Sponge filter question

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CarpCharacin

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I am going to start breeding discus hopefully soon. I am in the process of getting supplies for the tanks. My question is, what kind of sponge filters should I use? Should I use the air powered kind or the kind that has a powerhead attached?
 
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CarpCharacin

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That is what I will most likely do, but I am still considering the option of using the powerhead filters. The powerheads can aerate the water to. Most powerheads have a piece of airline tubing that sucks in air.
 

Angelphish

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That is what I will most likely do, but I am still considering the option of using the powerhead filters. The powerheads can aerate the water to. Most powerheads have a piece of airline tubing that sucks in air.
Think about the fry. They'll get sucked up and thrown around.
 

Cranky Old Fishkeeper

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A power head has a distinct advantage, as it would move more water per minute/hour past any bacteria in the sponge than any air driven sponge. However, to each his own.
 

Cranky Old Fishkeeper

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You can diffuse the flow by using a spray bar outlet across the surface of the water, which is indeed quite effective and also supplies a much better oxygen exchange without bothering the fry. As long as they arent being blown around, the extra benefits still apply.

You could also by way of a DIY, attached the outflow of the powerhead to the inlet of a bio-wheel filter and diffuse the flow that way, plus add massive filtration and biological filtration to your entire setup. :)
 

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I was thinking about getting the sponge filters with powerheads, but the air pump uses less power than multiple powerheads.
 

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Dont use power heads! Air is much much better. You want a slow steady stream of water through the filter, if you have a torrent then the water dosnt filter because the bacterial contact time is too low.

Also you get far less protozoan colonizing the sponge if you use a power head.
 

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Dont use power heads! Air is much much better. You want a slow steady stream of water through the filter, if you have a torrent then the water dosnt filter because the bacterial contact time is too low.

Also you get far less protozoan colonizing the sponge if you use a power head.
I agree.
 

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A power head has a distinct advantage, as it would move more water per minute/hour past any bacteria in the sponge than any air driven sponge. However, to each his own.
The problem is, do you know the optimum flow rate of water for bacteria to process a given volume of Ammonia?

It isnt a case of passing as much water through as you can, like aquaponics or hydroponics, you need a slow steady flow.

I will dig out the flow rates when i get a chance, but its surprisingly slow and alot lower than many think.
 

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I know that breeding and raising discus with any success at all requires a lot more than just a tank and a pair of possible breeders. The investment in proper equipment such as R/O systems, storage of the treated water, massive water changes etc. is enough to deter the novice breeder.

How many times the water goes through a sponge, or at what rate, is the least of your worries.

My advice to any potential/hopeful breeder would be to seek and absorb all the info you can written by Tony tan, and contact the folks at AngefishUSA, to pick their minds, as well as a few of the folks at simplydiscus.com before you bite off more than you can chew, and needlessly kill of a bunch of beautiful and helpless fishes.
 

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What is a drip system?
It's a tube/pipe connected to the water line, so new water is always added to the tank, with old water being drained out. This system can be used to avoid water changes and is very useful in larger aquariums (150+ gallons).
 

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What would the water hardness and ph of the water dripping out of this tube be ? What is the source water supply. ?
 

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It depends on where you live. I was giving the simplified version.
You cant just use what comers out of the tap wherever you might live,

Usually a conductivity of about 100 microsiemens or less (3 GH) is recommended for breeding and a conductivity of 200 or more for growing discus.

Moreover, the ph level which is used should be 6.5-7
 

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treated clean rain water dripped at a good rate will do it, or use RO with a modified system to buffer the water. I would drop RO and go with the 4 other filter stages if your going to drip system it.
 

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I think i should do a full write up on different systems. There are many ways to breed Discus, yes 50% water change a day is one way, i personally dont do it that way, i think its a suitable way for most people, however i dont think it is always the best way.

I need to keep in mind however not everyone has been an aquatic scientist for 40 years or kept fish for 50+ years, plus there is the question of equipment......
So maybe i should do a full write up on filtration systems and different ways to keep Discus, personally i change around 10% a day. BUT i also use Ozone and other methods to keep my water perfect.

Even if i fully automated my system at home it would not be feasible to change 50% of the water in the number of tanks i have.

But where i do fully agree is the part about not rushing into it, planning is the key to success.
 

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It's more work than it's worth. You have to run it through plant roots until all of the nitrates are gone. It's easier and cheaper to just add new water.
Generally yes i agree, but you can make alot of money if you do it correctly and choose the right system and plants.

BTW i am not arguing, I am simply comparing some of the systems i have or I am currently running. Until i get a chance to write it all up please keep an open mind, it wont be for everyone but hopefully it might trigger some people to try new ideas out.

With some wild Discus i have had to use Nitrate to get them to breed, its a common method with some rare south American dwarfs, you let the nitrate creep up to around 25ppm then do a large water change over 4 hours to lower nitrate to 5ppm, but you also normally then add tannin to simulate flood conditions in the wild.

