I have bamboo charcoal lying all around my house. I buy them from my local japanese grocery market, 8$ for a package of six 10" sticks, and I use it in my drinking water as well as its other traditional uses. I also get binchotan (white charcoal) and use it to make rice or just for decoration. I don't know the science behind all these charcoals but it does make a hell of a good tea.
So I've lately been throwing these same charcoal sticks (both) into water that I'm 'priming' to use in my planted tanks, basically just speeding the dechlorination of aged water. I didn't want to buy a real primer just yet until I get my fauna (shrimp). I reactivate them after a few days by steaming them and after a few months, i just crumble them into my houseplants. I saw some people using it in their substrate, and some using it in their filter. I have read some of the posts here about bamboo charcoal, about it absorbing fertilizers/medicines... but everything was iffy and people's experiences were mostly faith or rumor based.
It's been a few years since those posts, so does anyone have further experience/knowledge with this stuff? It's pretty much the same as the ADA bamboo charcoal and I see that they're popular in shrimp tanks.
I had no idea this stuff existed! This sounds like a much nicer way to dechlorinate tap water than sodium thiosulfate. I'm not sure it's practical for a 20 gallon water change, but I imagine it would work quite nicely for smaller tanks whose replacement water can fit into a bucket. Are these Japanese specialty items? I mostly hit Chinese stores.