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thinking of switching to sand

Discussion in 'Cichlids' started by chadly831, Jun 14, 2007.

  1. chadly831

    chadly831 chadly

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    i am thinking of taking out the gravel and using sand in my 75 gallon. my main concern is will the sand affect my blue dempsey in any bad ways. and also will the sand affect any of the biological settings in the tank. thanks
     
  2. Mgamer20o0

    Mgamer20o0 BobsTropicalPlants.com
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    well if you change it all at once you might have a mini cycle. you would be tossing out a lot of good bacteria. other then that i think it should be good. just make sure to wash it.
     
  3. FreakIndeed

    FreakIndeed Yo yo yo!

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    My regular JD seems to like the sand a lot. Always picking up mouth fulls of it and spitting it out. A couple notes though:

    #1 Rinse well because when adding sand to a tank already setup, it's going to get cloudy. You won't be able to help it, but if you rinse well it will lessen it.

    #2 At most, change half at a time. That gravel is going to have a lot of biological filtration in it and removing it all at once could give you a mini-cycle.

    #3 Be sure to turn off you filters when adding the sand or doing maintenance that kicks it up.

    #4 Big fish like JD's poop big poops (as I'm sure you already know). The waste REALLY sticks out on light colored sand. My pleco, JD and Severum are professional poopers and I ended up scattering some gravel around on top of the sand just so the poop would blend in. I didn't really mind the poop so much, but my wife thought it was "gross" and "didn't want to see it". :)
     
    #3 FreakIndeed, Jun 14, 2007
    Last edited: Jun 14, 2007
  4. severum mama

    severum mama is a big bowl of wrong.

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    I saw your post from just a couple of weeks ago where you were having problems with a mini-cycle. I'm glad that things are back to normal, but I'd be wary of switching out the substrate until the tank has more time to really stabilize- that's JMO.

    I agree with everything that's been said so far, and I just want to throw in there that I've changed substrates in an established tank before, and it's pretty much a huge PITA. Not something I'd want to do unless I was really dissatisfied with the substrate.
     
  5. Rbishop

    Rbishop ...and over the edge.
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    The easiest way to change out the substrate I have found...

    #1 Buy the next larger size tank.

    #2 Move everything from the tank you want the substrate changed out, to the new tank.

    #3 Do the substrate change.

    #4 Restock original tank.


    Works everytime, no mini-cycles.

    :grinyes:
     
  6. severum mama

    severum mama is a big bowl of wrong.

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    LOL, then you can stock the larger tank!
     
  7. rmcder

    rmcder AC Members

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    Sand is fine for ebjds. You're going to see the waste buildup more than with gravel, and that means you will want to vacuum often (a good idea anyway with ebjds). To avoid a cycling problem, use cloth or mesh bags filled with gravel from your existing setup to speed up bacterial growth and do part of the tank at a time (as suggested above). Now... To avoid cloudy water with new sand, take the following steps:

    1. Get pool filter sand (larger/heavier grains).
    2. Get a 5 gallon bucket at home depot or lowes.
    3. Tilt bucket to one side so water can flow out on the low side.
    4. Get a hose going HARD so the water is swirling vigorously and spilling out.
    5. Add sand s-l-o-w-l-y.
    6. If you're really compulsive, do this twice.

    What should happen is that the really light stuff should stay suspended and pour out the side. Heavy stuff should sink. If you do this right, you should have ZERO problem with cloudiness after.
     
  8. number1sixerfan

    number1sixerfan AC Members

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    Try this, I did it last week and it worked like a charm.

    Take out all gravel at once.

    Put in rinsed and clean sand.

    Then place a good amount of gravel in a plastic container/pot/jar etc.

    Place container with gravel in the tank on top of sand.

    The beneficial bacteria will still be in the tank and after a day or two, you can take the container of gravel out. Be sure to use a big container with a lot of surface area so that it can hold a lot of gravel.
     
  9. chadly831

    chadly831 chadly

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    thanks guys. really helped
     

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