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Old 10-31-2011, 06:13 PM   #1 
jskate94
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New Tank Idea! Need your help!

So I'm gonna end up buying a 10g sooner or later.

I wanna use sand as the substrate (even though i haven't heard many nice things about sand)

now my question is what can i use to clean the sand? i've heard of crayfish, but will they get too aggressive with the betta? and should i use a layer of potting soil underneath the sand for the plants? anymore advice/experience with sand? :D

and i think i wanna go for Amazon themed this time! either that or ocean floor (not coral reef, just some nice rock caves/arches and tallish, grassy type plants with some moss balls and possibly a few seashells)

and also, if i found treated lava rock, would that be okay? or would my fish still not like it?

or any other input on your experiences with these type of themed tanks or sand or pictures are welcome! thanks in advance!
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Old 10-31-2011, 06:20 PM   #2 
damselfish
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what about a corey fish? if you are looking for tank cleaners, and why not neon tetras as tankmates?
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Old 10-31-2011, 06:24 PM   #3 
jskate94
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oh i totally forgot about tank mates! i was just thinking about neon tetras earlier! lol. i think those would be lovely in the tank! and coreys will help clean the sand? i probably sound stupid but i have no experience with them, so i wouldn't know. lol
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Old 10-31-2011, 06:50 PM   #4 
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I use a mini gravel vacuum to clean the sand in my tanks..I just hoover the siphon above the sand a few inches and make small circular motions and anything on top of the sand gets sucked up...Corydoras love sand. :) though they wont help with cleaning the sand.
I just recently switched my tank back to sand and I love it. I used poolfilter sand. 10 dollars for 50 pound bag.
Every other week or so you will want to stir the sand gently to prevent it from compacting.
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Old 10-31-2011, 08:36 PM   #5 
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so i should get a small gravel vacuum? :o

and if they wont help clean the sand, what will? i've heard crayfish, malaysian trumpet snails (which i have no idea where to get, lol), and shrimp. but i've also heard shrimp are hard to maintain.

and did you use soil underneath the sand? or no? i've just been hearing many different things. lol sorry for the bombard of questions.
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Old 11-01-2011, 12:37 AM   #6 
Bombalurina
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What do you mean by "clean the sand"? Cories are great at nomming up leftover food, but won't touch poop. Some ghost shrimp do, others don't, but either way they poop it right back out the other end. MTS are wonderful at stirring up the sand to prevent gas pockets forming, but you can do that yourself with a chopstick or your fingers, with no risk of a snail infestation. Shrimp aren't that hard to maintain - in a 10g with just a betta, or a betta and some tetras, they will be fine with just a 25% water change per week (assuming you have a filter).
Definitely don't go with a crayfish, because it will be bye-bye betta fins if you do.

I really like the idea of an Amazon theme, with a betta, 6 neons and 6 pygmy cories. :) Cories and neons both being South American fish, it would look pretty authentic (apart from the betta). Neons look amazing against black sand with live plants. It really makes their colours pop. :) some good plants would be:
- java fern
- anubias
- lacefern
- rotala wallachi (if you can get it in red it looks amazing)
- ambulia
They are all really easy to maintain. :)

I have sand in my 16 gallon, and it's easy to clean but I have to do it everyday to get the shrimp poo off it, and I have a Thai-themed 5 gallon. :)
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Old 11-01-2011, 02:01 AM   #7 
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what is the name of that little plant that looks like it's in a tiny pot called? in the tank on the left =D
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Old 11-01-2011, 02:40 AM   #8 
Bombalurina
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Pennywort. It is in a tiny pot still because it looks so cute there and doesn't seem to be suffering because of it. :) There is also a tiny sprig to the right, in front of the anubias.
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Old 11-01-2011, 04:46 PM   #9 
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So I have Ghost shrimp on black sand & I see them doing plenty at cleaning of the excess food & other stuff I cant see.. As for there poop, I cant say I have ever noticed it.. To clean I basically as listed aboce swish the water around some & let the debrit off the top flat away (I use a motorized submerged pump to pump the water outside so I just use my hand to create the turbulance, then move the pump around like a vaccum to get floaties).
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Old 11-01-2011, 04:48 PM   #10 
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@bombalurina - sorry about that, i was watching this one guy's videos on youtube and was under the impression that a crayfish cleaned the sand himself and he didn't have to vacuum debris up at all. lol, how stupid i probably sound. but i figured it out now. lol and OMG that tank is beautiful!! its like a little stroll thru the forest. lol. i love it. and the mini one is great too! :D

and thank you so much for the plant list! it will help me a lot :)
i'm not very good with java ferns though i don't know why. but everytime i've had them, they seem to just die on me :(. although i have managed to keep one alive ;) he's in my greek themed tank. lol


and what kind of shrimp do you have in your tank?

and also i like really really like the idea of neons and corys as tankmates now! :D
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