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Old 10-09-2013, 04:15 AM   #21
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. You would be shocked how much crap gets to the bottom of the tank without the waterflow of a ugf.
I'm probably being dim -- but I'm not sure I understand this?

I guess the thing the UGF does is promote water flow through the gravel, and so more oxygen in the gravel, turning the gravel into a big BB colony? And without the UGF the stuff would still settle in the gravel, but without the water flow through the gravel, there'd be less BB? Is that right?
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Old 10-09-2013, 09:11 AM   #22
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I'm probably being dim -- but I'm not sure I understand this?

I guess the thing the UGF does is promote water flow through the gravel, and so more oxygen in the gravel, turning the gravel into a big BB colony? And without the UGF the stuff would still settle in the gravel, but without the water flow through the gravel, there'd be less BB? Is that right?
BB will grow in the gravel reguardless of a UGF. The water flow through the UGF im sure will boost growth of your BB however I use them to keep the tank cleaner.

Most gravel vacs have a cover to prevent rocks or fish getting sucked up while you vac the gravel. Try taking the cover off and shove the vac tube through the gravel right down to the bottom of the tank. If your tank has been established for a while im sure you will see that tube turn dark with the amount of junk that settles to the bottom of the gravel on the glass.

This junk is part of what creates the ammonia in our tanks. For me my UGF is hooked up with a HOB filter that is pumping the water through the filter. Pretty much a UGF hooked up to an actual filter instead of just a air stone turning the water will help vaccum your tank daily, increas water circulation and increase BB growth.
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Old 10-09-2013, 09:20 AM   #23
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You're not wrong. Using a UGF provides both water flow and oxygen, and that allows the nitrifying BB to establish in the gravel. Without a UGF, the conditions BB need are found primarily in the filter, not the gravel.

This is likely the reason that back in my high school days, fish did not die every time I cleaned the HOB filter, because we used to toss all the media and add fresh, having no idea about the cycle at the time. But we all used UGFs too, pretty much, and now I finally have a clue why we managed to keep fish alive back then.
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Old 10-09-2013, 10:29 PM   #24
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An ugf would be beneficial if you use gravel and fake decorations. But if you have a dirted tank or sand and live plants, wood, rocks, etc... then it would be counterproductive. I don't have to vacuume or anything aside from routine water changes and filter maintenance. Adequate water flow kicks up debris from the sand and the canister filter handles the rest. I actually have to turn the filter down to feed my bottom feeders.
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Old 10-09-2013, 10:43 PM   #25
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An ugf would be beneficial if you use gravel and fake decorations. But if you have a dirted tank or sand and live plants, wood, rocks, etc... then it would be counterproductive. I don't have to vacuume or anything aside from routine water changes and filter maintenance. Adequate water flow kicks up debris from the sand and the canister filter handles the rest. I actually have to turn the filter down to feed my bottom feeders.
Ah the loop hole. Yea it only works for gravel tanks and even then if its planted it will only rob the roots of food it may take in.
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