Kevin Novak: Anoxic Filtration - Page 2 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #16 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-02-2018, 07:12 PM
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A user commented that if he was going to be a condescending pedant, he should at least pronounce otocinclus properly. And that he sounds stupid. (He was pronouncing it oto-sink-U-lous.)
Haha! That is really funny. I have to say as a horticulturist who worked in plant records at a botanical garden the mispronunciation of plant names (and fish names) drives me a bit crazy sometimes. I know botanical latin is difficult and even I am not always sure of the correct way to pronounce some plants but people don't even try and start switching letters back and forth. Or worse yet they apologize for mispronouncing something 30 times in their video. Instead of apologizing do a bit of research and try to say it at least close to correct.

I've thought about making a video about pronouncing plant names but I doubt anyone would watch it and I would probably come off like a snob.


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post #17 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-02-2018, 07:32 PM
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Haha! That is really funny. I have to say as a horticulturist who worked in plant records at a botanical garden the mispronunciation of plant names (and fish names) drives me a bit crazy sometimes. I know botanical latin is difficult and even I am not always sure of the correct way to pronounce some plants but people don't even try and start switching letters back and forth. Or worse yet they apologize for mispronouncing something 30 times in their video. Instead of apologizing do a bit of research and try to say it at least close to correct.

I've thought about making a video about pronouncing plant names but I doubt anyone would watch it and I would probably come off like a snob.
I'd totally listen to a 30 minute video of someone reading latin names for plants and fish.
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post #18 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-02-2018, 07:35 PM
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I was watching almost all of his videos, I just found the channel a few days ago. Did anyone else try it? It doesn't seem like a bad idea to have a plenum. However, I did find it a bit vague, how much flow he was suggesting to get from under there in order to provide the proper low oxygen conditions, at least if you plan for it and put something in place, if you want to play with the amount of water change under the substrate you can do so. And if you end up hating the idea, then the worst case is you block it all off, right?

Last edited by Buzz1167; 01-02-2018 at 07:53 PM. Reason: Typo
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post #19 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-03-2018, 07:45 AM
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BTW: He's deleted all but one of his videos, presumably because he got called out for his latest video straight up chastising folks for using vernacular / common names when discussing species.

He repeatedly told viewers they "sound stupid" when they do things like call a Plecostomus a "pleco". He wasn't joking either. He sounded genuinely angry.

A user commented that if he was going to be a condescending pedant, he should at least pronounce otocinclus properly. And that he sounds stupid. (He was pronouncing it oto-sink-U-lous.)

12 hours later, and all his vids are gone. Coincidence?
He was mostly responding to people who told him he was pronouncing it wrong and scolding him in the first place. He did reply to me in the comment section, when I told him he came off a bit harsh, and he said he didn't mean to be and was just frustrated with a particular user at the time, and that he would probably delete his video. Turned out he deleted all of his videos and re-uploaded only some. As for not explaining it, I believe he explained it to the point where you can draw your own conclusions; I mean sure, it isn't like a template layed out in a video, but he goes over the basics of how it works. He's an Ichthyologist, a doctor, and I understand he would be frustrated when he is criticized by ignorant people.
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post #20 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-03-2018, 08:09 AM
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I have a 75gal. tank with a 15gal. dry sump filter,it has about 25 bioballs and a 3" course
sponge filter with 2" of fine filter material on top.The only thing I do is top it off (about a gal.
every 5 days ) and maybe 7 to 10 gallons are syphoned out,to get rid of built up detritus,
every couple of months.I've been doing this for around 5 years now and plants and fish are
fine.
edit: I clean the filter material every month and a half.
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post #21 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-17-2018, 04:21 AM
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He's an Ichthyologist, a doctor, and I understand he would be frustrated when he is criticized by ignorant people.
If someone's going to repeatedly tell people they "sound stupid" when using common names, he should make sure he's pronouncing the scientific names properly.

The only ignorant person I see in this situation is the one throwing stones inside a glass house.

I will admit that a plenum seems to make a lot of sense to me - but this forum seems to think they are not needed. I may try one on my next build.

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post #22 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-22-2018, 11:06 PM
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Check out the videos on Jays Aquarium. He goes through the science of it all without sounding ďpreachyĒ. He says you can accomplish it simply with a deep substrate and excess plants. Nobody likes a know-it-all. Problem is most of those who are donít realize it. I think Novakís heart is in the right place.
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post #23 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-22-2018, 11:20 PM
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It's funny because the late Takashi Amano, Oliver Knott and many other "names" in the planted tank world are far from scientists and I think their tanks look pretty good, much better than Dr. "I Found The Secret to Planted Aquaria"
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post #24 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-22-2018, 11:28 PM
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It's funny because the late Takashi Amano, Oliver Knott and many other "names" in the planted tank world are far from scientists and I think their tanks look pretty good, much better than Dr. "I Found The Secret to Planted Aquaria"
They got to where they are because of trial and error though. Imagine what they would have done if they didn't have spend a bunch of time testing over and over again until they got the results they wanted. Deep beds to promote anoxic filtration certainly isn't new in the hobby (store like Ocean Aquarium in San Francisco apparently have been doing it for a while). In fact, sewage treatment plants have been doing it for decades now to clean waste water. The key is demonstrate effectiveness of new ideas by educating the public on why they work, so that future hobbyists can spend less time fiddling around.
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post #25 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-22-2018, 11:37 PM
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They got to where they are because of trial and error though.
Exactly. That's why experience is king and not scientific theory that doesn't always work in a hobbyist setting.
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post #26 of 40 (permalink) Old 01-23-2018, 12:07 AM
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They got to where they are because of trial and error though.
And because their tanks don't look like an underwater corn field.
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post #27 of 40 (permalink) Old 02-14-2018, 07:22 PM Thread Starter
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Wow, I when I first started this topic thread I wasn't expecting to get so much response. Thank you for everyone who has chimed in.

