Thread: casuarina
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Old 09-21-2017, 03:25 AM  
Hamster Antics
Join Date: Sep 2014
Posts: 23,533
Default Re: casuarina

Hello I've just been reading up about Casuarina trees, and I'm not sure. It sounds to be a type of pine tree. Pine wood is ok for making toys and house, but not for wood shavings or bedding. But - there are apparently 17 different species of Casuarina and I don't know if that makes a difference, so I would err on the side of caution. For example in Europe fir trees and spruce trees and conifers are pine trees. But Spruce is very low in phenols and equivalent to hardwood, whereas all the other pines are quite high in phenols, so the wood needs kiln drying to be safe.

Here are some woods that are safe (if available). Hardwoods: beach, oak, birch, aspen.

Sorry not to give a more definitive answer. Bendy bridges aren't really necessary They are popular toys because they don't cost much and can make tunnels, ramps and ladders. But they do have their issues - some have sharp bits or become dangerous if chewed (metal inside), and some have uneven gaps between the bits of wood and hammies have been known to get a foot caught. All I'm saying is, there are plenty of other good toys for hammies that aren't made from wood or aren't bendy bridges

Cork is excellent and makes a good tunnel/ramp if it is available. Ceramic or pottery can be good and you can use household items such as a mug on its side, a plantpot or cooking dish. Cardboard tubes (if they're big enough) from toilet rolls etc (if from toilet rolls then slit them down the side so they expand). Cardboard shoe boxes make good houses.

One of the best things you can give a hammy is - lots of deep substrate (if no suitable wood available you can use shredded plain white toilet paper), a good sized house for building a nest that is dark inside, and a wheel. Toys can be a mug or cardboard tube. Scatter feeding allows them to enjoy foraging, and they love a tiny bit of fresh veg every day. A level or platform can be good for them to sit under and feel safe, or sit on to have a wash. That doesn't have to be wood and a large cardboard house (eg shoe box) would have a flat roof and double up as a platform.
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