maintenance, care, compatibility
Aquarium soil is an important substrate that maintains an artificial reservoir in the correct condition. In the soil there are many beneficial bacteria that play an important role in the ecosystem. They decompose toxic substances and waste products of fish.
You can prepare a quality ground for the aquarium with your own hands, if you read some of the recommendations.
It is not enough to choose the right sand, it is equally important to correctly put it in the aquarium. Laying soil in an aquarium should help recreate the look of a natural reservoir.
It should be laid with a slope to the front glass in the aquarium. What’s the point of this?
Thanks to this simple reception, it will be easier to remove the dirt that accumulates in the recesses of the soil. The thickness may be different, but in the range from 3 to 8 cm. In addition, it is permissible to build a small area in the front glass in the form of plexiglass rims that will be free of soil.
In this place of the aquarium, a tubule or bloodworm can burrow. For this purpose, a transparent glass vessel can be placed in an aquarium.
Soil for aquarium with fish and plants: the rules of preparation
Nutrient soil is extremely important to put in the aquarium. How to do it?
If you collected the soil for the aquarium with your own hands, did not purchase it in the store, then you need to prepare it. How to do it?
Rinse and boil. This is the so-called ground cleaning in an aquarium before it is placed. It is necessary to prepare also sand, pebbles, bought in a pet store.
It is enough to wash and process with boiling water.
An error will be washing with the addition of domestos or other chemicals. How can this affect the constancy of the aquarium?
The fact is that sand, pebbles are well absorbed by chemical compounds, it will be very difficult to wash them after processing, which means that they will gradually be released into the water.
After the selection of soil for the aquarium, it can be placed in the aquarium with fish and plants. You can do this immediately: rinse and still wet place in the aquarium.
Black, colored, quartz, as well as a different sand needs care. How to clean the soil in the aquarium, how to monitor its cleanliness?
The soil for the aquarium, along with the plants must be periodically cleaned, in other words, siphon. Externally, the siphon is a hose in which a vacuum is created and by means of which dirt is sucked in with water.
Sand, pebbles need to be cleaned as it gets dirty.
Now you know how to choose sand, pebbles, how to prepare them, how to clean the soil in the aquarium and a lot of other useful information. One thing remains: choose the appropriate option and apply all the knowledge gained in practice.
An aquarium is a whole ecosystem, and soil plays a major role in its successful development. The most popular type was and still is sand for an aquarium.
Like any other soil, it is gradually colonized by beneficial microorganisms. Recycling the waste products of the inhabitants of the aquarium, they reduce their toxicity.
The decorative function of the sandy soil is indisputable – with it aquariums always look spectacular.
If you decide to choose sand as a substrate, you should carefully study all the characteristics of different species.
- River. It is used for aquariums for a very long time. Contrary to the well-established opinion about its harm, many aquarists call river sand almost the best soil for an aquarium. You can buy it at a pet store, or you can dial it yourself using two sieves – to screen out particles that are not suitable for size.
- Quartz. It is produced by crushing white quartz. The main advantage of this type is chemical resistance. Quartz sand is neutral: it does not affect water hardness. Another plus is that it neutralizes harmful substances that can form in an aquarium, such as iron oxide and manganese.
- White aragonite. This species is formed from fragments of mollusks and corals. But it is important to remember that such a soil affects the hardness of the water, so it will not work for fish that require soft water.
- The black. It contains grains of magnetite, ilmenite and hematite. It is formed as a result of natural leaching of lighter rocks. This soil is good because, like quartz sand, it does not affect the hardness of the water.
- “Live”, or marine. It is mined in the coastal strip, often closer to coral reefs. Sea sand got its name because of its extraction technology: it is packed without drying, and as a result, the microflora remains in it. Such a soil is ideal for marine aquariums.
In order for the sandy soil in the aquarium to perform its functions with one hundred percent return, you need to remember a few parameters.
- The grains of sand should be the same size. Otherwise, caking begins, ammonia and hydrogen sulfide are dangerous substances at the bottom.
- Choose a substrate with fractions of at least 1.5 millimeters in diameter. Smaller prevents oxygen exchange. Because of this, waste and food particles are no longer processed, and the aquarium is quickly contaminated, and it has to be cleaned more often.
