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I need an advice to pick substrate

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#1 Varolluis

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  • Romania

Posted 11 October 2018 - 05:50 PM

Hello. Because I want to reset my Florida biotope I need a bit help to pick right substrate. Now I'm using a black type but in most picture I saw in most springs there is white sand bottom. Do you think a 1-2 mm white sand will be best choice?
For the moment I have Heterandria Formosa, Cambarellus schmitii, Pomaceea Paludosa and as plants ludwigia, hydrocotyle umbrellata, eleocharis parvula, gratiola viscindula, penthorum senoides and lobelia cardinali mini. Rocks and woods as decorations.
But as I said, I have a big problem to pick substrate and I need help.

#2 don212

  • NANFA Member

Posted 11 October 2018 - 08:43 PM

how are all our folks in the path of Michael

#3 jeffreyconte

  • NANFA Member

Posted 12 October 2018 - 07:55 PM

It is my opinion that black substrate provides the best presentation for aquaria, although I have to admit that I have not tried pure white.  

#4 Doug_Dame

  • NANFA Member

Posted 04 November 2018 - 09:34 PM

Many Florida springs and some Florida rivers & creeks do have white sand as the main substrate. However, most of Florida is very flat, and there is much swamp and near-stagnant slow moving water. Plus many lakes. Those tend to dark muck and accumulation of leaf litter and bio-buildup. (Occasionally, even a couple even a couple of foot deep ... I will spare you the grimy details of how I know this.)


Heterandria are small fish and usually found in and around fairly dense vegetation, in the slow/stagnant places. Thus a dark substrate or light substrate would be appropriate for a realistic Florida biotype for them. The apple snails are also found in heavily vegetated areas, so mucky bottoms rather than sand would be most typical.


The one thing that is uncommon in Florida is actual rocks. There are some creeks in the far northwest of the panhandle (north of Pensacola, basically) that have gravel, but fist-size or larger rocks are just very rare in the 99% of the rest of Florida ... it's pretty much all limestone base, and dissolves in place more than it fractures and moves with the current. 


That said, my aim with a biotype is to give a reasonable SENSE of the target environment, literal accuracy is both difficult and sometimes limiting.



Doug Dame

Floridian now back in Florida

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