Sand Vs Gravel - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
 
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post #1 of 4 Old 09-24-2012, 10:37 AM Thread Starter
Exclamation Sand Vs Gravel

I've been running my 3 tanks (30G, 75G, 160G) with gravel and I recently purchased a tiger shovelnose catfish, before reading that they do better with sand or no substrate due to them potentially eating the gravel and not being able to digest it. Will this hurt/kill the fish? Should I change out the gravel for sand or nothing? I'm fully aware that removing the gravel will remove a lot of beneficial bacteria which I don't want to do. Would it be a ridiculous hassle to swap the gravel for sand? Should I slowly remove the gravel over the course of a few weeks/months to go bare bottom?
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post #2 of 4 Old 09-24-2012, 11:13 AM
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Originally Posted by LOUIE ACES View Post
I've been running my 3 tanks (30G, 75G, 160G) with gravel and I recently purchased a tiger shovelnose catfish, before reading that they do better with sand or no substrate due to them potentially eating the gravel and not being able to digest it. Will this hurt/kill the fish? Should I change out the gravel for sand or nothing? I'm fully aware that removing the gravel will remove a lot of beneficial bacteria which I don't want to do. Would it be a ridiculous hassle to swap the gravel for sand? Should I slowly remove the gravel over the course of a few weeks/months to go bare bottom?
Considering the fish would be best suited for the 160 gal at some point,,I would shudder at the sand rinsing involved for 160 gal.
While it is true that fishes can ingest gravel,sand,, I believe problem's with this to be uncommon, or rare cases.
0ffer the fish cut talapia,shrimp,earthworm's,carnivore pellet's,and fish will have easier time foraging for food and less likely to ingest the substrate while searching for food's.

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.

Last edited by 1077; 09-24-2012 at 11:15 AM.
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post #3 of 4 Old 10-08-2012, 10:37 AM Thread Starter
Thanks, I'm with you on that. I definitely don't want to do extra work for no reason. It was hard enough setting up the gravel (bought the whole set up used and had to clean/rinse everything) so to take it all out and replace it with sand is NOT something I look forward to doing. Would it be OK to take the gravel out and have a bare bottom tank? I've heard its easier when cleaning the tank but I also know about the beneficial bacteria...pro's vs con's
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post #4 of 4 Old 10-08-2012, 11:22 AM
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I would only go bare bottom in tank where I was prepared to perform frequent water changes, such as grow out tank for young fish ,or hospital/quarantine tank.
The largest surface area available for bacteria to colonize is the substrate.Much beneficial bacteria is found in first few centimeter's of gravel,sand.

The most important medication in your fish medicine cabinet is.. Clean water.
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