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Thread: 'Overactive' biological ?

  1. #11
    Daihonmei
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    Sensei Kong, I was just rereading your post here and I would like you to reconcile this recent post with another you placed while being a 'pain in my arse' on another thread. Please take a minute and address your three posts----

    "To another subject. I am in the process of reading and getting organized to purchase a salt water tank.
    I just want something called Live Rock to keep in the tank with a few fish. So I am reading about the techniques of this Julian Sprung and Charles Delbeek. Two biology dudes that seem to be on top of the game and best techniques which can change as time goes on.
    I read more about Live Rock and how wonderful it is as a natural biofilter that you put lots of in the marine tank.Then I read that there has been a dramatic change in the mechanical requirements. No more bio media is needed in the trickle tower. Take it out. Don't need it anymore.
    Your trickle tower is now "too effective" with live rock, this over active filtration is now processing too much and throwing Nitrates back into the water. I think where have I heard this before?

    Live Rock has more surface area for algae/bacteria to grow on than a trickle tower. Ammonia, Nitrate and phosphate are devoured by algae and photosynthetic corals and Nitrates are being absorbed.

    This Live Rock is doing the complete 'cycle' on its own so there is no need for a competing outside bio system to put the natural LR out of balance.

    So one would ask...what does this have to do with freshwater water chemistry and bio equipment?
    Not much would be the answer. We pond people still require a source for effective active Biological Filtration to deal with the heavy loads of fish and food" -KONG

    Post #33 ( thread ‘best media’) KONG-
    “My pond walls are the biggest biofilters in my system. A filter is anything that extracts impurities from the water. A combination of gravity (settlement) and pond walls makes for a great filter if designed properly. “ – Kong

    Post # 36 ( thread ‘best media’) KONG-

    “Lets see how much TROUBLE I am in. Lets do a little math. I feed 1.5 lbs of food a day or 24 ounces. The fish will digest this as best they can and turn 24 ounces of solid food into 28 grams of ammonia, give or take.
    Now one square meter or 10 square feet of biologically active surface can metabolize one gram of ammonia per day.
    My pond walls, counting the bottom which I can because it is clean of solid wastes, comes to about 460 square feet. So we divide that by 10 and we get 46.
    I am adding 28 grams of ammonia a day in a biologically active sytem that can eat 46 grams a day.
    Who me worry - KONG"


    So I asked you to prove that to me by shutting off circulation to your dedicated biofilter section and you danced and danced away.
    yet now you are telling me that live rock wouldn't be enough ( indeed some folks use coral rubble in biofilters and its cousin, lava rock, feather rock and ceramics). All of which have WAY more surface area than pond walls??
    I agree that these all are bad choices for koi ponds. But I'm wondering how you reconcile these two very different views on nitrification powers?

    Your student 'Bugs'

  2. #12
    Oyagoi kingkong's Avatar
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    So the next logical question you may ask yourself is there anyway to avoid the Nitrogen cycle from happening in my pond? The answer is no but there are things one can do to remove some of the fuel before it enters the biofilters and gets converted to Nitrate.
    Remove Solids wastes as soon as possible from water system via:
    screens
    separators
    vacuuming bottom of tank
    How do I remove dissolved organic wastes?
    protein skimming works in freshwater

  3. #13
    Oyagoi dizzyfish's Avatar
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    The reef keeping hobby was introduced to the masses here in the US via a series article in FAMA magazine beginning in January 1986.....by a dutchman named George Smit. He called his system a mini-reef and it utilized generous growths of marine plants such as caulerpa as a nutrient export.....along with what he termed a wet/dry trickle filter which was under the tank. Water dripped down through coral rubble in the dry section(above the water line) and then ran up and down through chambers filled with coral rubble in the wet section below water level. The secret was the removal of some the plants as they rapidly grew. He was able to go years without doing water changes while keeping fish and some varieties of coral. However some species of coral failed to thrive in such a system and the hobby was evolving somewhat differently in places like Germany and even Britain. I think the use of a refugium (to grow plants) either below the main tank or attached to the back is somewhat of a return to Smit's principles. Actually I don't believe Smit exactly invented the mini-reef system that came out of Holland, but he gets much credit since he is the one that explained it to the American hobbyists.

