Aquarium Sand, Gravel and Substrates
Aquarium substrate is required as a base level of an aquarium. This layer is typically 1-2” deep depending on the size of your tank, and has many purposes. Substrate can help keep live plants, plastic plants, and other tank decor in place. Bacteria that’s beneficial to the ecosystem of your aquarium readily grows on the surface of substrate material. And some creatures in your aquarium might like to hide or dig in the substrate itself. But debris and algae can grow on substrate too. When regularly cleaning your aquarium, you will want to fully clean the visible waste from gravel substrate, or if it’s a hard-to-clean material like sand, you’ll want to replace it fully instead.