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Gravel and Decorations Questions and comments about gravel and decorations

 
 
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  #1  
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karne karne is offline
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Default Changing gravel

Hello!
Any tips on the best way to change your gravel? I have the stuff that I started out with - the cheap looking pink/blue stuff lol. At that time I didn't know that there were natural colors to pick from.
But where to start? I suppose I have to remove all of the fish and plants? Is there an "easy" way?
Karin
  #2  
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LittleHippyGirl LittleHippyGirl is offline
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Default Re: Changing gravel

Hi Karne,

Changing gravel must be done gradually because some beneficial bacteria, which supports the nitrogen cycle, reside in there. What size tank are you changing?

Leave the fish and decorations on the tank. If you have live plants gradually remove them as you remove the gravel. Net and remove portions of the gravel over a period of 5-7 days. On the last day, remove the fish and ornaments, and add the new, rinsed gravel to the bottom of the tank. To be on the safe side, hang the last portion (or part of it depending on how much there is) in pantyhose over the side of the tank for a week.
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Bernie Bernie is offline
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Default Re: Changing gravel

I was lucky when I changed my gravel in some of my tanks because they are only 10 gall. ones now and I only have plastic plants - I never removed my fish, (if the tank had fish in it), all I did was every time I did a partial water change, I kept that water and after rinsing some new gravel really well I let it soak in the removed tank water for a couple of days so that it would get some of the bacteria and then I would remove some of the decor and old gravel (with a small net) and put in the new gravel (by hand), making sure to place it right on the bottom not letting it just drop down on top of the fish (that could hurt and will stress them) and put the decor straight back in - this was done after each water change until all the new gravel was in the tank.

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LittleHippyGirl LittleHippyGirl is offline
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Default Re: Changing gravel

Wouldn't that mix the old with the new, Bernie? That might be hard to pick out if they mixed together. I suggest taking out the fish when putting new gravel because it would really freak them out, all those rocks falling from the sky!! Even if I were to do it gently, my fish spook very easilly and don't like much change.
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Bernie Bernie is offline
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Default Re: Changing gravel

It probably would have been easier to remove the fish and do it the way you mentioned Hippy but I tried to decide which would be less stressful to the fish as I don't like to remove fish from a tank unless absolutely necessary.

I just took about 2 handfuls of old gravel out at a time and made sure there was a big enough gap between the old/new each time. It was to change the colour of the gravel, so luckily I had two different colours for a while which made it easier if some did get mixed up. This way I also thought that the new gravel would have a chance to establish more bacteria if some of the old was still in there.

I made sure to place the new gravel right on the bottom without letting any fall or make to much noise and luckily the fish didn't mind at all
when I say a handful it was probably more like a desert spoon full in my hand each time.

I'm sure your way is best Hippy and it would be quicker than the way I did it for sure. If you had a large tank and did it my way it probably wouldn't work as it would take far too long.

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Default Re: Changing gravel

I'm sure your method works well too. The important factor is to change them gradually
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