US fixtures are different.
My friend @Lyn W is in Wales.
Maybe she knows of an equivalent.
 

Lyn W

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The cfl type bulb you have can damage tort eyes so you should stop using that asap.
The same for curly type bulbs that pet shops sell.
The double dome fitting is not recommended as they can overheat and cause the bulbs to blow or at least shorten their life. Wide domes are better.
Have a look at the Arcadia range for T5 HO uvb tubes and fittings, there are other makes available in the UK but Arcadia seem to be the most popular.
 

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The cfl type bulb you have can damage tort eyes so you should stop using that asap.
The same for curly type bulbs that pet shops sell.
The double dome fitting is not recommended as they can overheat and cause the bulbs to blow or at least shorten their life. Wide domes are better.
Have a look at the Arcadia range for T5 HO uvb tubes and fittings, there are other makes available in the UK but Arcadia seem to be the most popular.
Thanks Lyn
I wasn't sure that they were available with your different wall plug, etc.
 

dimitra

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The cfl type bulb you have can damage tort eyes so you should stop using that asap.
The same for curly type bulbs that pet shops sell.
The double dome fitting is not recommended as they can overheat and cause the bulbs to blow or at least shorten their life. Wide domes are better.
Have a look at the Arcadia range for T5 HO uvb tubes and fittings, there are other makes available in the UK but Arcadia seem to be the most popular.
I have the 10.0 UVB 13 watt reptisun zoo med bulb plus a heat bulb is this sufficient I don’t think it’s a cfl
 
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