Can You Put Moss Ball In A Turtle Tank?

Having moss in your tank will improve your aquarium’s atmosphere. Throughout this post, we’ll explain how it’s beneficial to your turtle’s health and how to install it in your tank. By the end, you’ll understand why moss is a perfect addition to your turtle tank. 

Yes, you can place a moss ball into your turtle tank. In addition to daily water maintenance, you have to place them in an area that receives medium indirect light. Like turtles, the moss ball needs a source of sunlight. A window or artificial lighting are great places to keep your moss ball within your aquarium. 

Are Moss Balls Safe For Turtles?

Any form of vegetation, whether that’s moss or algae, is great for turtles. It’s non-toxic and fulfills the herbivore side of their diet. Moss balls do everything from absorbing nitrates and give your turtles a beautiful, natural environment to live in.

Can Turtles Eat Moss Balls?

Turtles can eat moss balls! When they spot moss balls in the water, they might take a chance to bite them. Make sure that you get your moss balls from a reliable store. That way, your turtle can eat it and not worry about any defects. 

Benefits of Having a Moss Ball

Having a moss ball is a great way to add vegetation to your tank. Here are some other benefits you and your turtle will notice:

  • Low Maintenance

Moss balls require little lighting, waste, and freshwater. So as long as you have a tank with a turtle, you have everything the moss ball needs. 

Similar to sponges, moss balls gather debris over time. Moss balls need to move around in order to maintain their ball-like shape. With lighting, give them an adequate amount of light to avoid creating dead patches. Squeezing the moss ball periodically is the only maintenance you’ll have to do. 

  • Provides Oxygen

Like plants, moss balls collect carbon dioxide (CO2) and release oxygen back to the water. For those who dislike air stones, moss balls are a great source of oxygen for your tank. 

  • Protects Your Tank From Nitrates and Other Chemicals

Nitrates are byproducts of waste and are harmless to turtles under 30 ppm. However, as this number increases, it can stress or kill your pet turtle! That is why you must change your tank water partially to avoid a nitrate problem. 

Like plants, moss balls naturally absorb nitrates. But, it’s not usually a large amount. In this scenario, the moss ball would only be effective in a few gallons of water. Moss balls act as filters, gathering a small number of phosphates, ammonia, and debris. 

  • Helps Regulate Salt

Aquatic plants don’t work well with salt. Freshwater salt in your aquarium can be used to protect your turtles from parasitic outbreaks and reduce the number of nitrates. So with moss balls, you can regulate the salt level to keep your plants and turtles safe. 

Disadvantages of Having a Moss Ball

There are some caveats to having a moss ball in your tank. Here are some of them:

  • No Reproduction

Moss balls are unable to reproduce, they just grow in size. So you won’t see any patches or baby moss balls in your tank. Only cutting one in half will lead to more moss balls, but it’s suggested to just buy more. It can take up to a year for a moss ball to grow back to golf ball size. 

  • Minimal Impact on Tank Health

While it has the same abilities as plants (producing oxygen and absorbing nitrates), moss balls do it on a smaller scale. Often, a tank with multiple plant species will 

How Long Will My Moss Ball Last in the Tank?

With proper care, moss balls can last for two months in a turtle tank. Make sure to give the moss balls proper sunlight, to expand their lifespan. Depending on your turtle’s hunger, it might eat the entire moss ball at once!


While you can place a moss ball in your tank, it’s good to observe your aquarium and how your turtle would react. Also, ensure that you’re giving your turtle an organic moss ball that’s free from germs and other bacteria. By doing so, you’ll preserve your tank’s oxygen while creating a snack for your turtles!

Also read

Best Turtle Tank Dividers

Can I Keep a Turtle in a 10-Gallon Tank?

How To Fix Cloudy Turtle Tank Water


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