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Packarat

a quartz sand substrate question

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When I got my hissers they were housed on something that seemed to be wood-based cat litter and oats, which looked mold-prone, so I also bought a bag of reptile moist/semi moist substrate, but when I read the ingredients list I noticed it was a mix of coconut fiber, peat and quartz sand. I thought that was a silica. Since I read somewhere that silica can hurt insects, I bought some pressed coconut fiber discs instead (the ones you soak in water). Was I right to be worried, or is the quartz sand substrate safe for hissers? I still have the bag and I don't know if I should get rid of it or not.

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Quartz and silica will always be present in sand. It can be harmful to some inverts that require high humidity since it is a natural dessicant. Mixing small parts of it to coco fiber or garden soil renders it safe for invert use though

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It depends on the grain size. A very fine grain of silica like what you find in diatomaceous earth would be harmful. A much courser grain size like in sand and gravel probably would be fine.

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