Originally Posted by tlyons01
Thank you both for your responses. I currently put the sponge that was sitting in my other tank on the top, then the biomax bag and then the other sponge filter. I had to take it apart anyway cause it was not very quiet and I had to fix that too. Also, if I have the bacteria in my top sponge, how long do I have to get ammonia in the tank before they die off? I found that my bottle is not pure and I can't get out to search for any until later today
I can't personally cite any studies that have been done on nitrifying bacteria lifespan in aquarium habitats. The best way to test the efficiency of your biological filtration system is to test and track the production of nitrates in your water. A healthy bio filtration system will add a constant and steady amount of nitrate to water over time. Your aquarium should experience a linear increase in nitrate. Without a steady supply of ammonia your bacteria will
eventually die off and need to be reestablished, I don’t however know how long this may take.
It is nice to have pre-colonized filter media that you can add to jumpstart a new aquarium. I often start new filters in an existing aquarium sometime before setting up a new one so that my filter media is already mature when I add the first fish to my new tank. I keep the “starter filter/media” in the old tank though until I am ready to add fish to the new one so that the beneficial bacteria continue to have a steady supply of nutrients. If you want to seed your new aquarium I would add your fish and seeded media/filter at the same time. It sounds like you have already added the media to your new aquarium though. How long will it be before you add fish to the aquarium? That would help a lot in determining what you should do with your filter.
In addition, when it is time to add fish to your aquarium it would help to have chemical filter media on hand to use for the first few weeks while your tank is adjusting to your new fish. I personally recommend Nitrazorb or Zeolite granules as these coupled with regular water changes will help make up for any lack of filtration from your biological media. It is important to place these at the back of your filtration system so that they will not absorb all of the nutrients and starve your beneficial bacteria colony. I keep a small amount of each on hand always. I especially like Nitrazorb as it can be recharged by placing it in a saltwater (regular non iodine table salt is fine) soak, and removes NH3,NO3 and
NO4. I use nylon stocking or filter media bags to contain these media. I use these as temporary supplements to my filtration systems rather than permanent solutions.
Water tests for ammonia/nitrite/nitrat
e will help you determine what your filtration needs are at any given time in a particular system. Hope this helps!