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Re: Rusted rock

> From: "James Purchase" <jpurch at interlog_com>

> First of all, what kind of "quarry" was it where you obtained the rocks?  What
> mineral was originally quarried there?

Actually, the quarry is an extensive gravel pit north of Edmonton located along
the N. Saskatchewan River (which bisects the city).  Sorry for the confusion.  My
limited knowledge of geology suggests that the rock in the pits located in this
area are from the last few ice ages and/or from erosive action by the river in
much earlier times.

Over the years, we've selected rock for outdoor landscaping projects from these
pits.  We've found some amazing stuff such as 200 lb pieces of driftwood and an
eroded piece of dinosaur thigh bone.  The thought of paying $1 per lb of rock at
the lfs brought to mind the trusty old gravel pits, though of course we need to be
careful with what we put into an aquarium.

> Secondly, is there a University or Community College in Edmonton which teaches
> Geology or Geography? Someone there would surely be able to ID your rocks and
> tell you what ore is cauing the streaking. Knowing either of these things,
> someone her emight be able to say just how "safe" this material is.

There's a Geology Dept at the U of A that might of of help.  Good idea.

> My only other comment is the use of a "black", rounded rocks with Flourite.
> Apparently, Seachem will be coming out with several other color varieties,
> and I believe that Greg Morin has publicly stated that a black variety is on
> the way soon.

I'd also read about black flourite becoming available soon, though if it came
available soon enough up here, I would mix it with our current substrate to save a
wad of cash.

> Convincing aquascapes usually contain rocks which match the main substrate
> materia in color, tone and texture. Fluorite granules are
> rather angular and a mixture of several distinct colors. I don't know how
> that will hang with rounded, black river rocks. The effect should look like
> the substrate material originated from the same mineral as the larger rocks.
> You might be able to go back to the quarry and get some fine gravel which
> would match your rocks more closely.

Excellent point about matching substrate to decorative rock features.  We returned
to another nearby gravel pit this morning and selected fist and smaller sized rock
in colours similar to the gravel we currently use.  However, the colour selection
was done more by accident than by plan because smooth black rock of that size is
very difficult to find.  Black, or as close to it as possible, is still our choice
of colour since the darker the substrate and related features, the more strikingly
the dwarf cichlids and tetras colour up.

Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

Beverly Wladyka
Edmonton AB Canada