maintenance, care, compatibility
The simplest option is to create a small grotto with the help of small pebbles, and flat river pebbles are suitable for this.
You can make a frameless shallow grotto, consistently sticking stones to each other so that gradually, row by row, bring a small hemisphere with an open entrance. And let the shape of the fish shelter be wrong, it will even emphasize its naturalness.
There are several conditions:
- stones should not have sharp edges
- the construction of the structure should be carried out directly in the aquarium, before filling it with water.
The result is a natural, functional and fish-safe detail of the overall decor, the only drawback of which is the need to glue the very first row of stones directly to the bottom glass of the aquarium.
There is another way – very time consuming. A stone of the appropriate size is selected, in which gradually, using drills of various diameters, a cave is drilled for fish.
The work is dusty, noisy and difficult, but such a cave has its advantages.
- First, there is no need to use glue and paint.
- Secondly, such a solid “cave” can be installed anywhere.
Do not, however, put the cobblestone on the glass; it is better to gently put it on the ground for even distribution of the load.
The simplest option is a stump, in which holes are drilled to such an extent and location as necessary according to one’s own design. Naturally, a stump or stump is selected with no signs of rotting or decomposition, it is cleared of bark.
Holes and all other necessary places are polished to prevent fish from getting hurt. To prevent rotting in aquarium water, the wood should be burned with a blowtorch or a gas burner.
Read more about how to handle wood in this article.
For such a natural grotto, a base is necessary, which is dusted with soil in the aquarium. You can, by the way, stick the piece of wood directly to the bottom of the “can.”
As a result of the work done, a grotto combined with a bark is obtained, and such a natural element of the landscape looks quite organic.
Each of us sculpted from clay in childhood. Now you can make the grotto yourself, but only instead of clay you need to use red clay.
From it you can make a grotto of the form that your imagination suggests.
True, the modeling itself is a small part of the work. First, the billet is dried for 3–5 days in the sun.
In the conditions of a city apartment, home craftsmen dry up clay products much faster – in a microwave oven. What is it for?
The main thing is that all the water comes out of the clay, otherwise the product will quickly break.
Then firing is required. If a production workshop with a muffle furnace can be found nearby, the problem is solved.
If there is no such furnace, then firing can be performed in a conventional oven heated to 220 degrees. AT
Roasting time – 1 hour, it is recommended to keep the oven door ajar. There is such a feature: if after an hour the oven is immediately turned off, it will quickly cool and the clay will become brittle.
That is why the firing temperature should be reduced smoothly, gradually, over a period of 15–20 minutes. After cooling, the homemade grotto is ready for use as intended.
Considered by no means all options of grottoes that can be made by hand. In fact, the ingenuity of home craftsmen has no limits, but the main condition – environmental safety – always remains the same!
Video: how to make a grotto for an aquarium with your own hands:
DIY aquarium grotto made of coconut clay wood stone
Making grottoes and caves from improvised at home
Why are grottoes and other structures in aquariums
It is no secret that the aquarium looks much more impressive if it contains various structures in the form of rocks, grottoes, etc.
But to really get what is right for your aquarium is very difficult, and sometimes simply impossible.
This is due to the fact that the interior items are either quite expensive or simply impossible to find on sale.
So the idea arose to try to build something similar at home. As they say, neglect of the invention is cunning!
By purchasing certain components in the store, you can safely start making very nice things for your aquariums. And my further instructions will help to do this without too much difficulty.
The main thing is that you have the desire and even a little fantasy!
So, then my instructions for making a grotto for an aquarium.
Currently, many lovers of aquarium fish and other inhabitants of this environment are asking questions about the state of their aquarium, its unique uniqueness, cleanliness and safety, beauty, etc. Therefore, I will tell you how to do it yourself such an indispensable thing in an aquarium as grotto. Of course, many may argue that you can buy it at any specialty store, but the fact that you created your own hands gives you confidence in the quality and safety for your pets.
Grotto – This is a shelter for fish and a unique design of your aquarium. To get started, you need to select the source material to create a grotto.
It is desirable to exclude everything that relates to artificial origin (glue, sealants, paints, etc.). Here are some examples of creating a grotto:
So, buy a coconut. We look first at its appearance – there should be no traces of mold.
Shake the coconut – a characteristic gurgle should be heard inside. If the coconut does not gurgle, then it is surely spoiled, and is not suitable for our purposes.
Coconut purchased, then the fun begins.
Options for the future of the grotto, there is as much as you allow fantasy. It can be a grotto with one entrance, and several, located both at the ends, and on the sides; both with smooth holes, and with holes of asymmetric shape.
We proceed to the “cutting” of the future of the grotto. For this we need a drill, a hacksaw or a jigsaw and a knife. At one end of the coconut there are three spots – these are traces of the cutting.
One of the spots does not have a hard shell and therefore easily penetrates. By trial and error we find it and break through with a knife.
This is done in order to drain the coconut milk. Here is one secret: to make the milk flow better and faster – drill another spot. Milk is drained, we use it for its intended purpose and move on.
Using a hacksaw or electric jigsaw, we saw off the butt on which there were spots – it turns out the future entrance to the grotto.
Now you need to clean the inner surface of the coconut from the pulp. To do this, we take a knife and gently, in small pieces, cut off the pulp directly from the shell. We use pulp as intended.
All future grotto is ready. Then you can apply all your design abilities and make, for example, a few more inputs-outputs with an electric jigsaw.
The edges can be made uneven, chipping off the shell pieces with pliers.
