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    Friendly note from GFK. Please review this beginner guide for your fish.

Substrate or not?

Discussion in 'All Questions from Newbies' started by ThatGuy, Jan 18, 2016.

  1. ThatGuy

    ThatGuy Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 17, 2016
    Location:
    NJ
    Are potted plants better than just securing them to rocks or driftwood?
     
  2. CC11

    CC11 Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2015
    Location:
    Australia
    Each to their own on pots the one I was thinking of and given was empty with a plant glued to it. I have had pots with plants in them not in this aquarium not a fan of the plastic look. Cheers
     
  3. CaliGold

    CaliGold Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2015
    Location:
    South Carolina
    Why not plant whatever you want to add in the tank in little glass tumblers? Like tealight holders? You could even use glass marbles in different colors if you don't want the boring look of soil or gravel. ;)
     
    Iaidoka likes this.
  4. CC11

    CC11 Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2015
    Location:
    Australia
    Water flow after reading many different opinions and mine is just that
     
  5. GoldenMcNewbie

    GoldenMcNewbie Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 22, 2015
    Location:
    Oklahoma City
    Some plants need substrate to gro properly and some don't. It really depends on what you have and what you plan on growing.
     
  6. CC11

    CC11 Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2015
    Location:
    Australia
    Also when I posted my comments on this I had not cleaned my gravel substrate. I pulled it all out the other day after 3 months in and it was filthy. I was vacuuming it weekly and vacuuming at the bottom not top weekly. Why I pulled it and cleaned was due to a bottom sitting fish. My water is nil A N N now and before. Frankly I'm amazed at how dirty it was compared to what I was getting out of it. Fish up & swimming happily again and it's a wait and see if I keep the substrate as I now will need to incorporate at the least monthly substrate deep cleans/removal and wash.
     
  7. pritish1

    pritish1 Active Member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2016
    Location:
    India
    After keeping a substrate tank for 10-12 years and now for the past 2 months using bare bottom tank i am more happy with bare bottom one as it is easy to clean, easy for proper filtration and my goldfish dont get injured with some sharp substrates that i had and they swim happily in clear water and one more thing that i noticed after going bare bottom is that now my goldies love to rest on the bottom glass during their resting time, whereas on substrate they were not that much comfortable and used to float in water.
     
  8. Iaidoka

    Iaidoka Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2016
    Location:
    South Africa
    Having substrate myself and potted plants, I can see the appeal of going bare bottom, however my ranchu's seem to enjoy shifting through the sand.
     
  9. shakaho

    shakaho Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2010
    Location:
    Orlando FL
    Unless your fish have disease/parasite problems, a thin layer of sand may constitute the most healthful situation for goldfish. In nature, they grab a mouthful of sand and organic material from the lake bottom, swallow the organics and spit out the sand. While they have remarkable skills at separating the sand from the food, some sand goes through the gut, probably serving a function rather like fiber. You do have to take precautions against sand getting into your filter pump.
     
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  10. Fishheadz

    Fishheadz Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2014
    Location:
    Moffat, CO.
    ...Such as panty hose & a rubber band over the intake.
     
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  11. CC11

    CC11 Active Member

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 2015
    Location:
    Australia
    Wouldn't you then limit the filters ability to pick up larger debris. I noticed in many aquascaped aquariums small fish are used. The reason I posted was that for a truly clean environment to be provided the substrate will probably need to be pulled and cleaned regularly.
     
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2016
  12. CaliGold

    CaliGold Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2015
    Location:
    South Carolina
    The larger debris that you are thinking of can generally be vacuumed out when you do the water changes. Most of it will settle on the bottom of the tank, anyway, and wouldn't have been sucked in by the filter in any case. The pantyhose over the filter intake (a prefilter sponge works well too) just protects the impeller and mechanisms of the filter if sand were to be kicked up around the intake. As much as you want the filter to take care of the debris, you definitely do not want sand to grind around the impeller.
     
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  13. Silverphish

    Silverphish Active Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2015
    Location:
    Central Virginia
    I use the "whiskey brown" color glass marbles that are flat on the bottom. I got three small bags of them from amazon and they just cover enough of the bottom that you can't really see through it anymore. The fish scatter them around and created bare spots as the poke around on the bottom. I think it looks nice, while not being thick enough to cause problems when cleaning. The solid black ones also look nice, but you can tell when algae starts growing. I think the whiskey color off sets the gold in the fish very nicely.
     

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