    BTW the guy JR mentioned that developed the "Natural System" was Lee Chin Eng from Jakarta Indonesia. Eng only used a little air bubbling up from under a rock in his system filled with a thin layer of live sand. He used natural sunlight and keep several corals, worms, starfish, an other inverts and fish, all without a filter. He did have algae growth in the tank which may have sucked up some nutrient as well.

  4. #14
    Honmei ricshaw's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JasPR View Post
    Originally Posted by kingkong; A trickle tower is a Bakki shower concept mounted under your aquarium with water dropped on is rather then pumped on it as in a Bakki shower.

    INCORRECT!!! a bakki shower is a wet/dry biofilter! There are differences. Wet drys trap like crazy as does the bakki shower. If you go Momotaro's green houses, you will see entire blocks of moss growing in and on the bacteria house media. This is a far cry from plastic media trickle towers! In truth, depending on media selection, a TT can be turned to a wet/dry but a wet/dry can't be turned to a TT in the area and rate of resisting biofouling.
    I think I know what a trickle tower is and I think the term Bakki Shower is misused in some DIY Koi pond filter threads.

    Can somebody explain the difference between a shower filter and a wet/dry bio-flter? Or are they the same when dealing with Koi pond filtration?

  5. #15
    Sansai
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    kingkong, not sure why we're going over the same ground as we did a few days ago. Never mind.

    You asked if there is anyway to avoid the whole nitrogen cycle.
    yes there is and it is called anoxic filtration
    http://www.mankysanke.co.uk/Introduction.pdf

    And before anybody shouts at me, no I've never used it but have only read about it. Although I have experimented with cat litter in floating plant pots and water cress growing in it. Not sure how much nitrate it ate but the koi happily chewed the water cress before the winter winds killed it off.

  6. #16
    Daihonmei
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    Quote Originally Posted by dizzyfish View Post
    The reef keeping hobby was introduced to the masses here in the US via a series article in FAMA magazine beginning in January 1986.....by a dutchman named George Smit. He called his system a mini-reef and it utilized generous growths of marine plants such as caulerpa as a nutrient export.....along with what he termed a wet/dry trickle filter which was under the tank. Water dripped down through coral rubble in the dry section(above the water line) and then ran up and down through chambers filled with coral rubble in the wet section below water level. The secret was the removal of some the plants as they rapidly grew. He was able to go years without doing water changes while keeping fish and some varieties of coral. However some species of coral failed to thrive in such a system and the hobby was evolving somewhat differently in places like Germany and even Britain. I think the use of a refugium (to grow plants) either below the main tank or attached to the back is somewhat of a return to Smit's principles. Actually I don't believe Smit exactly invented the mini-reef system that came out of Holland, but he gets much credit since he is the one that explained it to the American hobbyists.

    BTW the guy JR mentioned that developed the "Natural System" was Lee Chin Eng from Jakarta Indonesia. Eng only used a little air bubbling up from under a rock in his system filled with a thin layer of live sand. He used natural sunlight and keep several corals, worms, starfish, an other inverts and fish, all without a filter. He did have algae growth in the tank which may have sucked up some nutrient as well.
    That's right Diz. Chin Eng. You must know that famous photo of his concrete framed aquarium! It was kept outside! Clever guy and way way ahead of his time.
    Those Dutch and Germans are the hard core aquarists no doubt.

