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Bio-pellets vs GFO


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#26
geaux xman

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Sorry - So I don't get this post? I have the tunze 9002 as well and I don't pull much skimmate either. So getting a reactor and using bio pellets would defeat the purpose?


sorry off-topic..

so you guys would not recommend the Tunze 9002? I've been considering it, but been having doubts.

Would a BRS carbon/gfo reactor be a better option than the tunze 9002?

I figure with the skimmer, i would still need something to battle the phos.

i am sumpless btw.

Can I run lilly pipes on the reactor?

Thanks.

Edited by geaux xman, 27 September 2010 - 08:10 PM.


#27
racerfreak

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I was going to go with the bulk reef supply premium canister but I found the two little fishies reactor for $35 plus shipping and bought a mj 1200 for the pump. From what I saw all the other reactors are about double to triple the price, but are meant for larger tanks. For a nano the two little fishies is the best next to a diy with a via aqua 80 pump. I plan on putting a small cpr hob refugium on the back of my tank and attaching the reactor to the refugium.

#28
wamb0010

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IIRC the main reason why a skimmer is a must is because it is needed to replace oxygen, right? I've been seriously considering bio pellets for my tank but my skimmer doesn't pull skimmate for crap (no pun intended). Btw, I'm using a 9002 in my 20L.


I'm throwing this back out there because I don't get it? So if your skimmer sucks you can't use bio pellets?

#29
glennr1978

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Your right. It got real good reviews. Is this thing easy to hang on back?


http://www.twolittle.../1202405781.pdf


Yes.

I'm throwing this back out there because I don't get it? So if your skimmer sucks you can't use bio pellets?



Right, sort of. The reason is because in some way, shape, or form the pellets cause oxygen depletion (I'm not sure of exactly why, maybe someone else can chime in with the reason). The skimmer is needed to replenish oxygen to the tank. Not to mention the fact that typically your skimmer will pull more skimmate. It works just like dosing vodka.

In my tank my skimmer pulls absolutely no skimmate (really not sure why). I just use it to oxygenate my tank even though I'm not currently using pellets or vodka. I have dosed vodka in the past without issue and that, along with procrastination, is the only reason the skimmer is still running.

Edited by glennr1978, 28 September 2010 - 05:23 PM.


#30
wamb0010

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hmmm. Well I do have the tunze 9002 skimmer, the MP10, and one of my powerheads is pointed toward the water surface. Maybe i'll just run phosban instead

#31
Gatotsu77

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I've been reading a fair bit of info about bio pellets lately, but my brain isn't exactly in functioning order atm. (I'm on my lunch break at work) The "bio-film" the bio pellets help to culture could pollute the tank if there is not a sufficient level of skimming, as the bacteria die and build waste in the water column. An efficient skimmer is needed to help remove this added bio-load, to prevent polluting the tank.

Another thing to look into is extremely accurate phosphate and nitrate measuring solutions - a delicate chemical balance is necessary, or you can do some serious harm to your corals. I can't remember the explanation on this one presently, I'll link it when I get home. I just remember that being a very stressed point in the article.

Oh, and if you happen to run macro algae, (chaeto, etc.) the bio-pellets are fully capable of starving out the macro. It is possible to utilize both, but again requires diligent monitoring. Wish I could remember more of what I had read atm, but I'm succumbing to food coma. Will post later.

#32
timdanger

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Well, logically your point makes complete sense. However, don't say I didn't warn you, lol.


my understanding is that too much GFO added too quickly causes alkalinity/pH drop.

#33
rod2

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Has anyone used pellets, specifically WM Ecobak, in a filter sock instead of a reactor? If so, what were the results?

#34
Mudfish

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I've been using Vertex pellets in my 40 breeder for a month now, in a BRS reactor. The pellets never tumble or churn, even though powered with a MJ1200. They aren't clumped together, and there has never been any hydrogen sulfide smell. They form kind of a loose, floaty mass that seems fully charged with moving water, but they never tumble.
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#35
Rod3

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How are they performing? Any Cyano?

