Can you use Live Rock in a freshwater tank?? Question 

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tatty_kassy

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Hello!
I've been doing some reading through the saltwater beginners tutorial, and I am really liking the idea of the Live Rock filtering out the water as well as providing a place for neato organisms to grow.
Can you use live rock in freshwater tanks? Does it work the same? I know alot of the corals and weird mushrooms won't grow on it, but will anything unique grow on liverock if I were to use it in freshwater??

Thanks for your time!
 

BennyB

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Algae...
I've never exactly tried live rock in a freshwater tank, but I'm guessing that there are bacteria and other organisms in live rock that could change the water. First, it would be a lot saltier, second, the pH would change drastically. Third, you might get some wierd things growing in there. Things that could ruin your tank.
Or it could all just be a fluke, and nothing would really happen other than the saltiness and pH change.

Hard to tell, maybe somebody that has tried this before will come along.
 

harpua2002

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benjaminBreaker said:
Algae...
I've never exactly tried live rock in a freshwater tank, but I'm guessing that there are bacteria and other organisms in live rock that could change the water. First, it would be a lot saltier, second, the pH would change drastically. Third, you might get some wierd things growing in there. Things that could ruin your tank.
Or it could all just be a fluke, and nothing would really happen other than the saltiness and pH change.

Hard to tell, maybe somebody that has tried this before will come along.
The beneficial organisms that make up your biological filter are different from Freshwater to Saltwater. Everything on the live rock would die.
 
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tatty_kassy

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Hmmm, too bad. It would of been a cool idea.
 

harpua2002

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I had some dried (dead) live rock that I used in an African cichlid tank for a while. I just soaked it really well and rinsed it a few times, and it was fine. I used it because I knew it would raise the pH for my Africans (along with the aragonite sand I used). I don't think that it's really possible for porous rock to have the same biological filtration capacities as live rock in Saltwater though.

If you're interested in "natural" methods of filtration, I recently read some posts on another site about a woman that uses a DSB (deep sand bed) in a Freshwater planted tank. She uses California blackworms, MTS, and other invertebrates to keep the top part of the sand aerated, but there is an anoxic layer under that part. I can try to dig up the threads and link you if you want to check it out.
 
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