Adding gravel with fish in?

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by FishtailBraid, Jul 22, 2015.

  1. FishtailBraidValued MemberMember

    Hi everyone! I am finally getting my new gravel and am all set up to clean it, and my betta has either gotten fin rot again or his fins have been damaged by being netted the other day. As a result, I'm reluctant to net him again while I clean and add his new gravel.

    However, I was wondering, if I clean the gravel and have already done a last rinse/soak in dechlorinated water, can I use a fish net to bit by bit scoop the gravel in, while he's still in the tank? This won't be quite as tedious as it sounds as it's only a 3.9 gallon tank. :) But will this hurt him in any way, if I lower the gravel right to the bottom in the net and then turn it over, not drop it in from a height where it might fall on him?
  2. GekcoWell Known MemberMember

    Just as long as you put the gravel in carefully and it's already cleaned then I see no problem with putting gravel in with a fish in the tank. IMO less stress on the fish because it's not being moved or being put in a smaller tank.
  3. ThatOneAquaristValued MemberMember

    You should be perfectly fine doing this, obviously you care about the fish so as long as you go slow it should be okay. Just make sure hes not stressed too much since you did say he was netted the other day. Hope this helps.
  4. FishtailBraidValued MemberMember

    Thanks Gekco and ThatOneAquarist!

    I moved him the other day (back to college) and then accidentally stuffed up the WC and the tank temperature dropped around 5 degrees Celsius (from 26 to 21.5). :/ And now his fins look in poor condition again. I feel so bad. I may delay a couple of days before adding the gravel even if it arrives today, though he seems in good spirits overall (his caudal fin is constantly having issues with curling and weird deformations like a ray that splits into two, which I think are genetic - he's a crowntail betta).
  5. DanB80TTSWell Known MemberMember

    I don't know how big your gravel is, but I saw somebody mention you can shoot sand directly to the bottom of a filled tank using some PVC piping, simple but ingenious solution.
  6. FishtailBraidValued MemberMember

    Thanks for the idea DanB80TTS!

    So I've hit another roadblock with the gravel as the order people called and said they're still waiting for the supplier but it could be well over a month, so they offered me the option of cancelling the order, which I reluctantly did. Does anyone know how much gravel (approx. weight) you need to cover a 31x23cm (12x9 inch) tank bottom to about 1.5cm (half-inch) deep? I only want to cover my artificial plant bases! :)

    ETA: I calculated that the amount of gravel I want will displace just over a litre (a quarter gallon) of water - so I think 2kg of gravel should be enough. The stuff is heavier than water, but I don't think it's more than twice as heavy! 2kg is going to be a tad more expensive at the pet store than online, but at least I can finally get it! :p
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2015
  7. ThatOneAquaristValued MemberMember

    2kg may be a tad much, I calculated with that size tank half an inch would be about 2 pounds (about one kg) of gravel
  8. FishtailBraidValued MemberMember

    So I ended up just walking to the LFS and buying gravel there; actually I got 5kg for the same price as 4.5kg would have been online (including shipping) so that worked out nicely. I've rinsed it and put it in and will post pics when the dust settles a bit more!

    Thanks ThatOneAquarist! Yeah, 5kg was definitely more than enough as I didn't use it all! But I think I did use more than 1kg as, since I had all that gravel, I decided I may as well add at least half of it, and I must say it does look nice with a bit of depth. I kept it shallow at the top but added in some height variations further back for a natural look.

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