Adding sand???

Discussion in 'Nano Reefs' started by Oldsalt01, Aug 5, 2017.

  1. Oldsalt01

    Oldsalt01 Well-Known Member

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    I've had a semi-bare bottom (about 1/2 sand) 14g for about 1 1/2 years. I now have a lovely coating of green algae mixed with some Coralline. Lately I've been considering adding sand back in, mostly for aesthetic reasons, but also so I can add some Nassarius snails as a CUC to replace the Peppermint's which attacked my new acans. My concern is that if I cover the algae it'll screw my tank when it dies off. I suppose I could add a little at a time. Opinions, please.
     
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  2. sundog101

    sundog101 Well-Known Member Build Thread Contributor

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    The algae would die. It may be fine, but I would add the sand in sections just to be on the safe side.

    Also it probably wouldn't be a good idea to add a deep sand bed (I assume you were planning on a shallow sand bed).
     
  3. Oldsalt01

    Oldsalt01 Well-Known Member

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    Yep. Shallow bed. Total might amount to 10#'s but I doubt it. Thanks for the confirmation. Now I just have to find a 10# bag and decide whether to use "live" sand or not. It being a well established tank, I doubt that "live" is necessary.
     
  4. Robin Haselden

    Robin Haselden Well-Known Member Build Thread Contributor

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    When you add the sand take a piece of pipe and pour the sand down it. I use the end of my syphon for adding more sand. You'll still cloud up the tank but you shouldn't cover your rocks and corals with sand.
     
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  5. Oldsalt01

    Oldsalt01 Well-Known Member

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    Has anyone used Carib "Live" sand? Recommendations?
     
  6. patfat

    patfat Well-Known Member

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    I’ve used Fiji pink from them when I started my tank with some live rock and a bottle of bio and had no issue with params..I’m not sure if it was the rock or the bottle or the sand but all was live and felt like it’s good stuff and it works..will be grabbing a 20pound bag for my24 jbj as my rock will be dried and adding a bottle or 2 of bacteria to help kick start the tank..my opinion I feel it works it’s dormant so it will take a little while to really start reproducing
     
  7. Oldsalt01

    Oldsalt01 Well-Known Member

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    The problem I see is that I'll be adding it to a tank with algae on the bottom, so I can only add a little at a time or run the risk of a fair amount of algae dying and jamming up the tank. I'm not sure but suspect I need to keep it damp and am not sure how I'll manage that. I suppose a Ziploc would work.
     
  8. patfat

    patfat Well-Known Member

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    I see what your saying now....well I would go with what one of the user said about the pipe and dumping a little here and there trying not to cover up the algae and let your snails do the work..I guess you can try to get what you can off but that’s gonna be a pain...the live sand has water in the bag that’s how it’s keeping it damp..given you have a small tank and your using a small bag I would dump all into a ziplock and then scoop what ever you use out and put into the tank..Not sure how long it will last or survive as I believe the bag the sand comes in it’s breathable if I’m not mistaken..maybe wait for some other input
     
  9. aquariumspecialtyDane

    aquariumspecialtyDane Active Member Gold Sponsor

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    I currently have a 16g nano mainly zoa, lps. I added live sand after it was initially cycled. I added a 20lb bag of Carib-Sea Aragalive Bahamas Oolite about 6 months after it was cycled. There was a little bit of algae build up on the bottom but nothing serious. Sounds like yours is about the same. I added in 5lbs at a time spread out over a week and a half. I basically pictured 4 sections of equal size and added the sand to a different section every other day. Every day I tested for ammonia and nitrate. Over the time spent adding the sand to the tank I never saw any ammonia and the nitrates only increased by 3 points(went from 2 to 5). The only filtration that I have on the tank is a little Eheim surface skimmer. I kept it in the bag it came in but scooped it out instead of pouring so wouldn't make a mess and would save the water inside the bag. It stayed damp over the 10 day period so I would say your fine, especially if your just adding 10lb or less. I'm not sure if it helped but I did use a razor wherever I could reach on the bottom glass before I added the sand. I could only reach about half of it though. I did dose Seachem Stability to the tank during the time I was adding the sand just to be safe. I was kind of hesitant before I added the sand but after doing it I can say it helped stabilized my parameters for sure ever since then. I don't know how I feel about adding a dry sand, or some brand other than the Carib-Sea Aragalive. I would just play it safe and stay with the live stuff. Good luck!
     
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  10. Oldsalt01

    Oldsalt01 Well-Known Member

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    I guess my best move is to scrape the bottom as I go, as I have some pretty extensive lovely green algae. I've used the pipe routine before and that works really well. I should scrape while I'm doing water changes to limit algal spread. Fortunately, it's a small tank.
     
  11. brandon429

    brandon429 Well-Known Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award

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    The setup here needs to pre rinse that live sand really well so it doesn't cloud since it's going into a running system. You can rinse it off in tap easily, though you don't need the bacteria that comes with Fiji pink wet pack sand, tap rinsing won't sterilize it the duration is too short. Allows for a really thorough pre rinse
     
  12. Oldsalt01

    Oldsalt01 Well-Known Member

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    This is going to sound like a stupid, newbie statement, but I have no idea how to rinse the sand, other than dumping it in a bucket and running water thru it while stirring until the overflow comes out clear. Keep in mind that here in Fla we have well water that is run through an ionic resin bed filter, with rocksalt added as a water softener. The well water itself is VERY high in Iron and Hydrogen Sulfide which the resin bed helps to eliminate (but not totally). I also add a cup of Clorox every month to reduce algae in the 200g aerator holding tank, so with all that stuff I'm a little nervous about creating more problems than I have right now. BTW, Brandon I'm in awe of your mini-biospheres. Wish i had the patience to try one.
     
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  13. brandon429

    brandon429 Well-Known Member R2R Supporter R2R Excellence Award

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    Thank you much i wish I had room for just one fish heh

    Hope this little rinse video helps, yours will be much larger scale~
    Since the final rinse can be done in sw that will flush out any impurities, the bulk rinse water needs not be special I use tap. Final rinse salt, then all my corals and rocks go back in



    The point is the cloudlessness see how the grains fall like snow globe grains? That allows you to install and move around and cloud not

    In several accessible areas before laying sand I'd take up bottom growth, for less decay under the new sand

    Perhaps not all can be taken, but if there's any algae base id scrape it up/siphon off bottom with a razor taped to the siphon hose end. Laying sand over coralline will not hurt, try not to cap algae and slimy growths where possible in my opinion
     
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  14. Oldsalt01

    Oldsalt01 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the link. I'll check it out. I think my biggest concern is the turf algae on the bottom. I am planning on scrapping as I go while siphoning. The other issue is the bubble algae that came in on a zoa frag last year, but it's mostly on the rock. The Mithrax doesn't seem very interested in it and it's really starting to spread. I'm a bit confused about why I have the BA and a fair amount of GHA when my parameters look pretty good. Nitrates are less than 5ppm and my Phosphates read zero on my low range kit. Mystified as to what's feeding it. Probably from over-feeding the fish, although I only feed 1/4 cube of hakari biopure mysis every other day.

    Not that I know anything about biotopes, but could't you put a Neon or Yellowline Goby in there?
     

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