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Could Someone Help Me Please?


Guest ma_ac13

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Guest ma_ac13

:) Hello just wondering if somebody can help me, im not sure whats the best way of doing it but i want to change from my gravel bottom to graveless, i am not supposed to take out the gravel all in one go am i???

Im quite unsure to what to do hope you can help me :krazy:

Thanks

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  • Regular Member

That depends. If you're diligent in your weekly cleaning, there shouldn't be too much accumulation of gunk within the gravel but if there's a chance that some build up exists and has done so for some time, I would remove the fish to a tub while you remove the gravel - just to avoid the possibility that gas has been trapped which would be released.

I've removed gravel on several occassions and it was really simple - basically I gave the gravel a really thorough vacuum first and then with a large fish net, I scooped all the gravel out. Any remaining rocks were easily sucked up by the tubing which I separated from my vacuum.

It was trouble free and I was able to do it while my fish were still in residence as my gravel had no waste remaining - so removing it was simple :)

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A little caution has to be used, however, when removing all the gravel. A lot depends on how your tank's biological filtration is designed. If you have a really good amount of biological media in your filter - and a normal or low stocking of fish in the tank, you should be able to remove all or at least most of the gravel quickly. IF you have a smaller filter with perhaps only a biowheel for the bacterial platform, you will need to be a bit more careful.

The gravel in the tank holds a colony of beneficial bacteria. If your filtration design is such that much of the cycle is contained in the gravel, and you remove all the gravel, your cycle may bump - seriously in some cases. You wish to avoid this.

I would suggest boosting the amount of biological media that is used in your filter system. Give the bacteria a lot of platform for colonization. Then, as Jen so wisely suggested, remove some of the cleaner water from the tank and put the fish in to a separate bucket with this water. Next, scoop out an amount of the cleaner water from the tank. Vacumn the gravel really well, discarding the waste water. Scoop out the gravel into the second bucket of used, cleaner water. Swish it around really really well - cleaning it as best you can. Scoop about 1/2 of the gravel into small baggies. I make baggies out of a leg of a pair of panty hose. Tie a knot, fill with gravel, tie another knot and cut it off. REpeat it up the leg of the hose, until you have a number of smaller bags of gravel. Keep the bags small - so water and oxygen can travel through the amount of gravel easily.

Replace the fish and water from their bucket back into the tank and fill it up with clean water.

Drop about 1/2 the gravel from the tank back into the tank in baggies. This will put back about 1/2 the biological platform you had in the gravel. Then as you do weekly water changes, just remove a bag of media each time. This will give your new media time to "seed" and the tank time to adjust to not having the gravel platform. In a few weeks, you will have removed all the gravel with no cycle bump.

HAve fun! I LOVE a bare bottomed tank. It is so easy to keep clean and bright and the fish are really set off in such a tank. :)

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Guest ma_ac13

thank you very much for the help much appreciated!

will take out some of the gravel in small amounts i think, as this will be better for my beneficial bacteria.

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