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Old 08-30-2014, 12:19 PM   #21
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I wonder why anaerobic bacteria are not attempted more for freshwater? Are we a bunch of slackers??
Three main reasons;
1) nitrate is far less toxic to freshwater fish and is very toxic to corals and inverts kept in reef tanks.
2) live plants help utilize the nitrates and keep the levels low.
3) It is much safer/easier to do a large water change in fresh water than it is in saltwater, so in fresh you can also keep nitrates under control with more frequent/larger WC's than are safe in a reef tank.

but beyond that it is actually kinda hard as the two types of bacteria have opposite environmental needs, but I guarantee that all types reside in an established tank.

One other thing to bear in mind is that the colonies of anaerobic bacteria take about 2-3 times longer to get established in a tank and they reproduce much slower.
So while it takes 4-6 weeks for the aerobic bacteria to take hold, it takes 8-12 weeks for the anaerobic colonies to really flourish.
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Old 08-30-2014, 12:37 PM   #22
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I wonder why anaerobic bacteria are not attempted more for freshwater? Are we a bunch of slackers??
Good question. Some have approached denitrification with a simple plenum beneath the gravel. Works very well unless you have fish that dig. Requires no maintainance, but does require a specific size of gravel to work well. the idea is to create an anoxic area for the anaerobic bacteria to live. Water flow between the tank and plenum is very slow as the two bodies attempt to reach equilibrium.
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Old 08-30-2014, 01:16 PM   #23
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Thank you for this conversation! What do you think about putting a fairly fine sponge on the outside and inside the PVC using ceramic media? Although, there wont be much room inside the PVC but I could use a 3/4".

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I think should work. I don't understand the 3/4" part. Is the PVC 3/4" wide? If so that is quite narrow.
I think in guilty of leading the topic astray. But definitely an interesting discussion!


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Old 08-30-2014, 02:29 PM   #24
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Live rock isnt used in freshwater because it dissolves in ph lower than 8 ish. This will increase the ph and buffering of the water the same way as adding crushed coral will. Not to mention the cost of true live rock is extreme.

As for anaerobic bacteria and ceramic filter media, I seriously doubt it happens enough to make a difference on the tank. Filters offer too much flow of oxygenated water to create a good anaerobic environment. However, its simple to make a denitrifying filter using pumice and a low flow water pump.
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Old 08-30-2014, 02:49 PM   #25
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Retired_AF you will have better results if you put the floss in the top chamber so it removes as much detritus as possible before reaching the biological portion of the filter. That way the bio-media doesn't get clogged with muck as much/quickly.
The last basket IS the top one. I haven't figured out how to load them any other way.

I like the idea of the pot scrubbers. Cheap and easy to clean. Good idea as long as you have enough to do the filtering.
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Old 08-30-2014, 09:03 PM   #26
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Good question. Some have approached denitrification with a simple plenum beneath the gravel. Works very well unless you have fish that dig. Requires no maintainance, but does require a specific size of gravel to work well. the idea is to create an anoxic area for the anaerobic bacteria to live. Water flow between the tank and plenum is very slow as the two bodies attempt to reach equilibrium.

Bit off track but any ideas on setting one up? I did briefly look at another filter where I could set a slow flow rate to try and help more anaerobic conditions (with specialised media) but got told everything must fit in the cupboards under the tank.

So I was thinking of an underground filter setup and deeper substrate and maybe? getting closer to what you posted?
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Old 08-30-2014, 09:26 PM   #27
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Bit off track but any ideas on setting one up? I did briefly look at another filter where I could set a slow flow rate to try and help more anaerobic conditions (with specialised media) but got told everything must fit in the cupboards under the tank.

So I was thinking of an underground filter setup and deeper substrate and maybe? getting closer to what you posted?
Check out this
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Old 08-31-2014, 07:58 AM   #28
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That is really cool. I like the idea it can be used for other media as well. Added to list
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Old 08-31-2014, 10:04 AM   #29
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Bit off track but any ideas on setting one up? I did briefly look at another filter where I could set a slow flow rate to try and help more anaerobic conditions (with specialised media) but got told everything must fit in the cupboards under the tank.

So I was thinking of an underground filter setup and deeper substrate and maybe? getting closer to what you posted?
We had a speaker at our club a number of years ago, that was bringing a denitrator to market based on the plenum system. It never happened, but what they showed us was a plenum made from 2 layers of egg crate (lighting grate) wrapped in window screen, which would have about 2" of 1/8" quartz gravel above it. I looked at it and thought I had some UGF plates with that amount of space beneath them that would work. UGF plates can be picked up by the box load for a few bucks. The product they presented was going to be too expensive for most people and I think they weren't able to find enough vendors. I recall from articles in FAMA years ago that plenums were being used in salt water tanks.
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Old 08-31-2014, 10:56 AM   #30
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We had a speaker at our club a number of years ago, that was bringing a denitrator to market based on the plenum system. It never happened, but what they showed us was a plenum made from 2 layers of egg crate (lighting grate) wrapped in window screen, which would have about 2" of 1/8" quartz gravel above it. I looked at it and thought I had some UGF plates with that amount of space beneath them that would work. UGF plates can be picked up by the box load for a few bucks. The product they presented was going to be too expensive for most people and I think they weren't able to find enough vendors. I recall from articles in FAMA years ago that plenums were being used in salt water tanks.
Interesting! Was the main expense in the media it sounds? Did they have any fine filter sponge to stop gunk getting sucked down or was it just natural water flow (have no idea what flow rates are like in gravel).
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