Is diatomaceous earth harmful to fish or inverts? - Equipment - Aquatic Plant Central

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Old 04-15-2007, 04:41 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Is diatomaceous earth harmful to fish or inverts?

I have otocinclus, shrimp, and livebearers.

A little bit escaped my filter today as I was trying it out with a Hot Magnum to clear green water (which it did very nicely ). Now it's a light dusting in some areas of the tank decor.
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Old 04-15-2007, 04:54 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is diatomaceous earth harmful to fish or inverts?

Nope.....it's ok. You shouldn't have any problems!
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Old 04-15-2007, 07:45 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is diatomaceous earth harmful to fish or inverts?

Sorry to disagree, but I lost several Amano shrimp when I had 'technical difficulties' the first time I tried charging a H.O.T. Magnum filter with D.E. Within hours I saw them going thru convulsive fits and then they died . I had five of them. It's possible it's entirely coincidental, but I'd be very reluctant to allow any of the powder to escape into a system housing inverts again.

I waited more than six months before attempting Amanos again. My second and third batches are now doing fine for me. I'm using the same water source and dosing regimes now as when I lost the first batch. So I still think it was the D.E.

My fish and snails appeared unaffected by the accidental leakage I caused.
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Old 04-16-2007, 04:37 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is diatomaceous earth harmful to fish or inverts?

Wow, that's alarming. Has anyone else had a similar experience?

I'm keeping a close eye for now... not that I could do much about it at this point....
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Old 04-16-2007, 05:06 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is diatomaceous earth harmful to fish or inverts?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mud Pie Mama View Post
Sorry to disagree, but I lost several Amano shrimp when I had 'technical difficulties' the first time I tried charging a H.O.T. Magnum filter with D.E. Within hours I saw them going thru convulsive fits and then they died . I had five of them. It's possible it's entirely coincidental, but I'd be very reluctant to allow any of the powder to escape into a system housing inverts again.

I waited more than six months before attempting Amanos again. My second and third batches are now doing fine for me. I'm using the same water source and dosing regimes now as when I lost the first batch. So I still think it was the D.E.

My fish and snails appeared unaffected by the accidental leakage I caused.
That would make sense the D.E. power is tiny to us, but to small animals like shrimp it is a sharp, edgy material that will literally cut their insides. I'm not really sure how small an animal has to be to be affected like that. From what I understand D.E. power is used to kill parasites and other small animals in food grain because they injest it and die. I would vaccum out as much as you can and/or remove the smallest of animals in the tank.
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Old 04-16-2007, 08:01 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Is diatomaceous earth harmful to fish or inverts?

Diatomaceous earth is commonly used as a natural pesticide to kill garden slugs and snails. It causes little tiny cuts inside of their bodies.
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