Best cheap Loach substrate Question 

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Dean

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I will be getting a some Polka-Dot Loaches for a 55 gal tank. What is a good cheap substrate for them?

Play sand is the front runner so far with pool sand and chery stone chicken grit close behind. The chicken grit is pretty fine but does have sharper edges than I'd like.

Any thought of those options or any other options that might be better? Thanks a lot.
 

Jaysee

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I'm going to be getting polkadots for a 55 too! I haven't decided on the substrate yet, but just the other day I got 100 lbs of white sand for $2.50 from a masonry supply place. I think they had chicken grit.....

I would go pool filter over play sand
 

Elodea

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I think play sand would be good. Never chicken grit--it might be too sharp.
 

Jaysee

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My experience with play sand is that by the time the sand was washed thoroughly enough to use, what was left was rather sharp. I didn't use it.
 
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Dean

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jayse, saw your post about the white sand find. I'm just not a fan of white substrate. really wanted to ge Granite Chiken Grit which is much rounder than the cherry stone but I can't get it here. I've looked everwhere. Is there pool sand thats not impossible to fing that isn't white?

Also, I want some plants in the tank to so if you have input into those sands with plants, that would be great too.
 

Jaysee

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The pool filter sand I have isn't white. Sorry, can't help you with plants.
 
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Dean

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what color is it, looks liek a cream tan color to me
 

Butterfly

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I have had pool Filter sand from bright white to a darker creamy color. Keep checking pool stores until you find the color you like best the loaches will thank you
I have also had loaches on pea pebbles (they are more round than gravel) and they did fine. The pea pebbles were a pain to wash though.
Carol
 
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Dean

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problem is I want I dark substrate. I was trying to find crushed granite chicken grit but its not available anywhere near my area. The pool sands i've seen are white or cream and that doesn't look very natural to me and again, I want a darker substrate. Play sand isn't as dark as I want either but seems to be muck more natural looking then the pool filter sand I've seen. Is there even darker pool sand than the cream color?
 

Butterfly

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The dark cream is the darkest I've seen. Sorry. Are you set on sand? Maybe eco complete? It's dark and would be easy on the loaches. It is a little more expensive than PFS though.
carol
 
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Dean

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I'm set on cheap more then dark. This tank is for my classroom and I have a very small budget due to how much sociaty values teachers...(sorry, had to throw that in there)
 
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I've got really good lead. A friend of mine has mineral rights for some mountains in colorado where he mines for gold flake. He has ton of 2 and 3 mm rocks from sifting. It contains mostly granite with quartz, garnet, and some shale. He did the vinegar test for me and said there weren't any bubbles or fizzing going on. Its fairly round but it does a some square like pieces in it. He said it looks really good with the grey,red,and clear quartz crystal in it, Do you guys thing that that will work well for my tank?
 

Jaysee

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Dean said:
I'm set on cheap more then dark. This tank is for my classroom and I have a very small budget due to how much sociaty values teachers...(sorry, had to throw that in there)
If teachers were paid what they're worth, people would do it for the wrong reasons.
 
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Touche
 
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