Would it be safe to go to my local river to find rock for my aquarium?


I figure that if I test the rock, and boil it to rid it of any kind of bacteria and parasite
that it would be alright to use

it beats spending around $4 a pound at my local fish store...

Nick G

All the rocks in my fishtanks came from local rivers.


My rock came from a local river also. But, one of the things you need to be aware of is the pollution level of the river in question, i.e., is there run off from a wastewater treatment plant (some have questionable practices, the one where I work is proud to have our run off go into a prize winning trout stream), are there manufacturing plants that have run off.... if so, this river is probably not a healthy source of either rock or driftwood.

Also, when you get your rocks home, pour some vinegar on them. If it fizzes, do not use the rock as it contains calcium deposits. If it doesn't, you're okay.


I think it's fine, but you gotta boil the heck out of them to make sure they are safe. I would also be careful with the river rocks that have deep algae stains. You don't want that algae in your tank


I bought river rock at a landscape center for 20 cents a pound.Did the vinegar test scrubed any loose stuff off and put it in the tank.Haven't had any problems,usually the bins that you can get individual rocks from have been in direct sun and rain for a while so anything aquatic would not be able to survive those conditions.:

Livebearer Boy

it may be okay but u will have to heat the rocks and let it dry in the sun for a while.
anyways I would be wise if I were u.the rocks may have harmful bacteria.


I use river stones from my garden (they were there when we moved in), I only took ones which were on top and therefore only ever in the sun (could also bake them in the oven over 100 C for a while to kill anything), boiled the heck out of them and so far no issues.

They look so nice, and easy to shift around and vac!

Good luck!

Latest threads

Top Bottom