#36
Mudfish

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How are they performing? Any Cyano?


Well, I'd have to say the results so far are mixed. I have a curious looking, short, spiky, reddish-brown algae growing all over my rock. It looks closest to perhaps a Gelidium sp., but who knows? Anyway, that's what I'm trying to remove. Nitrate and phosphate had already been testing at zero.

I removed the GFO, and put the carbon in a sock. I have been using 165 ml. of the Vertex pellets, and noticed almost immediately that my water was extremely clear. After a month, I don't think the red algae has diminished any, but it does look like its color has darkened significantly. Also, the couple of tiny patches of green hair algae were not diminished, either. The few persistant patches of dark, thick cyano that I've always had to deal with are still cropping up.

I feed the tank rather heavily - perhaps too much. Also, my skimmer (Octopus recirculator, with mesh-mod) has never really been a big performer. It makes tea-colored skimmate. Maybe I need to try yet another new skimmer...

I have added 50% more pellets (1/3 cup more) and will run it this way for another month.
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#37
wamb0010

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I just got the two little fishies reactor and I am running the ecobak pellets. Well see!

#38
Tanker1

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The people I know who have tried the Vertex Pellets swear by them, so I guess I'll give them a try. I ordered the NextReef SMR1 reactor, which is supposed to be designed for use with pellets.....we'll see how it goes!

#39
myjohnson

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Can anyone up date with test numbers on water condition before and after the use of biopellets?

#40
SCreefer

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Can anyone up date with test numbers on water condition before and after the use of biopellets?


I got one of the cpr Beta model reactors, and it looks pretty sweet. I have not used it yet and am still on undecided if I'm going to run GFO or pellets in it. I don't know when it comes out, but you can see vids of it online now if you want to check it out.

#41
Deckoz2302

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The problem with adding gfo to quickly are many

- how many of you test for iron? Gfo leaches iron
- gfo reduces phates quickly....guess what phosphates and nitrates are the building blocks of life..you never want zero however you do want control.
- as basser said gfo can cause problems with clams because of a spike in iron. The protozoa that causes pinched mantle relies on iron.
- as another member said adding to to fast can cause bleaching, this is because the zooxanthellae relies on phosphates and nitrates to create carbohydrates for the coral. If you starve the zoox you starve the coral.

Optimal levels for fast growth are 0.01-0.1phos and 2-3ppm nitrates. Never ever shoot for zero or your just going to slowly starve your corals and see very slow/minimal growth.

Biopellets work and so do phosphate binders...but they also enable you to feed more to keep the water dirty yet clean at the same time. Either way whichever you choose don't move fast. And never shoot for zero.

Edited by Deckoz2302, 09 April 2012 - 10:09 AM.


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#42
wombat

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- as basser said gfo can cause problems with clams because of a spike in iron. The protozoa that causes pinched mantle relies on iron.


Do you have a reference for this statement? GFO may be putting some Fe(III) in the water, but that is not a form that's useable by Perkinsus.

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#43
Deckoz2302

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http://www.ncbi.nlm....ubmed/12919819/

http://www.google.co...z9SmCo_Xyqe78-A

Also - GFO if not properly fed oxygenated water from the skimmer outlet or similar can cause a low oxygen environment. No oxygen and the iron - phosphate binds will break resulting in free iron²,³(yes ferric oxide comes in both iron 2&3). In short non oxygenated Ferric oxide will break down to Iron which is blinded by DFO(Desferrioxamine) which is what inhibits growth in protozoa perkinsus by stealing the iron from the cell. Desferrioxamine is naturally occurring iron chelator produced by marine bacterium. DFO also prevents peroxynitrous and peroxynitric acid from forming from NO3 and free hydrogen ions in our high pH solution we call saltwater. Anyway, When you have the added amount of iron the naturally occurring DFO isn't enough to bind all the iron.

At the slow flow rate that we set our reactors. Typically if you were to test the water inside the reactor its or ORP will be low basically low oxygen environment. All this compounded can lead to readily available iron to the protozoa. Hence the reason behind some people having problems with clams when running GFO because DFO can't keep up and bind all the iron. Along with an initial stressor.

