Black Sand


New member
Reality check

Is there anyone out there that has done black sand in a reef tank. I saw some advertised but I was not sure if it is a good idea or not.

Does it look awful over time as stuff builds up?



New member
My nano has black sand and it looks good . You have to keep it clean though . Also it does not help buffer like white sand does so be warned of that danger .

Dave & Monica

New member
Is that the same black sand they sell as refugium mud? I've never seen a display tank with black sand. If you go that route, pls post some pics...


New member

granted my tanks not set up with a bunch of corals yet but you should get the idea . Its called tahitian moon sand and it looks really cool in both preditory tanks and in reefs thats why I went with it for my mantis tank .


New member
I have black sand in my nano and it gets "Dirty" very quickly. You will need some sort of sand sifting organism (Snail or starfish) but then your pods will get eaten up too. It looks cool but I wouldn't do it again.


New member
What kind of buffering would be needed in order to go with black sand? I have white sand in my tanks currently with no need of buffering chemicals. What type of buffering will I need to do with black sand?


New member
I also have black sand in my nano and think it looks decent. My sand does not look as dark as some of these others. It is not the CaribSea sand, but rather the black Nature's Ocean Aragonite. I have not noticed anything messing it up, but I have several snail/crabs, and a pistol shrimp that loves to build sand castles.



Chair, MACNA 2014
For what it's worth, I have the Black Tahitian Moon sand in my 175. It's a FOWLR, not a reef. It looks very cool... but does accumulate stuff rather quickly. Given that my triggers stir it up quite a bit, it never looks very clean.

I still like the look of it though. There are a couple of fish pictures in my gallery taken wit that tank.



New member
<a href=showthread.php?s=&postid=12309841#post12309841 target=_blank>Originally posted</a> by devils_rejects
I love the Zooanthd farm that is amazing . I am going for something similar to that for my mantis tank .

Thanks. I had most of them sprinkled around in my 125g, and thought they would look good in a nano. Still a work in progress, need to get the lights where I like them, and get rid of the last bits of GHA.

To get back on topic, as you can see the Nature's Ocean "black" is really a dark grey. It also is a bit bigger than the Tahitian Moon. Still I have not had any trouble with it, and have not had any pH or Alk problems.


New member
I started out with Tahitian Moon black sand but didn’t really like it after a while. Like others said, it does tend to look dirty after a week or so. I mixed white sand with the black sand and I like it a lot better.


New member
<a href=showthread.php?s=&postid=12284056#post12284056 target=_blank>Originally posted</a> by G.SMITHII
i like mine.

i guess you give up the chemical buffering capabilities for asthetics, but ah well.

I wouldn't worry too much about the buffering capacity of sand. There is a good debate on that subject. Frequent waterchanges and an alkalinity buffer is good for any color of sand.