Substrate in Planted tank with Corydoras

KTshrimp

Hello! I am in the process of planning my aquarium. I am upgrading my 10 gallon cory aquarium to a 20 gallon. I want it to be heavily planted and have been searching for a substrate. I have fine sand in their current tank. What would be the best substrate for a heavily planted tank with corydoras?
Thank you!
 

awilkinson871

The best substrate for cories is smooth sand. Some people will use small rounded pebbles, but it is harder for them to root around for food and debris can get trapped in between the rocks and rot.
 

lojack

Hello! I am in the process of planning my aquarium. I am upgrading my 10 gallon cory aquarium to a 20 gallon. I want it to be heavily planted and have been searching for a substrate. I have fine sand in their current tank. What would be the best substrate for a heavily planted tank with corydoras?
Thank you!
You’ll be fine with any substrate that can grow plants. The most important thing is keeping the water quality up and they’ll do well.

I’ve had corydoras in planted tanks with sand, gravel (eco complete which is more like crushed rock) and currently a mix of sand and gravel. My oldest are currently around 10 years old and they’ve spawned and lived most of their lives on gravel in a community tank.
 

ruud

I would choose high quality sand:
  • Cory's let sand pass their gills, which is natural behavior; hence advocating sand.
  • Silt would be possible as well, but for plant roots, sand is better to enhance water flow through the substrate.
  • High quality sand, which has tiny variation in grain size and tiny variation in color, would be my preference; it enhances water flow even better, looks very natural, and detrius and poo look much less disturbing.
If you like to observe your cory's and tank every day, then I would not cut costs on substrate. Cut costs on the type of light, type of filter, type of heater, type of tank, but spend money on quality substrate. I find it to be very defining for the overall appearance of a tank.

My favorite brand for sand substrate is ADA La Plata or Colorado. Yes, it is very expensive.
But it lasts forever! I am using and re-using this substrate for years; I even have a bucket with used, surplus ADA sand for a next project.

Perhaps there are cheaper alternatives, or perhaps even more affordable, mix different sands yourself. But again, buy now, enjoy forever.
 

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