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Discussion Starter #1
Can someone please tell me what they are & what they are for etc
Practical or ornamental?
I saw some advertised on Ebay a while ago including big ones and tiny tiny tiny ones inside small jars.

Looking forward to finding out :)
Meg
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As to what they are, here is the definition from Wikipedia:
Aegagropila linnaei, known as Marimo (literally "ball seaweed") in Japanese and as Cladophora ball, Lake ball, or Moss Balls in English, is a species of filamentous green algae (Chlorophyta) found in a number of lakes in the northern hemisphere. A marimo is a rare growth form of the species where the algae grow into large green balls with a velvety appearance. Colonies of such balls are only known to form in Iceland, Scotland, Japan and Estonia.
I've never had them, I am not particularly fond of how they look:lol:, but I know several other members have mentioned them.

Byron.
 

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They are live plants but they are more for fun. They don't absorb too much stuff from what I've read. Yes you can keep them in jars in a slightly sunny place for decor, they actually do better in cooler waters but they can handle a tropical tank as well. They pretty much don't grow (I think they are supposed to grow .5" in diameter per year).
 

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From what I've read, they are a small amount off moss that gets rolled around on the bottom of the lake or river which forms a ball. They help filter the water and keep it clear. My LFS owner told me when I do a water change, take it out and squeeze it a few times in the siphoned water to clean it. My RCS love it. I think its a neat plant as well.
 

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These are not plants, nor are they moss. They are algae. I guess others have my bad habit of posting before reading the subsequent posts. I know I do this.:-(

I have read elsewhere that this cladophora algae can spread, and appear everywhere, getting into nooks and crannies. Considering the frequent number of times members post asking for help getting rid of algae, just be forewarned.;-)

Byron.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I haven't purchased one or anything but was wondering what on earth they are all about I saw advertised micro, mini, small, medium, large, jumbo ones and i'm thinking what are these things and are they beneficial and why have them... Confused me to be honest

Meg.
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I haven't purchased one or anything but was wondering what on earth they are all about I saw advertised micro, mini, small, medium, large, jumbo ones and i'm thinking what are these things and are they beneficial and why have them... Confused me to be honest

Meg.
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I have a planted tank that I am play testing a variety of species of plants in for LED lighting. I have tried 15 so far. One was a moss ball, it was one of two that did not make the cut. I would expect that a round mass of plant/algae material would need to move around to be of any use other than decoration. I don't find that I need to clean my plants so I wouldn't ever put one in that needed to be wrung out every once in a while.

My daughter had it with the betta originally and she did clean it every week.

If it is an algae, as Byron mentions, it can't be much use anyway.

Jeff.
 

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Marimo is wonderful fun. They are simply the cutest things and have a huge cult following behind them (an entire festival in Japan). You clean it mostly because a lot of crud gets stuck in it which I guess would be detrimental over time.
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You're supposed to clean them?
 

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You're supposed to clean them?
I don't know if you're supposed to, she did. Every week a 100% water change and a total scrub down of the gravel, plants and "tank", the ball was just part of her routine.

They might make an interesting filter media...:roll:

Jeff.
 

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So, the moss ball is only one form of the algae, it has two other forms one of which is a "carpet form." They live in streams where they're rolled around which helps them keep their shape but in aquaria they don't have this so you have to do maintenance on them by rolling them between your palms once a week like you would play dough.

Marimo can live for a hundred years and replicates by budding little balls off of them that detach and form another moss ball. You can also force it to split yourself, the sides will be brown from where you forced the division by within a few days the inactive chlorophyll will wake up, leaving you with two green balls.

Since they use the same resources as algae pet stores recommend them as a natural way to HELP combat it, but they're obviously not really a solution. A lot of fish don't find them appetizing either so it's safe from most plant-eaters.

Debris also tends to settle on them so it's nice when during your weekly rolling of the Marimo to run it under cool water and squeeze any debris from it. This will cause your Marimo to float for a while until it reabsorbs water and sinks back to the bottom.

Goldfish love eating Marimo, so don't put them with goldfish.
 
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