I never sterilize any substate, branches, bark or mulch...
It's not necessary.
One caution on Cypress...it contains long tooth pic shards... I've lost a couple snakes that ingested those.
I don't recommend feeding on it.
Landscape bark, marketed as "Western Bark" was my substrate of choice for many years... It offers good exercise and has no sharp bits.. It can also be spot cleaned, and smells great. It's sequoia I believe(redwood)
I stopped using it because it's expensive for a large collection, and yes, It would bring in flies.
Both Cypress, and bark chips, are usually kept outside in garden centres. The bags have small vent holes and that's what allows the odd bug in.
The bugs are not harmful, but when your herp room is full of them, it gets annoying.
For those that wish too, small amounts of substrate can be boiled quickly in the Microwave.
Put it in a plastic bag and spray some water on it before Nuc-ing it a couple minutes on high.
( not convenient for large cages or big collections)
Herpetology - more than a hobby
It's a Lifestyle
celebrating 26 years of herp breeding
Last edited by Stockwell; 01-03-04 at 02:29 AM..