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Bio Wheel Filters and CO2
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poorboy
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Joined: 31 May 2003
Location: Phoenix, Az

PostPosted: 2003.09.15(Mon)13:00    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've read around on this board for a long time.. and the general consensus is that penguins are generally bad for plants... Is this true? I'm seriously considering the canister filter right now.. as I would like to plant my tank.
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Agent_Embryo
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Joined: 29 Jun 2003
Location: San Luis Obispo, CA

PostPosted: 2003.09.15(Mon)13:01    Post subject: Reply with quote

I've heard the same thing. CO2 getting pulled out of the water because of the biowheel's nature. how do you measure the CO2 content exactly?
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poorboy
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Joined: 31 May 2003
Location: Phoenix, Az

PostPosted: 2003.09.15(Mon)13:05    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not sure.. as I've always just kept plastic plants and never worried about the co2. Razz
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Irons
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Joined: 27 Feb 2003
Location: Buffalo, NY

PostPosted: 2003.09.15(Mon)14:18    Post subject: Reply with quote

The bigest problem I've heard with BioWheels is if your injecting co2. I have heard that planted tanks don't like biowheels even without co2, but I don't remeber why.
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uLtRa
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Joined: 11 Apr 2003
Location: Southend, UK

PostPosted: 2003.09.15(Mon)16:28    Post subject: Reply with quote

Because of the bio wheel, there is more water surface agitation. This agitation makes the injected co2 diffuse out of the water into the air, and so your diy co2 is useless. The key (apparantly I've been told) in a planted tank is to keep surface agitation and so gas diffusion to a minimum, so no air pumps, ripples from filter outputs etc...
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Agent_Embryo
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Joined: 29 Jun 2003
Location: San Luis Obispo, CA

PostPosted: 2003.09.15(Mon)17:04    Post subject: Reply with quote

I keep my water level up to where the "water-fall" on my penguin filter ends, so I literally have no surface agitation. or are you reffering to the wheel itself? my plants seem to be growing fine... and I'm not using CO2 yet. and it's a low-light tank. maybe because of the low-light, I'm an exception... I dunno.
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poorboy
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Joined: 31 May 2003
Location: Phoenix, Az

PostPosted: 2003.09.15(Mon)17:34    Post subject: Reply with quote

Do I need to purchase a Co2 Injector? Also what's a good 'beginner' type plant? and is there anything cheaper I can buy as far as lighting goes to help with the plants? And finally... given my current livestock does anyone know if my gouramis will nibble on the leaves of the plants?
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Type-R
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Joined: 31 Jul 2003
Location: East Yorkshire, UK

PostPosted: 2003.09.15(Mon)18:04    Post subject: Reply with quote

Poorboy,
You don't need to buy a CO2 injector to grow plants. Only when you have high lighting does this become necessary (or at least beneficial).
The reason bio-wheels are supposed to be bad for plants is indeed because it removes CO2 from the water. The bio-wheel is in fact a mini wet/dry filter built into the penguin. So this means that it increases the contact between the water and air and this then allows more CO2 to transfer from the water into the air. Saying all this some people claim that you can grow plants fine with a bio-wheel filter. IMO it's down to what level you want to grow plants at. If you are looking for a few nice specimens and some in-fill plants you will be OK. If you are aiming for a fast growing aquatic jungle with all sorts of green and red species the bio-wheel will probably hold you back.
Some good starting plants are:

Java Fern
Java Moss
Hygrophila Polysperma
Hygrophila corymbosa "Stricta"
Ludwigia Repens
Vallisneria americana (natans)
Cryptocoryne wendtii

And if you want to try a red plant: Alternanthera reineckii "lilacina"

As far as lighting goes the cheapest worth having is standard fluorescent lamps. I would recommend either fit two 30" 25 watt lamps in your current hood or buy a new fixture for them. Choose lamps with a colour rating of between 5000K and 7000K for best results Smile
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