Planted Tank Obsessed
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: Where the devil went down to!
In theory it works for planted tanks. I am on both sides of the fence with this. I think if one your not dosing Co2, and if your not trying to keep a pristine tank, But your more for maybe a Dirted tank or a more natural setup I can see where it is in theory a good source of filtration. I have been researching this method for a long time now and even thought about going that route if i was to do saltwater. So if your tank has a lot of algae or it is a new tank I can see where it will help If you have a lot of rooted plants I can see where an ATS will not harm your plants that rely on the substrate for feeding. If you have stems and other plants that really get their nutrients from the water It could potentially be a problem. However i also see it as Algae grows in all tanks. even if it isnt very noticable it is still there by spores. So why not grow it in your sump and keep it out of your tank. Most algae even in a heavy planted tank, will still grow and over take a tank if we don't intervene, so an ATS really in theory shouldn't hurt a planted tank. But I think the splashing of the water from your ATS can reduce your Co2 in the tank and that can harm your plants. also the ATS is adding O2 to the water as the algae filters it and taking Co2 from the water. so with the splashing and or the gentle fall of the Ats (however your set it up) The oxygen exchange will be I think greater vs a fully heavily planted tank, and therefore could out compete your plants for Co2. Even though there is a good debate about Co2 and O2 and the effects of atmospheric exchange. vs. injecting Co2. On paper it would seem it could work, But I don't know if it would be a long term kind of set up for a planted tank. as for a non planted tank, I think it is probably the best source of filtration. But If you were to do a Dirt tank It could be good in the beginning to help rid of extra nutrients in the water and could also help keep the algae from forming in your new tank. But it really needs to be experimented on and see how it does in a planted tank for the long term. I always wanted to do a Ats with a planted tank. But never could justify it. Maybe you should do an experimental planted tank with a Ats. and document it. and let others know of your progress and how it does long term.
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