AGBs & oak sawdust/chips?

maxident213

Arachnolord
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Nov 5, 2005
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Hello, I'm getting a couple of AGBs this week, I know they need oak leaves & rotting wood for calcium/nutrients, my question is has anyone ever tried using oak sawdust or chips in place of one or both of these things? I work in a wood shop and throw out tons of oak everyday, from dust to cutoffs. Could the millis get their oak fix from sawdust or chips mixed with the substrate? Or in their food? Would/can they eat it in this form, or is it necessary for it to be softened up by the rotting process? If anyone has any input or experience to relate, I'd sure appreciate it. I can probably get some oak leaves from a nursery around here, but this would be a lot easier if it'll work. Thanks very much.
 

8+)

Arachnolord
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Feb 21, 2007
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In "Giant Millipedes" O. McMonigle states that for the upper substrate you can use hardwood saw dust, because it's fine enough for them to chew. He Says the chips are too hard for them to chew fresh and will often mold. I would try to mix in some rotting leaves if at all possible.

Spiderhunter uses wood chips mixed into his substrate with success. He uses Aspen I believe.

With the chips, if you have the space, you could leave a pile outside to compost for awhile before putting them in the enclosure. You'd want to sterilize them first, to eliminate pests.
 

spydrhunter1

Arachnolord
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I use aspen because it's readily and easily available at the pet store, I see no reason oak shaving wouldn't work.
 

ftorres

Arachnobaron
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Oct 29, 2004
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African Giants

HEllo,
Well, the fact that they chew on hardwood pieces,Aspen or sawdust, does not mean they are getting their nutrition, or Are they really benefiting from it?

I am under the impresion that they eat in the wild stuff that is already in some stage of decomposing, so I am not sure the bacteria in their guts are capable of fully decomposed what they are eating if it is still hard.

But again, I am not a scientist or a Millipede expert,so I am just asking this to get some more knowledge from others keepers.

regards
FT
 

Cheshire

Arachnoking
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They actually need the rotting wood. Millis that have rotting wood breed better and live longer.

As long as it doesn't smell like pine, it's OK.

Sawdust should be good, it will break down faster than whole oak peices.

Keep the oak moist. If you need, I have wood compost that should still contain the fungi required to rot the wood.

Ad's in my sig.
 

Snipes

Arachnoprince
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Feb 25, 2005
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ches-how would you go about rotting an oak or aspen piece of wood?
 

maxident213

Arachnolord
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Nov 5, 2005
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I went down to the park and scored two big bags of last year's oak leaves, whcih I've cleaned & mixed into the substrate along with some snake bed aspen shavings. The pedes seem to be digging it, I think they'll be cool until I can get some rotting wood. Thanks everyone. :clap:
 

Cheshire

Arachnoking
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ches-how would you go about rotting an oak or aspen piece of wood?
I'd find a rotten log and take a bit of that. Any non sterile rotten peice of wood *should* have the fungi and bacteria needed to rot the wood.

From there, put the two in a 5 gallon bucket and keep it moist somehow. The fungus and bacteria should transfer to the other log.

I'd do aspen shavings or oak sawdust because larger surface area means the wood rots faster. A log would take a much longer time than shavings or sawdust.

If you can, chop the log into small peices.

I'll be experimenting more as time goes on. I'm still not 100% sure on specifics at this point.

I'm actually collecting huge amounts of rotten wood right now because I want to raise hurcules beetles in the fall.
 
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