Sand/Soil mixes - What topsoil (specifically) did you use for burrowers ? - Reptile Forums

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Old 18-09-2018, 01:34 AM
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Default Sand/Soil mixes - What topsoil (specifically) did you use for burrowers ?

Hey all,

I've been trying to get some specific advice for a specific lizard species on substrate. However, for reasons, the conversation always gets de-railed by unrelated opinion disputes due to the particular lizard species in question XD

So I'm trying rephrasing the question : Without mentioning the species involved, if you use a sand/soil mix for a burrower - what soil and sand do you use ?

I've bought (non fertilised) topsoil from a supermarket before, and I've bought (non fertilised) topsoil from a gardening centre before. Neither worked. The sand just seperated out and drifted down to my drainage layer. Because the soil is black and the sand is yellow, it's been easy (and annoying!) to see this happen. So, in my most recent tank, I've actually created a substrate from the 'ground up', mixing in different Brand substrates for clay, bio-active substrate, CUC, sand, volcanic rock, and peat in more-or-less seperately until I get the right consistency. Finally, I've got something that holds burrows up and humidity in.

But... obviously, this is expensive. So please - what brand or outlet do you buy/buy from for your topsoil ? I'm genuinely looking for stuff as simple as "Haskins - some bag that said 'unfertilised topsoil" or "Tescos Own Potting Soil." It probably feels obvious to you guys, but I've been trying to get this answer for 3 years XD

Likewise, what sand do you use ? I know it seems like a dumb question to ask, but though people say "children's play sand" I bought one bag, opened it, and found it way too horribly dusty to use with my lizard (especially as compared to 'desert sand', but that costs $$s!) Hoping to find a nice brand somewhere between crap-and-dusty and nice-and-pricey XD

Thanks all
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Old 20-09-2018, 10:01 AM
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Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Slough
Posts: 9,011
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When I kept sand boa's I used bird sand. It does need to be sieved though to remove all the bits of shell and grit.
I'm using Luck Reptile desert substrate for my woma pythons, which seems fine although it isn't cheap. I may have a rethink when they are in their adult vivs!
What about using sieved bird sand and eco earth? One brick, once expanded gives a huge amount of substrate.
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