Changing substrate - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-26-2020, 09:15 AM Thread Starter
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Changing substrate

My mature 126 litre tank is pretty bare at the moment with only a couple of java ferns and not many fish so it seems like a good time to start over with new substrate and new planting. I currently have a mixed natural colour gravel in there which has been there for years and I want to change it for a black substrate. The inhabitants are 1 guorami, 4 chain loach, 1 rummy nose tetra. 2 wood shrimp, 1 armano shrimp and loads of dwarf blue shrimp- I'll be moving them into a spare tank whlie I do the changeover. I don't want to spend a fortune so rather than going for expensive growing substrate I'll probably go for something inert with root tabs, does anyone have any suggestions? I would like to add some corys at some point so nothing sharp. Also I don't want to kill my fish or have to deal with a cycle, will they be ok if i save most of the water and keep the filter running in sparetank while I'm changing things?
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post #2 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-26-2020, 05:18 PM
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The consensus on forum is that sharp substrates do not harm corydoras. So no worries! They also suggest that bbs is the perfect substrate for Corydoras so go with that. Cheap and harmless.
Hope that helps!!

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post #3 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-28-2020, 07:56 PM
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I think it's more accurate to say the consensus on the forum is that there is no consensus. Amy has held the opinion that Black Diamond Blasting sand, a popular and cheap substrate, is not suitable for Corydoras. Others on here have argued that it's fine, or questioned why it's a problem. This has become a contentious issue.

BDBS is sharp. It's a sand blasting compound. Many say it's not suitable for Corydoras others keep them together with no issues

I personally think Eco Complete and flourite are sharp. The aren't as hard as BDBS, but they are a lot harder than a Corydoras.

I think some of the other aquarium sand is a bit more rounded, like Tahitian Moonsand.
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post #4 of 4 (permalink) Old 09-29-2020, 11:20 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for replies. I didnít go with the blasting sand, instead got some black substrate from TM Aquatix which claims to be all natural and great for plants but Iím not sure what itís actually made of. However, I have tested my water today so I know whatís what before I change anything and I have trace amounts of ammonia ( just the slightest tinge of green) and very high nitrate, nitrite is 0. I cleaned the filter on Friday, could this be the issue? I just rinsed the sponges in tank water and didnít touch the ceramic stuff. Now Iím worried if I change the substrate Iím going to have issues.
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