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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi,

Just wondering what "ghost wood" actually is. I tried to find some references on google as to what kind/species of tree is ghost wood, but had no luck. Anybody know?

Thanks,

Marcos
 

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Ghost Wood Myths

To clarify a few "myths" found elsewhere on the web as well as this forum, Ghost wood IS NOT oak. It also IS NOT the same as other types of wood commonly sold in the pet trade. We have been selling ghost wood for about 10 years and chose this wood for our unique line of quality vivarium products due to its unique qualities and beautiful appearance. We only know of one distributor of this wood who will not divulge its true species name. I have seen this wood in nature and it grows as a shrub in certain western states and I also will not divulge the genus or species to protect it from illegal poaching. Its limited range as well as collecting permit regulations dictate the cost of this unusual wood. It is then processed by sandblasting which adds additional costs (as well as health risks to the handlers). Along with its beautiful appearance, Ghost wood possesses natural properties which allow it to hold up very well under wet conditions which makes it so highly desireable among dart frog enthusiasts. While I will agree that it is a little pricy, it is worth every penny invested.
 

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so if it has a limited range then in a way we are ridding a species of plant/wood off this planet.
i guess it could be the same way as all these pumilios being brought into the states for sale. for profit and heck with the enviroment.
i have come across other sources for this ghostwood but i don't off hand remember who they were.
 

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Did you read about the permit/ regulated harvesting and poaching comments? These are in place to prevent such consequences.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Interesting stuff. I just wanted to know out of curiosity not to harvest :) I think the prices were perfectly reasonable considering the quality of the wood and how it does in a wet environment. I did wonder about being oak since it looks more gnarled than oak.

I certainly understand hesitancy about revealing the source of the wood. I think many in this hobby are naturally very curious about what is in their tanks for many reasons many of which have nothing to do with trying to cut the vendor out of the loop. I always look at things with trade names with a lot of skepticism, but that skepticism could be easily assuaged if the vendor explained such things on their website or in their literature (like dartfrogs did here). One of the reasons I took up dart frogs instead of salt water aquariums is that there seems to be more willingness among this community to share information and encourage sustainable practices.

That is the double edged sword about anything like this. Interest brings awareness and appreciation, but also economic incentive and with that you have to rely on a whole bunch of folks to "do the right thing" and P.A. Walt has a good point about this regarding the pumilios. It seems to me that supporting vendors with sustainable practices is the way to go.

I'm glad Dartfrogs mentioned why the term "ghost wood" is used instead of the genus and species. I only wish that sort of information was conveyed more readily to the consumer by the vendor. I think such a business practice is okay. However, I take exception to repackaging generic GE silicone and calling it aquarium silicone at a 300% markup or refusing to give an MSDS sheet, in violation of federal law and possibly jeopardizing the health of animals, for "propriatary" cement.

I would love to see some sort of accreditation for sustainable practices in the hobby but know what sort of rigmarole that requires. It seems that the salt water hobbyists have tried to get this going but with little success.

In the interim, I will continue to try to find vendors that support sustainable practices such as Black Jungle, and I hope that all vendors continue to evaluate the impact of their practices especially regarding the import of frogs.

[/soapbox]

Marcos
 
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This is one of the reasons I like this forum. Lots of ppl willing to express ideas/views and at the same time, sharing information.
 
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ghost wood is great i bought some from black jungle and it is doing fantastic, moss is just starting to grow on it and it looks really cool.
 

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i'll have to go the route of people are not going to reveal the true name of ghostwood because they want to sell it. Send any vendor an email and ask them what exactly is ghost wood and they won't tell you, because they want to make money off it. Same concept as mentioned with GE Silicone and it being repackaged in form that says "For aquariums" for double the price. People are always trying to make a profit somewhere somehow.

Want to know how to find out what kind of wood ghostwood is? contact an arborist, bet you they will tell you. You can find out anything you want, just have to ask the right people.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Manzanita i'm not saying its manzanita but you can read about it and make your own determination
 

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Re: Ghost Wood Myths

To clarify a few "myths" found elsewhere on the web as well as this forum, Ghost wood IS NOT oak. It also IS NOT the same as other types of wood commonly sold in the pet trade. We have been selling ghost wood for about 10 years and chose this wood for our unique line of quality vivarium products due to its unique qualities and beautiful appearance. We only know of one distributor of this wood who will not divulge its true species name. I have seen this wood in nature and it grows as a shrub in certain western states and I also will not divulge the genus or species to protect it from illegal poaching. Its limited range as well as collecting permit regulations dictate the cost of this unusual wood. It is then processed by sandblasting which adds additional costs (as well as health risks to the handlers). Along with its beautiful appearance, Ghost wood possesses natural properties which allow it to hold up very well under wet conditions which makes it so highly desireable among dart frog enthusiasts. While I will agree that it is a little pricy, it is worth every penny invested.
Now i'm not trying to start an argument or have you take this is an attack but by saying you won't reveal the name of the wood to protect it from poaching doesn't really make sense because you sell it. If you really cared about the wood becoming poached or harvested by people you should support it to the fullest and not sell it either.

That would be like me selling fur coats made from an animal but not telling what kind of animal it was because i don't want people killing animals for the fur.

But like i said above, if people want to know what it is, all you have to do is ask the right person and you'll eventually get an answer. There's nothing wrong with people wanting to know what the product is they are buying, it's all a play on the consumer by calling it "ghost wood" so that they will pay the high prices people ask for it instead of finding it on their own. A little research goes a long way
 

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Remember not to mix Black Jungle line ghostwood with other import year ghostwood, without site data we could damage the hobby by mixing ghostwood from differant sources. Plus there is no way to identify true ghostwood just by looking at the phenotype, there are many other types of wood that look almost identical. The next thing you know someone will be selling El Dorado ghostwood. What will we do then?

some free sarcasm
Eric
 

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I mix ghostwood all the time to try to create a designer wood. I know that outbreeding depression has been proven with other types of wood, but until you can PROVE that it's bad with ghostwood too, I'm gonna keep doing it.
 
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