I was cleaning my 2 gallon jar out and had set everything up. While I was filling my tank with water, the thermometer fell and broke. the red tube was fine but a bunch of little black metal balls were ALL OVER the bottom of the jar!!!
Well I freaked and started filling it with water, called my mom to the kitchen to get a bag and hold it while I poured it all in.
Turns out it was just a bunch of tiny lead balls for weight purposes and that lead takes forever to leech into water. So I freaked out for nothing. =P
I feel bad for freaking out on my mom. <=/ Oh well! =P I'm just glad it wasn't mercury!!!
Yes I realize this is a solved problem but I figured this would save people some freak out time if they break their thermometer. =]
HOWEVER: IF YOUR THERMOMETER LIQUID IS A SILVERY COLOR AND THE BALLS ARE SHINY IT'S MERCURY AND YOU AND YOUR FISH ARE AT RISK IF IT'S BROKEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!