Best Betta Substrates – Reviews And Buying Guide

One of the vital considerations when it comes to setting up a betta fish aquarium you can ever or never think about is the material to cover the bottom of it. Whether you are well-informed about that or still a newbie with your very first day of being a fish keeper, and have never tried discovering it before, you would be somehow surprised to learn that there is a various range of advantages and features along with, that substrates bring about, and the bottom line is that you don’t get it wrong.

In this article, you will expect to holistically attain knowledge into the details of substrates for setting up an aquarium. And there are the top 4 of the best betta substrates available for you to consider before making any decision of purchasing one.

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Top 4 Best Betta Substrates For You To Choose

Top 1 of the best betta substrates: Flourite, 7 kg / 15.4 lbs

Plus points:

  • Specialized: This is a specially stable porous clay gravel for the natural planted aquarium only and then I bet you cannot find any similar specialization anywhere else aside from this one.
  • Multifunctional: Its appearance is best suited for planted aquaria but if needed it can be applied in any freshwater aquarium environment as well for the best experience as per personal demands.
  • Highly adaptable: This brand of the betta substrate is probably most effective when used alone as an integral substrate bed, however, it may be merged with other kinds of gravels as much in the case that it is possible.
  • Safe to use: It is described to be not chemically coated or treated, hence you don’t have to mind the fact that it may alter the pH of the water, as it is not gonna happen as sure as hell.

Minus point:

Even though it is pre-washed, in the sense that this is a natural product, it may get dusty in transit and require rinsing prior to use, to remove any residual dust and this may cause hesitation to some people before purchasing. 

Top 2: Caribsea Super Naturals Aquarium Sand

Plus points:

  • Supernatural experience: If you are upset just because of the coronavirus and then your travel plans have been all canceled, you basically love a supernatural experience like a wild world in your own home by using this kind of sand.
  • Healthy for the aquatic environment: You can be relieved since no paints or color-enhancing substances are allowed to go to ingredients of the product, enabling your aquarium to be as healthy as wished.
  • Made in the USA: If there is any other place on this earth being well-known more than the USA’s quality when it comes to betta substrates, I gotta say, you are illusional. Just to be kidding, anyway, but the USA’s manufacturing process is testimony to the high-quality products being inclusive of this one.

Minus point:

  • Be wary of what color you select before buying because generally the picture advertised definitely doesn’t match what you get as a package. 

Top 3: Spectrastone Shallow Creek Regular for Freshwater Aquariums

Plus points:

  • Non-PH affected: Psychologically speaking, loads of customers are afraid of paying for the products that adversely affect the PH of the water, but I am certain that this brand can promise the aforesaid concern would never happen, so you can actually count on this to make your aquarium look better.
  • Safe for use: It is a piece of good news for you when the manufacturer claims that the substrate is safely suitable for a freshwater aquarium, partially meaning your water will not be cloudy even after use.
  • Special bonus: Not only are the rocks beautifully produced but they are also affordable, being compatible with low-income households who are still fascinated with betta aquarium to some degree.

Minus point:

  • If you seem to be looking for smoother gravel to use for pygmy corydoras in an aquarium, chances are you will not be satisfied with this product as it is rough-edged gravel. 

Top 4: Aquarium Gravel River Rock

Plus points:

  • Multiple uses: If you want to add extra beauty to a potted plant or aquarium, I guess this pack of pebbles is greatly ideal for you. It is impeccable for home decor and a creative interior even exterior design as well. You can literally use it for flower arrangements, vase fillers, walkways, even water features, exposed aggregate flooring or walls, and many other areas needed. It could also be applied as an accent to aquariums, water gardens, ponds, and terrariums and for whatever you lean towards, it serves you at best.
  • Aesthetics: Those pebbles are a marvelous material for decorating. They effortlessly blend their amazing texture and natural color well with creativity and innovative DIY ideas and turn into the beauty-sounding natural as much as possible.

Minus point:

  • The delivery is not up to par sometimes as you may receive a package covered by a very thin bag though it is pretty heavy.

