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Re: New 55 Gallon
>What I don't like about not having an ug filter is the amount of cleaning
the bottom that I have to do -- that's fish waste, dead leaves, and so
I'm thinking a ug filter would process the waste better.<
A very common misconception. A ug filter is not meant to be a mechanical
filter. A ug filter should serve as a biological filter to handle
nitrogenous waste only. This is why, for those who use ug at all,
additional mechanical filtration is usually used in addition to the ug (e.g.
cannister filter, hangon power filter, etc.)
ug also has a very bad reputation amongst planted tank enthusiasts, though I
personally have had tanks that did OK (not great, but OK) with plants and ug
filtration. Whole novels can be found in the archives on this subject.
Also, I wouldn't plan on using laterite over a ug filter plate, unless you
like the foggy, mysterious look having all that clay in the water column
will give you :-).