Just how important is gravel to the nitrogen cycle?

jasmine-smith

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I've had a 5 gallon set up for my betta fish that has been cycled for at least a month now I'd say. I really want to change the gravel. I let my sister pick out a blue gravel that I really don't like. Would that completely destroy my nitrogen cycle if I changed it? Should I just keep the gravel I have?
 

Mongo75

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Your beneficial bacteria live in your filter/media. Very little live in the gravel or on the surfaces of your tank and decorations. There is so little in your gravel you can completely remove it and would never notice a difference in your water parameters. Just be sure to really, really, really clean the new gravel before adding it to your tank. You don't want your fish to be filtering any dust or sediment left behind through their gills.

Now, having said that, I would still check your water for a few days, just to err on the safe side.
 
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jasmine-smith

jasmine-smith

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Mongo75 said:
Your beneficial bacteria live in your filter/media. Very little live in the gravel or on the surfaces of your tank and decorations. There is so little in your gravel you can completely remove it and would never notice a difference in your water parameters. Just be sure to really, really, really clean the new gravel before adding it to your tank. You don't want your fish to be filtering any dust or sediment left behind through their gills.

Now, having said that, I would still check your water for a few days, just to err on the safe side.
Okie dokie, thanks so much. I'm always careful with washing my gravel so thank you for the advice :)
 

Gel0city

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jasmine-smith said:
I've had a 5 gallon set up for my betta fish that has been cycled for at least a month now I'd say. I really want to change the gravel. I let my sister pick out a blue gravel that I really don't like. Would that completely destroy my nitrogen cycle if I changed it? Should I just keep the gravel I have?
As mentioned above, most of your BB live in your filter. Since your tank is fairly new and is cycling, you could change out the gravel, but make sure you wash the new gravel VERY well. I don't think at this point it will hurt your cycle.
 

SeaMonkey06

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Agree with all of the above. I have changed the substrate in all my tanks but one and have had no ill effects :)
 

Redshark1

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I'm personally hoping that my BB live in my gravel as I don't have a separate filter.

I'm running undergravel filters.

Its a massive surface area for bacteria to live on.

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