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Thread: Anoxic filter

  1. #1

    Anoxic filter

    Hi
    I'm in the process of building a new pond and am really intrigued with the anoxic filter.
    Does anyone have one, if so are they all their cracked up to be, also could this be the only filter you need. With what I have read they seem to be a great way forward,but I'm sceptical.
    Tia Brian

  2. #2
    Honmei MCA's Avatar
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    <p>
    This goes back to designing a pond filtration system. An anoxic environement (not a filter as it does not filter out anything) is one way or encouraging denitrification/mineralization of nitrates by having bacteria break apart the nitrate molecule to consume the oxygen and release the left over nitrogen as a gas. But talking first about nitrate processing is putting the cart way too far in front of the horse. Pond water processing:
    • Stage 1 Mechanical: This is where we bring the water out of the pond to a filter pit via gravity (preferred) or pump from bottom drains and skimmers. We cause the water to go through one or more barriers that trap and hold the undissolved solids. One of the best ways to implement the mechanical stage is via rotary drum filter (RDF) as those can filter down to the 50micron level and are self cleaning. The negative for an RDF is the capital cost. Maybe second best is a parabolic sieve made of edgewire with a 200micron gap. This is a small amout of maintenance with these. Next best may be a static bed of something like micro K1. Such static beds are easy to clean by boiling the media with air and dumping the water.
    • Stage 2 Nitrification: The mechancally clean water is introduced to media in a O2 rich environment where naturally occuring bacteria secies with convert ammonia to nirite to nitrate. It is very hard to beat a shower with ceramic media for doing this work. Second best choice might be a fluid bed of micro K1.
    • Stage 3 Denitifcation/Mineralization: This final stage can be considered optional and used, along with water changes, to hold down the nitrate levels. A very good device for this purpose would be a traditional bead filter. Being a presurrized chamber the only O2 introduced is what is dissolved in the water. So the environment can support denitification/mineralization. A side benefit is that the bead pack can also do water polishing and help trap any small solids.
    </p>
    Koi keeping is not a belief system; it is applied science with a touch of artistry.

  3. #3
    Daihonmei MikeM's Avatar
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    It has been a very long time since I heard any hobbyist claiming success in relying on anoxic "filter baskets". I know a fellow who installed some and continues to have it, but he is careful to say he is unsure if it does any good.

    The theory behind them is sound, but koi ponds produce so much ammonia/nitrite/nitrate on a continuous basis that it is impractical, IMO, to think all that water volume is going to come into contact with the clay sufficiently rapidly to allow the koi to be in ammonia/nitrite/nitrate free water. The bottom line is that water changes remain essential to maintaining water quality. If the hobbyist is in an area with water restrictions, any little bit of benefit reducing the amount of water used can become a big deal. But, I tend to think the biggest benefit of anoxic filter baskets has been from giving the hobbyist a sense that they are trying everything to minimize water use, reducing their sense of guilt in how much water they use.

  4. #4
    Honmei MCA's Avatar
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    But does anoxic reduction of nitrates solve all the other issues addressed with lower amounts of water changes such as: declining KH, increased GH, declining ORP due to increasing amounts of organics in the wate column? To me solving high nitrates is very low on the bucket list compared to other issues. Standalone anoxic bioconversion of nitrates (not filtration) is the tail wagging the dog.
    Koi keeping is not a belief system; it is applied science with a touch of artistry.

  5. #5
    Daihonmei MikeM's Avatar
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    I agree. Only water changes deal with the full range of parameters involved in maintaining water quality. I would not minimize the benefit of lowering nitrate levels, but at the same time think most hobbyists should consider nitrate as a marker for all the factors involved in deterioration of water quality. It is easily detected and measured. Other factors are not so easily tested. When nitrate is targeted by de-nitrification, resin capture, clay capture or some such, it no longer serves as a marker for all the rest. Good to be rid of it, but there is still everything else.

    If I was in an area with strict water use limits, I would experiment with "water rejuvenation" with PP treatments/ozonation in a water storage system outside the pond, but even then I would be wondering what was missing that I could not detect.

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