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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Any recommendations as to the best (and safest) aquarium brand/types of gravel for use with Bettas? Of course, there's the old pet store standby of epoxy-coated gravel, as well as various uncoated river gravel mixes.

I realize that I'm going to want something smooth so as not to cut ups their tails. Also, are they any safe non-coated (naturally-occurring) black gravels? I know there are some black sand substrates available, but I've read mixed things in regards as to their safety with certain fishes.
 

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I personally like black sand. And make sure you use water to rinse it before putting the fish in with it! If you can’t find sand I like smaller rocks. Again rinse it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I personally like black sand. And make sure you use water to rinse it before putting the fish in with it! If you can’t find sand I like smaller rocks. Again rinse it.
I had looked into the getting some Tahitian Moon Sand, but have read some negative reviews from people who claimed it killed their fish.
 

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I had looked into the getting some Tahitian Moon Sand, but have read some negative reviews from people who claimed it killed their fish.
Sand can’t kill a fish, u gotta make sure it’s clean though. Plus I would recommend putting it in and letting it sit for a day. If you are going to use sand for a fish that doesn’t naturally live in sand u have to be careful it doesn’t tear it’s gills up with sand particles. Also I’ve seen some gravel or rock that even after you clean it multiple times it still is harmful to the fish. Make sure if you see any foggy water days after cleaning you get the fish out. Better to be safe than sorry
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Since I first posted my comment, from further research it appears the problem with the Tahitian Moon Sand was heavy metal contamination, and appears to have since been pulled from distribution (apparently I was reading older articles that had not been updated).

So, it appears that this instance was a special case.
 

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I used Tahitian Moon Instant Ocean for years with no issues. But two years ago I bought Tahitian Moon Super Naturals. It was a "tank of death." I couldn't figure it out. Could have been the sand. Now I don't feel quite so badly.

Anyway, all of that being said, I prefer CaribSea. After years of sand, I decided to use gravel. I bought their Peace River and am delighted. It is naturally polished and, like their sand, soft so it doesn't cut underbellies of bottom dwellers.
PeaceRiver.jpg

I have also used their Crystal River sand Aquarium - CaribSea I found prices online cheaper than PetSmart or PetCo.

FWIW, I've never heard of aquarium substrate products harming fins. Wonder if that is anecdotal?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Anyone familiar with this product from Australia:


I've tried looking up some reviews, but unfortunately it gets cross-indexed against Black Diamond Blasting Sand (and is apparently popular in some aquarium circles), which is apparently a totally different breed of cat.
 
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