• Are you a Tarantula hobbyist? If so, we invite you to join our community! Once you join you'll be able to post messages, upload pictures of your pets and enclosures and chat with other Tarantula enthusiasts. Sign up today!

Mould on wooden decor

Ajbeardow

Active Member
I'm having some issues with mould on wooden decor in my stick insect enclosure. They're in an Exo-Terra nano tall, with a mesh lid and the front ventilation below the door.

It's the first time I've used coir with sticks/mantids, as I usually use vermiculite. It's a ready-to-use hydrated coir, which I have baked to remove some of the moisture as it was far too damp for my liking. I'm using the same substrate for some of my T slings, and it seems to be clear of any signs of mould in there; so I don't think it's a bad batch of substrate.

The wood is a mixture of privet twigs and rodent gnawing sticks. These were boiled and baked pre-use. Due to the size of the enclosure, I want to give the stick insects plenty of room to climb, hide and molt, but the more wood inside, the more mould I get.

I know mould on wood is almost inevitable on damp substrate, and that I could combat it with springtails; but my issue is that it's happening so quickly. I'm reluctant to mist the enclosure, or I'll have to do a full clean-out once a week. Would I be best getting hold of cork bark instead of the wood I'm using? I'd like to know people's thoughts and experiences.
 

Casey K.

Well-Known Member
1,000+ Post Club
3 Year Member
Tarantula Club Member
I'm having some issues with mould on wooden decor in my stick insect enclosure. They're in an Exo-Terra nano tall, with a mesh lid and the front ventilation below the door.

It's the first time I've used coir with sticks/mantids, as I usually use vermiculite. It's a ready-to-use hydrated coir, which I have baked to remove some of the moisture as it was far too damp for my liking. I'm using the same substrate for some of my T slings, and it seems to be clear of any signs of mould in there; so I don't think it's a bad batch of substrate.

The wood is a mixture of privet twigs and rodent gnawing sticks. These were boiled and baked pre-use. Due to the size of the enclosure, I want to give the stick insects plenty of room to climb, hide and molt, but the more wood inside, the more mould I get.

I know mould on wood is almost inevitable on damp substrate, and that I could combat it with springtails; but my issue is that it's happening so quickly. I'm reluctant to mist the enclosure, or I'll have to do a full clean-out once a week. Would I be best getting hold of cork bark instead of the wood I'm using? I'd like to know people's thoughts and experiences.

Soak the wood in apple cider vinegar and then allow it to completely dry. Do not wash/rinse it. This should solve your problem and the vinegar will not harm your invertebrates like bleach or other cleaning agents will because it's organic. It also kills mold, bacteria, mildew, etc.
 

Ajbeardow

Active Member
Soak the wood in apple cider vinegar and then allow it to completely dry. Do not wash/rinse it. This should solve your problem and the vinegar will not harm your invertebrates like bleach or other cleaning agents will because it's organic. It also kills mold, bacteria, mildew, etc.
Oh I didn't think of apple cider vinegar! I have a big bottle that has gone unused (just seems to be one of those things that sits at the back of the cupboard) that would be ideal. Thanks! :D
 

Casey K.

Well-Known Member
1,000+ Post Club
3 Year Member
Tarantula Club Member
Oh I didn't think of apple cider vinegar! I have a big bottle that has gone unused (just seems to be one of those things that sits at the back of the cupboard) that would be ideal. Thanks! :D
You're welcome! :)
 

Latest posts

Top