And finally, some tips. “Hair” on the coconut to remove optional (a matter of taste of everyone); and if you have antsistrusy, then in half a year the coconut will be polished both outside and inside. If your aquarium is over 100 liters, then boiling coconut is not necessary; in a smaller volume, the aquarium may turn the water brownish, so boiling to remove coloring pigment is recommended. The specific gravity of the coconut shell is greater than the specific gravity of water, so it sinks safely and does not require additional attachment.
And yet, as an element of decor to the coconut shell, Javanese moss and anubias grow beautifully – fix them only with a thin fishing line for the first time.
As you can see, making a grotto from a coconut is not at all a difficult process, and it can be done by anyone who wants to bring diversity to their underwater world.
AQUAIUM SPRAYER AND EVERYTHING THAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT IT.
The aquarium is a home for ornamental fish. And it can be arranged in different ways, based on the capabilities and preferences of the owner-aquarist.
And if you decide to make a grotto for the aquarium with your own hands, then you will definitely succeed.
- For the work you need some materials: sea or river stones (pebbles), special aquarium silicone transparent sealant with a gun;
- Selecting pebbles in height, lay out the first layer of the future grotto.
- A little sealant is applied to the stones and another layer of stones is laid on top of it. Sealant should be used in an optimal amount. If it is not enough, then the strength of the structure will be at risk, and if it is a lot, the glue will flow out from under the stones.
- In order to make a way out of the grotto, we use any guide, for example, cardboard packaging. This guide will help hold the stones until they are glued.
- We wait until the sealant well hardens, and then push the guide out of the structure, leaving its edge just at the entrance. In order to form the vault of the grotto, fill the free space inside with crumpled paper.
- The vault of the grotto is laid out with stones on top of the paper, gluing them together with a sealer. After the glue dries well, remove the guide, and gently pull out the paper through the bottom of the grotto. If the excess sealant will be visible between the stones, they should be filled with small stones before the sealant hardens. It now remains to immerse our cave for several days in water in order to wash all the harmful substances from it. Change the water in the aquarium should be daily.
Decorating an aquarium with such a grotto will create an atmosphere of a certain mystery in it. In addition, many aquarium dwellers need just such a shelter, so the cave will serve not only for beauty, but also for benefit.
Many aquarists are offered ideas for decorating a home for fish using different compositions. This topic is constantly open as the space for imagination is constantly expanding. The aquarium landscape can be varied with the help of natural materials and plants.
What about coconut?
Coconut in the aquarium is an extremely useful and necessary item that will delight your fish. We can assume that the house for the living creatures is ready, one has only to spend a small amount of money and physical effort. Coconut shell is not subject to rotting in water, is easy to process and does not contain harmful impurities.
With it, you can make useful crafts with their own hands.
Coconuts have a negative buoyancy, have a beautiful view, so the fish and crustaceans will be satisfied. As a personal shelter, coconuts for aquariums will be taken by such aquatic inhabitants:
- Small cichlids (Apistograms, Etroplus, Lilioupi-lamprologusa, Trophaeus, Ramirezi, Nanochromis, Palvikakhromisy and others);
- Soma Loricarides;
- Crayfish and shrimp;
- Plekostomusy, Panaki and Ancistrus.
A coconut house is an excellent composition that requires physical hard work and precision. The coconut shell has a thickness of 3-5 mm, so determine in advance the width of the hole.
Consider that after separation of the back part chips will fly, and the pulp will have to be scraped. Half-sawn nuts, too, will look ugly, here you need to find the “middle ground”.
Using a hacksaw, “saw off” a part of a coconut with three closed holes, after which white flesh will appear. It is not soft, and not so easy to get it, even with a good kitchen knife.
First, decide for what you need coconut pulp – for food or other culinary needs. Secondly, find a good knife with a thick blade, gradually peeling off the flesh from the walnut walls.
It is better to do this by making a cut to the center of the coconut, and making the same cuts around the circumference. The “procedure” will take a lot of time.
See a great master class from Good Dad
Before putting the sawn coconuts for an aquarium, it should be soaked in water for several days (replacing water every 12 hours), after having cleaned the inside of the pulp residues using a hard kitchen sponge or metal scourer. After lying in water for a few more days, it is perfectly cleaned.
If you leave a nut in water or boil it in water for 10 minutes, it will no longer stain aquarium water, and the material itself will not harm the fish.
There is an opinion that after placing the coconut in the aquarium, the health of the fish deteriorates. This may be due to the chemicals with which the product was processed before serving on the counter. But during boiling, some of the germs and toxins are destroyed, so there are already prerequisites for trust.
In addition, very few people came across such poor-quality coconuts – product managers are well versed in products.
After all the procedures, coconuts can be cooled by gently dropping them to the bottom of the aquarium. You can make a house covered with Javanese moss – it will look organically and attractive.
But consider the moment – large fish can get stuck in a coconut, so be guided by the size of the aquarium living creatures.
Coconuts for aquarium – an excellent decoration, creating the presence of a tropical pond in the room. The small underwater world will delight both the inhabitants of the aquarium and those who love to contemplate it.
Each aquarium should have a filtration system that will purify the water, ensuring the health of the fish and plants. As it is known, wastes that are left behind by the inhabitants of the reservoir, as well as the remnants of food, suspended particles of soil are very harmful for fish.
Not eaten feed is oxidized, turning into toxic ammonia. In order for the water to pass through all the steps of cleaning in a timely manner, it is better to make an external filter for the aquarium with your own hands.
It will prevent the appearance of harmful substances that can poison living beings.