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Old 02-06-2007, 07:44 AM   #1
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planted tank vacuum?

Folks,
I do my water changes with a Python Biweekly. Can anyone recommend a hand vacuum that works well with planted tanks? I see 4 or 5 models in local stores. I just want to suck up any debris laying on top of substrate or on/in Glosso. Or should I just leave it to break down to fertilizer? I have to say my clown loach, Albino cat, and 2 other bottom fish in the Botia family are doing well with keeping the bottom clean.
Thanks
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Old 02-06-2007, 09:26 AM   #2
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I advise not disturbing the substrate. Let it become fertilizer. As for the Glosso, just wave it off onto the substrate.


HTH
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Old 02-06-2007, 10:35 AM   #3
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From what I've heard those hand pumps aren't particularly good. If you're going to clean the substrate you might as well do a water change anyway, so no really need for the hand pump. For spot cleaning you could always use a Turkey Baster.
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Old 02-06-2007, 10:47 PM   #4
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As always, I second MCD's and Purrbox's advice. In a properly maintained planted tank there is no need to vacuum the substrate. The plants will make use of it if you have a thick carpet. Trust me, I used to worry about this too. Let things sit and consider carpet plants (i.e. Glosso, E. triandra, etc.). If you don't have any, just let us know. Someone here will be more than happy to provide you with what you need
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Old 02-07-2007, 12:01 AM   #5
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I still use a Python but I have two bristlenose plecos (= swimming poo factories) so every now and then I have to vacuum out the poop pile that accumulates under the stargrass. Other than that I don't do much if any gravel vacc'ing, but the Python is still great for water changes.
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Old 02-07-2007, 12:48 AM   #6
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I also do not bother gravel vaccing. I converted my old gravel vac into a CO2 reactor, and now even that is retired in favor of mist method. For water changes I put the "screen" from a HOB filter intake onto the end of a length of hose. That just drains down the sink via siphon action. If feel the need to clean off the mulm/poop from and area, I just stir it up into the water collum before the water change, and wave the end of the hose over that area.
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Old 02-07-2007, 06:30 PM   #7
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Folks,
Thanks for the advice--funny, when I did my last python water change--the substrate was very clean! I just stuck the python tube about 1/4 inch into the substrate. Ok--so I wont go with the gravel vac and go natural!!
any estimate on how long java moss needs to attach to driftwood? Java fern? Both are tied with thread now.
Thanks!
Cliff
Long Island, NY
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Old 02-07-2007, 07:22 PM   #8
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If do not do gravel vac, will cories get sick from eating rotten food debris?
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Old 02-07-2007, 10:23 PM   #9
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I never vacuum either and my corys look nice and healthy and are growing like weeds.
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Old 02-08-2007, 12:02 AM   #10
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Quote:
will cories get sick from eating rotten food debris?
Should never feed more food than is eaten in 3-5 minutes
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Old 02-08-2007, 09:03 AM   #11
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i have to agree with everyone else, i do not suck the gavel in my planted tanks, i do wave the python about and such up some of the dead leaves and stuff on the surface.
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Old 02-08-2007, 11:44 AM   #12
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If you really want to clean the gravel in a small tank. Some air line tubing works wonders. I use it on my 10g once a week to take care of snail/shrimp poo (which is a lot). It's easy to get between stems, under moss beds, etc without damaging anything.
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