An ideal habitat for ball pythons includes the right substrate since they should never live on a bare floor. Ball python requires some factors such as absorbent, odor control, burrowing support, etc.
In this post, we will help you choose the best pall python substrate by comparing 2 different types of the substrate are Aspen shavings and AstroTurf. Looking closely at the pros and cons of each type in detail to determine what is the perfect substrate for your pets.
#1 Easy to clean
Ball pythons substrates require to be cleaned, removed any the dirty spots and waste daily. And once per month, you should completely deep clean the entire enclosure and do not forget to replace the substrate.
Aspen Shaving is not got difficult to clean since it has a light color, which makes you easy to notice, fine urine or feces and scoop out them. Because you will have to spot clean it every day, this feature becomes more useful than the darker substrate.
However, the drawback is that this substrate tends to het messy when you need to replace it. The shreds and small pieces of it will drop on the floor. It might also cause some dust when it is dry.
On the other hand, AstroTurf is the easiest substrate to clean. It is durable, so you can totally wash it under a stream of running water. Its appearances do diminish after many times of washing. Since AstroTurf is similar to reptile carpet, so you should have at least 2 pieces of it.
When you tank one out to clean, use the other one to place in the ball python cage. There is the note that you have to wait until the AstroTurf is dry before placing it back into the enclosure.
#2 Burrowing support
Ball pythons may not a burrowing snake, but they often prefer to bury themselves in the substrate. In order to allow them to do this instinct behavior, you should provide them the substrate that supports burrowing.
Aspen bedding has a good texture for burrowing animals. You just need to provide them a few inches of Aspen to support this behavior.
In addition, although Artificial Turf mimics the real grass, create the comfortable floor for your pets and is visually appealing for your cage. However, ball pythons cannot burrow in AstroTurf.
#3 Maintain humidity levels
Pall python requires a relatively high level of humidity from 55% to 60%. In the shedding process, these levels even increase to 80%. The substrate also plays a vital part in maintaining humidity in ball python’s environment. Moreover, high absorbent substrates are also good at control odors.
Aspen Shavings have been known as high absorbency eating substrate. This substrate also has a pleasant natural scent, which makes it good at reducing odors. However, Aspen bedding can grow mold if you leave it damp for a long time so you should not make it too damp.
The major drawback of AstroTurf is that it is not good absorbent and odor control material, you will have to wash it thoroughly to ensure it is clean and odor-free.