Powerhead? - Page 3 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #21 of 23 Old 11-21-2009, 10:45 AM Thread Starter
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I do about 20% changes twice a week due to the waste load. I've been thinking about changing out the substrate anyway... not a fan of white.
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post #22 of 23 Old 11-21-2009, 11:03 AM
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I think TM is correct, white gravel is often calcareous, comprised of dolomite, marble, or crushed coral. It is primarily intended for marine, rift lake cichlid and livebearer tanks, fish that require hardness and higher (alkaline) pH conditions.

I would recommend replacing it with a darker inert gravel, regular aquarium gravel or similar. Buying it in bulk from the fish store will be less expensive.

On the partial water change, twice a week is fine but it should be more than 20%. I would recommend 40-50% twice a week, or 70% once a week. Larger cichlids produce a lot of waste as you know, and it is the urine and liquefied solid waste that can only be removed by a water change. Filters and bacteria break down the solid into liquid, but they can't remove it. However, change your substrate first, then go to the increased pwc. I think you will see the improvement in your fish.


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 #23 of 23 Old 11-21-2009, 11:25 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for all your advice guys... I'll get crakin on changing out that substrate.
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