is all wood safe in an aquariums? - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-06-2013, 11:55 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
Join Date: Jan 2013
Location: Ontario
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is all wood safe in an aquariums?

hey guys i wanted to make a cave for a new crab of mine and found this cool log in the reptile section in my LFS. I then got a thought that all wood might not be good for aquariums and there might be a reason i really only see drift wood in peoples tanks. All i can really think is that the log will begin to rot and release some sort of bad toxins killing all my fish and even poisoning my plants. I attached a photo to the thread
let me know what you guys think about this thanks. again
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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-07-2013, 12:45 AM
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I believe some types are not safe. Like types for reptiles like grapewood etc.
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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-07-2013, 03:36 PM
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I would not use reptile decorations. I made that mistake and after one day it had like a gel casing growing over the entire thing. When I carefully removed it, the gook was getting all in my tank. I had to fish it out with a net. Stick with driftwood...

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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-07-2013, 04:35 PM
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They sell plastic reptile logs like that, that are fully safe.

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-07-2013, 04:39 PM
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no, not all wood is safe
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-07-2013, 04:45 PM
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List of unsafe wood

Anyone have a list of unsafe wood?
Share please,
big o
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-07-2013, 06:06 PM
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anything that has oils for sure.... I would primarily stick to manzanita and other forms often found in aquarium stores.

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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-07-2013, 07:26 PM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
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Location: Ontario
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well my crab has found a different place to make his home so i will be removing this piece to avoid any problems. Like Big_o said a list would still be nice for unsafe would to put in aquariums as i have lots of wood during warm seasons to pick from.
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old 02-07-2013, 09:58 PM
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A full lists of "don'ts" would be incredibly long--soo many species of trees out there and a lot of folks really don't know how to id living trees accurately, much less id fallen or water-logged bits they find.

Your best bet is to stick with wood specifically sold for aquarium use or marked as safe for aquariums (manzanita and mopani are both often used for reptile use, if you check the hang tag you'll often find a small blurb about being safe for aquarium use also). Grape"wood" is often found in reptile/bird sections and I've yet to see a definitive answer on how well it stands up to aquarium use--some say it disintegrates too quickly, others claim it's fine.

Past that, you'll want to stick with hardwoods (shouldn't be able to make a dent in it with your fingernail) that have been thoroughly dried or which are harvested from waterways already having become waterlogged over time. As with anything harvested from nature, thorough cleaning is a must to avoid introducing unwanted elements--biological or chemical--to your tanks.
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