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Re: Biowheel

Karen wrote:
>>If you ahve more then very small (10 ppm or less) amounts of nitrate, you
_need_ that bacterial filter! <<

Hi Karen.  Is this right?  A bacterial filter _creates_ nitrate.  I've
always operated under the assumption that our main goal is to get the plants
cranking and the animal load balanced so the plants would "intercept" the
ammonium prior to its entering the nitrogen cycle, thus avoiding unsightly
nitrate buildup.  A full throttle bio-filter would compete with the plants
for the available ammonium, producing nitrate.  Aside from whatever bacteria
reside inside my tanks and my frequently cleaned canister filters, I stopped
using bio-filters of any kind, and my nitrate levels dropped within days.
HOWEVER! I find the tanks are much more sensitive to radical increases in
animal loads, and bio-avoidance (sounds Freudian, no?) is probably not for
the beginner.