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Substrate preference poll

Discussion in 'Tarantula Questions & Discussions' started by pelo, Feb 27, 2004.

preferred substrate??

  1. 100% potting soil

    109 vote(s)
  2. 80% potting soil-20%mulch

    22 vote(s)
  3. 100% peat moss

    363 vote(s)
  4. 100% vermiculite

    34 vote(s)
  5. 50/50 peat/vermiculite

    95 vote(s)
  6. 50/50 potting soil/peat moss

    104 vote(s)
  7. 50/50 potting soil/vermiculite

    35 vote(s)
  8. 75% peat moss-25% vermiculite

    61 vote(s)
  9. 75% vermicuite-25% peat moss

    13 vote(s)
  10. other...please state in reply post

    413 vote(s)
  1. freedumbdclxvi

    freedumbdclxvi Arachnoprince

    Use to be 100% coco fiber, but now I use it only as a mix in. I use peat or a peat based potting soil mixed with coco fiber at about an 85/15 ratio.
  2. Shrike

    Shrike Arachnoprince Old Timer

    So if you purchase a bag of substrate from a pet store you sterilize it?
  3. Formerphobe

    Formerphobe Arachnoking Arachnosupporter

    I seem to have two types of 'shrooms. One umbrella type on a long stem that prefers the damper enclosures, and a phallic shaped one on shorter stem in the drier enclosures. The umbrella type grows up quickly, falls over and turns to mush if I don't get them out. The other is now even showing up on cork bark in some of my dry habitats. Though, now that you mention it, I did find an umbrella one in the dry H. mac enclosure on one occasion. Usually the isopods take care of stuff like that in my damp enclosures. Guess they don't like these 'shrooms.
  4. poisoned

    poisoned Arachnodemon

    It doesn't help with fungi. If anything, it promotes their growth.
  5. macbaffo

    macbaffo Arachnolord

    How? :confused:
  6. poisoned

    poisoned Arachnodemon

    Fungi spores are everywhere. You're probably breathing them at the moment. Natural materials, like wood, soil and other stuff are usually more alive than you think, it's all full of microorganisms, that help in decomposition. When you sterilize the substrate, you kill all of these beings, so all that food remains in soil. When spores fall on it, they have everything available for themselves and they overgrow everything very quickly.
  7. macbaffo

    macbaffo Arachnolord

    doesn't sterilization kill a big number of the spores in the soil too? If you use isopods the food avaible for spores is greatly reduced. More over If peat is used it should not be the ideal environment for fungi because it's slightly acid.
    Not saying that this way fungi doesn't grow but i thought that it's more difficult for them to grow.
  8. zonbonzovi

    zonbonzovi Creeping beneath you Staff Member

    We should start an enclosure fungi appreciation thread:laugh: People, in general, have such a weird relationship with it.
    • Like Like x 1
  9. Hobo

    Hobo ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) Staff Member

    My lividum enclosure, which is all peat:
    Incidentally, this is (was) the enclosure with the most fungi, though I haven't seen any pop up this past summer. Maybe the soil is finally depleted of nutrients?
    Anyway, I don't use any cleanup crews (intentionally; there are mites and springtales and other things living in some of my tanks), so I just plucked out the mushrooms before they turned into jam. No problems.

    Anyway, on this topic, I went from coir, to peat, and back to coir.
    I thought peat was ok, but it was too "dirty" for my taste, and once it dried it was damn near impossible to moisten up again. I also didn't like how it "shrunk" or compacted after a while, leaving perfect gaps all around the enclosure for prey items to hide and die in. I found it's holding power was no different from compacted coir, which was the main point of my trying it. The two things I liked, were that it was cheap, and it looked nice. Oh, and sometimes, you found prizes inside!
  10. macbaffo

    macbaffo Arachnolord

    Thank you Hobo for sharing your experience about peat. Actually when i started using peat it was for my dart frogs terrariums that are an environment a lot more "alive" than a T one. I mean the soil. I had mushrooms too but i saw them only about 4-5 times in the past two years. That's why i thought to use and using peat with isopods. Never said it was the best but i choose that for the reason i said. In the near future i was planning to try coir but i don't like its consistency...it seems a bit too loose...but i lack of experience that's why i am interested in experiences like yours.
    Hobo did you sterilized the peat before use?
    (springtails are cleaners. ;))
  11. Hobo

    Hobo ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) Staff Member

    Nah, never bothered with sub, peat or otherwise.
    I've read the benifits of "live" soil like natural peat, so I didn't want to nuke anything.
    And yeah I know springtales are "cleaners" I was just saying I don't intentionally introduce them or mites into my cages. They just kind of find their way in there themselves.
  12. Formerphobe

    Formerphobe Arachnoking Arachnosupporter

    That's one of the kinds of mushrooms I'm finding.
    I've had the coconut coir behave similarly to the peat as far as shrinkage and difficulty to re-moisten. I've also had coconut fibre bricks from the same 3-pack 'reconstitute' differently. Most of them fluff right up when you add water. Some are still bricks after days of soaking.

    You got prizes in your peat? I must have bought the wrong brand... :)
  13. macbaffo

    macbaffo Arachnolord

    I know that you wanted to nuke anything. You were just sharing your experience :)

    What prizes did you get in your coir?
  14. poisoned

    poisoned Arachnodemon

    That's how all of my coco coir behaves. Although, I think one from Ikea worked the best, because fibres were really short (and it was really cheap too).
    Water always seems to be floating on top of coir for me, like it was held up by surface tension.
    • Like Like x 1
  15. Hobo

    Hobo ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°) Staff Member

    Prizes included:
    Random strips of plastic
    Pieces of wood
    Part of what I think was a bottlecap
    A small bolt
    A small centipede
    Pieces of newspaper
  16. macbaffo

    macbaffo Arachnolord

    Omg that seems more rubbish than soil :eek:
  17. singaporesling

    singaporesling Arachnosquire

    using 75% organic potting soil 25% vermiculite
  18. Batu

    Batu Arachnopeon

    +1 Works Great!
  19. jdl

    jdl Arachnosquire

    I use vermiculite. I have a few containers with the coconut bedding and do not like it as it takes too long to absorb water. Vermiculite is awesome and has nothing organic to mold in it.
  20. I'm kind of a newby so I haven't experimented although I never have mold issues with EcoEarth Coconut Coir
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