    But I recall here in America that there was also an evolution of its own going on in the 1970s when I entered the marine hobby. We had what we called 'Invert tanks' and they were often below the 'main aquarium'. The guys and one gal in our club would keep- Hawian tube worms, sea cucumbers, arrow crabs ( from south Florida), star fish and flame scallops. I recall in the 1970s trying to keep a piece of 'living rock' which was a pieces of coral with sponge on it and an oyster embeded in it! It was amazing for its day. From there, we all tried to keep them alive for as long as we could which was usually only 6 months or so. I think many of the species simpy slowly starved to death.
    Water quality was never too challenging if you kept up with water changes but we knew very little about feeding or about lighting.
    Those were the good old days! JR

  7. #17
    Daihonmei
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    Quote Originally Posted by kingkong View Post
    So the next logical question you may ask yourself is there anyway to avoid the Nitrogen cycle from happening in my pond? The answer is no but there are things one can do to remove some of the fuel before it enters the biofilters and gets converted to Nitrate.
    Remove Solids wastes as soon as possible from water system via:
    screens
    separators
    vacuuming bottom of tank
    How do I remove dissolved organic wastes?
    protein skimming works in freshwater

    Mmmmm, miss my post did ya? Its right above this one! Just once, could you engage in a conversation and let the hit and hide on the side? JR

  8. #18
    Daihonmei
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    Quote Originally Posted by ricshaw View Post
    I think I know what a trickle tower is and I think the term Bakki Shower is misused in some DIY Koi pond filter threads.

    Can somebody explain the difference between a shower filter and a wet/dry bio-flter? Or are they the same when dealing with Koi pond filtration?

    Hi, sure it is pretty simple-- the first filters were a combination of organic filtration and biological filtration-- corner filters, gravel filters, under gravel filters ect. The problem of course was biofouling. These were what I coined as short term filters in my writings as they needed to be torn down at some point and washed-- reducing the decay activity but also knocking back the nitrification activity for a time. And due to the decay this generation of filters would also be deprived of good oxygen supply.

    So the next generation was to try and design filters to separate out the two components of organic collection and biological nitrification. Sections in aquarium filter designs and chambers in koi keeping.

    The next step was to 'lift' the media out of the water so that it was getting maximum oxygen during nitrification. The wet/dry filter was a series of UG filters that were lifted OUT of the water and after one pass thru the media, the water 'feel' to the next tray and was 're-oxygenated' before hitting the second tray. This covered the oxygenation issue but not the collection of organics and associated biofouling. So it was better than first generation but still carried the problems of first generations filters. This was unfortunately called a trickle tower because it was based on waste treatment plant designs that were all about organic contamination as that is what they broke down.

    The fish geeks however were looking for the idea of no organic build up. So in the 1970s - early 1980s, the idea of using plastic media that didn't/couldn't trap organics and also was aerated as it was all out of water would be ideal. In fact if you truly trickled all the water over each pieces of media, this thin layer of water, on contact with BOTH nitrification film AND the atmosphere would be best of all worlds. And so trickle towers for aquariums and ornamental fish keeping were created and evolved from there. If the trickle is right, you will keep very thin layers of biofilm and make it very hard for them to collect organics. They can still biofoul if their stacking properties are not good, but that is a different conversation.
    So wet/dry looks like a TT but in the details they are very different. JR

  9. #19
    Daihonmei
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    KONG, I MOVED THIS DOWN FOR YOUR CONVIENIENCE! TYPED IN CAPS SO YOU WOULDN'T MISS IT.



    Sensei Kong, I was just rereading your post here and I would like you to reconcile this recent post with another you placed while being a 'pain in my arse' on another thread. Please take a minute and address your three posts----

    "To another subject. I am in the process of reading and getting organized to purchase a salt water tank.
    I just want something called Live Rock to keep in the tank with a few fish. So I am reading about the techniques of this Julian Sprung and Charles Delbeek. Two biology dudes that seem to be on top of the game and best techniques which can change as time goes on.
    I read more about Live Rock and how wonderful it is as a natural biofilter that you put lots of in the marine tank.Then I read that there has been a dramatic change in the mechanical requirements. No more bio media is needed in the trickle tower. Take it out. Don't need it anymore.
    Your trickle tower is now "too effective" with live rock, this over active filtration is now processing too much and throwing Nitrates back into the water. I think where have I heard this before?