- The sand in the aquarium should not affect the water. As mentioned above, white sand is not suitable for fish living in water with low hardness – because of its lime composition.
- If you are making sand with your own hands, choose a clean body of water that does not get toxic plums and waste. River sand should not contain fragments and other debris. Self-excavated soil must be especially thoroughly cleaned and rinsed to prepare for laying.
- Do not get involved in colored sand. Undoubtedly, it looks very beautiful and impressive, and the dyes are used harmless. But some species, such as red and yellow, contain iron oxide, which is detrimental to fish. Gradually washing out of the soil, the substance can cause the death of the inhabitants of the aquarium.
- Decorative moment: believe that the white sand makes the fish less bright.
Sandy soil needs to be prepared for laying in an aquarium. Especially if you use the river or sea sand, extracted by yourself. With it, the risk of introducing dangerous bacteria and other microorganisms is very high.
White and quartz sand, bought at the pet store, is also better to process.
First of all, the substrate must be washed. To do this, you need a plastic bucket or a deep basin. The effect will be better if you pour sand into the portions – in time, of course, longer, but the quality of washing is higher.
In the tank, the substrate is carefully rinsed under running water. Actively stir the sand with your hands or spatula.
It is necessary to do all this until the water becomes transparent.
Try not to clean the sand using household chemicals. The soil can absorb the substance and it will be extremely difficult to wash it.
But over time, in the aquarium, the tool will begin to stand out in the water and may harm the fish. Instead of chemical treatment, it is better to turn to boiling or calcining sand, which is quite realistic to accomplish on your own.
It is necessary to boil the soil for 15 minutes, stirring continuously. Sand is calcined in the oven: it is evenly distributed on a baking sheet and left for half an hour at a centigrade temperature.
Prepared sand is poured into the aquarium layers of three to five centimeters, not more.
No matter how wonderful filters you have equipped your aquarium, the soil should be periodically cleaned.
There are reviews that cleaning the sandy bottom is extremely problematic. But everything is not so scary, and it is easy to clean the aquarium with your own hands. The surface of the soil must be siphoned regularly.
This is done with the help of a special device – an aquarium siphon, which can be purchased at pet stores.
Siphon is built on the principle of a vacuum cleaner: it draws water along with particles of dirt. At the same time, the grains of sand do not retract, but return to their place. In addition to the siphon to work you will need a bucket into which the water will be drained.
If the aquarium is large (from 100 liters), it is better to purchase a long hose and take it directly to the bathroom and toilet – for convenience.
How to properly siphon sandy soil:
- Prepare separated water before cleaning.
- Press the siphon cylinder to the ground. On some devices there is a pear, which can create traction. If not, you need to blow into the hose.
- Carefully go through the bottom of the aquarium. Make sure not to leave a lot of water: you need to clean the soil so that it can replace no more than 20-25%.
- After completing the cleaning, add new water to the aquarium.
Please note that siphon soil is not needed near the roots of plants. First, for them it is a nutritional supplement, and secondly, the roots can be easily damaged by a siphon.
Beginner aquarists may believe that siphon soil should be every week after the launch of the fish in the new aquarium. But in fact, it is better to wait a little and let the medium form in the sand.
It is not necessary to replant the fish during the cleaning, therefore the ground should be siphoned with great care. Some particularly restless fish with carelessness can get into the siphon – watch your pets!
When choosing a siphon, pay attention to the diameter of the hose. The larger the diameter, the stronger the water pressure. Accordingly, for small aquariums you should not use a large hose – you simply drain all the water before you clean the bottom.
If the water pressure is too strong, you can reduce the diameter of the hose with your own hands: just squeeze it a little.
Siphon sandy soil need to be at intervals of 2-4 weeks. The term depends on the number of fish in the aquarium.
Every few years (from 1.5 to 3) the substrate is completely removed from the aquarium to rinse.
Sand for an aquarium is invaluable if you want to create the most natural environment for fish and plants. Despite the apparent difficulties associated with handling and cleaning, the sand has a number of distinctive properties that make it one of the best substrates for aquariums.
