Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Southern California
This was an interesting subject for me recently when I accidentally purchased an external canister filter rated to 370gph for a 13 gallon tank...way more than the 10x turnover that is often thrown around. Before the canister I was running dual Tetra Whisper 30 which wasn't too strong but absolutely made quite a current in the tank. I used to watch the shrimp jump off the wood into the stream and go swinging about in the tank; it looked like fun and the amount of times the shrimp would do it indicated that they were having fun also! They were also able to stay still when they needed to and the fish also had no problems just relaxing in the water as well.
So I set up the new tank, made my nice little aquascape, put my plants in, and transplanted the fish, shrimp, snails, and filters into the new tank for a few days. Finally the canister arrives. I set that up, placed the intake and diffuser into the tank, primed it...instantly sand and gravel sediment blown around the tank with small plant bits following around in the hellish deep red tornado storm. Obviously the fish freaked out but the shrimp and snails managed to hold on for dear life onto the hardscape as the world around them was turned into a much more colorful transition scene of The Wizard of Oz.
In short, yes you can have too much water circulation. I would say 25x the tank capacity flying through tiny spray nozzles per hour is approaching the definition of too much water circulation.