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Old 11-30-2019, 02:00 PM
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Default Isopod substrate

What do y'all use for your isopod substrate? I was thinking about using a 1 part sphag 2 part reptibark substrate for them. Would this substrate be good for isopods? What substrate have y'all had the best luck with for your isopods? What substrate was the worst? Thanks in advance.
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Old 11-30-2019, 03:53 PM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

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Originally Posted by calhoun3186 View Post
I was thinking about using a 1 part sphag 2 part reptibark substrate for them. Would this substrate be good for isopods?
Probably not -- nothing for them to eat.

Years of experience here:
https://www.dendroboard.com/forum/gt...od%20substrate
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Old 11-30-2019, 05:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by calhoun3186 View Post
I was thinking about using a 1 part sphag 2 part reptibark substrate for them. Would this substrate be good for isopods?
Probably not -- nothing for them to eat.

Years of experience here:
https://www.dendroboard.com/forum/gt...od%20substrate
I'm feeding bug burger, have leaf litter and cork bark as well. I tried searching and read many threads but really couldn't get a good idea of what properties the substrate needs.
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Old 11-30-2019, 05:11 PM
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Originally Posted by calhoun3186 View Post
What do y'all use for your isopod substrate? I was thinking about using a 1 part sphag 2 part reptibark substrate for them. Would this substrate be good for isopods? What substrate have y'all had the best luck with for your isopods? What substrate was the worst? Thanks in advance.
I've been using NEHERP version 2 vivarium substrate, Works great.
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Old 11-30-2019, 05:34 PM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

I use a mix of peat moss, sphagnum, and orchid bark. Another keeper told me not to use coco coir, as it supposedly can cause them to become impacted.
I also ensure that they always have leaves to eat.
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Old 11-30-2019, 06:03 PM
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I use a mix of peat moss, sphagnum, and orchid bark. Another keeper told me not to use coco coir, as it supposedly can cause them to become impacted.
I also ensure that they always have leaves to eat.
Thanks, this was exactly the type of feedback I was looking for.
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Old 11-30-2019, 11:43 PM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

I culture my isopods on 100% Coco with some calcium bearing clay pellets thrown in. Some leaf litter and cork pieces make it easier to shake them into vivariums. I raise powder orange and dwarf whites. Moisture level is a more important factor when choosing a substrate.

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Old 12-01-2019, 12:24 AM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

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Originally Posted by calhoun3186 View Post
I'm feeding bug burger, have leaf litter and cork bark as well
Ah. Yes, they'll eat the leaf litter (I mix mine in), and some will eat the cork too.

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I tried searching and read many threads but really couldn't get a good idea of what properties the substrate needs.
I really wasn't trying to blow you off. Sometimes (usually) I feel like a big jerk playing the 'go search' card -- but then I don't, because here's a bit from the first hit on that search:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pumilo View Post
ABG works well because it is light and airy, stays moist, and is packed with organics that your Isopods/Woodlice can eat.
A cheaper alternative would be a peat based mix with plenty of organics mixed in.

Exactly what you wanted
, and the rest of that thread is an epic goldmine of culturing info. Can't pass that stuff up.
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Old 12-01-2019, 01:54 PM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

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Originally Posted by Socratic Monologue View Post
I really wasn't trying to blow you off. Sometimes (usually) I feel like a big jerk playing the 'go search' card -- but then I don't, because here's a bit from the first hit on that search:



Exactly what you wanted
, and the rest of that thread is an epic goldmine of culturing info. Can't pass that stuff up.
I didn't take it as you trying to blow me off, its sound advice suggesting to use to search function. Using the search function saves everyone time and keeps information more condensed. I didn't find many threads that talked about the substrate as a main focus, most threads focused on isopod foods (although this seems to be the same really). I did read through the link you provided and did find a lot of good information there. However, to be honest the link you provided was at the bottom of the first page so if I was more thorough/not lazy I would have eventually came upon it. Thanks again for the help/information.
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Old 12-01-2019, 11:07 PM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

I have been using potting soil as a base, mixed with spag moss, coco fiber, charcoal, and leaf litter.
Seems to work fine.



https://www.scottsbrands.com/en-us/p...ilizer-wetting

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Old 12-04-2019, 04:29 PM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

