I did it! It's a cloudy mess now so I'll post pics later. I changed my plans after extensive google searching about switching to Eco Complete. I decided to just leave the water in the tank and remove the old gravel then add the new stuff in using a cup. I took Tango out and I was going to take the corys out but I could NOT catch the little buggers. So I decided to leave them in. They're used to me rooting around in there. Sometimes they land on my hand even.
Some of the old gravel is mixed in with the eco complete, most of it on the top. I had a mesh bag that came with my phospure so I put a couple of big handfuls of old gravel in that too and placed it in the back of the tank near the filter intake. What I read says to leave it for about a week. Does that sound right?
I added in a piece of mopani that's I'd gotten for Whiskey that didn't fit in his hex. So far so good. No one seems to be adversely affected. The corys are shoaling and searching and Tango is checking everything out.
Now I have to clean up the big mess around the tank. There's water everywhere. Lol!
LOL I had to deal with the water too.. as well as little pieces of the e/c. If you have a test kit make sure you test the water for at least a week. Adding e/c can raise your pH temporarily and doing anything to your tank can mess with the nitrates. Once your readings return to normal its safe to remove the gravel bags.
I'm leaving mine in there longer than usual bc I want to use the cycled gravel in my 4 gal for ember. I'm waiting on a filter so I want the gravel to stay cycled so I'm just leaving it in my tank till I get the filter.
Not to worry, I'll be monitoring. I have an API master kit. I did a small water change with the gravel switch and I'll probably continue to do 10-15% changes daily with my monitoring. Hopefully the mopani will lower the ph a lil and the eco will raise it and it'll end up staying close to what it is. lol.
Okay, here it is. It's still kinda cloudy but much better then it was. Everyone is busy exploring, except Tango who's like ....'HI!!!' as usual. Hopefully this helps the corys get to their pellets better!
I got the left one from aquariumplants.com. They have pics of theirs with measurements so I picked it out. The one on the right came from aquabid and I didn't get to see it ahead of time or it wouldn't have been so chunky. I wanted a branch.
Can't wait to see yours when it's all done either, with the driftwood and all! Such a mess but so worth it. I was just looking at your pictures and your dalmation is SUCH a cutie!