Basically running a ferric oxide in a reactor is a blessing and a curse.

When you bring it to the level of the clam. Iron and Desferrioxamine are always present right? So why doesn't everyone get pinched mantle? The naturally occurring DFO is enough to bind the iron from the protozoa cell to keep population in check in conjunction with the clams immune system. What happens if you mess with the clams immune system and have more iron?

Well when you first add fresh gfo some iron is leachd and also phates are bound quickly which can stress the clam causing its immune system to be susceptible to the protozoa that will then be able thriving off of the iron. Because of the iron content in the water exceeding the usability of corals, macro and all other life in the aquaria. The DFOs threshold can be peaked leaving an excess of free iron.

Also note when doing your regular water changes your also adding iron. But water changes should match the system inducing no stress to the clam, making it unsusceptible to the protozoa that it is always keeping at bay via DFO and its Immune systems.

Ways to avoid this?
-Dont buy a clam lol jk
-dont run gfo when introducing a new clam.
- wait till the day before your normal water change and add the clam so the tank is low on iron. Then wait a week for it to adjust/get comfy so there won't be an iron introduction while its stressed/acclimating.
- start with small doses of gfo and work up every time you change it - and never shoot for zero or a rapid change

This post should probably be posted in the clam forum...think i may do that

Edited by Deckoz2302, 10 April 2012 - 08:26 AM.


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#44
wombat

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Cool, thanks for the reply. A very good read and interesting idea! That study demonstrates that iron binders will limit Perkinsus growth, and that additions of chelated iron (II) will reverse that effect. I doubt that a GFO reactor would be producing much if any iron (II) under normal operating conditions. If it were, I imagine much of it would be very quickly oxidized once it hit the aquarium.

Is this something you've measured on the output of a GFO reactor? Have you actually measured the dissolved oxygen concentration inside of one? The way I run my GFO reactors, I doubt the DO is dropping significantly across the reactor, but to be honest I have never measured it. I have always used moderate amounts of GFO and passed water through it fairly quickly.

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#45
Deckoz2302

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I have measured with. pinpoint ORP at the outlet and it was in the 250-60 range vs the aquaria of the 370 range then compared to the skimmer outlet of 417-425. Your right the amount of iron released is probably minimal. Like I said though the possibility of free iron from gfo may be enough off a difference to have an effect. But as many reports of clams and gfo problems its something that can't be dismissed.

Also even if the iron does oxidize when it hits the aquaria it won't turn back into ferric oxide as you need a hydroxy radical. Anyway glad someone enjoyed the read ;)

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#46
wombat

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I have measured with. pinpoint ORP at the outlet and it was in the 250-60 range vs the aquaria of the 370 range then compared to the skimmer outlet of 417-425. Your right the amount of iron released is probably minimal. Like I said though the possibility of free iron from gfo may be enough off a difference to have an effect. But as many reports of clams and gfo problems its something that can't be dismissed.

Also even if the iron does oxidize when it hits the aquaria it won't turn back into ferric oxide as you need a hydroxy radical. Anyway glad someone enjoyed the read ;)


Thanks! Do you have a reference that states that is a low enough ORP for Fe(III) > Fe(II)?

I certainly don't want to discount the possibility that iron is causing problems, but I do think there could be other reasons for a correlation between clam health and GFO usage. I have never noticed a correlation, FWIW. Another possibility could be that fines from the GFO (if not run properly) could be irritating the clam's gills. I also like the idea that simply lowering PO4 too fast can be the problem.

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#47
Deckoz2302

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I believe I do have a reference bookmarked for the correlation of ORP in an alkaline solution(bicarbonate) in relation to Ferric to ferrous and ferrous to ferric oxides when bound to phosphorus on my computer.

As you said I don't want to blame gfo...or any one thing. I think it is more of a compounded effect on clams that most people do not notice because we don't all have monitors with logs running 24/7 etc. I'll post again later when I get off of work

Edited by Deckoz2302, 11 April 2012 - 10:49 AM.


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