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Re: Aquatic Plants Digest V5 #85

> ------------------------------
> Date: Fri, 10 May 2002 11:22:23 -0400
> From: "Kinney, Travis" <kinney at pdtarchs_com>
> Subject: Fluval 303
> I just got a Fluval 303. The lowest stack has ceramic biomedia in it. The
> top one will have two layers of sponge. Anyone out there with a planted
> have suggestions for what I should put in the center tray? My tank is
> 29-gallons, mostly planted with a few fish. I'm trying to get the tank
> in shape but, would like to have the Fluval set-up right and ready to go.
> I've heard that I can layer multiple things in the Fluval canister. Maybe
> some aquarium gravel, peat (my water tends to be too alkaline) some sand
> more aquarium gravel? I don't know, what are others thinking I should use?
> ------------------------------

I'm not familiar with the Fluval 303, but on my 304 the water flows from
bottom to top.  This means that I put the mechanical filtration media in the
bottom (first) tray, and then I simply put bio media in trays #2 and #3.
The guy at my local fish store recommended doing mechanical filter in #1,
peat in #2, and bio media in #3.  As an alternative, I did a thin layer of
mechanical *and* a layer of granular peat in #1, then bio media in #2 and
#3.  I was using Fluval's Peat Granular product.

Other than lowering the ph of your water, I'm not sure what peat in your
filter accomplishes.  (Other than turning your water a brownish color.)  :)
Can anyone comment on that?  What are the pluses and minuses of running peat
as a stage in your filter?  Since I'm using only RO water for all my water
changes my water is very soft and doesn't have much buffering capability,
thus the peat was making my ph drop drop too low.  For this reason I removed