Turning off filter during feeding - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-26-2015, 10:54 PM Thread Starter
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Turning off filter during feeding

I have seen a couple threads lately mentioning that they turn off filters during feeding.
Is this a newbie mistake or is there some new info out there encouraging this?
I think it's a bad practice to turn off the filters because of the reasons posted on the current threads.
It causes bacterial die off from lack of oxygen to the BB.
Causing high potential for bacterial blooms.

Can someone with experience please weigh in on this?
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post #2 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-26-2015, 10:59 PM
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I used to do this so that the food stayed more or less in one spot so that the fish could eat. As my experience grew I realized as many other rookies have, this is not a good thing. Forgetfulness leads to bacterial die off which leads to newer and bigger problems.


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post #3 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-26-2015, 10:59 PM
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Depends how long its off. Say a half hour or so no worries. Not really necessary though, in most tanks.
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post #4 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-26-2015, 11:16 PM Thread Starter
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It is my thinking also that this is not a needed step. I was just wondering if there is someone out there encouraging this.
I know in reef tanks with corals sometimes they say this to give the corals a chance to eat. But I can't imagine this being a needed step in a planted or freshwater tank.
Thanks for weighing in.
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post #5 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-26-2015, 11:28 PM
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Geeze, might as well turn the lights off as well so they are not blinded.
I spread the foos as much as I can so the have to seek for it.

But my tanks don't have much surface agitation. I must be doing something wrong lol.


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post #6 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-26-2015, 11:29 PM
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I shut mine off my gourami cant catch the food. The danios on the other hand are like sharks at feeding time. So i say it deprnds on fish.
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post #7 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-26-2015, 11:42 PM
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I use my filter return to disperse the food through out the water column. Need to be a bit more cautious to only feed as much as the fish will eat... BUT I think it's much more natural.

Also cherry shrimp help to clean up anything missed.


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post #8 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-27-2015, 12:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by theatermusic87 View Post
I use my filter return to disperse the food through out the water column. Need to be a bit more cautious to only feed as much as the fish will eat... BUT I think it's much more natural.
+1
I don't know about it being more natural as feeding them inanimate artificially colored flakes is pretty unnatural, but I also drop the pinch near the flow from the filter. My smaller fish see it coming down and go right for it and are then followed by the larger fish who spy their feeding frenzy. All of my larger fish--Loaches, Gouramis, Corys-- seem just fine picking some up off of the bottom but it did take me a while to dial in the appropriate amount of food plus a tiny bit extra for the snails. I can't imagine a fish starving to death if you're putting food in the tank current or no current.
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post #9 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-27-2015, 12:59 AM
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LOL, sounds like some of you do exactly what I do. Put the flakes in front of the circulation fan and let it blow all the way across the tank. Big rainbows and black skirts grab the big stuff close to the fan. Al the rest of the flakes (or whatever) generally drop down and the smaller serpea and black phantoms have a chance. What ever they miss makes the bottom feaders happy.


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post #10 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-27-2015, 01:09 AM
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When I feed frozen foods then I do turn it down but the fish eat every scrap within a minute of feeding so usually within seconds of the last worm hitting the water the flow control goes back to full.
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post #11 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-27-2015, 02:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Immortal1 View Post
I used to do this so that the food stayed more or less in one spot so that the fish could eat. As my experience grew I realized as many other rookies have, this is not a good thing. Forgetfulness leads to bacterial die off which leads to newer and bigger problems.
+1 on this.. I did it for a while and kept catching myself forgetting to plug the filter back in.

It's a shame nobody makes a "pause button" outlet controller that would disable the outlet for 15-30 minutes, then turn it back on automatically.

New to planted tanks, avid gardener/tinkerer.

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post #12 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-27-2015, 02:40 AM
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LOL, sounds like somebody should invent an outlet for "seniors"!

oh crap, did I just have a TMI moment....


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post #13 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-27-2015, 04:23 AM
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I turn the filter off in my 75 and 90. They're drilled and sumped. Food would be in the overflow in seconds if I didn't.

Dilution is the solution for the pollution.
Quote me as saying I was misquoted.
Once you get rid of integrity the rest is a piece of cake.
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post #14 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-27-2015, 04:32 AM
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Just incase others didn't know and want a alternative to not turning off the filters, there are "feeding stations/rings" that you can buy or DIY. They break up the current/surface agitation within that feeding station leaving the food placed within to stay afloat longer and food that does drop down, drops to a general area incase you didn't want the food to end up in places you don't want it accumulating at. There are also worm feeder cones.

Or maybe you can just take a pinch of food and hold under the surface of the water for a few seconds until it's water logged (so it doesn't float back up getting into the overflow) then release it for the fish to eat. Some food may still get sucked up, but it's something. Hands will get wet, but I rinse my hands after feeding anyways.
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post #15 of 18 (permalink) Old 07-27-2015, 11:47 AM
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I have the forgetting to turn my filter back on problem too, sometimes. No bad symptoms or anything, but I have an internal filter.

I notice the fish are less active if I forget and leave the filter off all night.

I really don't have the option of not turning the filter off for feeding because the food would get blown all around the tank. I have a heavily planted tank so probably a lot of the food would end up lost. I have a small herd of Pristella tetras and they love to eat together.

MY TANK: Planted 10g; 2 x 10W CFL; Fluval U2 internal filter; MGOCPM/black sand cap

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started April 18, 2012
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