    Live Rock has more surface area for algae/bacteria to grow on than a trickle tower. Ammonia, Nitrate and phosphate are devoured by algae and photosynthetic corals and Nitrates are being absorbed.

    This Live Rock is doing the complete 'cycle' on its own so there is no need for a competing outside bio system to put the natural LR out of balance.

    So one would ask...what does this have to do with freshwater water chemistry and bio equipment?

    Not much would be the answer. We pond people still require a source for effective active Biological Filtration to deal with the heavy loads of fish and food" -KONG


    Post #33 ( thread ‘best media’) KONG-
    “My pond walls are the biggest biofilters in my system. A filter is anything that extracts impurities from the water. A combination of gravity (settlement) and pond walls makes for a great filter if designed properly. “ – Kong


    Post # 36 ( thread ‘best media’) KONG-

    “Lets see how much TROUBLE I am in. Lets do a little math. I feed 1.5 lbs
    of food a day or 24 ounces. The fish will digest this as best they can and turn 24 ounces of solid food into 28 grams of ammonia, give or take.
    Now one square meter or 10 square feet of biologically active surface can metabolize one gram of ammonia per day.
    My pond walls, counting the bottom which I can because it is clean of solid wastes, comes to about 460 square feet. So we divide that by 10 and we get 46.
    I am adding 28 grams of ammonia a day in a biologically active sytem that can eat 46 grams a day.
    Who me worry - KONG"



    So I asked you to prove that to me by shutting off circulation to your dedicated biofilter section and you danced and danced away.
    yet now you are telling me that live rock wouldn't be enough ( indeed some folks use coral rubble in biofilters and its cousin, lava rock, feather rock and ceramics). All of which have WAY more surface area than pond walls??
    I agree that these all are bad choices for koi ponds. But I'm wondering how you reconcile these two very different views on nitrification powers?

    Your student 'Bugs'

  10. #20
    Honmei ricshaw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2010
    Location
    Southern California
    Posts
    2,653
    Quote Originally Posted by JasPR View Post
    Hi, sure it is pretty simple-- the first filters were a combination of organic filtration and biological filtration-- corner filters, gravel filters, under gravel filters ect. The problem of course was biofouling. These were what I coined as short term filters in my writings as they needed to be torn down at some point and washed-- reducing the decay activity but also knocking back the nitrification activity for a time. And due to the decay this generation of filters would also be deprived of good oxygen supply.

    So the next generation was to try and design filters to separate out the two components of organic collection and biological nitrification. Sections in aquarium filter designs and chambers in koi keeping.

    The next step was to 'lift' the media out of the water so that it was getting maximum oxygen during nitrification. The wet/dry filter was a series of UG filters that were lifted OUT of the water and after one pass thru the media, the water 'feel' to the next tray and was 're-oxygenated' before hitting the second tray. This covered the oxygenation issue but not the collection of organics and associated biofouling. So it was better than first generation but still carried the problems of first generations filters. This was unfortunately called a trickle tower because it was based on waste treatment plant designs that were all about organic contamination as that is what they broke down.

    The fish geeks however were looking for the idea of no organic build up. So in the 1970s - early 1980s, the idea of using plastic media that didn't/couldn't trap organics and also was aerated as it was all out of water would be ideal. In fact if you truly trickled all the water over each pieces of media, this thin layer of water, on contact with BOTH nitrification film AND the atmosphere would be best of all worlds. And so trickle towers for aquariums and ornamental fish keeping were created and evolved from there. If the trickle is right, you will keep very thin layers of biofilm and make it very hard for them to collect organics. They can still biofoul if their stacking properties are not good, but that is a different conversation.

    So wet/dry looks like a TT but in the details they are very different.
    JR
    GOT IT Thanks!

    I needed the; "The wet/dry filter was a series of UG filters that were lifted OUT of the water and after one pass thru the media, the water 'fell' to the next tray and was 're-oxygenated' before hitting the second tray" to complete my understanding.

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