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Sand & Gravel


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#1 Ashton

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Posted 04 June 2008 - 10:08 AM

I've now got my Aspidoras pauciradiatus in a tank with just 2 Otocinclus and they seem happy enough, but I've got the small roman gravel in there and was thinking of changing over to sand. However, I've never had sand before and only seem to hear bad reports of compacting and giving off bad smells and turning black.

A friend has suggested that I leave a layer of gravel in the bottom and add sand to the top of this and as it sinks it will prevent compacting. Will this work, or should I change to 100% sand? Also what's the best way to care for the sand to stop any of the unpleasantness, and is it true that I can buy silicone sand from builders or Toys R Us?

#2 mummymonkey

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Posted 04 June 2008 - 11:39 AM

Mixing gravel and sand will result in the gravel working it's way to the top anyway.
I have sand in all my tanks and never have any problems. The trick is to keep only a thin layer - 2cm is plenty.
The only issue may be if you have lots of plants. I keep only floating plants or plants attached to wood.
I've also seen people keep plants in pots.

#3 mummymonkey

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Posted 04 June 2008 - 11:40 AM

Should also add that I use river sand which I collect from the banks of a local river.

#4 scotcat

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Posted 04 June 2008 - 08:45 PM

The sand that I am using at present is play sand from Argos and as mummymonkey states just a thin layer will do. I have also used silver sand from builders such as B&Q or Homebase. It depends really on your choice. I find the play sand is a little dark while the silver sand is more lighter colour. You could experiment as they are both pretty inexpensive.
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