I use a mix of garden soil, peat, Coco fibre, and charcoal as the substrate, and feed repashy bug burger, with cuttlebone and lumps of charcoal. The charcoal seems to be a favorite of my isos, there are usually a bunch of them on the charcoal pieces.
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Old 12-04-2019, 05:29 PM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

I've migrated to straight coco mulch, with a little live oak mixed in. It seems that finer substrates allow the isopods to burrow more easily, supporting greater population densities. I feed Repashy Morning Wood exclusively now, and it has given me better results than Bug Burger, vegetable scraps, or other powdered mixes.
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Old 12-05-2019, 01:56 AM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

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I've migrated to straight coco mulch, with a little live oak mixed in. It seems that finer substrates allow the isopods to burrow more easily, supporting greater population densities. I feed Repashy Morning Wood exclusively now, and it has given me better results than Bug Burger, vegetable scraps, or other powdered mixes.

Do you use the morning wood dry or make it into the gel?

Whenever I make the gel it seems to mold fast.

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Old 12-12-2019, 03:22 PM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

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Do you use the morning wood dry or make it into the gel?

Whenever I make the gel it seems to mold fast.

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Gel is too much work, and the isopods don't care. I sprinkle it in dry.
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Old 12-14-2019, 12:29 PM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

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Gel is too much work, and the isopods don't care. I sprinkle it in dry.
You are probably right, they are bugs.

Where do you buy decayed wood?

Cant collect outside, and cant find online.

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Old 12-14-2019, 04:29 PM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

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You are probably right, they are bugs.

Where do you buy decayed wood?

Cant collect outside, and cant find online.

Thanks

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Who says you need decaying wood?
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Old 12-15-2019, 01:14 PM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

Just some youtube videos.
I guess the cork and leaf litter is fine, but an occ scoop of morning wood /bug burger/ and krill

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Old 12-15-2019, 11:27 PM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

Cardboard pieces work well and they will eat it as it begins to break down.
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Old 12-16-2019, 02:01 PM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

Ya all are making too much work for yourselves. A large of amount of decayed oak leaves and some rotten wood or flake soil as a substrate, and you're golden. They don't really need anything else. You obviously can supplement with other foods (morning wood is a good one) but there's no *requirement* to do so if you have a nutritious substrate, as you should.
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Old 12-16-2019, 03:30 PM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

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Ya all are making too much work for yourselves. A large of amount of decayed oak leaves and some rotten wood or flake soil as a substrate, and you're golden. They don't really need anything else. You obviously can supplement with other foods (morning wood is a good one) but there's no *requirement* to do so if you have a nutritious substrate, as you should.
Great advice.

What is 'flake soil', exactly? A web search gives me mostly UK retailers with little description.
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Old 12-16-2019, 03:59 PM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

Flake soil is a fermented wood flake. Most folks use Traeger oak wood pellets (but most hardwoods of roughly sawdust consistency would work), add water, wheat bran and yeast, then heat and stir. It sits for a couple of months (with regular stirring) and ferments away into this lovely dark brown highly nutritious wood compost. The fermentation makes the nitrogen and other nutrients available for bugs, beetles, woodlice, etc. Most times we use this for raising rhinoceros beetle grubs, but it works well for other beetles and isos too. I use it for a variety of species. Millies too, actually.

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Old 12-17-2019, 03:01 PM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

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Flake soil is a fermented wood flake. Most folks use Traeger oak wood pellets (but most hardwoods of roughly sawdust consistency would work), add water, wheat bran and yeast, then heat and stir. It sits for a couple of months (with regular stirring) and ferments away into this lovely dark brown highly nutritious wood compost.
That sounds like the MOST work one could do for a substrate!
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Old 12-17-2019, 04:09 PM
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That sounds like the MOST work one could do for a substrate!
It's not as bad as it sounds. I make it in 20# batches, which swell up to fill a 63L bin. Once the initial wetting and mixing is done it's pretty maintenance free; I stir like once a week and that's it. That being said, it's certainly not a requirement, and I probably wouldn't make it just for isos. But because I have several other species that do require it, I have lots on hand and use it for isos as well. You could get by with just rotten wood and leaf litter though and be fine.
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Old 12-17-2019, 05:49 PM
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Default Re: Isopod substrate

Flaking soIL sounds interesting. I might try it out. Could you please provide more detail instructions like how much to use for each component? Thanks.
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