Anoxic filtration: An Interview with Kevin Novak. pecktec video link

Sarpijk

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Hi, I am very interested in hearing your opinion. There is certainly a good deal in science behind this.He provides some very interesting arguments.
 

jaypeecee

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Hi @Sarpijk

It's a shame that the video is so long. I've looked at snippets from it. I have heard of Dr Kevin Novak somewhere but I can't remember where. Have you formed any conclusions about his anoxic filtration system?

JPC
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
How do you think they may work, Darrel?
I think that the biocenosis buckets produce nitrate via conventional aerobic nitrification. A picture is worth a thousand words, and this picture (<"Dr Novak's blog">) tells me <"all I need to know">.



There might also be anaerobic denitrification deeper inside the container.
And, do you think they could be used in an aquarium instead of a pond?
Yes, the deep sand beds (that marine aquarists use) work on this principle. People have tried <"denitrification coils, Jaubert plenums etc.">. I think @foxfish knows more than I do.

cheers Darrel
 

Sarpijk

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Hi @Sarpijk

It's a shame that the video is so long. I've looked at snippets from it. I have heard of Dr Kevin Novak somewhere but I can't remember where. Have you formed any conclusions about his anoxic filtration system?

JPC
I am in no way qualified to say if the whole method is legit. I respect the fact he mentioned his background in research and how he used his findings in the pond hobby and subsequently in aquariums.

I do not need a no water change aquarium ( nor do I live in a place with water shortage that would deem it impossible). What I find intriguing is the statement that nitrates are equally bad as ammonia and the fact that while in the 60's undergravel filters were the norm, they became obsolete for the shake of "progress".

The main premise is that the water needs to move through the substrate as it does in nature.

He seems to know the hobby though.
 

foxfish

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I am not a technical expert but I have successfully used plenums in marine tanks, freshwater tanks and koi ponds.
The koi pond method that seems to have worked amazingly well is based on a deep suspended bed of gravel that is heavy planted and has flowing water over the water surface.
I have one very large pond (10,000 gallons) that has worked on this system for close to 35 years.
I have built many koi pond over a 30 year period that were designed to use many different filter systems as the hobby developed but the few that used a separate pond plenum filter method have always remained the most heathy or at least appear to be, with clear water, happy fish and little unwanted algae !
Other high flow filter methods even the ones with auto daily back flush, seem to have more suspended partials and unwanted algae than the large suspended gravel bed method.
It would be interesting to see what lives under the gravel after 35 years but I have never had a reason to check... quite possibly a mass of roots or decomposed roots, I really don’t know.
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
What I find intriguing is the statement that nitrates are equally bad as ammonia
That is one problem I have with him, a lot of the statements <"he makes are definitely wrong">, and if his baskets work, they don't work for the reason given. In his blog he says
Each biocenosis basket acts like a giant magnet that attracts ions (positive ions) out of solution; I explain that in my blog. So the nitrogen cycle as you know it and have explained, is not relevant with the Anoxic filter. High oxygen loving bacteria are not its primary reliance; that is only with conventional filtration.
Which is just b*llocks.

The koi pond method that seems to have worked amazingly well is based on a deep suspended bed of gravel that is heavy planted and has flowing water over the water surface.
You were just ahead of your time, these are the <"Horizontal Flow Constructed Wetlands"> that are now used a lot in waste water treatment.

cheers Darrel
 
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The only video I enjoyed was the one on using normal LED lightbulbs and removing the diffuser to get better output. He’s definitely educated but his info can be misleading and confusing to novice aquarists.
 

Soilwork

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when I pulled my old soil tank down. I could feel varying degrees of temperature within the substrate with my fingers (cold spots). Although now I’m not sure if I imagined this and have blown it up in my mind what I am sure about is that the smell of rotting eggs nearly knocked me out.
Point in case is that hydrogen sulphide production occurs at a lower redox value than denitrification so If i had this gas then I most definitely had denitrification. I don’t see the point in this. You just leave the substrate well alone.
 

tiger15

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There have been many discussions in fish forums on adopting deep sand system as used in saltwater, but it has not gotten traction in freshwater. Saltwater has more diverse fauna in live deep sand to carry out denitrification more efficiently than in freshwater. Making artificial saltwater is expensive and tedious, so saltwater folks employ every biochemical filtration option available to minimize WC. Freshwater is cheap and the easiest way to achieve nitrate reduction is do water change or to grow plants.

Having deep sand in freshwater has minimal benefit as denitrification is too slow to worth the effort. Nevertheless, denitrification kits are sold by a few vendors as snake oil.

I am a long time cichlid keeper and recent aquascaper. I have always maintained very thin substrate barely to cover the bottom as the aerobic zone is no deeper than 1/2 inch, so more depth is not needed. My cichlid will dig and having deep sand risk getting stirred up to release toxic gases. I keep mostly epiphytes attached to rock and potted plants, so I don't need thick substrate to root plants. Moreover, having deep substrate reduces the volume available for my fish and plants.
 

tiger15

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