• Looking to buy a cephalopod? Check out Tomh's Cephs Forum, and this post in particular shares important info about our policies as it relates to responsible ceph-keeping.


Pacific Blue

Blue Ring
Apr 19, 2003
Ok so the last octo I kept was in a fairly empty tank just some shells ect nothing on the bottom of the tank. What kind of sand should I be using? I know coral gravel is far too course for there senstive skin. I was thinking sugar sand would be a good option. Is this to sharp? Is there a good grit to feel ie rubbing it between my fingers? The other problem is that my tank return is through the bottom in an reverse under gravel filter set up. I want to enshure that it is not going to be too restrictive of the flow. Any thoughts on aquascapeing? I have a tall 130 gallon tank for a not so large octo.

Pacific Blue :boat:
If your return is under a plate, you are going to have some problems with sand...I use beach sand ( comparable to 80 grit silica), but have returns that are above the substrate...you might be stuck with gravel...

A mix between fine sand and goral sand/gravel works well... the CS helps to buffer the pH which can crash otherwise
I spent some time on the phone with the Carib Sea people about this question.

They make a very fine sand Aragamax that's almost like mud. There is one with slightly larger grain size caled Aragamax select. Both are considered "sugar sized" with a grain diameter of 0.2 to 1.2 mm. Neither would have sharp edges and are recommended for sharks and rays. Another slighly larger size grain in offered in the Special Grade Reef sand (1.25 -1.95mm )

The live sand costs more, but even if you don't need live sand, it can be an advantage because you don't have to wash it for an hour. They offer Bahamas Oolite, Fiji Pink, and Special Grade Reef sand - these don't have sharp edges.

Colin has a good suggestion about mixing the grades. I'm going to mix Fiji Pink with the Special Grade Reef Sand.

Where do you find the Aragamax Live Sand?

I've been looking for the mudlike live sand hopeing you could give a recommendation on where to buy from. :smile:
Um..Quite bad in Hong Kong, they don't have any info on anything, most of the personal aquariums only contain a simple filter, air pump and some sharp hard yucky disguting coral shards, they're not even sand...
Hey good advice, I think I will go with a 50/50 mix of sugar sand/ coral gravel. My under gravel is made out of egg crate and fine window mesh so I dont have to worry about the sand falling through. I am looking at cold water species (O. Rubecens) so perhaps the wont dig as much.

Pacific Blue :Boat:

This should be interesting..but I have bought myself one of those, um...newbie tank..I'll start a new thread soon on my dumb * developments, but the tank is soo small, and the filter system only contains a wheel (with a DIY bacteria kit) a airpump which lanuches bubbles the size of olives and the filter system is a overhead, sucks water from surface and puts it back on the surface....the air pump is just a tube contacted with a out let at the bottom.... :mad:
Pacific Blue, O. rubecens is a nice size and a very pretty octo, but I've come across several references to them biting a little more than other octos.

I was visiting where they were keeping this species last year (the octos were young, about the size of a tennis ball) and sure enough, one of them bit the person who was handling them! Not a bad bite, though.

the big problem with undersand plates is that of anaerobic decay...if you put sand on top of a screened in filter plate, you can end up with "dead spots" that can quickly overtake a filter system and crash a tank...don't go too fine with the sand mixture !!!


Huh, what? So, filter systems aren't suppose to go overhead and dump water in?
So, it's suppose to filter from the bottom, s..t I didn't know my tank was that newbish...

Shop Amazon

Shop Amazon
Shop Amazon; support TONMO!
Shop Amazon
We are a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon and affiliated sites.