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[APD] Cork tiles bark use and availability in Australia.

I'm sure natural sheets of cork look better, but in my tanks with the cheap bulletin-board style cork composites the java ferns and anubias cover them so happily that I don't see the cork.

The only problem I've noticed with using them in tank backgrounds is that they tend to crumble a lot when my goldfish bang around the plants pinned to them--and they aren't so attactive when the same process makes bare spots. In tanks with peaceable fish, they seem to be fine. Healthy plants, healthy fish.
Diane Brown in St. Louis

Hi Diane
I know what you mean, my mum bought me almost paper thin
cork roll once (I didn't bother at the time to wonder if it might be safe or not)
and siliconed it onto the lower half of the back of a 2ft tank (with pebbles
above it). The problem was I also had 5 or so bristlenose catfish in there,
they did have wood but rasped away -if I remember right- all of it! :O\

This time though I want thick corkboard because of the ease of using U shaped bits
of wire to fasten plants on to it.
of wire

I've used the 1 foot square cork tiles from the hardware store
in my tank with no problems.

I'm not sure if you used a brand with a similar manufacturing process
but I actually received a response from the company as follows:

Dear Damian, MJO cork tiles are very low emission in terms of VOC discharge
(volitile organic compounds) they meet or exceed E1 standard and are sold in
the most emission sensitive market in the world, Germany.
   However there is to my knowledge no in water testing. Be aware that as a
wood product, some swelling will occur when exposed to water, and i would
expect that emmision will bevery low or next to nothing initially, and may
increase as submerssion continues, Regards, Kendall Waller

What that means exactly I don't know! :O)

I used black Aquarium silicon to glue the tiles onto several 1
foot wide acrylic boards, leaving the bottom couple of inches
bare. After the acrylic cured, I pushed the bare part of the boards
into the gravel at the back of the tank and pushed the boards back
against the back wall. The cork makes the acrylic float up to wedge
under the back lip of the tank to hold it in place.

I think I will silicone it straight onto the back glass- acrylic around
where I am is super expensive.

The tiles I used where the dark brown, slightly smoky smelling
tiles. I stapled anubias and java fern into the cork.

Yeah they had light and dark ones and the darker are way nicer
more natural looking. You didn't have a problem with the stapler
cutting through the rhizomes?

Its been in place for over a year now with no problems. The staples have
rusted away, but the plants have attached themselves by now.

Here are links to before and immediately after shots.

http://enduse.lbl.gov/SharedData/MJPinckard/tank.jpg http://enduse.lbl.gov/SharedData/MJPinckard/tank2.jpg Maggie

That's quite a beautiful tank you have there. I'm guessing anubias, those
special algae balls (cladaphoria? marino?), java fern and possibly
vallisneria and swords but you also have gold fish in there- what temperature
do you keep it at?

Just wondering as I have a 2ft tank outside with anubias, echindorus compacta,
crypts, an aponogeton and and angel and I'm thinking about removing the
angel and turning into a cold water tank with white cloud minnows
or something but I'm not sure about the plants handling the temperature.

Natural cork is available in Australia from orchid vendors. I have several pieces that look same as on the the web site just posted. Ray Clement has it listed here: http://www.tinoneeorchids.com/accessories.html CORK Virgin Cork Slabs (random sizes) $18.00/kg Cork Guide: 1m2 surface area = approx. 2½kg

Thankyou Rob!!! I've done numerous google searches
in Australia and could never find anything.

The bits I have for my rochids look very nice.
I  just took a few shots of one that I am not using at the moment.

If you want to inspect before you purchase I am sure Ray may be able to help
find a palce close by.
Rob - Sydney

thanks for the links and advice. The cork bark beats those 'aquarium backgrounds on a roll'
any day.


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