Need advice on substrate

Paul Larke

Arachnopeon
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Apr 10, 2017
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I got my first arboreal a week ago and am following advice to keep the enclosure more humid. The spider seems pretty content and has already fed. For substrate I am using coconut coir with sphagnum moss on the top. I keep the sphagnum damp which means that the top layer of coir is also slightly damp. I also have a water dish in the enclosure. Unfortunately I am already seeing the development of mould where the coir is sitting against the glass. My wife, who is a gardener, says she won't use pure coir for potting plants as when wet it is great at encouraging mould. Does anyone else have this problem of mould in a humid terrarium? The terrarium is an exoterra nano tall, so there is plenty of ventilation. Is coir the wrong thing to use? Any advice?
 

Trenor

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Jan 28, 2016
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What kind of arboreal did you get? Most of them don't require a lot of moisture and wet substrate.

I use a mix of cocoa fiber, sand and fill soil. Mainly cause I have had good luck with it and like how it looks.
 

Ellenantula

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You don't say what kind of arboreal. Pix are always helpful.
If you're growing mould, I am thinking back down on moisture is more key than type of substrate used.
Depending on type of T -- a water bowl alone might be sufficient.
 

Paul Larke

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Apr 10, 2017
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What kind of arboreal did you get? Most of them don't require a lot of moisture and wet substrate.

I use a mix of cocoa fiber, sand and fill soil. Mainly cause I have had good luck with it and like how it looks.
A. Avic
 

Ellenantula

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For my avic, the water bowl was the only moisture I provided -- coupled with excellent ventilation (which meant more frequent water dish refills).
I have never misted an avic enclosure nor deliberately added a moistened soil area with the exception of during their slinghood. Then I kept a small (very small) area dampened and I rotated which area that was.
Good luck with your avic!
 

Trenor

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Should I get rid of the sphagnum moss then or just let it dry out. Also, is it ok to let the substrate become bone dry.
It's also dependent on the size of the T. Given the above enclosure I'm assuming it's out of the sling stage and well into juvie/sub adult/adult.

You can leave it in and and let it dry out. I don't add water to the substrate for my Avics. I provide a water dish and that's about it. I know several people who mist lightly and that has worked well for them.
 

Paul Larke

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Apr 10, 2017
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Thanks for the advice. Yes, she's a 4" sub-adult. I'll let the enclosure dry out and see how I go just topping up the water dish as needed. :)
 

Moakmeister

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Oct 6, 2016
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People used to think Avics needed humid enclosures until they found out Avics actually need it to be dry. So many people lost their Avics because of this misconception. Keep it dry.
 

The Grym Reaper

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Keep it on dry substrate with a large water dish, I overflow the water dish now and again and then let it dry out completely, I never mist.

I have a C. versicolor (care is identical) in the same enclosure and I've had no problems keeping it as mentioned above.

My wife, who is a gardener, says she won't use pure coir for potting plants as when wet it is great at encouraging mould. Does anyone else have this problem of mould in a humid terrarium?
She's right tbh, I hate using it on its own for that reason, I use a 60/40 mix of sedge peat/coco fibre and I don't have any problems with mould.
 

cold blood

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Thanks for the advice. Yes, she's a 4" sub-adult. I'll let the enclosure dry out and see how I go just topping up the water dish as needed. :)
And increase ventilation....very important....as is proper cover off the ground.

Post pics of the enclosure.
 
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