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Re: NFC: Another Filter/Aquarium Question

Chris Hedemark wrote: 

>>  Hey people should use whatever works for THEM.
>>  More important than what kind of filters you use is the 
>>  maintenance on the tanks.  You can have $1,000 worth 
>>  of filtration on your tank but if you never do a water 
>>  change a guy with an air-powered box filter could surpass
>>  you in quality, longevity, and breeding success of fish.

Definitely, everyone needs a plan that works for them. There's lots of different circumstances and ways to accomplish this. 

I have some killies in small containers (+/- 6 liters) with no filtration at all.  But they get 75% water changes at least once a week, and usually twice.  BAD THINGS happen with this approach if you neglect the maintenance for even a week, there's not a great deal of margin for error. (Trust me on this.) But it works fine IF your lifestyle and habits are such that you can maintain the discipline of doing the requisite water changes regularly. 

I also have a number of tanks with conventional filtration such as sponge filters, AquaClear, and Magnum Pros (hang-on canisters) on the bigger tanks, and do regular water changes on all of those in varying amounts, based informally on the perceived quality of the filtration involved, the size and plant-status of the tank, and the fish load..

Diana Walstad ("Ecology of the Planted Aquarium : A Practical Manual and Scientific Treatise for the Home Aquarist") says she has kept lots of tanks over the long run with water changes only every six months, and per her description running what I think most people would consider as minimal amounts of (human technology) filtration. But she understands how to use plants to provide natural filtration and apparently keeps relatively modest fish loads in her tanks. 

And Wright Huntley's tip on actively growing algae under a UGF was a totally new idea to me. Most of my current generation fishroom tanks are resting on plywood shelves, which is... how should I describe this ... an incompatible technology without some modifications ... but experimenting with that light-under-UGF idea is something I'll stash away for consideration for the inevitable next "re-org of the fishroom." 

Doug Dame
Interlachen FL
"We all kill fish, no question of that. The 
trick is learning how to kill less of them."
 - Paul Newman (Cool Hand Luke)
(as reported in my upcoming book, 
"Famous Things They Never Said.")