What to look for when drift wood hunting - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-10-2013, 03:10 AM Thread Starter
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What to look for when drift wood hunting

Hello

I live on the west coast of BC. Canada. I am planning to do some drift wood hunting in the mountains. I was hoping to get some advice on what to look for as well as what to avoid. This will help me save so time energy and most of all fish.

Also what are some of the better care tips for getting it tank ready?

Thank you all for your help in advance.
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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-10-2013, 03:37 AM
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The main thing you've got to watch for is to avoid wood that is rotting out. Other than that juat make sure you soak it good when you get it home, boiling it if possible, to kill off anything bacteria that may be in it.

Happy hunting!

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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-10-2013, 03:44 AM
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I speak from first hand experience - watch out for snakes! While dw hunting this summer I came within a foot of stepping on a superbly camouflaged Copperhead snake. One other time I got out of my car and there was a Timber Rattlesnake outside the door. Also, if you're in a rocky area be careful & test your next foothold to be sure the rocks don't move. Great way to break an ankle. Oh yeah, and once when I disturbed some rotten wood, a cloud of hornets chased me. Fun times...

That probably wasn't the kind of stuff you were looking for, but be careful of what local critters you have! lol

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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-10-2013, 04:04 AM
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Stay clear of soft woods such as anything evergreen. and others like aspen. There are at least one hardwood to stay away from Cedar. I was told that if it has an odor stay away from it.
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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-10-2013, 02:48 PM
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LOL. I love this answer... I don't think he was asking about the dangers of DW hunting, but it gave me a good laugh.

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Originally Posted by driftwoodhunter View Post
I speak from first hand experience - watch out for snakes! While dw hunting this summer I came within a foot of stepping on a superbly camouflaged Copperhead snake. One other time I got out of my car and there was a Timber Rattlesnake outside the door. Also, if you're in a rocky area be careful & test your next foothold to be sure the rocks don't move. Great way to break an ankle. Oh yeah, and once when I disturbed some rotten wood, a cloud of hornets chased me. Fun times...

That probably wasn't the kind of stuff you were looking for, but be careful of what local critters you have! lol
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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-10-2013, 03:41 PM
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Haha - now I carry a telescopic aluminum hiking pole with me, and I use it to disturb all the grass/shrubs in front of me to get the snakes moving. It keeps me from walking into giant spiderwebs too, and keeps me from slipping in river muck - I can't believe I enjoy doing this! lol I'm waiting for the day I bump into a black bear...

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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-10-2013, 09:33 PM
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I've become a big fan of using a walking stick when backpacking/hiking. pretty much all of the reasons listed by driftwoodhunter. I tend to favor just using a downed branch or something, that way it's no big loss if I have to loose it behind or end up breaking it.

Don't underestimate the worth of a stick to poke things with

As to finding driftwood, try to find things that have either been in the water for a while, or dead and well exposed - you'll want all the sap/resin to be washed out of the wood.
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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-10-2013, 09:40 PM
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lol - we should get "poke it with a stick" shirts made up

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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-11-2013, 06:07 PM
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lol, you can probably start marketing that

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lol - we should get "poke it with a stick" shirts made up
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post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-11-2013, 08:05 PM
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Yes... You can never fully estimate the value of a good poky stick! That's my advice... Get a strong, straight stick, and if the thing you're looking at might have bugs, snakes, ants, spiders, or other stuff in or under it, use the stick on it. I use a stick to flip rocks, so I don't get spiders on me, and sticks are a good way to check bushes for stuff. STICKS RULE!
Okay, I'm done. @driftwoodhunter, I'd buy one of those! And seriously, get yourself a good poky stick. Preferably one without ants in it.
Also, if you're pulling the wood out of water, watch out for big fat spiders and leeches! Sticks are good for both of those. And never stick your hand down a hole without thoroughly poking it first, a lot of nasty things live in holes. (poke the hole, not the hand!)
Sorry for any incoherentness, I have some weird virus-thingy that's making me think funny.

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post #11 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-13-2013, 06:17 PM Thread Starter
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that dose help. I use a trekking pole pole tent when I am backpacking so I do have poles around.

What about after I have loaded the truck and gotten my treasures home what ways are good for treating the wood? I have a 15 gallon pot and a burner for boiling. what can/should I do for treating it?
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post #12 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-13-2013, 11:09 PM
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Soaking it would be pretty good. I tend to be pretty dismissive of worries about pathogens/bacteria, but that's just me.

boiling will help it to sink quicker, and leech out some of the tannins faster. I've also heard speculation that it may accelerate the decay of the wood, but I haven't heard anything other then a vague speculation.

I've heard of people running it in the dishwasher w/out soap/etc. If you have exterior space, you could fill a large trashcan with water, just keep an eye out for mosquito larva.


I've soaked larger pieces in the bathtub, but there is a good chance of getting soap residue on them that way.

If you already have driftwood/weathered wood that doesn't contain sap/resins, a few soakings with water changes should get out most of the stuff - keep changing the water every day or two until you notice less of a color change.
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post #13 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-13-2013, 11:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by driftwoodhunter View Post
I speak from first hand experience - watch out for snakes! While dw hunting this summer I came within a foot of stepping on a superbly camouflaged Copperhead snake. One other time I got out of my car and there was a Timber Rattlesnake outside the door. Also, if you're in a rocky area be careful & test your next foothold to be sure the rocks don't move. Great way to break an ankle. Oh yeah, and once when I disturbed some rotten wood, a cloud of hornets chased me. Fun times...

That probably wasn't the kind of stuff you were looking for, but be careful of what local critters you have! lol

Lol I use to love finding those under the logs and driftwood I moved! Of course I was actually looking for copperheads and rattlers.

You shouldn't take life to seriously. You'll never get out alive.
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post #14 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-14-2013, 03:30 AM
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Fortunately, I like snakes - but I never considered I might get struck until I stumbled onto the copperhead! It was the first one I've ever seen (I'm originally from Connecticut). They are very beautiful.

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post #15 of 25 (permalink) Old 01-14-2013, 02:16 PM
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somebody said something about not using soft wood in the aquarium. is it toxic to fish? even if boiled?
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