Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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GwenInNM 03-14-2011 09:26 PM

using wood
 
Okay, I feel like this is a dumb question, but I don't know how wood works in a tank, so I'm asking it.

I have picked up my own while hiking. I've boiled it, and obviously it does float. Unless you're buying the african driftwood, which I do have in my 25 gal, I think all wood floats. I'm I right?

I'm wanting to use the wood I've found, it's great looking, and I'm wondering if there are tricks to keep it in the bottom of the tank? Of course, I could put a heavy rock on it. I'm wondering what others know about wood, if perhaps if it sits in water long enough it does sink?

Thanks for help. I see wood in pictures from this forum that looks no different than the wood I want to use in my 43 gal tank. It doesn't look like it has anything holding it down, so I'm hoping there is some magic trick I'll learn about here :-D

Gwen

Mikaila31 03-14-2011 09:36 PM

I generally use pieces big enough so the hit the lid and that holds them down. They will eventually become waterlogged, but they won't 'sink' they just kinda sit there. Very easy to move. I usually stick one end in the gravel and use rocks or whatever to hold it in place. Also please note that this kinda wood breaks down much faster then the store bought stuff.

Byron 03-15-2011 01:14 PM

Gwen, make sure the type of wood is safe. Hardwood that has completely dried is OK (after the boiling, etc). Soft wood will rot very quickly, and some woods contain poisonous sap. The wood must be dry, which means no sap as there would be if you cut the branch from a growing tree. If the branch has been off the tree and lying on the ground for some time, fine. I don't know how long this takes, may depend upon the tree species; but if it is brittle and snaps, it is dry. Oak is good wood for this. Avoid any coniferous woods (cedar, spruce, pine, etc). And make sure the place where you collected it is fairly safe--no chance of oil, pesticides, chemicals having been absorbed, as these will not come out with simple heating or boiling.

Byron.

kaxt 03-15-2011 03:06 PM

I picked up a piece of drift wood from a lake in the middle of nowhere in the Adirondacks about 8 years ago. When I got it out of the lake it was sitting on the bottom, but I kept it out of water for too long and it began to float again. To get it to sit on the bottom of my tank and be stable I drilled a hole through the wood and threaded fishing line thorugh it. I then threaded the fishing line through a couple of holes in a piece of slate and tied the wood tightly to the slate. I buried the slate in the gravel so you can't see it, and the drift wood is now stable on the bottom of my tank.

GwenInNM 03-15-2011 03:46 PM

wood
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Byron (Post 618950)
Gwen, make sure the type of wood is safe. Hardwood that has completely dried is OK (after the boiling, etc). Soft wood will rot very quickly, and some woods contain poisonous sap. The wood must be dry, which means no sap as there would be if you cut the branch from a growing tree. If the branch has been off the tree and lying on the ground for some time, fine. I don't know how long this takes, may depend upon the tree species; but if it is brittle and snaps, it is dry. Oak is good wood for this. Avoid any coniferous woods (cedar, spruce, pine, etc). And make sure the place where you collected it is fairly safe--no chance of oil, pesticides, chemicals having been absorbed, as these will not come out with simple heating or boiling.

Byron.

Byron,

Thanks for that - perhaps I won't use this wood. It was found in what is called "Open Space" here in NM. It would be safe from pesticides, but I'll ask my husband what wood he thinks it is, but we don't have Oak in that area - mostly juniper (which is probably a coniferous wood. Lots of scrubby pine, etc. It was dried, but I don't know if I want to chance it. Thanks for the info.

I've been washing sand for hours today - wow! Not sure I could handle doing this again. Hope I love it in the tank.

Gwen


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