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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
*** been looking to get some black lava rock, small pieces more used as a substrate on my background im building. Where can i get some? im located in Barrie Ontario. *** looked everywhere. The employees at Big Als didnt even know that there was such a thing. Googled, had no luck with landscapers either.

Also what can i use as a substitute which would give a good look? Something atleast dark and bulkier then small gravel. im looking to do the Cave Grotto Background. Any ideas would be great.

Thanks :thumb:
 

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There's some where I live. They have small pieces and 300lb+ boulders. :)
 

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When we moved into our house, I didn't have any aquariums then the whole front of the house was landscaped with those, I threw them out and buried some.
Dry Home Depot or Lowes. Isn't that the stuff they put in to a gas barbeque?
Anne
 

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I know a place that has a ton of black lava rock,but you won't like the answer.Hawaii.

When I went back to the big island this year I got all kinds of inspiration for rockscaping my tank

the different types of volcanic rock their would look absolutely awesome in a malawi tank.

so I just made a diy background using inspiration from rocks I saw their and it came out nice.
I even had a friend come over and say it reminded them of hawaiian lava rock which just made my day.

I have been told that some home improvement and landscaping places have these. which I tend to believe,only because the home I bought and moved into recently had lots of them around the garden and bonsai trees in the yard.

I have thought of bringing those in ,cleaning them and putting them in a tank as well.
 

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Well, I'm jealous, I've always wanted to go to Hawaii, (am I spelling that right?). I guess you could get a lot of inspiration there.
 

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if you are willing to make the drive, here in London Ont. there's a landscaping place called Grand River Natural stone. they've got black lava boulders and have some smaller bits that are 3-4inches big. 50 cents a pound. I'm using it in my aquarium currently, but i find it's a little rough and i'm constantly seeing a few fish in my tank with new scrapes and scratches everyday.
 

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I picked up some nice size river rock today, you would never guess where...I had gift cards to walmart and cruising the aisles, in the craft section. I won't tell you what I paid for them, but if you think of it I will have them forever. Then I have a couple THR, won't tell you what I paid for that either. They seem to have some kind of coating, the rocks. Have been soaked in bleach water. now I'm using a detergent. also some interesting ones from backyard and vacation spot in Gaylord MI.
I have been looking at a lot of the tanks not only @ this site but u tube. I really like the black sand. I am not sure what kind to purchase. But it will be a summer project anyway. My husband freaks when he thinks I am getting gravel down the drains.
Since you've read this long post so far...you can hear the rest, I'm bored even the dogs are asleep. I have wanted an aquarium for years and years, we have been married 31 years, my husband would say, "what do you want for your birthday?" I would say I want an aquarium and he would say, "No you don't" So I just did it on my own. we have a little more room now that my son is out of the house.
I still remember my dad picking out the baby guppies out of the filter years and years ago, it was angel hair then (asbestos, I think). Now I have much better luck w/ cichlids than I do guppies.Thanks for reading my long reply, that is if you haven't clicked me off yet. Do you know anything about where I could get the black sand, besides HA I mean. Anne (babble, babble,babble)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for the replies. I ended up using pool filter sand as a substrate and black gravel on my background. However still looking for black lava. I have quite a bit of red if anyone wants to trade. If I don't find anything local maybe I will check out London. Anyway black sand is pretty common at local fish stores. However if you want sand for cheap get some pool filter sand, I paid $10 canadian for a 50 lb bag. It may not be black but it's cheap and really nice looking. Much better than the sand I got previously from petsmart, a third of the price, for double the amount.
 

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In Florida, the red type of lava rock is easy to find at landscape suppliers, but the black not so much, as far as I have seen. I think the thing that may have caused fish deaths is the presence of toxic levels of arsenic or cobalt or whatever minerals or metals that may be present in that particular lava rock. On that note, zeolite, which is also a volcanic rock, is known to trap many heavy metals in the same way that carbon traps certain water impurities. And the carbon blend products by marineland do contain zeolite, so either that, or another granular zeolite media might be helpful to remove heavy metals from the water when any questionable rocks are used.
 

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I just saw some black lava rock this weekend at Harpers Garden Centre in Ancaster (Near Hamilton). Might be a little closer than London. Good luck!
 

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I hate it when I realize I need something and don't remember where I saw it. Unfortunately, the ones I saw were large ones that were pre-drilled with holes. I'm confident it was the BA's in Vaughan. You could try calling them if you haven't already. If they don't have small pieces, perhaps get large and break it down. It's going to be expensive if you need a lot.
 

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Our local, in Louisiana-USA, Home Depot & Lowe's did not carry black lava rock...only the red.

Found it at a local garden store.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
des said:
I hate it when I realize I need something and don't remember where I saw it. Unfortunately, the ones I saw were large ones that were pre-drilled with holes. I'm confident it was the BA's in Vaughan. You could try calling them if you haven't already. If they don't have small pieces, perhaps get large and break it down. It's going to be expensive if you need a lot.
Thanks, i had been looking for so long! right now i just have a black granite type rock in my tank, about 150 lbs. Im in Vaughan the odd time so i will be sure to check that out. Its really hard to come by in this area.
 

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This may be what you are looking for. Check out caribsea's website and the "Arag-Alive" substrates product. I just setup a tank with the Hawaiian Black which is crush lava rocks. You can buy it online or find a local dealer (this is what I did). African Cichlids seems to be doing well so far and the lava rocks really bring out their color! Hope that helps.

~Chris
 

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of note, I have a beautiful coating of algae, bright green, covering by black lava grotto background. if you like that sort of thing, which I do, red lava rock would be just fine to use!
 

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I've picked up black lava rock from southern Utah, mainly the St. George area. It's literally EVERYWHERE there. There are acres and acres of it just stretching out over the red sand, very beautiful.
 
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