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Substrates

When setting up an enclosure for a reptile or amphibian it is important to consider the substrate used. Substrate can have influential effects on the humidity, surface temperature, maintenance as well as animal behaviour!

Particulate substrates encourage digging and other naturalistic behaviours that act as enrichment. Soil and coco based substrates will help booster humidity, whereas sand is better for arid species that prefer low levels of humidity.

Paper substrates, such as the honeycomb liners, are great for quarantine and other sterile conditions. Though will require more regular changing.

Bio-active enclosures are where the soil contains invertebrate custodians that assist with the breaking down of uneaten food, dead leaves and waste material. They are usually live planted and intended to replicate the animals natural environment. A ‘bioactive style’ setup without the addition of custodians is referred to as a naturalistic setup and these will work for the majority of species.

Branded naturalistic and bioactive substrates are usually soil type mixes containing a mixture of bark chips, sand and soil; simulating a rainforest or woodland environment.

Fibrous substrates are incredibly absorbent and will quickly soak up any waste or water spillages, so make a great option for messy snakes. Their absorbent nature also helps to reduce potential smells linked to waste production.

Coco and Coir substrates are made from the husk of coconuts. As a by-product of the coconut farming industry; it is 100% organic, sustainably sourced and perfect for all reptiles, amphibians and invertebrates.

Species specific substrates are generally those that have been designed to replicate the wild habits of key pet species; such as Bearded Dragons, Leopard Geckos, and Mediterranean tortoises.