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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm thinking when the time is right to have more than one aquarium that one of them could be a dedicated guppy tank and whenever one deals with live bearers perhaps the biggest challenge is not to have the newborns get sucked up by your filter. So I'm thinking that an UG with powerheads would be good but I know that generally speaking UG's aren't a good filtration system because they really offer no biological.

But here is my big idea and the point of this thread...
Has anyone tried to stuff an UG full of biomedia? I don't mean the tubes either I mean filling the UG grates full of biomedia.
 

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In a ugf the substrate is the bio media so adding any would be redundant. A ugf in a planted tank is rather pointless as the plants play a large role in biological filtering. If you use a very fine sponge you can avoid fry being sucked up by the filter, I have a shrimp only tank and thats how I do it as do many others.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Oh wow. I had the impression that UG's are probably the worst type of filtration system out there and I guessed it was because of the biological aspect. So I suppose if I ever start a planted guppy tank I just might go the UG route for filtration. Thanxs.

Bump:
In a ugf the substrate is the bio media so adding any would be redundant. A ugf in a planted tank is rather pointless as the plants play a large role in biological filtering.
Yes but the point to wanting to use a ugf is so that the babies don't get sucked up by the filter. Isn't gravel pretty inefficient to housing bio bacteria compared to biomedia though? Not much surface area.
 

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Yes but the point to wanting to use a ugf is so that the babies don't get sucked up by the filter. Isn't gravel pretty inefficient to housing bio bacteria compared to biomedia though? Not much surface area.
What the may lack in actual surface area they make up for in shear volume, most ugf systems I have seen house 3 inches or more of gravel multiply that across the footprint of the tank and it isnt really an insignificant volume. The problem you will have with a ugf and a planted tank is the roots get wrappd up in the grating. If you have a tank with fry and the tank is planted your best bet imho is a sponge filter. The output from a couple of powerheads would be pretty stout for fry and if you are going to go with air then save the money and invest in an air driven sponge like this one: CAF25
 

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The problem you will have with a ugf and a planted tank is the roots get wrappd up in the grating. If you have a tank with fry and the tank is planted your best bet imho is a sponge filter.
Interesting. The problem with roots getting wrapped up in the grating would be clogging?

I re-read some research using ugf's with a planted tank...not worth experimenting IMO. If I ever do a guppy tank I'll probably just go with an Eheim with the pre-filter add-on to the intake.
 

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Using a ugf is like anything else, it is all a matter of preference and achieving the desired results. I would do some research and draw a conclusion from that. My opinion on your original question is filling the grate with bio media would be an unnecessary expense and if it was me and the tank was being used to house fry I would go with an air driven system rather than powerheads. Many people like myself prefer to use other forms of filtration in a planted tank but a quick search with turn up many people have had good results with a ugf. As to your question about the roots I guess it depends on thge plants. Anubius and java fern will be fine where as I cant imagine what would happen with an amazon sword in a ugf system. However there are always exceptions: http://www.plantedtank.net/forums/20-diy/99605-ugf-planted-tanks.html
 

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UGF's do provide biological filtration.
Long story short, UGF's do work, but there are much better options nowadays.
I would never go back to UGF's. I would rather use sponge filters.

For tiny shrimplets or fry, you could pretty much use any filter as long as they have fine enough pore sponges. Whether a sponge filter (you can look into HMF filters), or any other filter just using a sponge as a prefilter (to prevent tiny babies from being sucked up).
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
UGF's do provide biological filtration.
Long story short, UGF's do work, but there are much better options nowadays.
I would never go back to UGF's. I would rather use sponge filters.

For tiny shrimplets or fry, you could pretty much use any filter as long as they have fine enough pore sponges. Whether a sponge filter (you can look into HMF filters), or any other filter just using a sponge as a prefilter (to prevent tiny babies from being sucked up).
Thanxs
 

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As an example I have this at the bottom of my 40g bow front tank. I also havean HOB filter and built a filter on which I waiting on the pumps for. The UGF, I wanted to keep a small mount of circulation through out the tank. The tubes pictured are air line tubing with slits cut in the bottom. It was then wrapped in a tightly woven polyester material, covered with small pea gravel then covered with crushed white feldspar. its air driven.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
As an example I have this at the bottom of my 40g bow front tank. I also havean HOB filter and built a filter on which I waiting on the pumps for. The UGF, I wanted to keep a small mount of circulation through out the tank. The tubes pictured are air line tubing with slits cut in the bottom. It was then wrapped in a tightly woven polyester material, covered with small pea gravel then covered with crushed white feldspar. its air driven.
Well done.
 