If no one objects i might write this up on a page, then copy to post here. The reason being i am thinking of writing one last book and it would be easier to draft it out like that.
 
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Angelphish

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I think i should do a full write up on different systems. There are many ways to breed Discus, yes 50% water change a day is one way, i personally dont do it that way, i think its a suitable way for most people, however i dont think it is always the best way.

I need to keep in mind however not everyone has been an aquatic scientist for 40 years or kept fish for 50+ years, plus there is the question of equipment......
So maybe i should do a full write up on filtration systems and different ways to keep Discus, personally i change around 10% a day. BUT i also use Ozone and other methods to keep my water perfect.

Even if i fully automated my system at home it would not be feasible to change 50% of the water in the number of tanks i have.

But where i do fully agree is the part about not rushing into it, planning is the key to success.
How much ozone would you recommend for a 210 gallon aquarium? I have an ozone system that I was planning to use for a saltwater tank but I decided against the idea.
 

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It's more work than it's worth. You have to run it through plant roots until all of the nitrates are gone. It's easier and cheaper to just add new water.
Generally yes i agree, but you can make alot of money if you do it correctly and choose the right system and plants.
How much ozone would you recommend for a 210 gallon aquarium? I have an ozone system that I was planning to use for a saltwater tank but I decided against the idea.
Depends on your set up, I only use Ozone on sump type systems. I dont use Ozone directly into an aquarium, also although they cost a fortune i think a REDOX probe is the best way to regulate ozone.

I will go injto alot more detail, it takes a little time to write it all up, there is a fair amount of information to put in. Most people use too much Ozone, you really only want to burn off surplus organics. In my own system the generator runs for maybe 4-5 hours a day (not constantly but to maintain a REDOX reading).

I aim for a fairly low REDOX, I also use a home built freshwater protein skimmer in conjunction with it, but they are a mare to get working. Is that 210 US Gallons? If so then a small unit on for around 30 mins every 6 hours should be enough. But depends what filtration,how many fish,how much you feed, what you feed etc etc.

Unlike Marine where they tend to use alot more Ozone, I found it better to use less with freshwater. I also use a UV sterilizer, mine is designed for pond of 4000 UK Gallons, it serves around 600 Gallons on the Apisto setup, i have that running for around 3 hours a day in 30 min bursts. From the outlet it goes into the Ozone column and then into the skimmer.

I am doing a write up of the various systems I have tried and use now, both at work in the lab and at home. We also owned an aquarium maintenance company, so have tried alot of systems. I see many people using under gravel filters and using Ozone injection into the airstone running the under gravel filter, I would NEVER advocate this.

We had a customer who used Ozone this way for 4 hours a day, as well as getting headaches while it was on, one of his discus got caught behind the uplift tube. The burns to the fish were pretty bad, you can also make the water too sterile.
 

Angelphish

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Generally yes i agree, but you can make alot of money if you do it correctly and choose the right system and plants.

Depends on your set up, I only use Ozone on sump type systems. I dont use Ozone directly into an aquarium, also although they cost a fortune i think a REDOX probe is the best way to regulate ozone.

I will go injto alot more detail, it takes a little time to write it all up, there is a fair amount of information to put in. Most people use too much Ozone, you really only want to burn off surplus organics. In my own system the generator runs for maybe 4-5 hours a day (not constantly but to maintain a REDOX reading).

I aim for a fairly low REDOX, I also use a home built freshwater protein skimmer in conjunction with it, but they are a mare to get working. Is that 210 US Gallons? If so then a small unit on for around 30 mins every 6 hours should be enough. But depends what filtration,how many fish,how much you feed, what you feed etc etc.

Unlike Marine where they tend to use alot more Ozone, I found it better to use less with freshwater. I also use a UV sterilizer, mine is designed for pond of 4000 UK Gallons, it serves around 600 Gallons on the Apisto setup, i have that running for around 3 hours a day in 30 min bursts. From the outlet it goes into the Ozone column and then into the skimmer.

I am doing a write up of the various systems I have tried and use now, both at work in the lab and at home. We also owned an aquarium maintenance company, so have tried alot of systems. I see many people using under gravel filters and using Ozone injection into the airstone running the under gravel filter, I would NEVER advocate this.

We had a customer who used Ozone this way for 4 hours a day, as well as getting headaches while it was on, one of his discus got caught behind the uplift tube. The burns to the fish were pretty bad, you can also make the water too sterile.
My tank is 210 US gallons and I'm working on a 75g sump.

My generator is a Red Sea 50mg/h.
 

Professor_fish

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Ok let me read up some tables tomorrow at work, otherwise your going to need a redox probe, a good one will cost you a huge amount of $$$$. I can work it out with tables though and use a bubble counter, aim for a low-mid Redox potential.
 
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