Are These Rocks Aquarium Safe?

Caleb Smith

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I had collected these rocks and some other very similar rocks about a year ago and since then, they have been in a terrarium. I sanitized them and now Im wondering if someone can identify them/ tell me if they are aquarium safe.
 

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They look safe, but I am unsure of the second rock in the photo.
Do they have any residue on them, such as powdering? I think some of them are a type of slate, which is safe.

The first and third are most definitely safe.
 

SFGiantsGuy

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* HOW TO DETERMINE IF "WILD CAUGHT AQUARIUM ROCKS ARE SAFE FOR USE.": Yeah usually with "wild caught" types of rocks, you can easily "test" 'em. How? STEP 1. The "scratching/etching" method: Use a strong, sturdy and sharp knife, (a pocket knife for example) and if the knife's blade is able to etch a tender slice into the rock, then the rock is SOFTER, and likely contains a number of unsafe minerals etc. therefore discard it! STEP 2. If the knife CANNOT easily etch a slash into the rock, therefore creating a highly resistant slashing impression into the rock that is barely visible, then it is HARDER, and more promising for keeping--thus, proceed to step 3 to conduct further testing. STEP 3. Using vinegar (cheapest method) or hydrochloric acid, or muriatic acid. If the rock "bubbles" and fizzles violently, which indicates potentially harmful minerals etc. then likely it is NOT acceptable for use in an aquarium. But if it does NOT bubble and fizz with the testing chemicals, then it is probably acceptable.
 

Mcasella

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SFGiantsGuy said:
* HOW TO DETERMINE IF "WILD CAUGHT AQUARIUM ROCKS ARE SAFE FOR USE.": Yeah usually with "wild caught" types of rocks, you can easily "test" 'em. How? STEP 1. The "scratching/etching" method: Use a strong, sturdy and sharp knife, (a pocket knife for example) and if the knife's blade is able to etch a tender slice into the rock, then the rock is SOFTER, and likely contains a number of unsafe minerals etc. therefore discard it! STEP 2. If the knife CANNOT easily etch a slash into the rock, therefore creating a highly resistant slashing impression into the rock that is barely visible, then it is HARDER, and more promising for keeping--thus, proceed to step 3 to conduct further testing. STEP 3. Using vinegar (cheapest method) or hydrochloric acid, or muriatic acid. If the rock "bubbles" and fizzles violently, which indicates potentially harmful minerals etc. then likely it is NOT acceptable for use in an aquarium. But if it does NOT bubble and fizz with the testing chemicals, then it is probably acceptable.
Bubble and fizz indicates calcium, which can alter ph. Vinegar doesn't always work in this case. Slate rocks are safe because of what they are made of.
The three rocks look to be a granite like material (at least the first and third, the second looks like red slate), which are safe in tank. However I would scrub the rocks with a stiff bristled brush or tooth brush and hot water to clean off any residue that might be on them.
 

SFGiantsGuy

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Yeah not a geologist per aquarium rocks, but I always use the etch method as well as acid. Rocks are kinda complicated! But when it comes to aquarium safety, yeah they're a bit tough! Heh
 
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Caleb Smith

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Iverg1 said:
Where did you find them (guessing minnehaha falls)
I found them on our farm in Tennessee. They were just off to the side in a field.
 
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Caleb Smith

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I forgot to mention I did conduct a vinegar test and there were no bubbles/ fizzing which is promising but I want to as sure as possible before using them
 

TexasDomer

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Even rocks that fizz with vinegar are fine to use in aquariums - it just means that it may change the GH/KH/pH.
 

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Does anyone know if you have rock that have calcium carbonate and increase pH/GH/Kh in your tank, will it do this continually as long as they are present or does it eventually taper off?
 

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I put any rock i’m Interested in in a bucket of water, barely covered. In a week I test PH, GH, KH against my tap.

Not sure how accurate it is since in every case they were the same.

Then I brush and boil.
 

Mcasella

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Hunter1 said:
I put any rock i’m Interested in in a bucket of water, barely covered. In a week I test PH, GH, KH against my tap.

Not sure how accurate it is since in every case they were the same.

Then I brush and boil.
I've had a rock take as little as 2 days and another that took almost 2 weeks to show signs of change.
 

Katie13

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Caleb Smith said:
I found them on our farm in Tennessee. They were just off to the side in a field.
I use the same. Mine are also gathered in my yard. The look almost identical to the fist and third.
 
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