I have just been thinking about splitting my ten gallon tank ( it currently houses my one veitail and has been housing him for over a year) and have been wanting to get a new sand substrate. Do any of you have experience with sand as a substrate (is it hard to clean with a gravel vac?) or do you recommend anything? I am only splitting my tank after my VT passes ( i want to have a plan, hope this doesn't sound mean, i love all of my animals dearly). I am thinking of upgrading to an Aqua-Clear filter ( i have heard these are REALLY good) because it has a slower current (adjustable flow) and keeps super crystal clear water. If i have a filter on one side of the tank, then the divider, then the heater, will any of my new fishes get warmer or cleaner water then the other(is this even possible?)? Also, will the one Betta on the filter side be beat up by the faster current on his side?
Any recommendations or pointers would really be helpful!
Ps! NEW news! Honeycomb's split fin this morning ( after treating with frequent water changes and AQ Salt ) was almost completely healed! I am just working on tho one little torn spot.......
I have no experience with sand, so I do not know about Siphoning it.
If you have a Filter on 1 side, and it's low flow, I think that would be okay.
Otherwise, you could just baffle it, even if it's Low Flow.
For the Heater, you could just put it near the Divider so the other fish could get more warmth. If you are concerned about who gets more heat, just get a Heater that you can adjust. Just change it to 80F-82F. It's better more Hot than more Cold. Splitting the tank would be perfectly fine. Just make sure that the Divider isn't see through, and that they can't jump over it. An extra 2 inches would be okay. Good Luck with the new idea. :D
Sand is pretty easy, but using a gravel vacc won't work. Instead, you'll have to turn off your filter each week and use either your figners or a stick thing to gently shift the sand around and get all the mulm suspended in the water and to prevent anerobid spots of lethal gas from building up. THen you just siphon it out. The only downside to it is that you see everything . All little bits of poop sit on top and sort of wave around. When I had white sand, I used a clean turkey baster several times a day to remove the stuff on top, but come water changes in a week, it'd still look messy.
Aquaclear is wonderful! It can got from a tiny trickle to a full blown blast depending on what you like or want.
As for dividing, if you make a homemade mesh divider, neither side should be more circulated or warmer than the other. I have a divided 10 gallon with an aquaclear (set on the lowest). The heater is flush against the mesh, partially to prop it up and paritally to make extra sure there isn't an uneven distribution of heat. Now, one side (the side without the filter) will tend to develop an irridescent protien film, but it doesn't bother the fishies any (Panache, my boy on that side) likes it because it helps keep his bubblenests together.
Thanks, i think i will skip the sand and just get natural looking gravel. I will be getting the Aqua Clear and possibly a new heater because it is rusting.( it is fully submersible, but the inside is getting rusty) i might keep it though. Anyways, JKFish, what is this "protein film" you are talking about? Could you possible post a pic? Also, does this "film" create ammonia, or is it just an eyesore to look at?
Unfortunately, I can't, but if you see it, you'll know what it is.... It sort of looks like a tiny bit of oil spread over the top of the water. You know that shiney look, right? I'll try and snap a picture tomorrow and post it if possible.
It's harmless- just a film of microscopic bacteria (non harmful) just a bit of an eyesore. It doesn't create ammonia. Of course if it gets too thick, you can scoop it out with a cup and dump it out. Keeping a cover on the tank works or using an air bubbler work at keeping it to a minimum as well.
Protein film is most common in still water, or water without a filter... It would be oily, and pretty thick after a while!! This can make it harder for bettas to get air from the surface. Easy to break it up - some people use paper towel to lay ontop to catch it all, others use cups or a turkey baster.