Substrate for alternas

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Posted by Bill Messer on July 10, 1997 at 23:35:29:

A few years ago I was having trouble getting my alterna's to reproduce, a breeder recommended changing substrate from newspaper to aspen shavings. The logic being the shavings make the snake feel more secure. I changed all my snakes over and the reproduction improved. The bad news is that I have had a couple of problems with the shavings causing infections in the mouth or esophagus when swallowed.
For hide boxes I use upside down plastic "terra cotta" plant pot saucers with holes drilled into the side or top. I now turn the hide box over during feeding and put the thawed mice inside. The snakes usually cooperate and feed in or on the box, keeping the mouse free from shavings.
I've tried the Care Free animal bedding, but found it difficult to spot fresh stool because of the bedding's dark gray color.
Does anyone have any related information to share ?
Has anyone noticed an improved feeding response in hatchlings on certain substrates ?

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