What will clean/sift my substrate in a 25 gal that is NOT a goby

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Zer0

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Nassarius snails are probably the best for that, imo. Won’t exactly clean the sandbed, but they will overturn it and loosen detritus so that you other cleanup crew can take care of it.

And the more extreme option is probably something like a pistol shrimp. Those suckers will move your sand all around, all the time lol.
 
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LateStageReefer

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I believe the only thing that can help you are snails. I have a pistol shrimp but he only tends to the burrow and what is about a goby's length from it and he just takes the substrate that falls in the burrow out.
Turbo snails are good for algae (particularly hair algae)
Nassarius snails focus on eat detritus but lean more towards dead and
left over meaty things, they burrow but I wouldnt consider that substrate turnover.

Blue hermit crabs dig around in the substrate and turn it over.
 
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Chris_Noles

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Watchman gobies do sift sand though, at least YWGs do.
Might just have to try my luck with a YWG, I heard they didn't sift sand, I just lost my 2 spot goby after a week so that's why I didn't want to try another one....
 
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Apparently they are prone to not lasting long in aquariums, I was feeding him brine for a couple of days after I got him and then when I came home from work a couple of days ago he was dead.

I was thinking of trying hermits, might just get 2 of them and see how they do
 
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Akira

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Get a pistol shrimp and watch the wreckage . They are loud and make a huge mess they will burrow under rock too
 

shooter2377

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I bought a court jester goby from algae barn a few weeks back, he’s doing great at sifting the sand! Besides his burrow he dug a hole in a corner and is constanly scooping up mouth fulls of sand and spitting them back out. I think they need a healthy supply of pods to go with them as well though…
 

CanuckReefer

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As others mentioned Conch ( Fighting or Strawberry), your 25 gal is likely not a long term home for them though. If you can strike a deal to get one then sell back to LFS or even rehome to another local reefer, after 3 or 4 months something to consider.... they are workhorses on the substrate, eat voraciously
 
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