Leaves and Wood

Leaves and Wood


What Leaves/Wood should I provide to my isopods?

 Here are some suggestions: 

  •  Typically, hardwood trees are what you want like oak, maple, magnolia, hickory, beech, birch, etc.
    • We tend to use maple, oak, and magnolia due to the local access we have.
    • You can sterilize the wood/leaves by boiling in water, baking in the oven, or freezing.
      • Baking: We typically bake ours at 350°F for 20-30 minutes (on cheap “dollar store” disposable tins) while the aromas fill the kitchen and remind us of nice mountain cabin.
      • Freezing: We typically place in plastic bags and freeze for 36-48 hours. Then air-dry prior to packing. 
  • Many softwood species have needles (not leaves) and can produce chemicals to help keep insects away (natural pesticides typically in the sap).
    • We try to avoid any wood/leaves that have a strong scent and/or are sticky.
    • Black walnut has been discussed as toxic though we haven't tried ourselves (and probably will not).


Whatever you decide to use, do some research, use leaf litter & wood that you know is Pesticide Free, and keep safety in mind if boiling water or using ovens (children shouldn’t attempt without parental supervision).


*This is not an all-inclusive list, but tips on how we choose & sterilize our leaf litter & wood for our pod enclosures. Sterilizing collected materials is optional for each person, and we prefer it to remove potentially unwanted guests in our enclosures. 

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