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Filterless tanks.

Ed wrote:
>>On the 'debate' over which filter is better the obvious choice is clear
:) plants are.  Want proof?  When I pulled the filter of off my tank they
started growing like weeks! :)  I now enjoy the calm peacefull setting
with no noise, no added electricity (just for the lights) good continuous
growth.  And oh, I do believe the fish likes it much better, they seem to
be less stressed than before (none before and definately none now)<<

I have no doubt you had success pulling your filter, but that isn't exactly
conclusive proof that it will work for everyone.  I can, in fact, guarantee
that it would have pretty horrendous results for some folks, especially
those just starting out and getting the feel of keeping plants going at full

A filter adds a safety zone.  If the plants stall or even begin performing
at sub-optimal levels, they will no longer be able to handle whatever animal
load with which they were at perfect balance with previously (ech!  I
shouldn't try creating sentences prior to my first cup of coffee.)

Also, most people out there keep pretty heavy animal loads, and it is the
balance between animal load, feeding levels, and plant activity that allows
filterless systems to work.  Anyone yanking their filter had better take a
very critical view of how many fish they have (none of this "well, I'll only
count the angels as one inch 'cause they're so narrow" stuff!)  Personally,
I KNOW I stock slightly on the heavy side, and I like raising young fish to
be big, hefty Bubba fish which breed regularly, and this requires heavy
feeding.  I'm keeping my filters.

I do have a a 5 1/2 and a few betta bowls running filterless (one of the
betta bowls has a Hygrophila polysperma which went emersed and has grown to
a foot high bush. It looks like a potted plant with a betta swimming around
the roots :-))