Hawaiian Black Arag-Alive! Live Reef Sand

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Product Name Qty
20 lb. Hawaiian Black Arag-Alive! Reef Sand

SKU: 207429

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Caribsea's Hawaiian Black Arag-Alive! Live Reef Sand is a great choice for new aquarists and new reef tank setups. Arag-Alive sands clear quickly and contain millions of live bacteria, speeding up your tanks cycle and leading to less nuisance algae.



  • Contains live bacteria to assist with a faster cycle
  • Grain size: 0.25 - 3.5mm
  • High Surface Area for Bacteria


Selecting the right sand: When choosing the right sand for your tank, it is important to keep a few things in mind.


How much flow will be in the tank?
Aquariums with high amounts of water movement will require sand with a larger grain size. Smaller particles can be blown around easily.

What kind of inhabitants will you be keeping?
Many species do require particular types of sand, like gobies, jawfish, and wrasses. Fish and invertebrates that like to burrow or sift through the sand will do best with smaller particle sizes.

Will it be for a refugium or deep sandbed?
Sand that will be used for filtration or refugium, we suggest using smaller particles that will give bacteria more surface area to grow and thrive on.


How much sand do I need? 

BRS suggests 1 pound of sand per 2 gallons of display tank volume on average.


Below is a table of common tank sizes and how many pounds of Hawaiian Black Sand is required to achieve a certain depth. Results may vary depending on the aquascaping in your tank, overflow styles, and the specific tank manufacturer. We always recommend getting a little extra sand to make sure you have enough on hand when you are filling your tank. 


Gallons Dimension 1" Depth 2" Depth 3" Depth
10 Gallon 20x10x12 9.1 lbs 18.2 lbs 27.3 lbs
20 Gallon 24x12x16 13.1 lbs 26.2 lbs 39.4 lbs
29 Gallon 30x12x18 16.4 lbs 32.8 lbs 49.2 lbs
30 Gallon 36x13x16 21.3 lbs 42.6 lbs 64.0 lbs
40 Gallon 36x18x16 29.5 lbs 59.0 lbs 88.6 lbs
55 Gallon 48x13x20 27.8 lbs 55.7 lbs 83.5 lbs
75 Gallon 48x18x21 38.5 lbs 77.1 lbs 115.6 lbs
90 Gallon 48x18x24 38.5 lbs 77.1 lbs 115.6 lbs
120 Gallon 48x24x24 51.4 lbs 102.8 lbs 154.2 lbs
180 Gallon 72x24x24 78.7 lbs 157.4 lbs 236.2 lbs
220 Gallon 72x24x30 78.7 lbs 157.4 lbs 236.2 lbs
300 Gallon 72x36x27 118.1 lbs 236.2 lbs 354.3 lbs


Sand Type Grain Sizes (mm) Average Density
Fiji Pink 0.5 - 1.5 90lbs per cubic foot
Special Grade 1.0 - 2.0 85lbs per cubic foot
Bahamas Oolite 0.25 - 1.0 96lbs per cubic foot
Indo-Pacific Black 0.25 - 5.0 90lbs per cubic foot
West Caribbean Reef 1.0 - 5.0 90lbs per cubic foot
Hawaiian Black 0.25 - 3.5 80lbs per cubic foot
Bimini Pink 0.5 - 5.0 90lbs per cubic foot
Natural Reef 3.0 - 5.5 85lbs per cubic foot
Florida Crushed Coral 3.0 - 5.5 72lbs per cubic foot
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SKU Hawaiian Black Arag-Alive! Live Reef Sand
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Product Questions

Can this be used in fresh water aquariums?
Question by: sheryl on Nov 3, 2017, 11:51 AM
Hi Sheryl, thanks for reaching out.
Provided you aren't using this sand in a tank with fish that require low pH or soft water you should be fine. Just remember to rinse it well since this is package in saltwater!
Answer by: Nick on Nov 25, 2017, 12:47 PM
Is this sand to course for sand sifters. I so are there any other options?
Question by: John on Apr 29, 2017, 2:06 PM
Hey there,
This sand has a wide range of grain sizes mixed in, but should be fine for the majority of sand sifters. If you prefer a more uniformly small grain size, the Fiji Pink is another great option.

Happy reefing!
Answer by: Zack on May 2, 2017, 12:56 PM
This bag is larger than my tank needs. If I take some out, can I save the rest for later? How should I store the sand after is has been opened?
Question by: William Deich on Jan 24, 2017, 12:58 PM
Great question! You can store sand indefinitely, however the bacteria that is in the sand may not survive. You can still use the sand in the future, you will just have to allow the tank to cycle and repopulate the sand with beneficial bacteria. :-)
Answer by: Randy on Jan 28, 2017, 7:40 AM
What are the benefits to black vs white live sand?
Question by: William Deich on Dec 24, 2016, 11:35 PM
Great question! The biggest difference will be mostly aesthetics between the two. As far as their ability to house beneficial bacteria, their surface area will be very much similar. :-)
Answer by: Randy on Dec 26, 2016, 3:56 PM
I bought a bag of this stuff can I add in my reef tank if I already have inhabitants such as fish coral ect.? Help! Please
Question by: alan on May 3, 2014, 6:11 PM
Hi Alan,
Its certainly possible to add sand to an existing tank though it is a bit messy. The best thing to do is is fill a cup with sand, lower it all the way down to the bottom of the tank and then pour it out. It will help keep as much sand from blowing around.
Answer by: Bulk Reef Supply on May 3, 2014, 6:11 PM
BRS, I have a question about your Caribsea Hawaiian black reef sand. I had seen this product in local aquarium shops and it appeared to be a mixture of black and white particles. I am curious if the product you are selling here on the website is the same as I've seen in the shops. I would like a substrate of pure black particles only. Can you describe what this product looks like? Are there any white particles mixed into this product? Thanks, John
Question by: John on Oct 27, 2013, 12:42 PM
Hey John,
I happen to have this sand on the tank sitting on my desk. It is like the other sands you have seen, a mixture of black and white (and I would say a few redish brown) particles. I haven't seen a purely black one myself but that does sound cool!
Answer by: Bulk Reef Supply on Oct 27, 2013, 12:42 PM