Help! My Hermann's tortoise keeps getting substrate in his mouth!

hermannstortlover

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Oct 17, 2021
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ohio
Hi I have a 4 year old hermanns tortoise and i keep finding pieces of substrate hanging from his mouth. I use zoo med forrest floor and it seems to get in his mouth and i have to pull the strands out. I’m not sure if he’s trying to eat it or if he digs and the pieces get in his mouth? Is there anyone else who has had this issue?
 

Maro2Bear

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May 29, 2014
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Glenn Dale, Maryland, USA
The Zoomed Forrest Floor says it’s 100% cypress. Cypress can be pretty flaky & easily picked up on food & tort If it’s too dry. Do you have it a bit packed down & moistened? Hopefully wetting it down will help.
 

TeamZissou

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Aug 23, 2020
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Location (City and/or State)
Albuquerque, NM
I would avoid Cypress mulch in favor of Reptibark/Orchid bark. Though Cypress mulch is sometimes recommended here, I caught my yearling/juvenile Greek tortoise eating some on a few occasions about four months ago when he was in his outdoor enclosure. It took four months to work through, but yesterday he had a huge poop that was entirely the Cypress mulch and must have been very difficult to get out. I'm lucky he didn't get impacted.

At the time, I fed him some 'Miner-All' which supposedly helps prevent substrate eating, but it did not work.

I later switched it to Reptibark, and haven't seen him eating any substrate.
 

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