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El Natural Diana Walstad's low-maintenance, soil-based 'El Natural' method for keeping plants and fish.

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Old 09-09-2020, 07:21 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Default Re: Fish load and filter question

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Filters help primarily by circulating water and keeping dissolved oxygen levels higher, allowing us to keep more fish. I like to run filters with mechanical media only. They keep the water looking clear and, with no biomedia, they don't compete with plants for nutrients.
Michael, what kind of mechanical filter medium do you prefer?

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Old 09-10-2020, 06:48 AM   #12 (permalink)
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Default Re: Fish load and filter question

I have Aquaclear filters, and normally use the sponge that comes with the filter, or somewhat coarser sponges cut to fit.
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Old 09-10-2020, 06:52 AM   #13 (permalink)
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Default Re: Fish load and filter question

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I have Aquaclear filters, and normally use the sponge that comes with the filter, or somewhat coarser sponges cut to fit.
Yes, I also like Aquaclear! Been using them for years. Do you stack the sponges to the top or just leave the extra space empty? I thought maybe putting filter floss on top the sponge.

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Old 09-15-2020, 09:28 AM   #14 (permalink)
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Default Re: Fish load and filter question

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Originally Posted by Michael View Post
Filters help primarily by circulating water and keeping dissolved oxygen levels higher, allowing us to keep more fish. I like to run filters with mechanical media only. They keep the water looking clear and, with no biomedia, they don't compete with plants for nutrients.
I also run my filters for mechanical polishing only, no bio media. Not only that my plants provide bio filtration, all surfaces exposed to oxygenated water are essentially in situ bio media. So good circulation is important for CO2 and O2 gas exchange.

My preferred filters are Marineland Penguin which I can use their refillable cartridge cage to clamp DIY filter pads I cut from polyester batting. I run them for mechanical only without installing the bio wheels

http://www.marineland.com/products/r...ia-refill.aspx

I keep dirty cichlid with plants and the bio load is off the cart, 60 fish in my 125g filtered by 3 Penguin 350 and a circulation pump on the left to provide cross longitudinal flow. Many say high bio load will invite algae, I have none. But I replace filters and do large WC weekly to keep clean.
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