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Article About Aquatic Woods Used For Decor

Discussion in 'Aquarium Equipment & Decor' started by MOD_Dawn, May 22, 2010.

  1. MOD_Dawn

    MOD_Dawn Thread Starter Active Member

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    For a natural looking aquarium driftwood, in addition to live plants and a natural color substrate such as eco-complete is the way to go.

    There are a few disadvantages that can for the most part be easily overcome that one needs to be aware of:
    1) A good quality piece of driftwood can be expensive
    2) Driftwood can be difficult to find
    3) Driftwood can color your water (usually a brownish-color) due to the fact that driftwood releases natural tannins, but this can be lessened by methods such as boiling/pressure washing with water only/etc.
    4) Most Driftwood tends to float like cork, but this can be remedied by using a galvanized screw and attaching a piece of slate as a base to weigh it down...you can also simply place a heavy rock on it to keep it down until it becomes fully water logged.
    5) A large piece of driftwood will take up aquarium space in addition to decreasing your available water volume.

    Bog wood sinks like a rock from day one and will feel as heavy as on when you go to lift it.

    For the most part this is typically used in reptile/hermit crab enclosures, but heavier pieces can make nice aquatic pieces but be aware that they will take quite a bit of time to fully waterlog (sink on there own).

    Mopani Wood comes from africa and sinks like a rock. Pieces are usually gnarly and knotted in appearance.

    Singapore Wood sinks like a rock and has a twisted appearance.

    Cypress wood releases very little tannins and if has been dried out will need to be mounted to slate to keep it in place until it re-waterlogs.

    Dependant upon piece can look very real underwater, will not need weighed down, won't release any tannins, is usually quite cost effective and can be found in smaller sized pieces which are ideal for nano sized tanks.
    p-33027-42130-driftwood.jpg Cypress.jpg Singapore Driftwood.jpg Mopani Wood.jpg Grapevine Wood.jpg BogWood.jpg Driftwood.jpg
  2. MOD_Dawn

    MOD_Dawn Thread Starter Active Member

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    Tea-Colored Water Related To Driftwood

    tea-colored staining is caused by tannic acid, or tannins, leaching out of the driftwood, and this leaching can go on for many months.

    Depending on the tannins and your aquarium's buffering capacity, the presence of tannins can lower the pH of your water. That could be a problem for fishes that prefer hard, basic water, such as livebearers.

    However, fish such as neon tetras and cardinals will feel right at home in slightly acidic, tannin stained water.

    IF the tea staining really bothers you, filtering your water through activated carbon (and frequently replacing the carbon) will help to remove the tannins.
    Or, if practical, you can remove the driftwood and boil it for about 15 minutes in a pot of water. Boiling the driftwood will liberate the tannins more rapidly than simply soaking will.

    -> ps. As Anthony has suggested elsewhere...Purigen will also speed the removal of tannins from your tank!