Tropical Fish Keeping banner

1 - 6 of 6 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)


I have a 55 gallon tank with 6 Angelfish a Bala Shark and several plants. I've had this tank established for almost a couple months shy of a year and the issue I'm having is the slow/absent growth of my plants. I have used fertilizers (not consistently) and a couple of months ago I added CO2.

After watching several of Dustin's Fish Tank videos on YouTube I have decided that I would like to add dirt to my tank. Currently I just have pea sized gravel in the tank. I am wanting to add dirt to the tank and cap it with my existing gravel.

My question is about the bacteria in the tank. In order to drain the tank to add the dirt I would have to temporarily move my first to a plastic tub (with an airstone). Will it be safe to add them back to the tank after several fills and drains of the aquarium (to remove free floating debris and dirt)? Will I have to completely cycle the tank again? My fish are obviously my priority and I do not want to kill them, but I also want my plants to grow and propagate.

Thanks for the help!

P.S. Here is a link to a video of my tank just showing the plants:

https://youtu.be/8cN8o0YLxzY
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,764 Posts
As long as the filters aren't too disturbed; it should be fine. Most of the beneficial bacteria is in your filter.
 
  • Like
Reactions: dwillings

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,042 Posts
Yes keep you filter media wet and it will live for a little while.

I have heard of others using the Dirt tank idea and it working great but I have tried it and I'm not impressed. Maybe I did something wrong but my plants aren't growing any faster. Next time I will just dose plant food.

Take some photos also and share with us it's always good to see out other do their tanks.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
53 Posts
I did a big substrate change in my 125g a while back going from gravel to sand. I lowered the water and scooped the fish and put them in buckets. I took 3 pair of womens knee high stocking and put the dirtiest, bottom rock I had into them and tied them off. scooped out the rest of the gravel. Put the sand in, burried the stockings (left corner, middle, right corner), put a garbage bag over the sand (to reduce a sand storm in the tank) and filled back up with water. Kept the filters on the tank still wet. Didn't go through a new cycle at all. Took out the stockings after a month (just to be safe). All was good. Just be sure to have everything you need and plan it out in advance so there are no unexpected delays.

***note I did not completely empty the tank of water. Took it down to the top of the substrate. I wanted water in there to hold the "gunkiness" to help keep as much of the bacteria as possible.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,676 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
398 Posts
Dirt is not an easy substrate to work with. I am more concerned about the bacteria you will introduce with dirt than losing your biofilter.
Dirt will go through phases. Will exude ammonia for a while, will form pockets of gases when it breaks down and it's a mess if you need to plant/replant. Most people do not add fish for at least a month after they go with soil substrate.
 
1 - 6 of 6 Posts
Top