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Re: biomedia in planted tanks

> Now check me on this: removing the biomedia from your filter does not
> necessarily equate to removing all of the beneficial bacteria,
> correct?  
> Sure, the bacteria will colonize biomedia more effectively than they 
> colonize every other surface in your tank.  But they're still out
> there, 
> right? 
> After all, we would not want to remove ALL the beneficial bacteria. 

Before everyone with trickle filters, biowheels, ehfisubstrat, calcined
glass microbead, etc. goes dumping their filters for fear that they are
starving their plants of valuable ammonium, check out your plants, your
nitrite and nitrate levels.  Does it seem like you filter is starving
your plants?  There's a diff between not helpful, helpful but not
necessary, helpless but harmless, and down right detrimental.  

It's been said more than once on APD that it doesn't take a lot of fish
to support a planted tank.  Many of us have more than a few fish in
some tanks and the biofilter can help keep down excesses.  I have even
been encouraged by quite knowledgeable aquatic gardeners to increase
the biofiltration on some of my tanks.

I'm not encouraging excesses, I'm just saying assess the situation in a
tank before you chuck your rocks or wheels or whatever.

Scott H.

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