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  L# building a sand box/digging pool for loaches
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Subscribebuilding a sand box/digging pool for loaches
devon7
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Hello! I have a 29 gallon tank, sparingly planted right now but I would like to fill it out as time goes on... I have this semi-large gravel that is no good for digging and I recently got my first dojo loach. I had this idea that i could make some sort of sand pool in the tank for him by putting some sort of container into the gravel and filling it with sand, like a swimming pool. I was wondering if you guys think this would work? and then what kind of container would be appropriate to use? would tupperware be safe to use or will it release bad things into the water? what else could i use?
Post InfoPosted 06-Dec-2009 23:02Profile AIM PM Edit Report 
hca
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IT will work, but will slowly end up working its way out of the container.

You can use any NEW food safe container, or a NEW terracotta ( the bowl you put under a flowerpot...) thats not been painted, ect.... just make sure the edges are SMOOTH
Post InfoPosted 06-Dec-2009 23:58Profile PM Edit Delete Report 
Shinigami
 
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Tupperware will work fine. I mean, if it released bad chemicals into stuff, then that wouldn't be a good thing for people eating out of them, eh?

In any case, hca is right, the sand definitely has the possibility of working its way out of the sandbox, but if you have a deep enough container (2"?) then it's probably not going to happen too quickly.

Make sure to mix the sand every now and then so it doesn't form anaerobic pockets.

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Post InfoPosted 07-Dec-2009 04:26Profile PM Edit Delete Report 
keithgh
 
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Certainly the sand will come out and this can and often will cause problems with your filter impeller (cutting it to pieces.)

If you still want to go ahead buy a terra cotta saucer/dish what is used under plant pots. They will not have any holes in them but they are easily drilled using the correct drill bit.

Keith

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Post InfoPosted 07-Dec-2009 04:40Profile PM Edit Delete Report 
devon7
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I have a little peice of sponge covering the end of my filter because the tip part is broken (i just replace it when algae grows... works pretty well!) so perhaps this would help with the sand issue.... I thought I could try to arrange a circle of small rocks around the edges to disguise the spillage... at least 2" deep sounds good, especially since the purpose of the thing is for loach diving! I will take a picture when i figure it out
Post InfoPosted 07-Dec-2009 11:41Profile AIM PM Edit Delete Report 
TW
 
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EditedEdited 07-Dec-2009 21:45
silica pool filter sand should not give you much of a problem in regards to being sucked up by the filter & causing damage. It's a slightly larger grain and is easier to manage in the tank than a fine grain sand will be.

If you put the sand pit away from the filter uptakes, that also minimises the chances.

I've had a planted area & a silica sand "beach" area in my tank for around 18 months now without issues.

Cheers
TW
Post InfoPosted 07-Dec-2009 21:39Profile PM Edit Delete Report 
hca
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I have used sand as a subtrate, and by raising the intake tube 2-3 inches off the top of substrate didnt have any further problems. most HOB filters are a couple to a few inches up anyway.

If your worried about, just place the dish away from filter as suggested, and all will be fine.
Post InfoPosted 07-Dec-2009 22:21Profile PM Edit Delete Report 
brandeeno
 
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devon7, any news on how the sandbox is going? Its a cool idea and I am tempted to try it in the future, let us know how it went/is going!

\\\\\\\"an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of the cure\\\\\\\"
Post InfoPosted 17-Dec-2009 22:04Profile PM Edit Delete Report 
devon7
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Sorry this took me so long! So... it worked! And the loaches actually use it! I have to clean it up every once in a while because it gets messed up, but I'm glad it gets used, so I don't mind! the rams really enjoy it as well.

Attached Image:
Post InfoPosted 01-Jan-2010 01:25Profile AIM PM Edit Delete Report 
hca
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Thats a good picture of the kids playing in their sand box

It turned out well!
Post InfoPosted 01-Jan-2010 01:59Profile PM Edit Delete Report 
lowlight
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That looks like it works well. How did you make it?
Post InfoPosted 01-Jan-2010 08:39Profile PM Edit Delete Report 
devon7
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It was really easy, I used a plastic saucer, (I think it was meant to put under a plant, it was just very thin clear plastic, about 1.5" deep) some sand, and some river rocks. First I pushed the saucer down into the gravel, I was amazed how easy it was to position the thing, it wont float up at all! Then, I rinsed the sand and poured it into the saucer. This is the hard part. the sand will want to float away, if you put it in a cup first and then try to pour it into the center of the saucer it is easier. Wait for it to settle before you try to smooth it out. After adding the sand, I just covered the edges of the saucer with river rocks to disguise the sand spillage. Voila! The loaches really like to dig around the river rocks on the edges, so I pushed some into the sand, too. My rams also like to dig around in there when the loaches aren't hogging it!
Post InfoPosted 01-Jan-2010 08:49Profile AIM PM Edit Delete Report 
Shinigami
 
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Sounds like it's working out. Make sure to dig all the way to the bottom of that sand regularly to make sure the sand doesn't compact at the bottom or start becoming anaerobic in any untouched pockets and you should be fine.

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The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian.
Post InfoPosted 01-Jan-2010 23:46Profile PM Edit Delete Report 
lowlight
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Cool. I may give it a try someday my Kuhlis might like it.
Post InfoPosted 03-Jan-2010 07:52Profile PM Edit Delete Report 
Babelfish
 
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nice

Kinda looks like kids jumping in a pool too

Just keep an eye on the compacting like shini mentioned, that's the problem I ended up having with sandpits.


^_^

Post InfoPosted 04-Jan-2010 23:33Profile Homepage AIM MSN PM Edit Delete Report 
brandeeno
 
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glad to see it worked out but like every one is saying watch out for compaction with the sand... I'd also say try getting some MTS but the loaches would probably eat them but if you can get them free or cheap it might be worth a try!

\\\\\\\"an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of the cure\\\\\\\"
Post InfoPosted 13-Jan-2010 05:32Profile PM Edit Delete Report 
devon7
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I just try to give it a good stir every couple days, my hands are always in there anyways moving plants around nstuff
Post InfoPosted 30-Jan-2010 23:51Profile AIM PM Edit Delete Report 
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