Hello dear readers! Today’s article I want to touch the aquarium false, because about him quite often asked on the forums.
I will try to describe all the pros and cons of this substrate, so that the aquarist decides for himself whether he needs it or not.
In fact, false is the simplest biological filter. The design does not differ in any complexity and intricacy.
Over the entire area of the bottom of the aquarium fits the second bottom of plexiglass or vinyl plastic. In this layer there are holes and cuts with a diameter smaller than the size of the aquarium soil fraction. It turns out that between the ground and the bottom of the aquarium there is a space where aquarium water is pumped with the help of a pump.
The direction of water flow directly depends on what scheme the pump is turned on: either the pump pumps water under the false one and then goes through the aquarium soil, or the water is sucked through the soil under the false one and is released into the aquarium. In any case, the main filter element is aquagrunt.
In the ground, as you know, there are a lot of different microorganisms that utilize organic compounds and remove metabolites, which then turn into minerals. The most important function in this action is performed by aerobic bacteria, which process ammonium into nitrates and nitrites.
The second group of bacteria (anaerobic) converts nitrates to free nitrogen or nitrous oxide. With the help of these beneficial microorganisms, a nitrate cycle occurs in an aquarium, the main purpose of which is neutralization of toxic compounds.
In descending order, they can be arranged as follows: urea, ammonium, nitrites, nitrates and free nitrogen.
The size of the soil granules directly affects the area provided by the beneficial bacteria for their vital activity. The smaller the fraction of the soil, the greater the surface area can be achieved, but the risk is high to get a huge number of areas where there will be stagnant water for oxygen. The consequence of this will be non-working areas of biological filtration.
The most suitable size for aquarium soil is considered 3-5 millimeters, and the thickness of the substrate layer is around 4-5 millimeters.
As for me, the biological filter at the bottom has both advantages and some disadvantages. The advantages can be safely attributed to a large area of interaction of the soil inhabited by beneficial bacteria with aquarium water. This results in excellent ventilation, which benefits aquarium plants.
The disadvantages are the rapid clogging of soil with detritus, which subsequently begins to rot and release toxic compounds (hydrogen sulfide and ammonia). These harmful compounds disrupt the biological balance in the aquarium and adversely affect the livelihoods of aquarium plants and fish.
As a solution to the problem, aquarists may be advised once a year to remove all inhabitants, pull out all the plants and carry out thorough cleaning and washing. In fact, you need to start and equip an aquarium with a new one. Only consider one thing: in a newly launched aquarium, biological balance is established a little longer than in a new one.
And imagine a picture: you started the aquarium, everything settled down and the balance was established, the fish began to grow up, the plants indulge in their growth – and then bang and you need to restart the aquarium again. I don’t know about you, but this arrangement doesn’t suit me.
It is better to buy a human biological suspension filter and change the fillers in it.
The only drawback of such filters with respect to false – a smaller area of interaction of bacteria with an aqueous medium. But I think it is not so important, because it is easier to disassemble and clean the filter than to re-launch the aquarium and flush everything. In addition, all your animals do not experience any stress, as it happens when transplanting to another container when cleaning the aquarium with a false one.
The only thing I will advise you is that you do not need to make an overpopulation in the aquarium and everything will be ok!