Sand or fine gravel? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-22-2003, 01:53 PM Thread Starter
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Location: Rugby, England
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I'm revamping my Mirabello 30 (30 litres/6.8 US gallons) after moving my rapidly growing fancy goldfish to a large tank at work. I have access to a lot of cultured fine gravel, but I'm considering sand - I currently have large gravel that is pretty useless for planting.

I'd be interested in the pros and cons of a sand substrate. I'd imagine keeping it clean would be difficult.

Would it also help to add laterite for the plants?

Thanks

Neil
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post #2 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-22-2003, 04:44 PM
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Sand just doesn't contain any nutrients and being so small in diameter, it doesn't allow for much water flow through to the roots of plants. Malaysian Trumpet Snails (MTS) definitely help keep the sand clean by consuming detritus, stirring the substrate and aerating the roots of plants. I would consider MTS a must with a sand substrate.
A laterite base would definitely help, yes.

- Sam P -
plantedtanker in limbo - all tanks currently in storage
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post #3 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-22-2003, 07:25 PM
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Thats the exact formula I use for my 5 gallon, Sand with a laterite base and MTS to stir the sand, its working wonderfully so far.

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post #4 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-23-2003, 01:10 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks guys, I'll hunt around and see if I can get some MTS. Are they easily available in the UK? How many would you add to a 7 gallon tank?
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post #5 of 5 (permalink) Old 12-23-2003, 05:48 PM
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heh heh heh, add at least a half dozen and wait for the population explosion, rabbits have nothing on these little guys. Their live breeders so you can check the tank after lights out and find dozens if not more depending on the food supply

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