What is the best substrate?

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NolaGirl

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I am a new owner of a baby Sulcata tortoise. I've been having it for about a month and a half. It was 2 weeks old when I got it. I am currently using aspen as substrate. Is there something better that I can be using?
 

leonardo the tmnt

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I would change aspen to coco coir like Eco earth or Cyprus mulch since they hold humidity pretty good
 

Tom

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Hello and welcome. I love N.O. Been there many times. Broiled oysters... mmmmmmm...

Anyhow, for your question, there are several good substrates. Its really personal preference. Aspen is too dry. You need something that will give off some humidity, but this also means you will need warmer temps, even at night.

Click on the links in my signature for more info. It is all explained there.
 

NolaGirl

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Tom said:
Hello and welcome. I love N.O. Been there many times. Broiled oysters... mmmmmmm...

Anyhow, for your question, there are several good substrates. Its really personal preference. Aspen is too dry. You need something that will give off some humidity, but this also means you will need warmer temps, even at night.

Click on the links in my signature for more info. It is all explained there.
My father is an oyster fisherman and I can't stand oysters. LOL! I LOVE every other seafood, though. :) I tried the the Eco Earth already. It kept getting into my tort's eyes and irritating them. I guess that I'll try the cypress mulch. Any other suggestions?
 

NolaGirl

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Tom said:
Hello and welcome. I love N.O. Been there many times. Broiled oysters... mmmmmmm...

Anyhow, for your question, there are several good substrates. Its really personal preference. Aspen is too dry. You need something that will give off some humidity, but this also means you will need warmer temps, even at night.

Click on the links in my signature for more info. It is all explained there.
The warm temp isn't an issue here. It's in the upper 8o's and humid right now. We don't have much of a Fall or Winter. Temps drop to the 40's or so for only a few weeks. Really, we have a constant climate of hot/warm and grossly humid weather here. It's horrible for my hair, but great for my tortoise. LOL!
 

safari_lass1

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NolaGirl said:
My father is an oyster fisherman and I can't stand oysters. LOL! I LOVE every other seafood, though. :) I tried the the Eco Earth already. It kept getting into my tort's eyes and irritating them. I guess that I'll try the cypress mulch. Any other suggestions?

That happened to me too when I first used Eco Earth. Typically it means there isn't enough moisture in the substrate. I put some sphagnum moss on top to help keep the moisture in a bit more and keep the dust low. I personally like untreated dirt or mulch. I am lucky enough to have plenty around the house, but don't know if you may. I have heard people microwaving any dirt the get from the outdoors to remove any bugs or bacteria, but I never have and haven't had any issues thus far :)

Welcome to the forum :)) let the addiction begin lol
 

Eweezyfosheezy

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As long as you bake the substrate to take out all the bugs orchid bark and cypress mulch are the best options in my opinion. Both smell good and dont take much effort to keep clean and they both hold humidity really well.
 

TortoiseBoy1999

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Tom said:
Hello and welcome. I love N.O. Been there many times. Broiled oysters... mmmmmmm...

Anyhow, for your question, there are several good substrates. Its really personal preference. Aspen is too dry. You need something that will give off some humidity, but this also means you will need warmer temps, even at night.

Click on the links in my signature for more info. It is all explained there.

Read Tom's threads! They will save your tortoise's life! ;) I didn't really want to read ALL of that when I first got my baby Leopard, but I reluctantly did. And I am SO glad that I did. They are very useful and the tips will last you a lifetime! :D
 

NolaGirl

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Y'all rock! Thanks! I've read most, if not all of Tom's threads. I stumbled upon them when I was researching how to properly care for a Sulcata. I read through this forum for a few months before getting my little Morla. :)
 

NolaGirl

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Eweezyfosheezy said:
As long as you bake the substrate to take out all the bugs orchid bark and cypress mulch are the best options in my opinion. Both smell good and dont take much effort to keep clean and they both hold humidity really well.
I bought some Zoo Med cypress mulch bedding today. What temp should I set the oven on and how long do I bake it?
 

mainey34

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Hello and welcome, you have come to the right place for answers. Toms threads are very helpful. I recommend reading. And by the way...sulcatas rock !
 

Eweezyfosheezy

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I dont bake my substrate in the oven so I cant help you out there. I just throw all the substrate in a black trash bag and keep it in the sun all day and that takes care of the bugs, I live in Arizona where it gets 100+ degrees regularly so it may not be a suitable solution for you.
 

NolaGirl

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Eweezyfosheezy said:
I dont bake my substrate in the oven so I cant help you out there. I just throw all the substrate in a black trash bag and keep it in the sun all day and that takes care of the bugs, I live in Arizona where it gets 100+ degrees regularly so it may not be a suitable solution for you.
It's in the upper 80's here in NOLA. Pretty darn hot!
 
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