Safe Ceramic Aquarium Ornaments
The suitability of ceramic objects as aquarium ornaments is sometimes debated amongst fish enthusiasts. The truth is that some ceramic ornaments are perfectly safe while others leach fish toxic heavy metals as the glaze dissolves. You don't have to be an aquatic chemist to know the difference though. This article deals with ceramic aquarium decorations and how to choose these objects safely.
Any object produced to be 'dinnerware safe' will be suited as an aquarium decoration. A dinnerware safe object is one which has been glazed and fired using techniques and substances which will not dissolve under acid conditions. Most developed countries have strict standards regarding the safety of dinnerware pieces. Therefore contemporary tea pots, mugs and other kitchen ceramics are generally safe to use as ornaments.
Non dinnerware objects do not have to meet the same safety standards. Thankfully an easy test can be performed. Take some household acid such as vinegar. Dilute it to a pH that might be reasonably expected under the most extreme aquarium situation. A pH of 5 should be sufficient. Submerge part of the ornament in question and wait. After a month examine the glaze on the object and compare the acid treated portion to the remainder. If any of the shininess has deteriorated the decoration will be unsuitable for your aquarium.
Plain non glazed ceramic objects such as terracotta pots are universally suitable as aquarium decoration. Just examine carefully to ensure the object is indeed unglazed and not finished in a matte glaze or paint. When using broken pieces of pots be careful to avoid any sharp edges. These can injure both fish and owner. Jagged edges can be chipped away or covered in a bead of aquarium silicone to create a safe ornament.
Resin Ornaments Rock Ornaments Aquarium Ornaments Wood Ornaments Ornament Stability