Originally Posted by McCoveyCove
I'm vacationing in the Clear Lake, Ca
area and would like to pick up some driftwood for my 20 Gallon while I'm here since I'm a broke high school student but want a nice piece of driftwood in my tank. But I have a few questions.
1. According to Clear Lake's wikipedia page the area has high mercury levels, does this make the Driftwood unusable?
2. How can I tell what wood is usuable and what's not? How can I tell what's hardwood?
3. I understand to soak the wood and boil it but what dangers does finding driftwood present?
Thank you for any help!
Take what you read on wiki with a grain of salt. Today's waterways have been polluted with all sorts of crud from humans. If it was me,I wouldn't worry about it. But others may tell you different.
Stay away from softwoods such as pine. It will breakdown faster. Not real sure how you can tell if something's hardwood or not. If you can see sap coming out of the wood, leave it alone. I've been told to dig your fingernail in, if it goes in, it's no good.
Dw from the 'wild' can be home to all sort of nasties. Boiling will,hopefully, kill off anything. Boiling will also help release tannins.