Sand-fluffing Species For 10 Gal?

Discussion in 'Freshwater Fish and Invertebrates' started by SM1199, May 4, 2019.

  1. SM1199

    SM1199Well Known MemberMember

    Hey everyone, I've got a dirted 10 gallon with a hefty sand cap. Waste often ends up sitting on top of the sand, and it's not only unsightly, but makes quite an impressive cloud when stirred up. I'd very much like to keep an invert or fish capable of turning over that top layer of sand to slow down that waste buildup (it's mostly from my nerite that chews up all the algae on the driftwood). Current inhabitants are CPDs, cherry shrimp, and one nerite.

    I know for a fact MTS are great at this, but I'm not really interested in getting a species that has the potential to grow completely out of control. I also know cories are very good at fluffing up sand, but since it's just a 10 gallon, I'd only feel okay putting pygmy cories in it - and I've heard they are mostly mid-level swimmers and won't mess much with substrate. Any ideas?
     
  2. Pat93

    Pat93Valued MemberMember

    Hmmm I would say a loach but you already do have some snails. Mts really don’t go that crazy out of control. Maybe if there was something like a sand loach that was a little smaller and didn’t eat snails

    What happens is you have a few snails, then you have way to many snails, then the population will balance out as long as you don’t change how much food you are putting in the tank.
    Perhaps you already understand all this and still just don’t want the hassle regaurdless which I totally get.

    Hmmmm I have a species tank of Pygmy corydoras and they do stay mostly on the bottom but they are so small they seem to prefer eating the algae off the back glass rather than sifting sand. Perhaps when they clean off that area they will move to another but I have almost never seen them sifting, just cleaning plants and decor(outstandingly well I might add)
    One of my freshly cycled tanks had a lot of diatom algae(I think) from using stability I think and they cleaned it better than I could have with my little aquarium loofa

    I seem to have gone on for two paragraphs while not helping at all lol, how bout some kind of fish that eats and sifts gravel like a goldfish but NOT a goldfish

    Yeah, that’s my best solution there’s gotta be some kind of little friendly ram like fish you could put in there to sift some gravel or sand as you have.

    Nothing really works better than mts and you’ll hardly notice if they get a little out of control for awhile cause they live in the substrate. I thought it was the coolest thing ever after I put in three big trumpet snails just to see baby snails crawl to the surface like little zombie snails just a few weeks later, but I’m kind-of a snail nerd I have a pet garden snail as well so I’m very biased but a little fish sifting gravel like a goldfish does might be cool to watch too

    If I come across some sort of fish like I described I will post the link back here for ya
     
  3. OP
    OP
    SM1199

    SM1199Well Known MemberMember

    Thanks for the response! I do agree MTS would be the best for what I'm aiming for and I understand they should be self-maintaining, but like duckweed (except even worse), it's one of those things that once you have it, it's so hard to get rid of, and if I change my mind down the road I fear I'll never be able to get rid of them for good (especially having a very thick substrate). Would a few assassins keep them in check, reasonably speaking? Then again, I don't want assassins taking out my nerite.

    I looked into sand loaches and everything said they're just way too big and active for anything under a 30 gallon. All I could think of that's small enough then would be kuhlis, but I think trying to fit a decent enough school into a 10 gallon isn't all that reasonable. I'd rather understock than overstock, especially since this is a planted thank tank that is currently running very well mechanical-filter-free (and yes, it did still have gunk settling on the bottom when I had a filter on it). I'm not totally opposed to getting another filter to accommodate more fish, but after two filters breaking down on me just on this one tank (I know it was my fault without a surge protector, but still - don't want to drop even more money on a 3rd filter, and if the tank is self-sustaining right now...)

    I know there are freshwater gobies, but I don't think any of them sand-sift, unfortunately. I don't think a dwarf ram would thrive in a 10 gallon, and would most likely eat my shrimp.

    I plopped two baby rabbit snails in there this morning to see if they do anything in the way of moving sand around. The tank also doesn't have a heater on it (CPDs prefer cooler water) so rabbit snails aren't a good long term option, but right now the tank is pretty warm as summer is approaching and the apartment is getting toasty. They're also definitely going to get too large for the tank eventually, or might eat my plants, so I'll end up removing them at some point - but for now I'll see what they do.
     
  4. Humanartrebel1020

    Humanartrebel1020New MemberMember

    Orange rabbit snails . My gobies hide in the sand sometimes if that counts. You may be dealing with a dead spot from your filter?
     
  5. OP
    OP
    SM1199

    SM1199Well Known MemberMember

    I actually don't have a filter on this tank, as I said in the last comment. I also just plopped some rabbit snails in to see what they do, as also said. What species of goby do you have?
     
  6. Humanartrebel1020

    Humanartrebel1020New MemberMember

    I have two little grey ones from the stiphodon species. Heres the link.. I have the one in the first video you see titled " sweet dwarf goby". I don't think there is a better solution than getting a filter for this problem if your going to keep the tank long term. I also have a ten gallon and I use the Medium Aqueon HOB filter. Its not the best but it came with the tank and gets the job done. Gobies Do need pristine water .https://www.google.com/search?ei=Mw...3i10i30j0j0i131j0i67j0i10j0i13i10.TqHfXW2CZto
     
  7. OP
    OP
    SM1199

    SM1199Well Known MemberMember

    Even when I did have a filter on the tank, it didn't decrease the waste on top of the sand, most likely because all the plants I have in there blocked the flow of the water reaching the lower levels. I went through two filters that both got killed in power surges and yes, that is my fault, but I'd rather not spend another $20 on it if the tank's nitrogen waste is being kept perfectly in check by the plants alone. The fish and shrimp really enjoy the still water.

    I'll look into the gobies out of curiosity.
     
  8. Anders247

    Anders247Fishlore LegendMember

    I wouldn't keep even pygmy cories in a 10g, personally. Besides, they really don't do anything for fluffing up the sand anyway.
    I'd suggest amano shrimp or snails, this being a 10g your options are pretty limited.
     
  9. Humanartrebel1020

    Humanartrebel1020New MemberMember

    I gotchyaa just a thought.
     
  10. OP
    OP
    SM1199

    SM1199Well Known MemberMember

    I wasn't planning on pygmy cories, just spitballing. Amano shrimp do a fantastic job on algae but they don't really move around the sand. And there are so many types of snails, you'd have to be more specific - I've already got a nerite and a couple baby rabbit snails in there.
     
  11. Anders247

    Anders247Fishlore LegendMember

    Yeah... I can't really think of any fish that would stir the substrate that would be fine in a 10g. The few bottom dwellers I can think of aren't super active, like Asian stone catfish. I do have peacock gudgeons in my 10g, but they don't stir the sand.
     
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