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Changing gravel in a dirted tank

572 Views 2 Replies 2 Participants Last post by  sbinf
Hello all,

I've scoured the net to find a recount of a similar situation, but I've been unable. Perhaps one of you can help, or has some input.

I've got a ten gallon tank, cherry shrimp (60 or so adults and a few clutches of wee ones), planted, dirted with a cap of gravel. When I set the tank up a few months ago, I used the gravel I had on hand (waste not, want not). It's white. I am finding that the colors on the shrimp are not quite so vibrant on the light background. I would like to switch out the white gravel with Eco Complete, leaving the dirt intact. The problem is there are lots of baby shrimp, so I don't want to disturb too much and risk harming them. The tank is cycled, and all of my parameters are within the acceptable range for my livestock.

Has anyone worked on a similar issue? I thought that maybe I should switch out a bit of the gravel at the time, maybe split the tank up into 6 sections, and do one section per day. Second thought: remove some of the white gravel on top, throw down some Eco Complete, and hope for the best. My aim is for the least amount of disruption to the tank.

Any ideas or advice are welcomed.

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I just changed my whole substrate, I found in the end it was just easier to move all the shrimp and any other livestock to a holding tank/bucket, and then i drained the tank and removed the gravel cap first, then most of the dirt. I left a little dirt mixed with gravel because i capped with ADA amazonia and I wanted something to help hold the plants in place when I replanted them. I let sit for half the day and then reintroduced my livestock. Sound like a pain but ultimately it was easier and more thorough than trying to work around them.
Thanks for the feedback. It seems that may be the only good way to do it. Have found a decent setup for a shrimp trap. I'll go with that and hope for the best.
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