The pros and cons of using sand? - Page 2 - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #11 of 13 Old 09-25-2011, 10:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by folion View Post
just java moss and maybe java fern to help with water quality a little. thank you for your help.
Sure, no problem! With those plants you won't need to go heavy on depth for substrate. Java moss & fern don't need to be rooted, they can be attached to driftwood. You can always add more substrate later down the road if you want to do rooted plants.

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post #12 of 13 Old 09-26-2011, 12:01 AM
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With a 75 gallon you should be fine with 2 bags of sand, you could go for 2 1/2 just personal preference really. Years ago I switched one tank to sand now you could not pay me to have a gravel tank, sand is so much easier.
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post #13 of 13 Old 09-26-2011, 12:07 PM
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Others have answered your question, so this is just an agreement with a couple of highlighted points.

The depth is critical; if substrate-rooted plants (swords, crypts, aponogeton, vallisneria, etc) are planned, you need sufficient depth to provide a rooting medium. But the plants also work to prevent compaction. If you have no substrate-rooted plants, the depth can be minimal, an inch is sufficient; this will not cause compaction issues, or shouldn't, and regular stirring during the water change is adequate.

In a planted tank you shouldn't be messing around with the substrate, and I find a 2 inch sand layer throughout the tank with deeper areas (3 inches) at the back for large sword plants and maybe 1-1.5 inches at the front works well. I never touch it.

Malaysian livebearing snails are also very useful, as they c continually weave their way throughout the substrate.

I use playsand in my sand tanks; I buy it at Home Depot, it is made by Quikrete [spelling may be off] and is dark gray/tan dry. It does light a bit under the tank lights, but as it is identical to the sand in the Amazon basin I like it. So do the fish. You can see it in the new photos of my 115g and 33g tanks, under "Aquariums" below my name on the left. In my 5-foot 115g tank I recently changed it to sand, and used two bags; 50kg (110 pounds), cost $12 CDN.

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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