Which soil is better for an aquarium? Aquariums large and small: clearance
What is the best soil for the aquarium – the first question a person starting to breed fish
Very often at the initial stage of arranging the “home for fish” the question arises: which soil is better for an aquarium? Although later it loses its relevance and ceases to be actively discussed.
However, at the end of the time, mistakes made at the beginning make themselves felt, and as a result large-scale corrections begin.
The main purpose of this article will be the nuances of selection, preparation and placement of soil filler. In addition, the important circumstances in this matter are the decoration and cleaning of the bottom of the aquarium.
Initially, it is worth noting that the black soil for the aquarium is the most important part of its configuration. Together with elements such as the background, lighting and additional decorative components, it gives a noticeable uniqueness to the placement.
At the same time, being a substrate, the soil provides conditions for the existence of a whole complex of microorganisms and plants.
At the same time, the aquarium nutrient primer works as a primitive filtering mechanism. It accumulates microscopic suspensions that pollute the water, which significantly expands its functions.
Before buying the above-mentioned filler, it is necessary to determine the objectives, as well as the general vision of the “underwater kingdom”. In addition, you need to navigate the key aspects of the choice.
If there is an aquarium of 200 liters, then before laying the ground it is necessary to prepare its bottom. This is especially true of the aquarium soil, which is collected “on the street.”
Mandatory washing and boiling are the main procedures that prevent infection.
Shopping purchase to boil is not necessary, but it needs to be washed and pour boiling water. It eliminates the use of soap or other cleaning products, since subsequently it will be very difficult to wash the chemical impurities out of the soil.
At the very least, it will take a lot of time and effort that you can use for other efficiencies.
These procedures are fundamental. If you have properly processed and prepared the ground for the aquarium, the price for it, even if it was substantial, will not be of particular importance to you later.
It should be noted that it is not necessary to wait for the complete drying of the future “stone bottom”, since the wet state is natural for it.
If you follow the recommendations of experienced aquarists, the soil should be laid in three layers. Moreover, the content and nature of the placement should correspond to a specific sequence.
The bottom layer should consist of gravel, which is enriched with laterite iron or clay. Its thickness should be from 3 to 5 cm and include balls with fertilizer.
In addition, there may be a mixture of trace elements that do not contain phosphates and nitrites, which are so destructive for plants and fish.
It is desirable to focus on the iron in the soil mixture, which is present in chelated form. Otherwise, it will simply not be available for food representatives of flora and fauna.
In addition, ferrous sulphate, usually used for feeding garden bushes, will not work, since it will significantly reduce the acidity of water.
If heating cables are used, they are also laid in this layer. They should not be located directly on the bottom, because uneven heating leads to cracking of the glass, and the house aquarium can quickly deteriorate.
In addition, sand and clay in this case will be inappropriate – they will also be heated unevenly.
The middle layer should contain land with admixtures of peat, constituting 15-25% of the total volume of bottom soil. Its thickness can be no more than 2-3 cm, since an overabundance of soil enriched with peat can provoke the process of decay.
If in the ground there is a large amount of organic matter, then it can be supplemented with sand.
In addition to everything, the middle layer can be filled with microelements and clay balls. However, for this you need to conduct thorough training of peat and earth.
Strictly speaking, such a rule holds for each layer.
The top layer should be of fine gravel mixed with sand. About 5 cm of this soil prevents the turbidity of water due to peat contact with the ground.
It is here that used stones for the aquarium, which can be purchased at the same pet store.
If in the aquarium there are snails or fish digging in the ground, then you need to grow plants in pots or increase the thickness of the upper layer. This will prevent significant damage to their root systems.
It should be noted that usually the soil in the aquarium is uneven. Although it can be distributed in such a way that it will look like a slide that rises towards the back wall.
This option of laying the bottom can visually give the aquarium a volume and a more spectacular appearance.
Most novice aquarists lay out various patterns from the ground. Since they are gradually moved by the action of water, these compositions are short-lived.
Of course, this is not so scary, but the overall appearance of the aquarium can still deteriorate.
The final procedures that will make the aquarium 200 liters perfect will be the installation of the decor, pouring water and planting plants. This should be taken care of in advance, so as not to “slow down” the overall process of arrangement.