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Old 05-02-2013, 11:20 PM   #1 
Darkicydevil
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Several questions involving decor, rocks, and caves.

a few questions, first, If I do the "vinegar test" (making sure the rocks don't bubble), scrub them, then boil them, then soak them in treated water for a day or so, should it be safe to put rocks in a tank?

Second, could I take some of those rocks and make a cave out of them? I know bettas like caves to rest in and such, and well, they are quite expensive. I was gonna get a floating betta log at first, but I would have to order it, and the reviews said it didnt last long before the paint started chipping off, and was dangerous for the fish. (I still plan on getting a betta leaf hammock perhaps)

BUT ANYWAY, would it be safe for me to make a cave from the rocks? Would I be able to use a hot glue gun?


Also, what kinds of caves and hiding places are in your tanks? Are there any good inexpensive ideas out there? I'm already on a tight budget, but wanted to splurge and get a bigger tank for my betta than a smaller more affordable one. I have some silk plants, and I'm wanting to make sure I can give it all the proper care, so I wanna come up with some caves and decorations that would be inexpensive. I was thinking of flower pots maybe, but I don't know how that would really look in a non-planted tank. I have a lot of cool rocks where I live that I could possible add, any inexpensive ideas?

Sorry for all the reading, in summary:

1. If I do the "vinegar test" (making sure the rocks don't bubble), scrub them, then boil them, then soak them in treated water for a day or so, should it be safe to put rocks in a tank?

2. Second, could I take some of those rocks and make a cave out of them? (using a hot glue gun possibly?)

3. Any other inexpensive decorating ideas? What is in your tanks?

Last edited by Darkicydevil; 05-02-2013 at 11:24 PM.
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Old 05-03-2013, 01:29 AM   #2 
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[quote=Darkicydevil;1949938]a few questions, first, If I do the "vinegar test" (making sure the rocks don't bubble), scrub them, then boil them, then soak them in treated water for a day or so, should it be safe to put rocks in a tank? I would think so, but get some more opinions on it. I think that sounds like an adequate method. But be careful about what kind of rocks and where you are getting them from. Limestone is obviously a bad idea. My mother once accidentally killed all her african cichlids because she put some kind of oil shale in the tank and didn't realize it could hurt them. My boyfriend has petrified rock in his tank and the fish is fine. And if the rock came from somewhere dangerous, such as a nuclear testing zone (I'm exaggerating, but you know what I mean :p) just find something else.

Second, could I take some of those rocks and make a cave out of them? I know bettas like caves to rest in and such, and well, they are quite expensive. I was gonna get a floating betta log at first, but I would have to order it, and the reviews said it didnt last long before the paint started chipping off, and was dangerous for the fish. (I still plan on getting a betta leaf hammock perhaps) Sure! as long as it is secure and the arrangement does not create any sharp points or other dangers to the fish. be careful about the leaf hammock as well, The reviews claim that the metal rod inside is exposed and will rust, and this is true. I have three, and only one is really safe for the aquarium. i have removed the others and need to seal them with aquarium silicon. For the record though, the one that is still in an aquarium pretty much seats my lazy VT at all times.

BUT ANYWAY, would it be safe for me to make a cave from the rocks? Would I be able to use a hot glue gun? You can find aquarium safe hot glue you can use in a hot glue gun online. I don't remember exactly where to find it, but just make sure it is 100% aquarium safe.


Also, what kinds of caves and hiding places are in your tanks? Are there any good inexpensive ideas out there? I'm already on a tight budget, but wanted to splurge and get a bigger tank for my betta than a smaller more affordable one. I have some silk plants, and I'm wanting to make sure I can give it all the proper care, so I wanna come up with some caves and decorations that would be inexpensive. I was thinking of flower pots maybe, but I don't know how that would really look in a non-planted tank. I have a lot of cool rocks where I live that I could possible add, any inexpensive ideas? You could kind of branch off the flowerpot idea and go with something kind of mismatchy or modern. One of my tanks has really strange mugs/bottles I found at a thrift store. Another has a candle holder suspended by fishing line in it that I got for 10 cents at a yard sale. You can put all kinds of strange items together to build a sort of playground. You could even use old glass chess pieces. Here is a pic of what I have done with the glass orb. I want to eventually make it a planted tank and plant the inside of the orb as well. The decorations in it other than the orb are temporary until I can get more plants.
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Old 05-03-2013, 01:46 AM   #3 
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[quote=bniebetta;1950554]
Quote:
Originally Posted by Darkicydevil View Post
a few questions, first, If I do the "vinegar test" (making sure the rocks don't bubble), scrub them, then boil them, then soak them in treated water for a day or so, should it be safe to put rocks in a tank? I would think so, but get some more opinions on it. I think that sounds like an adequate method. But be careful about what kind of rocks and where you are getting them from. Limestone is obviously a bad idea. My mother once accidentally killed all her african cichlids because she put some kind of oil shale in the tank and didn't realize it could hurt them. My boyfriend has petrified rock in his tank and the fish is fine. And if the rock came from somewhere dangerous, such as a nuclear testing zone (I'm exaggerating, but you know what I mean :p) just find something else.

