Cholla Cactus woods
Cholla, pronounced “Choya” is an all natural product from the desert, and is chemical-free and thorn free. Cholla has a natural near neutral PH balance and is known for promoting good tank health. This is why Cholla is such a sought after product in the aquatic and dry pet world.
It is great for wood crafts, air plants, orchid farming, pet rodent chews, bird toys, aquarium displays, reptiles, hermit crabs, Pleco shrimp, fish, hermit crabs or any small animal environment. The possibilities are endless!
Our Cholla is 100% raw and organic, meaning it is not always “perfect”. No two pieces are alike! When we harvest Cholla, it has been dead for many years.
Spine and thorns:
When alive and healthy the Cholla cactus is not to be messed with, they have hard to remove, painfully strong and abundant thorns that can ruin your day. We only harvest what we call “standing dead Cholla”, this is for a few reasons; first this ensures the driest wood with the most consistency and quality. Second, the dead cholla has shed most of its thorns and we work hard to harvest and assure your Cholla is spine and thorn free.
Introducing Cholla to your reptile or fish aquarium:
Boil the wood first to ensure that you won't be introducing unwanted foreign material to your aquarium or environment so that your lil' friends are safe. We recommend boiling your Cholla for at least 45 minutes. (This boiling process is not necessary or recommended for Chinchilla or rodent chews).
**I recommend you doing your own research on introducing natural products like Cholla to your particular animal or aquatic environment.
Cholla will float when placed in water, but usually for only 24-72 hours. Once it is completely saturated with water it will sink down and stay there. Some stubborn pieces may require ties or stone weights.
505 Farms is a family business and we have been supplying Cholla Wood for over 20 years. Customer service is our priority. Looking for something else? Want something specific? Let us know, we'll go find it! We have a knack for procuring the unusual.
Tank & Livestock health
Nutritionally, cactus is a source of soft fiber suitable for their digestive system. Arguably, other than the wood eaters (such as Panaques) most Pleco's need very little (if any) wood in their diet. The reason they love to rasp on wood is it has all sorts of bacteria and microscopic organisms on it. Since this is a highly porous wood, it does facilitate and encourage this 'sugar coating', which may explain it's popularity in Pleco tanks.
For fry (baby fish), it has proven to be a wonderful hiding place in my aquariums, and they too get to pick away at the microscopic organisms. It attracts and increases the number of infusorians as well.
Once the cactus sinks (in about 24 hours), it becomes a functional plant anchor with the holes facilitating quick, natural attachment.
As a general practice, we recommend that any wood be boiled before adding it to an aquarium.
Although cholla wood is definitely a visually interesting addition to the aquarium, most aquarists don't use its for its decorative value. It's added to the aquarium because shrimp love it!
Promoting natural tank health
Unlike most types of wood that are used in the aquarium, cholla is soft and breaks down over time. During this beneficial processes As with Indian almond leaves and alder cones, tannins are released into the water. This can stain the water a slight yellow color, which some consider unsightly but actually helps imitate the natural habitat of many shrimp species. Most importantly, though, tannins have antibacterial and antifungal properties which help protect your shrimp against disease.
As Cholla wood breaks down a layer of biofilm forms on it. This makes it the perfect place for shrimp to forage; a piece of Cholla wood will likely have a few shrimp on it at any given time.
Lastly, because Cholla is hollow and holey it makes a great hiding place for shrimp, which means you can use it as a natural looking alternative to ceramic shrimp flats. Shrimp will especially appreciate it while molting, when they're very vulnerable and like to be able to retreat to a safe place.