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How can you tell if live rock is still "live"?

Discussion in 'Saltwater General Discussion' started by arlong1, Aug 1, 2007.

  1. arlong1

    arlong1 Small Fish

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    My LFS is selling live rock for $2 a lb, pretty cheap, but when I inspected the rocks, I didn't see any coralline algae, not even regular algae, or any organisms on the rocks. When I asked the owner about this, he said the live rock only had the beneficial bacteria on it because everything else had been scrubbed clean or died off during the curing process. I wanted to know how to tell whether a rock is dead or alive so I don't get ripped off. I'm also planning to purchase some live rock online and wonder how long the live rock can exist out of water during shipping.
     


  2. Lorna

    Lorna Elite Fish

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    "LIVE" part of live rock refers to the beneficial bacteria that is coating the surfaces of the rock. The curing process is when any dead/dying or decaying matter is removed from the rock and is usually done over a period of a couple of weeks scrubbing to remove decaying matter. Depending on the rock and where it came from will determine how much visible life remains after the curing process. Rock that comes from the south pacific probably has the most amount of die off as it has been in shipping the longest. All rock that you buy will experience some die off between the time of purchase and the time you place it in your tank and may create a cycle in your tank as dead matter converts to ammonia/nitrite and out......unless you are shipping immersed in water there will be some. I have bought Marshall Island rock that looked virtually dead only to have it come alive with pods and stuff once placed in my tank.......you would be amazed. If you are truly buying live rock for $2 a pound you are getting a bargin. Though I would question whether it is fully cured, and where it came from......
     
  3. TRe

    TRe Elite Fish

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    at $2 your not getting ripped off
     
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