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Old 10-31-2009, 04:26 PM   #1
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Tree Branches?

Is it safe to take a small branch or stick off of a tree, boil it, and then put it into my aquarium? I have always wanted to know if it is safe because I do not want to try it without knowing whether I am going to wake up and find all of my fish dead. Thanks for any replies!
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Old 10-31-2009, 04:38 PM   #2
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You won't find all of your fish dead, however you will most likely run into the wood developing fungus and mold. If you are going to go the route of tree branches, it would be best to find some that are hardwood and dried out. Still, you will have to watch for fungus and mold on those as well. Be careful where you get them from so as not to run into pesticide problems, of which will kill your fish
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Old 10-31-2009, 06:33 PM   #3
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Thanks for the reply. But how can mold grow underwater? I thought molds and fungi require wet but not submersed environments?
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Old 10-31-2009, 07:10 PM   #4
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Wood also leaks, I think it's called, Tanin? And it will turn your water murky brown, which is why you are supposed to soak it and do water changes to whatever container it is in. I have often had the same questions as you, but it seems like too much work to me that I don't have time for lol. Good luck!
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Old 10-31-2009, 08:34 PM   #5
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Not safe to take off tree and toss in the tank.


Get hardwoods, I use oaks and walnuts for my DW. The tannins will not harm a thing infact it will actually help the tank alot as far as immunity and sheer health and vigor of the fish in the tank.

Do some research on blackwater environments and you will see the results. I prefer blackwater tanks, Clear is very unnatural to me and well frankly I am the one who stares at my tanks for hours, no one else lol.

My avatar is a blackwater tank, used some virginia oak and african mopani.
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Old 01-23-2010, 01:02 PM   #6
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Your best bet is to buy safe, seasoned wood from a pet store or aquarium shop. Keep in mind that tree branches can be contaminated with lead, coal dust, and other toxic impurities from the atmosphere. Also, make sure you use only hardwoods, such as oak or maple - pines contain harmful resins. Any wood placed in an aquarium must be thoroughly seasoned for at least 30 to 60 days, preferably longer. Make sure the wood is thoroughly washed in boiling water and then soaked and seasoned until it no longer floats.
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Old 01-24-2010, 01:48 AM   #7
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You should not use green wood in a tank. <that is what you have if you just pick branches off a tree.> For one, green wood will contain sap, some species of wood's sap is toxic. <And the bark will rot & pollute your tank. Seasoned wood have had the bark & most of the sapwood rotted off, you are left with the heartwood.>

If you want to collect driftwood for your tank, you should use only hardwood, and the wood should be aged at least one season - a couple years or more is better. Then you need to boil & water log it. It is a fair bit of work to prepare wood to be tank safe.
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