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Old 10-01-2010, 08:01 AM   #31 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: USA
Great job.....

At what stage did you see the ammonia (expected due to decomp) and did you see ammonia readings in the control jar of water
Any pH changes at all or other water pram changes like nitrite and nitrate

That is interesting about the white substance-I have never noticed that with mine...but I also don't know the species......mine are just native oak
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Old 10-02-2010, 07:39 AM   #32 
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Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: John 14:2-4
Waah, cool idea! :D
Thanks for posting it, this will help me since I can't really find away of ordering iol online....right now!

There is a water oak tree in the backyard, i'm going to use these leaves. I picked some brown ones off the ground and am testing them now.

What about the time that you can use each type before replacing to a new one? Since they eventually start to decompose and cause ammonia to go up. I wonder if oak leaves can be used (with other things) in cycling fishless tanks.....?
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Old 10-02-2010, 11:50 AM   #33 
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Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: WV
Living in West Virigina and with it being the start of fall, I have plenty of Oak leaves around. I did have an idea though...

What about making "tannin tea"? By this I mean take some oak leave of choice, crush them, and seep in boiling water. Then of course straining the leaf bits out of the water (using a coffee filter works). I actually gave this a try today with what I believe are either Red or Black Oak leaves in a small coffee cup. The result was a nice-smelling light tea colored water. I didn't think to check the pH though.

Would this not be a quicker way to release the tannins without the worry of rotting leaves? Obviously the water would then need to be cooled, but still.

Anyone with more savvy at this want to give it a try? Or maybe tell my why it would not be a good idea?

I am curious though... For those that use Oak (or other) leaves for Bettas, do you use enough so that the tank water is actually tea colored? Or just a little bit of the tannin laden water? Is there a benifit to using the whole leaves rather than my proposed "tea" method?

I'm no breeder, I just have a petstore fish. Still I'd love to keep him as happy and healthy as possible. :)

Last edited by wystearya; 10-02-2010 at 11:51 AM. Reason: spelling error
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Old 10-02-2010, 12:17 PM   #34 
Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: USA
You can make tea tannins by boiling the leaves and they are fine, however, once you boil them you kill some of the good/beneficial properties that can be helpful...especially if you are using it as part of a treatment...but if you just want the tannins- boiling is just fine. Be sure and refrigerate unused water so it will keep longer and just nuke it to get it to temp

I like the tea/amber colored water and I also like the leaves in my tanks too and I allow them to rot and decay and with all the plants in my tanks they use the ammonia as plant food before it can be harmful to the livestock, the decay also help produce CO2 for the plants and infusoria free range food for fry.
The shrimp and snails help with break down as well.

You can just add a oak leaf or two to your tank and remove and replace weekly
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Old 10-17-2010, 08:49 PM   #35 
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Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: Fargo, ND
Awesome thread, there are oak trees abundant in Fargo :P So, my question is this: Would an apple snail be able to eat the decaying oak leaf?

I currently have a piece of wood in my tank, plus a few plants. I recently obtained two apple snails and found pond snails on my water hyacinth. Looking up my species of apple snail, it says it prefers to feed on rotting plant material or fish food (hence the question about the leaf :P) I'm assuming if I leave the leaf in, the plants would use some of the ammonia and I could use ammolock to take care of the rest?
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Old 10-19-2010, 07:14 PM   #36 
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Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Ontario, Canada
I have been using Chestnut oak lately...and I have found that the ammonia rises sturdy within 3-5 days to a very high number lol...but...the PH is very low. The higher the ammonia the lower PH with this leaf.. When using this leaf, I fins with regular water changes the PH stays low, and the ammonia wont rise much at all...

Im going to be trying a few more soon..Chestnut oak , Chinquapin oak and one one tree I am still unsure of exact type....
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fin repair, ial, indian almond leaf, oak leaves

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