Making Sure That Your Aquarium Decorations Are Safe

There are a lot of creative things people do with materials they but or get around the house to create their own version of an awesome fish tank theme. Over the past decade or so, I have seen so many different things being put into an aquarium, creating designs that have inspired my own concepts. And if what you want is a theme that stand out, that no one on the face of the planet has, you can also do so. You are not confined to just getting store bought accessories and ornaments. The things that you have around the house, the trinkets and mantle decor that you no longer want can in many cases be transformed into super cool aquarium decor.

But not every item can be dropped into a tank of water with fish. Remember, fish are living creatures. The water they swim in is their environment and the aquarium is a mini ecosystem which you will have to maintain as close to their natural environment as possible. The stuff you place in with them should not alter the delicate balance in the tank. It should not in any way harm them by injuring them or affecting their health.

Things That Should Never Go Into An Aquarium

Here’s a simple list of items that should not be placed inside the aquarium with the fish. While the actual list may be longer, these are the more common things that you may accidentally place in there.

The first on the list is metal objects. While you won’t knowingly place anything metal in the tank, what you also need to ensure is that the object that you have chosen does not have any metal parts. This means not even a tiny screw. Metal oxidizes with water. Iron rusts and the oxidized iron poisons the water for the fish. Inspect the object carefully and remove every piece of metal on it. If a screw is holding a part of it together, remove the screw and glue the part on.

The second item is chemical containers. This includes detergent bottles, shampoo and soap bottles, perfumes bottles and so on. Any container that had once housed any form of chemical should be avoided. I have seen so many of these containers especially perfume bottles that would make excellent fish tank ornaments. The problem is though there is no more chemicals in them and though you may have rinsed the bottle, there would most likely still be chemical residue on it. You may think that the residue is too minute to affect the fish but it will. The water that the fish swim in is also the water that they drink and breathe from. Even the slightest trace of chemicals will affect their health. If you do insist on using a chemical container, you will need to soak it in plain water for at the very least a week and swish it around the water to dislodge the chemicals every day.

The last item is painted ornaments. This is where the ornament is either hand painted or has the colors sprayed on. If they are, check that their is an outer layer of protective film that prevents the paint from fading. You can do this by taking a sharp blade and running it over the surface of the object. If the pain comes off as fine dust, it does not have its protective layer. Putting this into the tank of water will cause the paint to leak into the water and poison it. If the paint comes off as a sliver or chip, then it should be fine. But just to be on the safe side, you may want to coat the ornament with a layer of transparent aquarium silicon.

While it may seem like too much fuss or being a little paranoid, these three common items which people use as aquarium decorations do adversely affect the health of the fish. If you want to have vibrant and healthy fish in your aquarium, you would do well to follow the suggestions above.

Source by Timothy Kessler