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Old 12-30-2002, 09:11 PM   #1
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what to do about critters hell bent on suicide?

I am getting really annoyed, at first I was really sad when this would happen, now I am realizing the amount of dollars being flushed. No matter where I put the powerheads, snails are getting into the intake. I mean the big huge snails! I am down to 4, from 10. The powerheads have the rubber guards on them, they get stuck to the guards and then...the inevitable. My big brittle star has gotten the top of his disk stuck twice, boy did he look funny when I unplugged the powerhead. Huge pointy knob on his back...It does not matter if these powerheads are 20 inches off the substrate with nothing around,.....they find ways to get in them.
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Old 12-31-2002, 01:17 AM   #2
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suicidal critters

Maybe you can modify the intakes on the PH's by making them larger? This will reduce the suction in any given spot and allow the critter to escape. I know my PH is a lowly MaxiJet 400 and probably is much smaller than the ones you are using. It has a large screen on the intake and the snails crawl all over it and don't get stuck. All I can think of...
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Old 12-31-2002, 09:14 AM   #3
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I, too, use MJ pumps as well as a rio, the screens do wonders. Another option might be to buy a wakemaker. This will cycle the powerheads on/off, this might give the snail a chance to extricate itself when the pump shuts off. I think Aquarium systems makes a cheap one that will do upto 3-4 powerheads.
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Old 12-31-2002, 03:16 PM   #4
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Aside from what's already been said, you can also put a sponge over the intake. You just have to be sure that you clean (rinse) them at least every week. This is also a plus if you have any anemones in the tank as they can't get sucked into the powerhead with this as a cover. Again, you must clean them (the sponge) frequently if you decide to go this route....
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Old 01-01-2003, 06:21 PM   #5
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Thanks for the advice. I will be shopping for a wavemaker I think. This morning, my mandarin fish was missing, blamed it on the poor lionfish until I noticed one of the powerheads not working.....yep, head first.

I hesitate to use the sponges for the loss of flow. I do the sponge thing in my seahorse tank and I know it definitely cuts the flow rate alot.
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Old 01-01-2003, 08:38 PM   #6
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sponges

Hara,
I'm thinking (this usually scares the @#$ out of most people ) that some of the PH sponges have a rigid frame inside them to support the sponge. Possibly you could use the frame without the sponge? I get some perforated plastic here that I use in filters. It's flexible and about the size of a table placemat. It has square holes about 1/8". I get it at a store called Hobby Lobby (craft store). I believe a suitable screen could be fashioned out of it if you were inclined to try something like that. If you're interested, let me know and I'll post a pic of it. If you can't get it there, I would be happy to mail you a couple of sheets of it.
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Old 01-01-2003, 08:50 PM   #7
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I know what you are talking about when you say the rigid plastic square stuff....but how do you attach it to the intake?
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Old 01-01-2003, 09:37 PM   #8
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screen

What I had in mind was to fashion a cylinder out of a small piece of the plastic...maybe 3-4" long and the size of the PH intake. You could either make it tight enough that it would stay or you could make it so it will just slide on and use a small plastic wire tie to secure it to the PH intake. Maybe use some kind of plastic plug (1/2 CPVC?) in the bottom to keep determined snails from getting into the impeller. This is about what I have on my Maxi Jets and I have never had any trouble with anything getting stuck. The peppermint shrimp will even climb up on it and pick at the stuff that gets stuck on the screen. Some super glue or epoxy should hold the edges together just fine. Or...you could "sew" it together with some fishing line.
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