Driftwood weird to the touch. - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 5 Old 09-24-2012, 11:18 PM Thread Starter
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Driftwood weird to the touch.

I had seen this thread before but alas i could not find it. I have a piece of driftwood that I have had for months. Just the other day I picked it up to move it to another tank. It was incredibly soft to the touch and i could literally scrap off wood with my fingernail with ease.

I purchased it from a LFS. A place that i have a good reputation with, its actually one of my favorite places to go. Is it alright for me to keep using it? Or should I get rid of this one.
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post #2 of 5 Old 09-25-2012, 01:26 AM
I dunno sounds quite plainly like it's degrading, which would be normal in the wild. Watch your water parameters and see if it has much of an effect. You might expect a increase of phosphates and lower pH. But phosphates could be a pain cause that usually spells algae :\

The only other thing I could think of would be a layer of detritus or brown algae that is caked on there, but now dislodging to touch?
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post #3 of 5 Old 09-25-2012, 09:54 AM
I don't currently have one, but I had a nice piece of driftwood back in the day that always had a bit of a spongy feel on the surface. It's wood that's waterlogged and subject to slow decay. I think the soft spongy feel is perfectly normal.

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post #4 of 5 Old 09-25-2012, 12:56 PM
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All wood will naturally decompose in water, some faster than other types. [This is why one has to be careful with the origin of wood, as the wood may leech toxins during this decomposing over many years.] The softwoods that decompose much faster are not good for aquaria, but the hardwoods usually do well. Obviously at warmer temperatures the decomposition is a bit faster than it wold be in a teemperate body of water.

As long as you have no fungus from the wood (white or gray fur/fuzz/slime), the wood smells like wet wood or a forest, and it is not disintegrating fast, you should be OK.


Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #5 of 5 Old 10-05-2012, 04:18 PM Thread Starter
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I got caught up in some stuff and haven't been on a in while! Thanks for the replies. Its been out of the tank for weeks now, going to bake it in the over for a few hours and then try it out again. Ty!
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