Sea Shells Vs Cuttlebone

Megumizoe

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So, I have sea shells in all of my betta tanks. Including a large shell in my 12 gallon. My dad lives in Florida and puts seashells in all his tanks and told me it was good for it but now I am seeing posts that seashells are not good. Note: my dad keeps and breeds guppies mostly. He also has betta and some other fish. He has a lot of tanks.

I also have cuttlebone in my tanks for the snails, is this bad for the betta?

Do I need to remove the shells from my tanks? My betta seem fine but the longest betta I've had right now is 4 months.
 

smee82

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No theyre fine I have cuttlebone in my tanks too.
But too many can raise the ph
 

Madeline Peterson

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He has a point. Test the pH every time you test the tank's water, which should be every week. If it is consistantly too high, remove the shells and possibly some of the cuttlebone. You need at least some cuttlebone for the snails. If it is still too high, add a buffer from an aquarium store to it. That'll keep the pH at a lower level. Actually, I'd recommend adding a buffer whatever you do. I consider it a necessary part of a healthy tank. The bottle will have information on dosage, and there are tests to ensure you have the right level.
 

jdhef

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Sea Shell, cuttlebone and crushed coral will all raise your KH (which in turn will raise your pH) as the dissolve, releasing calcium into the water. All but the most sensitive fish will be fine in any pH between 6.0 and 8.5. But your beneficial bacteria really needs a pH closer to 7.0 and above. The reason being, as your pH drops below 7, the bacteria starts becoming dormant. Also as you pH drops below 7, ammonia starts turning into ammonium, So if your pH starts dropping too much below 7, you will lose your cycle due to the bacteria becoming dormant. At that point your ammonia (ammonium) levels start to rise. The good thing about ammonium is that it is far less toxic to fish than ammonia (some claI'm it is actually nontoxic).

So...to finally get around to answering your question, having the seashells in your tank should be fine. In fact, it will be beneficial to your snail.

Also, I am going to respectfully disagree with Madeline Peterson (sorry Madeline) in that adding pH buffers to alter your pH can lead to disaster. They can cause rapid pH swings. Fish Fish cannot tolerate fluxuating pH levels, but like I mentioned will be fine in any stable pH between 6.0 and 8.5.
 
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Megumizoe

Megumizoe

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Thanks for the replies. I checked the PH 2 days ago on one of my tanks and it was 7.5. So, I will check it weekly from now on.
 

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