Second, could I take some of those rocks and make a cave out of them? I know bettas like caves to rest in and such, and well, they are quite expensive. I was gonna get a floating betta log at first, but I would have to order it, and the reviews said it didnt last long before the paint started chipping off, and was dangerous for the fish. (I still plan on getting a betta leaf hammock perhaps) Sure! as long as it is secure and the arrangement does not create any sharp points or other dangers to the fish. be careful about the leaf hammock as well, The reviews claim that the metal rod inside is exposed and will rust, and this is true. I have three, and only one is really safe for the aquarium. i have removed the others and need to seal them with aquarium silicon. For the record though, the one that is still in an aquarium pretty much seats my lazy VT at all times.

BUT ANYWAY, would it be safe for me to make a cave from the rocks? Would I be able to use a hot glue gun? You can find aquarium safe hot glue you can use in a hot glue gun online. I don't remember exactly where to find it, but just make sure it is 100% aquarium safe.


Also, what kinds of caves and hiding places are in your tanks? Are there any good inexpensive ideas out there? I'm already on a tight budget, but wanted to splurge and get a bigger tank for my betta than a smaller more affordable one. I have some silk plants, and I'm wanting to make sure I can give it all the proper care, so I wanna come up with some caves and decorations that would be inexpensive. I was thinking of flower pots maybe, but I don't know how that would really look in a non-planted tank. I have a lot of cool rocks where I live that I could possible add, any inexpensive ideas? You could kind of branch off the flowerpot idea and go with something kind of mismatchy or modern. One of my tanks has really strange mugs/bottles I found at a thrift store. Another has a candle holder suspended by fishing line in it that I got for 10 cents at a yard sale. You can put all kinds of strange items together to build a sort of playground. You could even use old glass chess pieces. Here is a pic of what I have done with the glass orb. I want to eventually make it a planted tank and plant the inside of the orb as well. The decorations in it other than the orb are temporary until I can get more plants.

yay! someone answered! thank you for all the answers. I been researching caves and things I could make (considering I can't order too much so I am mostly stuck with what I can get locally)

what do you think of this? http://www.cichlid-forum.com/articles/diy_caves.php


As far as the leaf hammock goes, could I put some sealant (if I find some, since walmart doesnt have it) on it maybe? or will it still work if I take the metal rod out? Since I cant really order any special kinds of hot glue right now, what would you suggest? do you know if most sealants are safe? I plan on trying to look for some aquarium sealant but I doubt Ill find it haha

and your tank is so cool! I like the idea of decorating with weird things haha. I want to look natural but interesting. My silk plants I got are purple and green. (purple is my fav color and the green is to look natural though they all match in tones) and I am planning on getting some black gravel, so just trying to come up with some cave and decoration ideas.

I am alright at working with clay, and was thinking of making something with it maybe, but I'll probably stick with rocks and pots to make it simple haha
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Old 05-03-2013, 01:53 AM   #4 
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It will kind of ruin it if you take that out, but sealing would work. as long as it never has the opportunity to rust. That tunnel is AWESOME!!! Doooo itttttt! Well you can use good old aquarium silicon sealant. You'll find it, I promise. The internet is a beautiful beautiful place :p Can't wait to see what you do with it!
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Old 05-03-2013, 02:16 AM   #5 
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Originally Posted by bniebetta View Post
It will kind of ruin it if you take that out, but sealing would work. as long as it never has the opportunity to rust. That tunnel is AWESOME!!! Doooo itttttt! Well you can use good old aquarium silicon sealant. You'll find it, I promise. The internet is a beautiful beautiful place :p Can't wait to see what you do with it!
Ah, thats what I thought so I dont know why people say to take it :/ I THOUGHT SO TOO haha I was like thats awesome! and well, I know but I cant order anything on the internet right now so hopefully I'll find something here :3 so excited! can't wait for my paycheck! other than gas money Im basically blowing it all on a tank and fish and snails haha.

