Question about Rocks- Fools Gold - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 10-19-2012, 05:16 PM Thread Starter
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Question about Rocks- Fools Gold

I am wondering if anyone has had any experience with rocks they have found that have bits of fools gold in them....are these rocks prone to break down and affect water chemistry over time?
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 10-19-2012, 06:41 PM
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This question intrigued me so I looked around the net. Almost all answers came back to say don't do it.

Here's one of the best explanations I found:

"Fool's gold, also known as pyrite, has a strong acidifying effect, so it drops the pH. In addition to iron, it may also contain heavier metals such as copper, zinc and lead, and because it acidifies the water, it can "unlock" heavy metals into their toxic free-ionic forms. Oxygen and natural bacteria in the water oxidize the sulphide component of pyrite to sulphate/sulphuric acid, and the low pH water produced then activates the iron and any other heavy metals present. It is NOT safe for aquarium use!"

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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 10-19-2012, 07:09 PM
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I actually tested some rocks with pyrite in them. I grabbed a few samples from a landscape supply place. They raised the tds so they do leach something into the water column. I cant tell you what they leach but when I did research on them, I found the same thing as soothingshrimp. Depending on where it was mined, it will contain different elements.

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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 10-23-2012, 03:47 AM
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Definitely don't put rock containing pyrite (fools gold) in an aquarium. Pyrite is an iron sulfide and will break down fairly quickly essentially producing sulfuric acid. That goes for all sulfide minerals!
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