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CO2 suggestion


I would like to make a suggestion for you.  Here is an easy way to help the 
CO2 dissolve in the aquarium without having to worry about a filter pulling 
the contents out of your CO2 bottle.  Use a filter sponge (like one of the 
larger aquaclear) and insert a piece of rigid tubing about 3/4 of the way 
down into the middle of the sponge.  Now hook your airline, from your CO2 
bottle, up to the rigid tubing.  This is a neat system.  When it gets going 
you will still see bubbles float up to the top (which don't really have much 
time to dissolve), but here's the neat part.  If you squeeze the sponge after 
it has been working awhile it release many bubbles of CO2.  So what this 
setup does is hold the CO2 in the water until it is dissolved.  The sponge 
can only hold so many bubbles so the extra bubble off and kind of act like a 
bubble counter.  When they slow or stop being released you know it is time to 
change your bottle.  You have some extra time to do this to, because your 
sponge will hold that CO2 until it is dissolved.

I have used this setup with an oceanic prefilter sponge which are round to 
fit over the perforated round plastic tube in the over flow boxes.  If you 
want to use these sponges you have to cable tie one end closed around the 
airline.  That works well though because it adds an extra pocket of water 
that is somewhat filled with the bubbles of CO2.  I was thinking that the 
aquaclear sponge would look better (be easier to hide) in your aquarium.  Let 
me know if you try or like this method.

Aaron Sparrow
John G. Shedd Aquarium
1200 S. Lake Shore Dr.
Chicago, IL 60605
asparrow at sheddaquarium_org

Hi all, just checking back to express thanks to those who gave condolence
and advice, and let you know how it is going.

The white water that had a visibility of about 3 inches now has a visibility
of about 7 inches, and is getting better.  I tore down my filter, which was
completely stopped up, and discovered why.  It was almost a solid mass of
the white fungus, filling the filter nearly completely.  This is surprising,
since the Ocean Clear canister filter has an area that takes about 2 gallons
of water to fill when it's put together.  I evacuated this foul-smelling
mixture outside, training a hose full blast on it, and scrubbing the
remaining goo out.  After hooking the sparkling filter back to the tank, I
rooted in my closet for any old filters, and came up with a Magnum 350 and a
Biolife in-tank wet-dry.  I hooked these up to the tank, and went to my
friend's house, and borrowed an Aquaclear 300.  Leaving the airstone hooked
up, and with a total of 4 filters running nearly 2150 gallons per hour on a
55 gallon aquarium, I dare say this problem will go away fairly quickly. :)
The fish are taking refuge from the hurricane tides in the trunks of my
sword-forest, and look to be faring better.  I added a flocculent, and am
hoping for total recovery in a couple weeks.  In the meantime, I am going to
find some sturdy bottles for CO2 duty.  Maybe Gatorade bottles, if I can't
find something tougher.  I will be utilizing the powerhead method described
by Tom Barr (thanks Tom!) to disperse my CO2 from now on.