Moss balls, are small, green spheres of algae that are mainly found in freshwater lakes. They are often sold as novelty items in aquarium and plant stores and are generally considered decorative plants.
However, what many people don’t know is that these little green balls offer a wide range of benefits for both your fish and your aquarium as a whole.
It’s these benefits that make moss balls a popular choice for both beginner and experienced fishkeepers alike. So, if you’re thinking of adding a moss ball to your tank, here are sixteen reasons why you should:
16 Benefits For Having A Moss Ball In An Aquarium:
- Helps Oxygenate The Water
- They Balance The pH Levels
- Acts As A Natural Water Filter
- Reduces Algae Growth In The Tank
- They Absorb Harmful Bacteria
- Provides Food To Shrimp And Fish
- Good Nitrogen And Phosphate Levels
- Provides A Natural Habitat For Fish
- Requires Very Little Maintenance
- Aesthetically Pleasing To The Eye
- They Can Last A Lifetime
- Betta Fish Love Them
- Are Snail-Proof
- Fish Don’t Eat It
- Easy To Propagate
- Safe For All Aquariums
1. Helps Oxygenate The Water
Moss balls are known for their ability to help oxygenate the water in your aquarium. This is because they release oxygen into the water as a by-product of photosynthesis.
This extra oxygen is not only beneficial for your fish but also helps to keep the water clean and clear which is a huge bonus and keeps your tank looking at its best.
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2. They Balance The pH Levels
Moss balls are also known for their ability to help balance the pH levels in your aquarium. They do this by absorbing carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen into the water which helps to keep the pH levels stable.
Top Tip: It’s a well known fact, that some aquarium plants don’t do well in high pH water! However this is not the case for moss balls and they can survive in pH levels of 8.4, and still remain healthy.
3. Acts As A Natural Water Filter
Moss balls are also great for filtering out toxins like ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates from the water which helps to keeps it clean and free of any harmful toxins.
However, it’s important to note that moss balls should not be the only form of filtration in your aquarium and should be used in conjunction with other forms of filtration such as mechanical and chemical filters.
4. Reduces Algae Growth In The Tank
If you have an aquarium that is prone to algae growth or if you live in an area with hard water then we have some good news! Moss balls can actually reduce algae growth in your aquarium and this is because they absorb nutrients from the water that algae need to grow.
“But” they won’t completely eliminate algae growth and you may need to clean the moss ball from time to time as the algae will start to grow on it.
5. They Absorb Harmful Bacteria
Moss balls are also great at absorbing harmful bacteria from the water. This is because they have a high surface area to volume ratio which means that they can absorb more bacteria than other types of filters.
They do this by absorbing the bacteria into their cells where it is then broken down and used as food.
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6. Provides Food To Shrimp And Fish
Did you know that moss balls provide food to your fish and shrimp? That’s right? But not in the way you might think! Moss balls actually get bits of food trapped in their fur and fibers from previous feeding.
It’s this food that the fish and especially shrimp find later on! So if it looks like your fish or shrimps are attacking or eating the moss ball don’t be alarmed as they are simply trying to eat the leftover food.
7. Good Nitrogen And Phosphate Levels
Moss balls also help to maintain good nitrogen and phosphate levels in the water. This is what keeps the water healthy and clean which is a big help if you have other plants in your aquarium.
By absorbing the nitrogen and phosphate from the water this keeps the levels balanced. However, depending on the size of your tank and moss ball you may need more than one to maintain good levels.
8. Provides A Natural Habitat For Fish
Moss balls also provide a natural habitat for fish. This is because they offer places to hide which helps keep them healthy and happy.
It’s also a great place for them to lay their eggs and can help increase the hatching rate of eggs. So if you want to provide your fish with a natural habitat then adding a moss ball is the perfect way to do it.
9. Requires Very Little Maintenance
Moss balls are very easy to take care of and require very little maintenance. This is because they don’t need to be replaced as often as other types of filters and they don’t need to be cleaned as often either.
All you really need to do is give the moss ball a quick rinse every few weeks to remove any debris that may have gotten trapped in their fur and fibers.