Which leads me to another question... have you had any nerite snails? do you know if there is anything in particular they like concerning decor?
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Old 05-03-2013, 02:25 AM   #6 
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Yeah I have two, Ricky and Lucy. They are so much fun! They poop a lot so just be aware of that, but they actually poop the least of aquarium snails. I thought mine would have a hard time going over the lips of the holes in my artificial log in my tank (I can send a pic if this is vague), but they haven't had a problem. I would just say that they would probably prefer smoother surfaces as opposed to, say, artificial coral (which is really too rough for a betta anyway).that's what happened to all of my money haha :D They can't crawl up some plants by the time they reach a certain size, so a non-plant surface would help them out. They LOVE to hide. I can usually only see mine at night unless someone is really hungry, so just make sure they have a place(s) they can feel secure.
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Old 05-03-2013, 02:48 AM   #7 
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Yeah I have two, Ricky and Lucy. They are so much fun! They poop a lot so just be aware of that, but they actually poop the least of aquarium snails. I thought mine would have a hard time going over the lips of the holes in my artificial log in my tank (I can send a pic if this is vague), but they haven't had a problem. I would just say that they would probably prefer smoother surfaces as opposed to, say, artificial coral (which is really too rough for a betta anyway).that's what happened to all of my money haha :D They can't crawl up some plants by the time they reach a certain size, so a non-plant surface would help them out. They LOVE to hide. I can usually only see mine at night unless someone is really hungry, so just make sure they have a place(s) they can feel secure.

Cool! Im glad you say they are fun cause I was worried they might be boring but then I heard they actually arent that slow, and that they take rides on each other and stuff and so im like ya! cute! haha

Yeah, thats the main reason I chose nerites was they poop the least. All the others are supposed to poop alot. And yeah! I'm thinking of making a tunnel with the pvc pipe and maybe trying to assemble a sort of cave with some rocks, or get a pot. I dont like the color of the pots but I could do the same thing with the pot as with the pipe as far as covering it in gravel or some stones. Would the snails like those? A pot and maybe the tunnel?

and I know bettas mostly stay at the top of the tank but does your betta like to swim everywhere? If i made a tunnel and cave do you think that it would like it or use it?
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Old 05-03-2013, 04:56 AM   #8 
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I bought some cheap coffee mugs to use as caves.. They come in a variety of bright colours if that takes your fancy..

Terractta pots make great caves as well.. Just block up the drain hole so your fish dont get stuck..
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Old 05-03-2013, 01:20 PM   #9 
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Cool! Im glad you say they are fun cause I was worried they might be boring but then I heard they actually arent that slow, and that they take rides on each other and stuff and so im like ya! cute! haha

Yeah, thats the main reason I chose nerites was they poop the least. All the others are supposed to poop alot. And yeah! I'm thinking of making a tunnel with the pvc pipe and maybe trying to assemble a sort of cave with some rocks, or get a pot. I dont like the color of the pots but I could do the same thing with the pot as with the pipe as far as covering it in gravel or some stones. Would the snails like those? A pot and maybe the tunnel?

and I know bettas mostly stay at the top of the tank but does your betta like to swim everywhere? If i made a tunnel and cave do you think that it would like it or use it?
Yeah they are surprisingly fast! haha I think they would like it. As for the swimming everywhere thing, it really depends on my tank. One of my older males is just downright lazy and just sits on his leaf. The rest explore their tanks but are pretty slow about it, but my sorority is absolutely crazy busy all the time!
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Old 05-03-2013, 01:32 PM   #10 
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Be careful when boiling rocks as there have been instances when they explode because if they have cold water in them, the water expands with the heat from the boiling water causing the rock to explode. Make sure to leave them out in the sun for at least two days so they dry thoroughly before boiling.
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