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I've been so busy the past few months that finally I'm in the process of setting up my new 29 gallon tank.

At the moment I have a 15 gallon with 4 neons, 4cardinals, 2 otto's and 2cories.

I plan on transfering these fish to the new tank once it's established, water is excellent etc.

My new tank has a aqua clear filter.

My question is about substrate. I currently have gravel in my 15 gal and thought about sand for the new tank. I hear the catfish love sand and gravel can hurt their barbels/whiskers?

However the price is expensive. Only Petland in my city carries it and it costs $9.95 (Canadian $) for a 5 pound bag plus tax.I figure I will need 5-6 bags for the 29 gallon.

I thought about pool sand but my family is freaked out it will kill the fish even though I have shown them posts about it.

Are there finer gravels that would be suitable and good for the cories? Or should I invest in sand?

Someone told me I could place a small flat plastic lid on top of the gravel and fill it with sand to let the cories dig around. But I'm not sure how this will look in the tank unless I landscape around it. Plus the cleaning of it. Not sure about the safety of plastic in the tank ??

Mixing sand with some fine gravel? Not sure how the cleaning of that would work.

I do have a gravel vac.

Any advice or tips? Thanks! :)
 

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Aqua Addict
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3M Colorquartz T-Grade Black Sand <---- if your really lucky you might be able to get ahold of this stuff. It is suppose to be really nice, but I've never tried it since no one local carries it

I really don't know anything about sand though. Always used gravel and never had cory cats. I might try sand in my newest tank if I can find some dark stuff. If not, I'm just going to use black and blue gravel again
 

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cichlidaholic
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36 Posts
Pool filter sand or regular play sand is perfectly fine. You just want to rinse it really really really really really really really really really good. Seriously , you almost cant over do it when you wash sand. Its perfectly safe for the fish, but you do want to make sure that it's silica sand and not something else or has been colored. Also buy it from a place like a Lowes or a Home Depot type store. Pet stores charge way too much and you can get it in 50 pound bags for well under $10 US . It might require some hunting for since I've heard Canada has introduced some sort of health regulations on silica sands. I think that was just for industrial uses but I'm not 100% on that. If your anywhere near the US border , it might be worth a quick trip over.
 
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