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Sorry but under gravel filter have a lot of negative problems with the worst being cleaning them. The only real way to clean them is to take the whole tank down. They are also hard to tell when there dirty and as they do get dirty your power head will slow down and less water is pull thru the gravel. Just go with a sponge filter with an air lift. So much easier if it for breeding no gravel would even be better for cleaning.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Sorry but under gravel filter have a lot of negative problems with the worst being cleaning them. The only real way to clean them is to take the whole tank down. They are also hard to tell when there dirty and as they do get dirty your power head will slow down and less water is pull thru the gravel. Just go with a sponge filter with an air lift. So much easier if it for breeding no gravel would even be better for cleaning.
Yup, once again...
after re-reading the research on ugf's I will go with a canister type filter with some sort of pre-filter on the intake (if I ever do a live-bearer planted tank).
 

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I'm thinking when the time is right to have more than one aquarium that one of them could be a dedicated guppy tank and whenever one deals with live bearers perhaps the biggest challenge is not to have the newborns get sucked up by your filter. So I'm thinking that an UG with powerheads would be good but I know that generally speaking UG's aren't a good filtration system because they really offer no biological.

But here is my big idea and the point of this thread...
Has anyone tried to stuff an UG full of biomedia? I don't mean the tubes either I mean filling the UG grates full of biomedia.
I agree with what has been said about UGFs verses sponge filters, so I need not repeat that.

However, in reading your post, I wonder exactly what you are trying to do as far as breeding guppies goes. If your just trying to let a few fry grow up in the main tank, then using a sponge filter is fine.

However if your seriously trying to breed them, you really need multiple tanks. One or more for the female to give birth, and one or more grow out tanks, so you can get some size on the fish, and not have to worry about the fry being eaten. In either case I'd use sponge filters there.
 

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for a pre filter,Fluval makes a small round sponge with a hole in the center that is just about the right size to fit over the intake of a canister filter.The only draw back is they clog up quickly.

It's the Fluval edge pre-filter.

 

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Sorry but under gravel filter have a lot of negative problems with the worst being cleaning them. The only real way to clean them is to take the whole tank down. They are also hard to tell when there dirty and as they do get dirty your power head will slow down and less water is pull thru the gravel. Just go with a sponge filter with an air lift. So much easier if it for breeding no gravel would even be better for cleaning.
What? Hard to clean? Au contraire. Damn easy to clean. Use a gravel vac when doing a WC. Clean 1/2 the gravel at each change. In fact I've found them to be the easiest to clean. The reason I stopped using them is because of plants. I had them in my 90, a bunch of 10s and 20s also.
I don't use them anymore like I said because of plants but I've moved all the breeding to the fish house and have mostly bare tanks. 20 of my breeding tanks have Lee's economy corner filters in them. I paid under $1.50 each for them last year so pretty economical. Water is very clear.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I agree with what has been said about UGFs verses sponge filters, so I need not repeat that.

However, in reading your post, I wonder exactly what you are trying to do as far as breeding guppies goes. If your just trying to let a few fry grow up in the main tank, then using a sponge filter is fine.

However if your seriously trying to breed them, you really need multiple tanks. One or more for the female to give birth, and one or more grow out tanks, so you can get some size on the fish, and not have to worry about the fry being eaten. In either case I'd use sponge filters there.
I'm just spit-balling ideas on different themed tanks I might set up and regarding a guppy tank...
I won't be interested in breeding them but merely get a few pairs of guppies and let nature take it's course. I would heavily plant the tank with types of plants where the fries could hide in.
 

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What? Hard to clean? Au contraire. Damn easy to clean. Use a gravel vac when doing a WC. Clean 1/2 the gravel at each change. In fact I've found them to be the easiest to clean. The reason I stopped using them is because of plants. I had them in my 90, a bunch of 10s and 20s also.
I don't use them anymore like I said because of plants but I've moved all the breeding to the fish house and have mostly bare tanks. 20 of my breeding tanks have Lee's economy corner filters in them. I paid under $1.50 each for them last year so pretty economical. Water is very clear.


I not trying to say they are wrong. Just to clean the filter you have to reset the tank that's even with vac the gravel. After 2 years use they had a lot build up under there plates. I'm big on making cleaning and maintenance easy because if it's easy were more likely to do it. I'm glad that the corner box work for you. I also have only few tanks and my budget allows me other ways to do things. But we all only have so much budget for our hobbies and to get the best bang for your buck is always good.
 
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