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Help! I need some substrate and Axie advice.

This is a discussion on Help! I need some substrate and Axie advice. within the Axolotls (Ambystoma mexicanum) forums, part of the Beginner Newt, Salamander, Axolotl & Help Topics category; Hello, I am new to this forum, as well as a new axolotl owner. I recently bought a fine sand ...

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Old 10th May 2017   #1 (permalink)
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Unhappy Help! I need some substrate and Axie advice.

Hello, I am new to this forum, as well as a new axolotl owner. I recently bought a fine sand substrate for my tank. I put the sand in yesterday, and let it settle over night. As I poured it in I noticed it started to clump. I figured this was normal because sand and water, naturally it's gonna clump. This morning I looked in and the water was still very cloudy. Without thinking I flipped on my filter, and as expected from sand, it stirred up. So after leaving my axolotl in a separate tank over night, and half of this morning, he has been sitting in a smaller tank. I want to hook his fan up to the tank but the water will move around too much, stressing him it. But if he's too warm he'll get stressed out as well. I just need some advice on what to do. I've been having so much trouble with finding the right substrate for my juvenile axie.



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Old 10th May 2017   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Help! I need some substrate and Axie advice.

The sand can cause cloudiness, but if you wash it it isn't an issue. Did you soak/rinse the sand with dechlorinated water prior to adding it to the tank? If you didn't, that's where the cloudiness is coming from. As for clumping....that's a mystery to me. Depending on the type of sand, different things can occur. I've always used flourite sand and I've never had it clump. In the tank I'm currently upgrading to (33gal long), I'm going with carpeting the bottom to avoid any sand issues.
How long have you had your axie? It could be an issue involving cycling, because I always cycle with the sand so there are no issues with cloudiness. When adding new sand I sometimes put it in a quarantine tank to cycle alone, siphon the sand out, let it dry, and put it in.
I hope you are enjoying your axolotl!



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Old 10th May 2017   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Help! I need some substrate and Axie advice.

I washed the sand twice and used the bowl/plate method to add in water. It takes a very long time to settle because it's very fine sand.

I've only had my axie for two-three weeks. He's well adapted to his tank, I just feel bad for the poor guy. We'be tried three different methods of substrate. He first had small gravel, but he could easily injest it so we switched to bare bottom. But I noticed he was having a hard time crawling around because there was nothing for his little toes to grip. So we bought him very, very fine sand. And now we've in this little predicament.



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Old 10th May 2017   #4 (permalink)
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Default 回复: Help! I need some substrate and Axie advice.

I also have very fine sand, I probably washed it quite a few times but i've never had a problem with it clouding the water. i have to be careful about when i change the water to pour onto a plate or some other obstruction rather than directly hitting the sand or it will kick up everywhere!

You also need to be VERY careful about putting on your filter when the water is cloudy with sand, because it will eventually destroy your filter if tiny sand particles are constantly being sucked through it. I avoid this by allowing the sand to settle post-water change before switching the filter back on.

Was it legit fish tank sand or some other sand? Maybe give it some time to settle but it shouldn't really be clumping or clouding up the water if you did wash it.



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Old 10th May 2017   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: 回复: Help! I need some substrate and Axie advice.

It was hermit crab sand, but the package also said it can be used in fish tanks. So I assumed it was fine. I used the bowl method and let it settle over night, after rinsing it out twice. It just made a mess of his tank and I can't put him back in yet. Poor guy is stuck in a container in the fridge



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Old 12th May 2017   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Help! I need some substrate and Axie advice.

I'm new to axolotls too and I'm not sure of any of this but I remember reading somewhere that sand for Reptile enclosures was bad for axolotls because it contains too much calcium. I'm not sure if hermit crab sand is the same or not but I wonder if that might have something to do with your issues?



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Old 25th May 2017   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Help! I need some substrate and Axie advice.

You should probably just go to the pet store and get some fine sand for aquariums. I find National Geographic to be a good brand, if not a little pricey.



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