concern

Jono_mad

Arachnosquire
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Oct 26, 2002
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hi. last night i was looking into the tanks that i had prepared for the new t's and in the substrate i noticed a really tiny little white worm thing squiggling around and then burrowing into the peat. i've been told that this is a nematode worm and that it is harmless. is this ok or do i need to change the substrate? i haven't actually noticed any in the rosea tank however.
thanks,
Jono
 

Mister Internet

Big Meanie Doo Doo Head :)
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Sounds like a "springtail" ... I don't think they're considered harmful unless you're keeping a small sling or unless they absolutely overrun the enclosure..
 

Jono_mad

Arachnosquire
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Oct 26, 2002
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if there are any in the rosea tank would they be the reason that she spends almost all of her time on top of her cork bark hide?
 

Mister Internet

Big Meanie Doo Doo Head :)
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It could very well be that the nematodes are irritating her booklungs enough to make her not want to walk around on them...
 

mebebraz

Arachnobaron
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Sep 27, 2002
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microwaving or baking the peat might get rid of them. I usually do either whenever I open a new bag, I prefer baking though, I toast the peat at about two hundred degrees for an hour or so.
 

Arachniphile

Arachnosquire
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Oct 3, 2002
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I tried that but the SMELL!!!! I use my gas BBQ outside for the same effect. I spread the soil on old cookie sheets and grill it on low heat for about 30 minutes to an hour...
 

JDK

Arachnosquire
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Jan 2, 2003
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Did you take the worm thing out?
 

MrT

Arachnoking
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Aug 13, 2002
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Originally posted by Arachniphile
I tried that but the SMELL!!!! I use my gas BBQ outside for the same effect. I spread the soil on old cookie sheets and grill it on low heat for about 30 minutes to an hour...
Great idea.:)

I hadn't thought of useing the grill outside. My wife gets pretty pissed when I bake a dirt cake, or cook corkbark. LOL

Ernie
 

Steve Nunn

Arachnoprince
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Aug 30, 2002
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Originally posted by MrT
Great idea.:)

I hadn't thought of useing the grill outside. My wife gets pretty pissed when I bake a dirt cake, or cook corkbark. LOL

Ernie
To Ernie and all,
There is absolutely NO need to cook your substrate. Don't believe me?? Here's a post from Rick West on my tarantula forum (Australian Tarantula Forum, on yahoo groups):

In all my 38 years of keeping,
breeding and rearing theraphosids and scorpions, I've never kept them on
sterile soil. It's unnatural. I tried 'sterile potting soil' once or twice
but I
found that dead unnoticed crickets molded up twice as fast with no micro-
organisms in the soil to aid their decomposition. With regular garden soil,
micro-organisms cause tarantula faeces, discarded boli and unnoticed
dead crickets to quickly decay.
Additonally, it's believed that trace minerals are ingested with their food as
the tarantula eats and preens it's feet. If a tarantula is in good health,
they
rarely succumb to pathgogens and parasitic organisms from the soil unless
they're highly stressed, old, ill or out numbered (rarest) by the nastys.
The instant you introduce a tarantula and it's food source into a 'sterile
soiled'
terraria ... it's no longer sterile. Tarantulas have to live with these
unsterile
(not unsanitary) conditions in their natural environment or their health will
suffer later in life in fighting off these parasites and pathogens.
Remember, nonsterile is not the same as unsanitary. Regular soil stirring
or refreshening, water dish cleaning, picking out dead crickets, not too wet
or too dry (depending on the species' requirements) and environmentally
enriching 'furniture' bark, rocks, plastic plants, are all important for
rearing
a healthy tarantula.
Rick C. West


I hope this helps,
Steve
 
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