10. Aesthetically Pleasing To The Eye
Moss balls are also a great addition to your tank because they add color and life to an otherwise boring environment. And let’s face it, who doesn’t love seeing a little bit of nature in their aquarium right?
Well, with their vibrant green color and unique shape moss balls are the perfect way to do just that!
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11. They Can Last A Lifetime
Moss balls are also very long-lasting in fact, if taken care of properly they can last up to 100 years. So if you’re looking for some plant life that you won’t have to replace anytime soon then we recommend adding a moss ball to your aquarium.
12. Betta Fish Love Them
Betta fish love moss balls and can often be seen swimming around them or resting on them. This is because they provide a safe and comfortable place for them to hide and relax in.
These fish have also been seen eating left over food that got trapped in between the moss balls hairs. (Cleaning it, so to speak) So if you have a betta fish then we recommend adding a moss ball to your aquarium as they will love it!
13. Are Snail-Proof
Snails love to eat planets but, for some reason they dont like to munch on moss balls making them snail-proof! This means that you don’t have to worry about it getting eaten by snails.
This is a great benefit if you have a lot of snails in your aquarium and you’re looking for a plant that is safe from being eaten by snails then we recommend adding a moss ball to your aquarium.
14. Fish Don’t Eat It
Moss balls are also safe from being eaten by fish as they dont seem to like the taste of it. They only like to nibble scraps of food leftover on the surface of the moss ball.
However, there have been cases where shrimp have torn through the moss ball trying to get bits of food so be careful.
15. Easy To Propagate
Moss balls are very easy to propagate which means that you can easily create more of them. This is done by simply taking your moss ball and cutting it in half.
Once you have done this place the moss in your palm and genetly roll into a ball then place it back into the aquarium.
You may have to do this a few times to get the moss to stick but it will eventually take root and start growing into a sphere.
16. Safe For All Aquariums
Most aquatic plants don’t do well in salt water aquariums but moss balls are an exception. This is because they are able to thrive in both fresh and salt water making them safe for all types of aquariums.
So no matter what type of aquarium you have we recommend adding a moss ball to it!
How Many Moss Balls Should You Have In An Aquarium?
The number of moss balls you should have in your aquarium will depend on the size of your tank as well as the number of fish you have.
A great way to finger this out is to follow the golden rule! which states that you should have one to three moss balls for every one gallon of water in your aquarium!
However, this doesnt mean that you should add 150 moss balls to your aquarium! What this means is that you can have a suitable amount of moss balls in your tank without it getting overcrowded.
In the end, its your desicion on how many you want in your aquarium. Just remember to not add too many where it looks cluttered.
How To Keep Your Moss Ball Healthy In An Aquarium?
As we have already mentioned, when it comes to caring for your moss ball they require very little maintenance. However, for your moss ball to live a long and healthy life in your aquarium, there are a few things you need to keep in mind.
- First, you should make sure to give your moss ball a quick rinse every time clean the tank to remove any debris that may have gotten trapped in its fur and fibers.
- Second, you need to make sure the water in your aquarium is clean and free of harmful bacteria. This can be done by regularly testing the water quality and making necessary adjustments as needed.
- And finally, you should try to keep the temperature of your aquarium within the ideal range for moss balls. This is usually between 65 and 77 degrees Fahrenheit.
Thats it bassically very simple, the moss ball will take care of itself. They dont need any fertalization or much light to grow!
Top Tip: As these moss balls are ussally found at the bottom of the lakes where they dont really take in much light. So dont worry about giving them too much or too little light.
As long as you keep these things in mind, your moss ball should be happy and healthy for many years to come! If you want to go into more detail about caring for your moss balls in an aquarium watch this video below from Youtube channel More Aquarium Co-Op.
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So there you have it, there is sixteen benefits to why you should add a moss ball to your aquarium! We hope you found this post helpful and informative.
If you would like to know more about moss balls or would like some more advice on how to use them in your tank then feel free to check out the rest of our articles on this website. Thanks for reading!