After making the original post, I decided to try and implement the annoxic filter in my own aquarium because I already had a sump and the room to play with. In the beginning, I didn't notice the nitrate levels dropping until about 2 months into the experiment. After passing the two month mark, I found that my nitrate levels have almost zeroed out at least on my test kits. Naturally, my ammonia and nitrite are also reading at zero and I have begun to remove the original biological filter media from my sump. So far the annoxic filter baskets have picking up the slack nicely, and I have seen no upticks in any of the ammonia, nitrate, or nitrite readings.

I am not sure if zeroing out the nitrate is good for the fish or the plants as Novak purports in his videos, but the system does work as advertised to get rid of nitrate.

Does anyone have opinions on Novak's claim that we don't need to fertilize for anything except micros, iron, and potassium? He says in one of his videos that he doesn't fertilize with nitrogen or phosphorous. I would appreciate if someone with more knowledge than I regarding plant husbandry could chime in on this point.

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post #28 of 40 (permalink) Old 02-14-2018, 08:07 PM
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Wow, I when I first started this topic thread I wasn't expecting to get so much response. Thank you for everyone who has chimed in.

After making the original post, I decided to try and implement the annoxic filter in my own aquarium because I already had a sump and the room to play with. In the beginning, I didn't notice the nitrate levels dropping until about 2 months into the experiment. After passing the two month mark, I found that my nitrate levels have almost zeroed out at least on my test kits. Naturally, my ammonia and nitrite are also reading at zero and I have begun to remove the original biological filter media from my sump. So far the annoxic filter baskets have picking up the slack nicely, and I have seen no upticks in any of the ammonia, nitrate, or nitrite readings.

I am not sure if zeroing out the nitrate is good for the fish or the plants as Novak purports in his videos, but the system does work as advertised to get rid of nitrate.

Does anyone have opinions on Novak's claim that we don't need to fertilize for anything except micros, iron, and potassium? He says in one of his videos that he doesn't fertilize with nitrogen or phosphorous. I would appreciate if someone with more knowledge than I regarding plant husbandry could chime in on this point.
would you say your plants have been looking healthier now than befre you made the switch to an anoxic filter?

im tempted to try an anoxic filter in my sump but i'd be worried about my plants competing with the filter for NO3 and NH3.

edit:
i guess you can kinda circumvent the plant/bacteria resource competition if you layered your substrate like this:

something with high CEC (aqua soils, dirt, oil-dri, or kitty litter)
something with high iron content (laterite or maybe mexican red pottery clay)

it'll be an anoxic filter in the tank in that case right?

edit 2: Jay's Aquarium with explanations on the anoxic filtration
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCNJ...6-7xOHad6FTJ2Q


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Last edited by SingAlongWithTsing; 02-14-2018 at 08:17 PM. Reason: edit
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post #29 of 40 (permalink) Old 02-14-2018, 08:14 PM Thread Starter
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My plants do look better, but I am not sure if that is a function of the filter or simply because my tank was rather newly setup when I started the experiment.

My only question right now is how I should go about fertilizing the tank. I was doing ei dosing, but Novak seems to get away with just micros, iron and potassium, which seems appealing because of the fewer water changes he gets away with. Trying to figure out if I should try to fertilize the way he goes about it or if dropping phosphorous and nitrate will hurt the plants. As it is I am still doing the normal weekly water changes.

Bump: Also, as a side note, I did go on a vacation for about 2.5 weeks and the water parameters when I got back were still good, despite the lack of water changes...although I did get an algae bloom because my co2 ran dead during that time.
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post #30 of 40 (permalink) Old 03-10-2018, 11:34 PM
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Well it's common knowledge you need to be a doctor to have a successful planted tank. Dr Oliver Knott, Dr. Takashi Amano, Dr. Joe Planted Aquaria. That's why the hobby isn't bigger. Most will toil in mediocracy until they eventually give up. It would have been easier to get the doctorate.
Well ... yes and no. I have two PhD's and still struggle in less than mediocrity. Then on the other hand. I spend 9 out 12 months in the hospital and my tanks go uncared for; then I come back to clean up the mess I left behind.

But that has nothing to do with my Phd's now does it.

I find I ask more questions than provide answers and even the answers I might provide are full and complete without condescending. But then too I get accused of being arrogant for being informed and providing a full and complete answer with details. And sometimes when I ask a question and ask for details the same perception comes off.

Cheers,
Wes
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