How do you clean a sandy aquarium? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
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post #1 of 3 Old 04-25-2014, 10:39 AM Thread Starter
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How do you clean a sandy aquarium?

This is kind of a two-parter here.
1- I already have an established tank with sand covering its bottom. I used playground sand that I rinsed with hot water. The betta and two mystery snails are fine. The only problem is that I have a betta. And a Tetra 10i filter. A betta's tail and the 10i don't mix. I had to put a pantyhose sock over the filter to reduce pull and flow. There are bits I food every now and then that I stir up with a net and fish out, but there is also a buildup of snail and fish poop that I can never completely catch. If I tried to siphon it, the sand would pour out with the "debris". So how can I clean it?

2- I am going to set up a 29g fancy goldfish tank and heard they like burrowing, so I would need to use sand. I found silica sand in 5lb bags pretty cheap. I have an Aqueon quietflow 55/75 for them, but I am worried that the sand will be pulled up and pushed away by the filter. How can I have this filter as strong as it is and not have any (or the least amount) of the sand moved?
Or should I go with gravel?


Don't be so abSERd!
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post #2 of 3 Old 04-25-2014, 01:20 PM
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1. You have to hold the siphon over the sand roughly half an inch to an inch and pick up the debris from that. Yes you will pick up some sand but it shouldn't be so much that you really notice a difference in the tank. You can use gentle swirling motions to kick up the debris and suck them up with the siphon. Look on youtube for what this looks like, there's a few good videos up of it.

2. well I really don't condone this. One goldfish regardless of type needs at least 30 gallons at the bare minimum, 40 being better. If you want more than one goldfish go with a 55 or larger, 70 being much better to house roughly 3-5 fancies with no other fish. As for burrowing I've never heard of this behavior in the aquarium, perhaps in the wild to get away from freezing waters but I'm not so sure. Either way sand or gravel is fine for goldfish.

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post #3 of 3 Old 04-25-2014, 04:39 PM
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They don't burrow in the sand - they constantly sift through it picking out morsels of food.

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