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Re: UltraViolet, ultracloudy
I wouldn't even think of setting up a discus or other large-fish
tank without an UV sterilizer. The protection provided by UV
from parasitic assaults is well worth the expense. On my 70
gallon heavily planted discus tank I have a tiny 4-watt UV
(replacement bulbs cost $17). It is plenty effective because
the flow past it is so slow. I have never noticed any negative
effects on my plants, and the UV stays on 24/7. The only
regular fertilizer that I use is the substrate type every 3
months. The plants in that tank are thriving.
I use an 8-watt UV in my 92-gallon corner tank that houses my
30" fire eel, "Sparky". I turned of the UV once and he almost
died from a hook worm. I never want to go through that again.
I have had him since he was a baby, and that was six years ago.
I expect him to live at least another 20 years, and I rely on my
UV to help me achieve that goal. This tank is also heavily
planted, but the plants are all attached to bog wood and consist
of only Java fern and Anubius. So I don't consider that a test
of nutrient depletion.
I think the trick with UV lights is to get the smallest wattage
possible and then use a very low rate of flow. This serves to
keep your electric bill down and really helps when it is time to
buy replacement bulbs (every year). And they are plenty
effective if the flow rate is low.
That's my 2 cents,
Alan in Napa
PS: If anyone wants info on incorporating them into their system
please email me.