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Indoor substrate that doesn’t turn into dust

Discussion in 'Tortoise Enclosure Substrate' started by Jarrette, Feb 11, 2019.

  1. Jarrette

    Jarrette New Member

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    Hello! I have tried several different substrates for my sulcata, he will be moving outdoors full time one day but until then he has a large indoor enclosure (he gets lots of outside time weather permitting) and I would like to keep a nice indoor enclosure for him even after that in case it gets too cold for his outdoor enclosure (will be heated but still, he’s my baby and will be coming in if it is too cold in the future). My problem is it seems all the types of substrate I have used, coco coir, wood chips, paper bedding, all turns to really thick dust pretty quickly as he stomps on it and then his room is covered in dust and I’m dying of allergies! I would love to hear what substrate people use with less of a dust issue or what you do to combat the dust issue for large indoor enclosures? Thanks so much!
  2. Maro2Bear

    Maro2Bear Well-Known Member

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    Greetings. Try cypress mulch from your garden center.
  3. Wright78

    Wright78 Member

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    If you mist the substrate with water it will help with the dust and also help with the humidity.
  4. Cheryl Hills

    Cheryl Hills Well-Known Member

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    Poor water in your substrate, mix it all in until all of it is damp, then pack it down some. If you keep the substrate moist like this, you will not have as much of a problem. What size or age is your tort? If it is a baby, it should have humidity at 80 to 100 percent and temps no lower then 80 degrees anywhere in the enclosure. Just misting the substrate will not help, it will evaporate right out.
    Wright78 likes this.
  5. Yvonne G

    Yvonne G Old Timer TFO Admin 10 Year Member! Platinum Supporter

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    My favorite is labelled "orchid bark" and it's made from fir bark. I keep it moist and have never experienced "dust."

    This tells me you are keeping the substrate too dry.
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  6. Jarrette

    Jarrette New Member

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    Thanks everyone, I’ll try more misting. He is 4 years old. I’ve had him since he was a hatchling. He was kept very humid and warm as a baby and is in great health. He will be moving outside (mostly) full time soon, just looking for an interim solution for his indoor enclosure when he is in it, usually just nights and sometimes during the winter when it’s too cold outside.
  7. Markw84

    Markw84 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    Orchard bark is by far the best substrate I have used. It is the least likely to break down and become dusty. It holds moisture well which is important to a sulcata enclosure. I would definitely Orchid Bark.jpg suggest trying that and reporting on the difference!
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  8. Yvonne G

    Yvonne G Old Timer TFO Admin 10 Year Member! Platinum Supporter

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    Mark: Where do you find that brand?
  9. Markw84

    Markw84 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    We have a local small chain of nursery/garden centers that is very complete. Called Green Acres.
  10. Markw84

    Markw84 Well-Known Member 5 Year Member

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    I see several places near you that carry EB Stone naturals products. Evergreen Garden Center on Alluvial does. If they don't stock it I'm sure they could order it for you.
  11. Yvonne G

    Yvonne G Old Timer TFO Admin 10 Year Member! Platinum Supporter

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