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Upgrading tank

Badmans Tropical Fish Message Center: General message area: Upgrading tank
  

robin

Monday, February 11, 2002 - 10:16 am
have had a 20 gal freshwater tank for several years which i would like to increase to a 30-40. with the exception of a few tetras, most of my fish have been moved to my large tank. this tank has a ugf and a penguin biofilter. if i move everything quickly, will the bacteria survive the move, or should i recycle the tank as if "new". also, am tempted to go without the ugf as i am not sure it is necessary (my lfs says it is. any suggestions.

as long as i am on the subject, any suggestions for fish. previously this was a "community" tank (it was my first one), and had mostly platies, tetras, etc. would consider more aggressive fish, but my experience with such fish is non-existent.

thanks.

  

badman

Tuesday, February 12, 2002 - 09:26 pm
Robin, if your move is a quick one and you can keep some oxygen to the gravel your bacteria should survive. I would seed the new tank with some of the old gravel. This gravel will have bacteria living on it and should give your new tank a good start. I am going to take and answer from my FAQ section on the UG filter issue, It may start a war, but this is my feeling on them. I am not a big fan of UG filters and have not used them for years, Here's why (remember this is opinion).The UG filter is a bacterial filter that utilizes a huge surface area ( the gravel bed ) and the gravel as the medium for the bacteria to grow on. This is great when everything is new and clean and the tank is bare. The lift tubes create a current that causes the water to flow through the the gravel, under the plates and out again. This current brings the oxygen and food to the bacteria. The good bacteria are aerobic and need oxygen to live. Now over time the waste accumulates on the bottom of the plates and sections of the gravel become blocked. In these areas the water has no oxygen and the anaerobic bacteria start to grow. Anaerobic bacteria respirate deadly gasses that form bubbles in the bed and under the decorations. Anytime they are disturbed they release into the water and can harm the fish. Over time the entire gravel bed will break down and no longer be effective. Once this occurs you must completely break down the tank clean the gravel, under the plates and start all over again. Not something I want to do!. Now a 5 gallon is not so large as to be too much of a problem, but just imagine a larger 4 foot 55 gallon, not a pleasant thought. The UGs do work and do it well but in my opinion the "future" maintenance issue far outweighs the benefits.

  

robin

Wednesday, February 13, 2002 - 12:00 pm
yike - they didn't tell me that at the fish store. thanks badman - was leaning towards going without the ugf anyway!

  

Pandora

Thursday, February 14, 2002 - 07:24 pm
Robin, they will omit to tell you many things at the fish store, depending on which ones you go to! What great advice from Badman, who I'd trust over an LFS anyday, because he's not trying to sell you anything.

 

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