(RE)decorating an aquarium...

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10 Jan 2008 18:29 #1 by DaveyH (Dave Horan)
So after cycling my tank, choosing some tacky crapy ornaments, various weeds and some fish, I think I probably need to re-decorate. I'm aware of how the lay out should be once I get new plants.

How do you completley strip an aquarium of both plants and gravel and then re-gravel & plant it?

My main concern is freaking the fish out and churning up all the crap in the gravel and choking the fish.

Thanks,

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11 Jan 2008 16:31 #2 by tanks_alot (Denis Coghlan)
Hey Davey,

If you are planning on stripping down a tank i.e. changing the substrate. I would try and keep as much of the original water as possible in some big containers (bins, those big water bottles, large buckets etc...). I would also remove the live stock during the conversion.

You can buy a 80-90lt black bin in woodies for about 10euro. I would put the heater, filter (still running) and fish in this while doing the change. Then replace everything back in the tank when you the rescaping it to your liking. Keeping the original water will reduce the amount of stress on the fish. Plus, if the fish are happy in the bin then you can take your time while planning the new layout of your tank.

Make sure to give the bin a good rise with clean tap water (no soap) before you use it.

Lead me not into temptation, For I can find it myself!

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11 Jan 2008 17:56 #3 by Cardnim (Andrew Hanley)
One thing to consider as well is that substrate leeches stuff as it matures in the tank. Things like phosphates and other organics (which really contribute to algae outbreaks) slowly come out of your substrate into the water.

If you are going to change your substrate then you effectively go back to square one again, and perhaps risk algae problems down the line.

If at all possible, I would advise keeping the existing substrate, unless of course you are going to change it for another kind (eg. take out lovely sand and put in bright pink large gravel :ohmy: :P )

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13 Jan 2008 14:13 #4 by DaveyH (Dave Horan)
I left the gravel, it made things much easier. I swapped the fake looking plants for some real ones and removed the tacky ornament - looks allot better.

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