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Old 05-28-2013, 01:47 PM   #1 
Fastcash124
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Items that don't belong in a fish tank

I'm wondering if there are any items that simply have no business in betta tanks or that affect water perims. One of my friends said natural driftwood is helpful to a tank because you can plant it and it helps the ph stay balanced. I was wondering because in the future I would like to get shrimp and a piece of PVC is much cheaper than pet store furniture. Feel free to post anything anyone has hand made and anything that is detrimental or affects water at all.
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Old 05-28-2013, 02:48 PM   #2 
Wildbetta
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I love using items that are not sold as "fish" decor. I use pvc, terra cotta pots, plastic soap dishes all of which are not sold at the pet store. None of these items has ever messed with my water or with my fish in anyway whatsoever.
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Old 05-28-2013, 02:57 PM   #3 
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I don't think driftwood changes the PH at all, especially if you are doing regular water changes.
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Old 05-28-2013, 11:15 PM   #4 
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I've heard that it positively affects certain aspects. I'll look up some reading material eventually
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Old 05-28-2013, 11:53 PM   #5 
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Driftwood can change the pH, but only a little bit unless you add a LOT and don't cure it first. Otherwise, it would only cause a small change in pH, if any.
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Old 05-29-2013, 09:23 AM   #6 
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How/why do you cure it?
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Old 05-29-2013, 09:36 AM   #7 
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To cure driftwood you can boil it for an hour or two, changing the water often when it turns a brown/yellow color. Keep boiling it until the water stays clear. You can also soak it in a bucket and change the water daily. The purpose of curing is to release the tannins, which color the water brown/yellow and can change your water chemistry.
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Old 05-29-2013, 04:34 PM   #8 
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Is that from store bought stuff or actual driftwood?
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Old 05-29-2013, 04:59 PM   #9 
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If your water is soft or has a low carbonate hardness, adding things like driftwood can alter the pH more than if your water has a higher carbonate hardness (buffering capacity). Tannins are beneficial to a lot of fish species, bettas included, and even without being cured, driftwood is unlikely to drop the hardness/pH of the water so dramatically as to cause issues.

Like WildBetta, I have used terracotta pots and PVC pipe as hiding places for my fish. These are very commonly used by fish owners and breeders the world over so unless they have been contaminated prior, they are perfectly safe.
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