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Old 01-08-2005, 09:22 PM   #11
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People shy away from bioballs because they can only produce nitrates. The rubble is preferable because while it creates nitrates, it also removes them.
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Old 01-08-2005, 10:49 PM   #12
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you still will want a collection sleeve to catch the big stuff. Skimmers remove gunk from water, but the big pieces of gunk are best removed with a fine mesh "strainer" of some sorts. I have a sleeve that goes in my canister to collect the gunk.
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Old 01-08-2005, 11:28 PM   #13
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I have a sleeve that goes in my canister to collect the gunk
How often are you cleaning the sleeve?
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Old 01-09-2005, 02:07 PM   #14
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once a month. (but I have a low bio-load.)

If you have a large bio-load you will want to do it about 2 times a month.
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Old 01-09-2005, 02:57 PM   #15
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What is the beef against bio-balls then? Granted, live rock may be the best choice, but it's also expensive. Bio-balls serve the same purpose, if not as effectively. Then why the flight from bio-balls in the hobby?
Bio balls (and ceramic media for that matter) are great at converting ammonia to nitrite, and then converting the nitrite to nitrate. The problem is that is stops right there and waste in the tank is very quickly converted to nitrates. The mass produced media types provides TONS of surface area for bacteria, but lack the low oxygen zones found needed to process the nitrate further. No manufactured media has proven to be effective as live rock at converting the nitrates to {relatively) harmless nitrogen gas. With more and more people going to reef tank and even FOWLR tanks with tons of inverts, those people want as little nitrates in the tank as possible. This is why you have seen a Bio balls taking a back seat to having a lot of live rock or a DSB.
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