Why do you need a betta substrate for your aquarium?

In the case that you know anything about the nitrogen cycle, you are liable to know the great importance of bacteria. Certain bacteria are able to break down nitrates, nitrites, nitrogen, and ammonia in the aquarium, for example. All of which can be damaging to the health of your betta if those cannot be eliminated timely. Substrates are generally beneficial in the sense that they house bacteria allowing the bacteria to thrive.

The primary reason why people use substrate is scientifically demonstrated to make their tank look better. If you’re similar to me, you may think an empty glass floor looks barren and a bit unnatural as well. And an empty tank floor can basically stress your betta out also. If too much light reflects off the glass, it is obvious that your betta might start flaring up.

In terms of aesthetics, substrates help to make your betta’s colors pop as well. Especially if you think of using darker and more natural substrates.

A substrate also makes your aquarium more natural for your betta to wander around. Think about what your betta’s natural environment is like, I guess you can. It’s not typically a glass-bottom floor, but rather gravel, soil, rocks, or sand with a host of plant life in there.

Having plants in your tank is extremely essential for a betta. They can give your betta places to hide and make the tank feel more natural. And substrates make your plant anchor in place.

Some kinds of substrates also help change the pH of your aquarium, make the water soft or hard, and absorb detrimental substances, and then release beneficial ones as well.

How to choose the best betta substrate?

If you would like to choose one betta substrate that most suits your style and the interior environment, please bear in mind that water chemistry is extremely important!

Bettas hail from waterways that are very soft and acidic as such.

They can be then soon acclimated to a wide variety of water conditions, but they technically do best in neutral to slightly acidic water for sure.

This means you may want to avoid substrates greatly increasing the water’s mineral content (general and carbonate hardness) going into the ingredient. Don’t apply substrates such as aragonite sand or crushed coral. These substrates will constantly leach calcium and carbonate into the water, raising the GH, KH, and pH, which means you have to generally take care of the water more than your beloved fishes. 

Also, I don’t really suggest beginners use substrates that lower pH, like some planted tank substrates in the sense that can cause problems if you don’t have a solid handle on the ins and outs of water chemistry for the best use at all.

Best Betta Substrates FAQs:

What is exactly aquarium substrate?

Aquarium substrate is fundamentally whatever you line the bottom of your fish tank with as usual. Many people think it’s only there as decoration, or to make your tank look nicer than normally it does. But, in fact, actually, it plays a more essential role than what you may think of. The type of substrate you use can have a great effect on a lot of things including how hardy or soft the water is, the pH of the water, and most vitally the well-being of your betta as much.

Is gravel bad for betta fish to live around?

Gravel is genuinely good in the sense that it anchors plants easier and produces more beneficial bacteria than the average. You should perhaps avoid coral sand and marble chippings and definitely stay away from any substrate you’ve found in the wild as well. Aquarium substrate will make your betta feel more or being at home than anywhere else as well as making the tank look more natural.

Which one is better between planted and unplanted betta substrates?

Live plants will need substrates that they can anchor in and the best substrates then give them nutrients also (especially for root-feeding plants). Aquarium soils coming with a gravel or sand top are the go-to substrates for betta keepers with planted tanks, I am sure.

Siamese fighting fish use manmade or live plants to hide themselves in, and plants breaking the surface of the water generally make ideal anchors for a bubble nest later on. Plants can be used to create a non-toxic environment that stimulates your betta most.

An unplanted betta tank actually will not need a substrate for anchoring as clear as day. The benefit for you and your fish will be the greater selection of substrate materials then. These will include a range of commonplace materials such as marble, rock, and sands as well.

Many hobbyists feel that the top-rated materials applied to cover the bottom of a betta fish tank literally combine two or more of these.

Those are basics that you need to be armed with when taking into consideration what you should have, whether planted or unplanted betta substrates. Hopefully, you can end up owning a proper category being compatible with your aquarium and your needs likewise.

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