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Re: Mysteries of the Wood Chunk

James Purchase was kind enough to concern himself with some mysterious 
plant growth in an aquarium of mine and offered his thoughts:

>"The first growth is a long, straw colored runner.  A small tuft of
>curled...leaves, I guess...is at each node and the interval between nodes
>is about 1.5 - 2 cm.  This runner is putting out another runner
>perpendicular to itself.  The runner extends from a moss covered wood
>chunkIt's a very interesting growth and decorative as well."
>How are the nutrient levels in your tank? It might be
>possible for the moss to produce a slightly odd looking
>section if it is under stress due to lack of nutrients, but
>this is probably something else - without photos, its
>impossible to tell.

Both types of moss in this tank appear to be doing very well.  What has me 
most confused is that the growth is obviously a runner/chain.  I've never 
seen a moss put out a runner, though I've not had many different mosses 
growing in this tank either.  I originally thought it was a weirdo form of 
tenellus perhaps, but the tenellus I have planted elsewhere is doing well 
and shows no growth of this type.

A picture is indeed worth a thousand words in this case.

>"The second growth I'm seeing is what I believe to be a moss.  It is a
>curious growth of an electric, pale green color and is flat and takes the
>form of a "Y".  There are 4 of these "Y" growths now and they are
> From the description, this sounds a lot like Riccia - its a common enough
>"hitchhiker", if the tank the moss came from contained any at all. But
>again, without reference to a photograph, its impossible to say for sure.

I had thought it might be Riccia, but I've never seen any images that show 
it having such an intense green color.  Of course, given my inexperience, I 
could have seen it and not realized it.  The Christmas Moss came from Kwek 
Leong whom I know to be a moss fan (like myself), so I'd say it likely some 
Riccia was in his tank, but only he can say for sure.  KL is the only 
possible source of Riccia in my case because I have never knowingly kept 
any myself...yet.

Something of possible interest which I forgot to mention in my original 
post is that these growths did not appear until after I had increased the 
amount of light available to the plants growing on the wood.  I have 3W per 
gallon of NO fluorescent lighting over this tank and the wood sits in the 
open now.  Previously, it had been shaded.

Thanks, James.  I will try to post some photos on the Web in the near 
future if I can run down a decent camera.

Chuck Huffine
Knoxville, Tennessee  USA
mailto:grendel at usit_net