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Old 12/19/2005, 09:12 PM
bertoni bertoni is offline
RC Mod
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Foster City, CA, USA
Posts: 35,743
Shallow Sand Beds

A shallow sand bed (1" or so of sand) is a good choice for many aquarists. This approach offers little or no filtration capacity, but will support some animals that require a sandbed, such as fighting conchs, some snails, and sand-mopping sea cucumbers.

Compared to a deep sand bed, the shallow sand bed is less expensive to install, leaves more space in the tank for other animals, and, to many people, offers the nicest look. The narrow band of sand is often hidden behind the strip of the aquarium frame or the stand.

For this approach, a fine-grained sand is a good choice in many cases. Of course, animals with a need for a coarser substrate, such as burrowing jawfish, have their own requirements that must be met. In general, though, coarser substrates seem to require regular siphon-cleaning because they trap more detritus (leftover food and worse) than fine-grained substrates.

Such sand beds might need replacement if the sand fills with nutrients or solidifies. Stocking some good-quality live sand and animals that stir the sandbed, such as the fighting conchs and sea cucumbers already mentioned, might reduce the frequency of such problems, and help keep the sand cleaner in the meantime.
Jonathan Bertoni

Last edited by WaterKeeper; 12/29/2005 at 03:34 PM.

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