Marbles?! - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 20 Old 03-16-2011, 08:53 PM Thread Starter
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Marbles?!

Do people actually use Marbles as a normal substrate? Really? I have heard of using this for breeding purposes so that the eggs fall between and the parents cant eat them...but other than that, does anyone here have pics of that? I would love to see them, I have never actually seen a tank with Marble substrates.
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post #2 of 20 Old 03-16-2011, 09:03 PM
I dont see a problem with marbles as a regular substrate

38 gallon :
Pelvicachromis Taeniatus Nigerian Red not yet breeding pair
4 Pangio Kuhli
12 Hemmigrammus Bleheri
2 Botia Lohachata
1 Botia Straita
1 Ancistrus Sp.
6 Poecilia Reticulata




The Wet Spot Portland Oregon!!!!!!

ADA: Do!aqua Iwagumi 10 gallon size!
7 Clown Killies
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post #3 of 20 Old 03-16-2011, 09:58 PM Thread Starter
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Oh no, I don't see a problem either, I just have never seen it. ha I tried googling, but didn't really find anything. haha
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post #4 of 20 Old 03-16-2011, 11:59 PM
oh, well i say get colored marbles and it might look good

38 gallon :
Pelvicachromis Taeniatus Nigerian Red not yet breeding pair
4 Pangio Kuhli
12 Hemmigrammus Bleheri
2 Botia Lohachata
1 Botia Straita
1 Ancistrus Sp.
6 Poecilia Reticulata




The Wet Spot Portland Oregon!!!!!!

ADA: Do!aqua Iwagumi 10 gallon size!
7 Clown Killies
7 Ghost shrimp
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post #5 of 20 Old 03-17-2011, 03:12 AM
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Generally,, the same principal that allows eggs to Fall through the marbles where fish can't get them,allows uneaten food,poop, to also fall through.
Some also suggest that fishes don't really appreciate or like ,,light reflecting off such a substrate and then perhaps stessing fishes who for the most part,,would enjoy darker substrates,less light.
Some who keep Betta's claim their fish" likes to play with the marbles" but perhaps ,just maybe,,they are simply irritated by the light reflecting from the marbles and are seeking to move them for same reason?

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.
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post #6 of 20 Old 03-17-2011, 05:08 AM
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Generally,, the same principal that allows eggs to Fall through the marbles where fish can't get them,allows uneaten food,poop, to also fall through.
Some also suggest that fishes don't really appreciate or like ,,light reflecting off such a substrate and then perhaps stessing fishes who for the most part,,would enjoy darker substrates,less light.
Some who keep Betta's claim their fish" likes to play with the marbles" but perhaps ,just maybe,,they are simply irritated by the light reflecting from the marbles and are seeking to move them for same reason?
The only fish I have heard don't like reflective substrate are neon tetras, but that doesn't mean others don't also have a problem with it. I use regular marbles, as well as the flattish glass drops, but not as the whole substrate, only as accent on top of gravel.

Marbles would probably do well in a tank that gets 100% water changes, since they would be easy to rinse off. Yes, the poop, uneaten food, etc., would sink between the marbles, but by the same token it would also come out easily.
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post #7 of 20 Old 03-17-2011, 12:55 PM
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The only fish I have heard don't like reflective substrate are neon tetras, but that doesn't mean others don't also have a problem with it. I use regular marbles, as well as the flattish glass drops, but not as the whole substrate, only as accent on top of gravel.

Marbles would probably do well in a tank that gets 100% water changes, since they would be easy to rinse off. Yes, the poop, uneaten food, etc., would sink between the marbles, but by the same token it would also come out easily.
No forest fish likes bright or reflective substrates. In fact, I can't think of any fish that "likes" a reflective substrate.

Almost all the fish we maintain in aquaria occur in water with a dark substrate. There are exceptions, some occur over tan-coloured sand. But even this is still not "bright" due to the forest canopy shading the water as well as frequent wood and leaf litter. Darker substrates absolutely mean less stressed and therefore healthier fish. Several years ago Dr. Stanley Weitzman had articles mentioning this.

I have personal experience with substrate colours and several species of Amazonian forest fish. There is not the remotest question that given the choice, they prefer dark substrates. Their colour (fish can lighten and darken their cells according to their environment) and their behaviours (more out and about, less "hiding") over darker substrates is undeniable.

The colours of the fish themselves are another clue to this. Viewed from above, they are intended to blend in with the substrate to fool predators; viewed from below they are lighter coloured to blend in with the surface.

All this should be considered when selecting a substrate. Fish forced to live over something un-natural will be under stress, and that weakens the immune system and cause many other problems.

As for the issue of marbles trapping debris, this is significant too. Food that falls between marbles will not be eaten as the fish can't get to it. There it will decompose. And whereas a substrate of sand or fine gravel (or soil) has the right porousness to encourage the host of bacteria that handle this naturally, this is less in a large-sized substrate material.

Byron.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #8 of 20 Old 03-18-2011, 04:58 AM
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Byron - what you say makes sense. I wasn't saying that other fish were fine with reflective surfaces, only that I had only heard it about neon tetras.
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post #9 of 20 Old 03-18-2011, 06:10 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amethyst123 View Post
The only fish I have heard don't like reflective substrate are neon tetras, but that doesn't mean others don't also have a problem with it. I use regular marbles, as well as the flattish glass drops, but not as the whole substrate, only as accent on top of gravel.

Marbles would probably do well in a tank that gets 100% water changes, since they would be easy to rinse off. Yes, the poop, uneaten food, etc., would sink between the marbles, but by the same token it would also come out easily.

No ,Marbles are poor for use as substrate for reasons mentioned by both Byron, And myself.
I strive to offer info that will give the new hobbyist the best chance with their fishes with least amount of problems .

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.
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post #10 of 20 Old 03-18-2011, 12:38 PM
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Byron - what you say makes sense. I wasn't saying that other fish were fine with reflective surfaces, only that I had only heard it about neon tetras.
No problem. I felt it important to explain the issue, as others reading this thread, especially beginners, could think that aside from neons it is fine. I wanted to set the record straight. B.

Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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