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Water Changes - planted tanks

RTCfan86

Active Member
As I add more and more plants to my sand bottom tank, I am wondering how people clean the waste off their substrates who have densely planted tanks. Currently, I’m able to hover the siphon just above the sand. But what about when the plants don’t allow it without all being moved? Trying to get conditions just right for cacatuoides breeding, and I have all anubias plants.
 
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RTCfan86

Active Member
In case you maintain leaf litter you can just let it rot down to detritus, building up a beneficial layer of mulm. Cleaning stuff off the substrate will become a thing of the past.
Thank you for the response. What if I do not have leaf litter? In other words, how would that process be different?
 

dw1305

Well-Known Member
5 Year Member
Hi all,
What if I do not have leaf litter? In other words, how would that process be different?
You could use a turkey baster to flush the stuff from around the base of the plant and have the siphon ready to pick up.
That is one of the great advantages of sand (and <"there are many">) any debris sits on top of it, so you can syphon it out without disturbing the sand layer.
That was basically the hint to start to use leaf litter. ;)
I couldn't agree more, <"structural leaf litter is great">, all soft water fish tanks should have it.

cheers Darrel
 

RTCfan86

Active Member
Yep, doing the same thing today with the 55.
Think a few bags will be ok for a 75 gallon?

2216B235-AFC3-442E-AD92-B2B680CFAAFE.png
 

MacZ

Well-Known Member
Also, any concern for ph getting too low with any of these types of leaves?

Unless your KH is below 1 there will be no significant change. Also I keep Apistogramma at about 6.0 pH and many here at lower numbers.

About the leaves: You can use indian almond, magnolia, oak, beech, maple, cherry... so much choices. I tend to collect myself in fall, because it's for free. I am on my first bag of oak leaves since October and have 3 to go through until late August. At least I estimate that's when they are used up.
 

RTCfan86

Active Member
Unless your KH is below 1 there will be no significant change. Also I keep Apistogramma at about 6.0 pH and many here at lower numbers.

About the leaves: You can use indian almond, magnolia, oak, beech, maple, cherry... so much choices. I tend to collect myself in fall, because it's for free. I am on my first bag of oak leaves since October and have 3 to go through until late August. At least I estimate that's when they are used up.
Thank you!
 

yukondog

Active Member
Same here leaves in the yard are free, what is your PH now? If bought at local fish store there more than likely used to higher PH, in my cac. tank it's running about 6.8 and they dont stop making fry, I'm constantly culling fry, you can get loaded up with fry faster than you might want, it's easy to make fry but hard to get rid of sometimes, I'm there now with three types and I can't give them away where I live.
 

RTCfan86

Active Member
Same here leaves in the yard are free, what is your PH now? If bought at local fish store there more than likely used to higher PH, in my cac. tank it's running about 6.8 and they dont stop making fry, I'm constantly culling fry, you can get loaded up with fry faster than you might want, it's easy to make fry but hard to get rid of sometimes, I'm there now with three types and I can't give them away where I live.
I’ll have to save up from the yard this year. But since there’s no leaves right now, I ordered 3 of those bags today.

PH seems to be 7.5ish...

PH test:

66FF7590-9A3B-4C4D-A3C8-284E0E970798.jpeg


High Range PH Test:

EDC01E01-E965-4E6C-B9D9-C1D86727C979.jpeg
 

MacZ

Well-Known Member
I can only guess what KH the water has, but I would assume with these pH readings it's relatively high and leaves might only lower it by 0.2-0.4 points pH. But that's an estimate, without KH, no fixed answer.
 

RTCfan86

Active Member
I can only guess what KH the water has, but I would assume with these pH readings it's relatively high and leaves might only lower it by 0.2-0.4 points pH. But that's an estimate, without KH, no fixed answer.
I actually don’t have a KH test kit but will pick one up today and test/post tonight.
 

RTCfan86

Active Member
I can only guess what KH the water has, but I would assume with these pH readings it's relatively high and leaves might only lower it by 0.2-0.4 points pH. But that's an estimate, without KH, no fixed answer.
Do I have any hope of breeding Cacatuoides?

122C34E3-4909-4B92-A259-BBAD4348B138.jpeg

7099C903-E7D2-4E23-8334-5A6A25AD7324.jpeg
 
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