bubbles of...what?

coffeebean

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I have a 20 gallon fry tank set up. running 40 gallons worth of filtration plus a bubller on a sponge filter. fully planted with a ton of java moss, java fern, anubius and canadian pond weed. all readings are within optimum parameters and have been consistent for months and months.

there are always bubbles of some sort under/in the substrate. if i prod the gravel, bubbles come out. there is no odor. I have hundreds of trumpet snails in there which i thought was supposed to ensure that no gas pockets formed.

what is this? is it harmful? I have seen no negative effects on the fish when the bubbles are released.
 

Nutter

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Is it sand or gravel? If it is gravel, what diameter is it?

Normally bubbles forming in the substrate are nitrogen bubbles but the substrate material needs to be pretty fine for that to happen. Nitrogen bubbles are poisonous to your fish if they inhale them directly.
 

Nutter

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It shouldn't be nitrogen then. Do you think it may be possible for air to be travelling from the airstone underneath the substrate to a point where it is released? The other option would be oxygen trapped under decorations when you add them is being released. That should stop after a little while though.
 
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