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Life in the substrate

DTM61

Member
Joined
1 Dec 2020
Messages
44
Location
West Yorkshire
Hi all,

I'm interested to know what kind of macro life you have living in your substrate. Coming from reef tanks where the sand is crawling with various worms and pods etc and has its own interest and role to play in the system, I'm not finding much information regarding freshwater?

Is there any life down there? Is it just me staring at the sand? 😂 Reefers used to take a cup of sand from various aquariums to seed their substrate. A decent lfs would be happy to supply it for nothing. Is there not enough value in terms of fauna to do the same thing with freshwater? Or have I just missed something, or could I just seed it with some live foods to colonise before adding fish and shrimp?

We all seem to talk about bacteria, which is obviously important, I'm just interested to know if there's much else available to increase diversity? Thoughts much appreciated!

Cheers
Dan
 

dw1305

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Staff member
Joined
7 Apr 2008
Messages
11,539
Location
nr Bath
Hi all,
Is there any life down there?
Reefers used to take a cup of sand from various aquariums to seed their substrate. A decent lfs would be happy to supply it for nothing. Is there not enough value in terms of fauna to do the same thing with freshwater?
I just seed it with some live foods to colonise before adding fish and shrimp?
Yes, <"the same applies really">. Have a look at Stephan Tanner's <"Aquarium Biofiltration">.

cheers Darrel
 

JoshP12

Member
Joined
8 Dec 2019
Messages
520
Location
Canada
We all seem to talk about bacteria, which is obviously important, I'm just interested to know if there's much else available to increase diversity? Thoughts much appreciated!
I took a sample and stuck it under a microscope and found loads of cool stuff. Different spots of the tank had different life.

Excuse the lack of technical terms, but a sample from my skimmer had loads of rod-shaped organisms and a sample from a decaying leaf had loads of "round" and "string-like" organisms.
 

DTM61

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Thread starter
Joined
1 Dec 2020
Messages
44
Location
West Yorkshire
Thanks for the replies.

So if for example I wished to keep "micropredators", perhaps liquorice gourami for example, who predate on tiny aquatic invertebrates, could I start adding these somehow? The aim being to increase biodiversity, creating a more complete ecosystem? If yes, how? Buying different live food / scooping water from a pond / taking sand from established tanks etc?
Thanks all
 

dw1305

Expert
Staff member
Joined
7 Apr 2008
Messages
11,539
Location
nr Bath
Hi all,
Buying different live food / scooping water from a pond / taking sand from established tanks etc?
Yes, all of those would do. I'd probably try some leaf litter from a pond, and then quarantine it for a couple of weeks and see what you get. I've been keen on getting <"a culture of Dero digitata">, so far unsuccessfully, but they are <"apparently easy to keep">.

I have Naidid worms in the tanks and even with the Corydoras pygmaeus present <"they persist">.
I wished to keep "micropredators", perhaps liquorice gourami for example, who predate on tiny aquatic invertebrates
I've kept <"Parosphromenus "Bintan"> "successfully" (I never raised any fry) and they are very keen on Micro and Grindal worms.

cheers Darrel
 

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