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Old 01-23-2012, 08:26 AM   #1 
SpookyTooth
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Cory appropriate substrate?

Hello,

I've done a great deal of research on corydoras and have a 14 gallon that I would like to set up for them however I have had next to no luck getting dark sand. I ordered what I thought was black sand but have realized (upon seeing it today) that the particle size is too big.

The "sand" I have is 1-2mm in particle size, with every size in-between. I can't find "proper" sand anywhere locally and am unable to go far to get it. I've had a look online and simply cannot find dark sand; I would prefer dark sand as I've heard it helps the corydoras relax, knowing they are camouflaged - it would also be preferable aesthetics wise.

The tiny gravel I have doesn't hurt to rub between my fingers and compacts very easily (I was rinsing one of the bags of gravel in a bucket of water and was "folding" it over itself; the gravel at the very bottom of the bucket was bone dry!). Anyway, I'm wondering if anyone knows if this gravel would be appropriate for corydoras?

If not I'll keep looking; I want to do what is best for the fish, not what is easiest for me. I've attached a photograph below of a "closeup" of the larger particle sized gravel that was available. The stuff I have at the moment is much smaller and smoother (they sent me two bags of the larger stuff too - made for a good comparison). I don't want to put the cories' barbles at risk. Please note that the photograph isn't mine, it was taken directly from the advertisement for the gravel, I simply uploaded it onto photobucket so I could link you to it easily.



Here's what the page said about the gravel:

High Quality BLACK Aquarium Coloured Gravel & Fine Sand

This high-quality gravel is ideal for using in Aquarium Fish Tanks and Vivariums. It is also an excellent hobby and craft material, and can be used for general gardening purposes - ideal for brightening up plant pots.

We supply Two (2) types of Gravel (please select):
1-2mm / 0.1" (Fine-grain Sand)
3-5mm / 1.5" (Small Pebble Gravel)

I thought it might have been appropriate, but now I am not sure. I'd rather not risk it so I hope you don't mind me asking. The fact that the advertisement said "fine-grain sand" made me think it'd be smaller... despite having a ruler on hand, an error in judgement on my behalf. Regardless, I have it now and do love the appearance of it. I can make use of it elsewhere if I find it isn't any good for my cory aquarium but would like to use it if I can - thank you very much for your time.
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Old 01-23-2012, 09:01 AM   #2 
paintedpink24
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I would like to know the answer to Spookytooth's question also! I have one upside down catfish now and I'd like to have some cory's in the future.
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Old 01-23-2012, 09:40 AM   #3 
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The close up picture is too sharp, don't use it. But anything with 1-2mm Is just large grain sand, if it isn't sharp, which I doubt, they'll be fine.
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Old 01-23-2012, 11:40 AM   #4 
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Thank you for your response. The sand looks good, much smoother than the larger gravel. I can press it between my fingers without pain (which I told was a good indicator; rub it between your fingers and if it doesn't leave them raw it's okay to use).

I may still look for finer grade sand, but I am relieved to hear that this is okay. Thanks again!
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Old 01-24-2012, 04:16 PM   #5 
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No problem. Out of curiosity, which species are you considering?
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Old 01-24-2012, 08:40 PM   #6 
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+1 Diablo. If you are thinking pygmies, or even pandas, I'd wait for a finer grain, but bigger species like bronze, juliis, trillies, etc, will be ok with the sand you have now. :)
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Old 01-24-2012, 08:48 PM   #7 
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In a 14g tank, he really can only home the smaller ones suitably. Playsand is often used as black sand.. and is really the only black sand I have heard of actually.
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Old 01-24-2012, 10:01 PM   #8 
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Depending on the footprint, the bigger species should be ok. If it is a hex tank and has a tiny footprint, obviously not, but in a longer tank, I don't see a problem with the bronze-sized species. They aren't *that* much bigger than the pandas, it's only a centimetre or so difference.
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Old 01-25-2012, 04:29 AM   #9 
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Thank you all for your responses.

Quote:
Originally Posted by diablo13 View Post
No problem. Out of curiosity, which species are you considering?
I was thinking about bronze, as I believe they are the easiest to acquire in our local area - having read all of the above comments I may go for pandas if they would be better suited to the aquarium though.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ladayen View Post
In a 14g tank, he really can only home the smaller ones suitably. Playsand is often used as black sand.. and is really the only black sand I have heard of actually.
I apologize if I sound nitpicky but I feel it only polite to inform you that I am a she :). Thank you for the advice!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bombalurina View Post
Depending on the footprint, the bigger species should be ok. If it is a hex tank and has a tiny footprint, obviously not, but in a longer tank, I don't see a problem with the bronze-sized species. They aren't *that* much bigger than the pandas, it's only a centimetre or so difference.
It's a 14 gallon long, I had thought it would be okay - but I am not entirely sure now.

I have since washed the large grained sand and added it to the aquarium. I can try and get a photograph of it in comparison to my hand if any of you would like, perhaps that would be better. But yes, as for clarification: the aquarium is a 14 gallon long, the footprint is roughly 30cm x 60cm, I don't have a measuring tape so my ruler is all I can go by, the length is slightly more than 60cm. Would this be appropriate?

I apologize for all the questions. I'd done a lot of research and assumed my aquarium would be all right for a small school of bronze corydoras but I'm not entirely sure now.
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Old 01-25-2012, 03:18 PM   #10 
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I accidentally used the wrong formula for it, and I said something about it being too small here.....but wrong formula, so it's bigger. Sorry!

Last edited by diablo13; 01-25-2012 at 03:23 PM.
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