Eco-Complete with Cory catfish? - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-10-2015, 09:16 PM Thread Starter
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Eco-Complete with Cory catfish?

Hello.

Is Eco-complete too sharp for Cory catfish?

I think I saw a youtube video they said that since they like to move around the substrate a lot, you can't have anything sharp or else it will cut them.

Is this true? Is so, should I put normal gravel on top of the eco-complete or just avoid cory catfish all together?

Thanks.
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post #2 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-10-2015, 09:48 PM
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I have them with eco complete and they have barbells still
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post #3 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-11-2015, 01:37 AM
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I capped my Eco-complete with Peace River gravel for this reason. It is a bit difficult to keep some of the Eco from coming up to the top, but there isn't much of it exposed.
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post #4 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-11-2015, 01:43 AM
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They'll be fine. That thing about cory barbels being damaged by sharp gravel is a myth. It is NOT true. Your corys will be fine with Eco-Complete.
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post #5 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-11-2015, 01:47 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by randym View Post
They'll be fine. That thing about cory barbels being damaged by sharp gravel is a myth. It is NOT true. Your corys will be fine with Eco-Complete.
That would explain why my 9 month old albino cory's look just fine, barbels and all, even though all I have is eco complete.


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post #6 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-11-2015, 01:57 AM
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Can't tell you for sure if it's sharp or not. I got some advice to not use it because it MAY be sharp for corys, but the deciding factor for me was that eco complete has no nutrients of its own out of the bag, but just helps absorb and release them with time.

About capping though, I also got advice that capping eco complete with something like sand is pretty useless as the eco-complete pieces will begin to come to the surface. Especially with corys digging. But since several people above haven't had problems with it hurting corys. I think you should just decide from an aesthetic point of view. Also, my understanding is that eco complete pieces are pretty varied in their sizes, and won't provide a very uniform surface. However, again it's up to you whether you want that look.

Seemed kind of a waste of money to me since I was planning on capping with sand anyways and didn't want the eco showing.

Good luck though

Last edited by behemoth; 10-11-2015 at 01:59 AM. Reason: typo
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post #7 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-11-2015, 02:57 AM
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I've kept cories with Eco-Complete for almost 10 years now with no issues. Even the babies are fine with it.
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post #8 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-12-2015, 12:15 AM Thread Starter
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This is great to hear. I picked up 4 cory catfish today at Petco. Hopefully they will be ok.
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post #9 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-12-2015, 12:24 AM
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I am using blasting sand and my corys are fine. So I can't imagine eco complete being too sharp.
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post #10 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-12-2015, 12:44 AM
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Great to see everyone mentioning no problems with "sharp" substrates and cory barbels.

Mio, Corys do prefer at least 6-8 of their own to really liven up and be more happy. It's worth it for their happiness and you'll enjoy seeing them being more active as a result.
As a side note though, I also know "sharp" substrates don't cause barbell erosion (at least in clean water), but bottom sifters do love fine grain sand much more as they can easily sift it through their gills as they pick up food and it's "softer" for them to wiggle their faces in. I think it would be worth it to just add a thin layer (1/2'-1" of sand just for the Corys to enjoy that much more. It's not necessary, and they could live just fine without sand, but the bottom dwellers would appreciate it.
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post #11 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-13-2015, 05:37 PM
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From my experience the problem with Cory's is related more to the size of the particles instead of the shapeness. If they can easily move the pieces around they don't tend to have problems. But if they try to dig through large pieces that they cannot move or easily move then they wear down the barbels. What looks sharp to a human doesn't look as sharp when you are the size of a Cory.
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post #12 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-13-2015, 06:14 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by randym View Post
They'll be fine. That thing about cory barbels being damaged by sharp gravel is a myth. It is NOT true. Your corys will be fine with Eco-Complete.
I had corys in a planted 135 and they had no barbels left after a while. Obviously this is anecdotal but in my two large tanks with corys the sand bottomed tank corys had them, the other with eco complete did not. Both tanks had albino corys purchased at the same time and were in a tank with peaceful community fish. In reading online this could also be because the larger tank didnt have sufficient flow at the substrate which allowed bacteria to thrive, but im not sure


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post #13 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-13-2015, 06:17 PM
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I have at least 20 species of corydoras (brochis and aspidoras also) and from my experience, I have had no problems at all with barbel erosion and I've had them on abrasive sand (can feel it is rather sharp when rubbing in hand) and very sharp rock chips (1/4"-3/4", hard for a cory to move when everything is laid together, sharpest "gravel" you could find) as substrates.

It does make logical sense that if something is sharp that it could create a open wound, but it just never happened that way for me. I've never even seen a cut (open wounds) or bent barbels or any irritated gills (red) on any of my corys and its not like they were hesitant or extremely careful when rummaging through the sharp substrate.

I've also accidently (didnt notice) bought corys who already had barbel erosion and it was never was transferred to any of my other corys (it has been said barbel erosion is contagious). Their barbels never eroded more, but they are extremely slow to repair/regenerate.

Just my experience. Maybe barbel damage is due to poor water quality (which allows for infection) or damage from hungry nipping tankmates.

Again, even though I had no problems with barbels, I do now exclusively keep my bottom dwellers on soft rounded sand now just because the fish do prefer it more.
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post #14 of 14 (permalink) Old 10-13-2015, 07:05 PM
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I have not had any issues with barbell erosion from the substrate like many of the other members I have kept the in rocks and sand. I do find they do seem to prefer sand over rock. I have been told the erosion is from poor water quality.
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