Originally Posted by danielthomas78
hi guys, so,, i know nothing about fish or aquariums. ive stumbled across this site because i was researching dolomite and this site came up on a search..
i am the manager of a dolomite quarry and processing plant in new zealand , the only one in nz for that matter and one of very few in the southern hemisphere.
so you use dolomite in your aquariums...interesting!
im wondering if there is a market for this product? we can crush and mill dolomite to any specification
what grade of dolomite do you guys use and in what quantities?
do you have difficulties getting hold of it?
thanks for your help
Whether or not an aquarist needs dolomite depends upon the source water we use (tap water normally) and the intended fish. And here I'm thinking freshwater fish.
Some fish occur in very soft water, the hardness (which is primarily determined by the minerals calcium and magnesium) can be near-zero, and the pH is usually on the acidic side. Generally speaking, South American and SE Asian fish fall in this category. But other fish live in water that has a degree of hardness much higher, and the pH will naturally be on the basic side (above pH 7). Livebearers which occur in Central America fall into this category, as do some rainbow fish from Australia, and the African rift lake cichlids need very hard water.
Most, but not all, of us living in North America have water that is usually on the hard side rather than very soft. There are some exceptions, such as myself in the Pacific Northwest where our source water is soft and slightly acidic. I've no experience with Australian/New Zealand water, but I believe most of it is on the harder side. Anyway, those of us with soft water may need to increase the hardness for the fish, or the aquatic plants if it is very soft, in order to provide sufficient hard minerals (calcium and magnesium primarily). Dolomite is about the best source for this, as it includes both minerals, and takes very little.
Dolomite used to be widely seen in NA as a gravel/sand substrate material for marine tanks. Marine (salt water) is high in the hard minerals and pH, so this is always essential. But today there are more products available to prepare marine water so the reliance on dolomite has changed.
So, the point in all this, is that there may be a very small market for dolomite to begin with (from the aquarium hobby perspective). And it is available in a few places in NA, and presumably it would be more common if it has more demand.
Hope this helps.