Sand as substrate?

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Deesk06

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Hey yall! I have owned a fish tank for about 2 months now. Love it. Love the hobby!! I started with a 13 Gallon wide screen. Had 4 neon tetras and a betta. I today just got a new tank, 5.5G to put JUST my betta in, so he is happy! Wanna keep everything stress free. I chose my substrate to be sand..I have a question about cleaning the tank. When I clan it should I take out all of the plants and decor? Or so I keep it in there? I read somewhere to take it all out, stir up the sand so the poop comes to the top. But I am not 100% sure of this! That's why I am asking you all!! How would I go about cleaning the substrate with sand?

Also! I just started cycling today..I put in gravel from my established tank in a stocking and put it in this tank, as well as a plant..plus I took my filter from my established tank, and stuck it in about 1/4 of the way and swooshed it around a bit..maybe just maybe some good bacteria came off of it! How long should I wait before sticking my betta in there?
 

AquaticBrandon

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Welcome to Fishlore!
Sand is a good choice and looks great. You don't need to remove any plants or decor, that will hurt the plants (if they are live plants). If you Have a gravel vacuum, simply just Hoover over the sand and get all the poop and other stuff out. If you have a test kit, I would check daily to see if there's any ammonia spikes. If you haven't already, I would pick up some Conditioner like Prime which detoxifies ammonia. I would add the betta as soon as the tank is cycled and there's 0 ammonia and nitrate.


 
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Deesk06

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Okay awesome !! Thank you!! And I will buy a test kit tomorrow. I REALLY wanna buy a 55G tank...but I will not do that until I have had a tank for 6 months - 1 year...anyway back on topic, I will get a test kit tomorrow! I'm happy I invested in another tank for the betta. He is older I believe, plus I think he has a tumor growing so I wanna make what days he has left the best they could be and the most stress free!! I will let nature take him. I could not bring myself to kill lefty(betas name) my first fish. I will let nature take its course and give him the best care possible!
 
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Deesk06

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Yep! Was thinking of getting 2 more neon tetras! And maybe some hatchets! Or gourami! Any other possible ideas? I have a wide screen, so the length actually measures the same as a 20G..so I figure I have a little extra room to work with. But I do not want to overstock my tank at all. Want it to be just at the perfect amount. No more no less!
 
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