Obviously sand is the main choice, but what type?
I've heard of people using kids playsand, pool filter sand, shop bought or found naturally from beaches etc.
What are peoples thoughts on sand source, grain size, price, effect on fish/filtration/plants etc.
Any/all comments will be welcomed
Also one thing to be aware, at least for those in the U.S. is that most sand is locally sourced. Meaning one brand of sand at one place isnt the same as it will be in another place. For example on another forum one person had great luck with Quickrete Medium Sand, but the Quickrete stuff at my local Lowes looked nothing like it.
Have a look at stores that sell landscape or masonry supplies.
Happy fish keeping!
I don't know of many places in the UK that sell pool filter sand - Any UK members got an idea?
When I was on holiday last year, I found some really cool beach sand. It was multi-coloured (from all the different rocks in the cliffs) and quite large-grained (it sank real quick when stirred in a cup of water).
Do you have to do anything other than boil up beach sand, to make it safe for aqaurium use, or is it just too risky to bother with the hassle of collecting it?
Beach sand often contains a lot of shell fragments which might have an undesirable effect on pH that would be difficult to remove.
i know aquarium sand might be more expensive, but what was important to me was it being inert, and after failing to lower water pH with Ro water in a tank with gravel, getting something i knew would be inert was well worth buying
where abouts do you live?
If you can get some fairly easily it might be worth checking into. Sounds pretty.
Its from this beach in Pembrokeshire, South Wales. Imagine all the colours of the cliffs in a sand sample the size of a pennyshari2 wrote: Do you know the primary type of rock in that area that might be where the sand came from?
It is very cool, I liked it because it was a mixture of colours and not all one tone like bagged shop sand.shari2 wrote: Sounds pretty.
I use both a mixture of coarse gravel and sand (see size reference)
Keep in mind that this is a pain to wash-once the bucket of sand is rinsing clear and you set it up in the tank, the whole tank basically needs drained again to get rid of all the little floating bits I like it though, even if it is a pain
Two types with a with a 2p coin
However flourite is actually a pretty cheap plant substrate, I got mine in my 75g for $13 per 15 lb bag online. Even with additional shipping it was a decent amount cheaper than buying local when your looking at 7 bags or more. However, its is more coarse and not so smooth so not ideal for loaches. I am glad to say though that after 2 yrs+ none of my loaches have shown any signs of it being to harsh on them. I'd really like to see the new black flourite sand, unfortunately I bought the PFS for my 240g long before flourite black came out.
If you got this route, rinse it many times - over and over - to get the grit and dust out.
How is your water? Hard/soft, high pH/low pH?
If it's hard, skip the coraliferous sand. If it's soft a nice mix would do. It is from a salt water beach, right? Just make sure that you clear out all the salt. Shouldn't take much work to do. Sand doesn't absorb salt.
With sand obtained "in the wild" or even at an LFS would a good soaking in mild chlorinated water solution and several thorough rinses in hot water with the final rinse containing a dechlorinate? (just a question as this is SOP for me but I really do not know if it is "overkill": I have just always been worried about pathogens entering my tank from extraneous sources and a day long soaking in the presence of chlorine will destroy these pathogens).
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In the long run they win some of the times!
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