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Discussion Starter #1
In my leg-popped tad tank (with accessible land area), i lined it with insulation foam, called "rubber foam" (and siliconed it down) to keep the frogs from getting into the underneathe after morphing.

there isnt any reason why that stuff would contaminate the water in any way would it?
 

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Cliff,

Hard to say with the information you have given. There are several polymers that could fit that description and probably thousands of chemical combinations used to make those polymers. I have a lot of plastics reference materials and can look it up for you if you give me more information, but without a manufacturer or more specific information it is hard to say. Even then, the specific additives in this foam rubber can vary from manufacturer to manufacturer and batch to batch.

Much of what is known about polymer toxicity is highly technical and still being researched by many organizations including the EPA and FDA. All polymers are permeable to a certain degree and most are somewhat subject to oxidation, what is released into your tank due to hydrolitic breakdown, microbial attack, or other types of degradation is guesswork. The tricky thing about using these chemicals is that you may never notice the adverse ill effects as they may be subtle, mutagenic, etc, and could manifest itself years later in ways you might not imagine (e.g., low fertility). Some of this information is coming out about bisphenol A (a common comonent of most epoxies) and alligators (there's a thread around here somewhere) and recently the US joined the EU and others in phasing out PBDE in polyurethane foams (like those used in car seats, mattresses, pillows, etc) because of toxicity concerns.

I wouldn't use a synthetic foam in direct contact with water, but YMMV...

Marcos
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The exact brand, etc, is:
Frost King
Poly Foam Weatherseal - Self Stick Tape


since its not food, i guess they dont have to label what the "ingredients" are in it. It merely looks/feels like foam, and it has silicone-based paper backing still attached to the sticky part of the foam (I didnt peel it off, so that it wouldnt shrink at all).

is there a way to reduce the possible toxicity of it? I have heard of people soaking their fish tanks in salt water for a week after doing a DIY background in order to reduce the possible toxin effects from products used to hold it together.

what would be a safe alternative that will provide me with the same tadpole/frog safe effect (i.e. something I can silicone down in teh water that stretches along the sides)? I will put some pictures up to show my intentions. I may not even need that area to be closed off anyway.
 

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Clif,

Pictures would be helpful. I'm pretty sure I know exactly the kind of foam you are talking about. Hard to say what is in it additive wise. Probably not too much since it is relatively low grade foam, but it may break down in water. I would also worry about the adhesive that they use on the back of that stuff. But, I am a worry wart when it comes to chemicals (after being a HAZMAT officer in the military for some time and becoming an OSHA authorized instructor) and clean my house using vinegar and mostly non-toxic chemicals, so I am spring loaded to the paranoid position.

Marcos
 

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Discussion Starter #5
well, in good news, your posts got me to re-model the tank :)

I set it up now to have more water area for the tads during their last few weeks as in the water, and now dont have any foam necessary. there are also more climbing ledges for them to get out on. I will post pics anyway soon of the new setup once I get the tads moved over.

thanks again for your cautionary post.
 
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