Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Technology and Science...

Technology and Science…

  Technology and science; they seem to walk hand in hand. That is as long as no one tries to stymie the science from becoming tomorrow’s technology. Sometimes the mind resists such with such equal fervor, that the new idea now acts as an antinomy, convincing us that it is worthless before knowing all the facts. Such resistance invokes chaos, and chaos overwhelms us from thinking rationally.

   There is however filtration technology out there, which will actually allow every Koi hobbyist the same benefits as a cost-no-object system, which only a few rarefied Koi hobbyists ever get to enjoy. However, it’s at a fraction of the cost, with greater biological benefits (Nitrate reduction), ease of maintenance and can save diminishing resources like; wasting freshwater! That is exactly what the Anoxic Filtration System can do, but you cannot buy it out of a box, it is completely free to the hobbyist, and it is millions of years old, already tested and used by Mother Nature. This is not a veggie filter whatsoever, and does not have the restrictions of such. Example: Dictated by geographical location, sunlight, nor the high maintenance that one requires. Let me elucidate on how the Anoxic Filtration System works and why hobbyists are changing the way they think about Koi pond filtration.

  The thing you must remember about this system in opposition to other systems. Is that each basket can theoretically be said that they are sitting in the filtration system. That is the process of passing water through or putting something through the filtration system itself, not that the baskets themselves are the filtration system. Therefore, each basket technically becomes a biocenosis-clarification-basket. The baskets themselves aid in the process of making our pond water crystal-clear, clean of biological and/or chemical pollutants, and free from impurities for aquatic life. They are only a constituent of the filtration system inner workings, but not the filtration system itself.

     Biophysical rules for this kind of filtration system are different from that of filtration systems most hobbyists associate with ponding. The Anoxic Filtration Systems biocenosis clarification baskets stay open to biochemical mediators and do not clog or go anaerobic in the clarification process: Because of the diversity of clay materials type used (cat litter and Laterite) and the substrate particulate size or their depth. The microbial population will always stay in equilibrium with its supply of foodstuffs. However, this is somewhat misleading, because in a closed system like our ponds, it is the overall efficiency of the baskets themselves, in relationship to the systems incoming foodstuffs that really matters. Nitrogen pathways react differently to elevated or very low levels of nitrates in bulk water. If the microbial mediators are in equilibrium, they respond respectably to either of those conditions. Yet, excesses will occur for an unknown reason! There may be a lack or balance of useful microbial mediators consequently short-circuiting the microbial balancing act!

  How all this applies to the biocenosis clarification baskets would depend upon the volume and compensation of incoming nutrients and the health, condition, and type of substrate used. Because of this, the baskets stay anoxic than going anaerobic where a greater volume of more efficient microbes exists and thus would be able to respond expeditiously to an excessive nutrient flux in the pond. 
  The Anoxic Filtration System does have a remarkable difference from that of other filtration systems, because of the value of the electrical charge that accompanies matter in the depth of its substrate. This electrical charge is measured in millivolts (mV). Even though the mechanism and pathways associated with cat litter mixed with Laterite are quite involved, it could generally be said that the baskets themselves are basically chemolithotrophic, where the diffusion of nutrients through them are influenced by electrical charge. Moreover, those positive charges are attracted to negative charges. Accordingly, the water’s surface and the air above the pond is a negative mV. In the bulk water of the pond there are many charged molecules. Much of it is positive mV. So is most of the living biomass, example: The fish, gastropods, and plants. The substrate surfaces, which are the sides of the baskets, inside and including top and bottom, are largely a negative mV. The cat litter itself with the Laterite is negatively charge, with increasing magnitude with depth. The deeper the cat litter and Laterite, the more negatively charged it becomes and the more positively charged nutrients are naturally attracted to lower depths inside the baskets. In each basket, small amounts of oxygen have actually been tested and shown to usually stay slightly above 1.5-.5mg/l. The ability to retain some oxygen appears to keep the majority of the bed in an ”anoxic” state. You must also remember that obligated anaerobic heterotrophs, will die if exposed to oxygen.

  Dissimilatory denitrification occurs in zones having a small amount of oxygen. One of the nice things about facultative anaerobic bacteria that reside in the baskets is: They are capable of living in areas containing little or no dissolved oxygen (in other words they are dimorphic in nature). They are enormously more efficient than the microbes living in the anaerobic zones!

    That is of great value here since the biocenosis clarification baskets can easily be kept in an anoxic state for the reason that excessive bulk water nitrate levels can potentially be controlled, because microbes actively strive to stay in equilibrium with the available foodstuff. However, lets take this scenario for instance: If the majority of the basket became anaerobic for some reason, ammonium is the denitrification byproduct, not nitrogen gas. Hence, another nitrogen compound of more significance is resulting! Yes, it would be fair to say from the studies conducted that when and anoxic system is created, the depth of its anoxic zone is then extended and insured. The potential is now greater for increasing astronomically the number facultative anaerobic heterotrophs; do to its substrate and basket configuration.

   Many hobbyists promulgate that: “It is impossible to have oxygen in the baskets because the substrate will compact, and therefore will inhibit any beneficial biological process to take place!” However, they forget about the substrate permeability qualities, and the large part it plays in the microbial and chemical processes. The permeability of cat litter and Laterite allow oxygenated pond water with inorganic compounds to pass through the substrate on a current-carrying magnetic field, which then allows the substrate to stay more aerobic. Such substrate has two characteristics that enable fluids to move through it: (1) porosity and (2) permeability. Porosity is the presence of small openings, or pores. Permeability means that some of the pores are connected by spaces through which fluids can move. Nonetheless, actual tests of the baskets have confirmed the existence of oxygen at low levels for bacterium to exists and exists it does. 
   Oxygen penetration becomes less and less with depth of a substrate. It decreases for two reasons: microbial metabolism and subsequent biogeochemical processes. Diffusion is a very effective process over a short distance; however, it does have its limitations. Yet, the presence of oxygen in the biocenosis clarification baskets suggests that oxygen does diffuse as far as the center of each basket. Concomitantly, biogeochemical processes may produce or retain some oxygen.
  Differential pressure existing across gradients. Ion displacement (differential pressure) exists when there is an association with carbon dioxide removal. If there is a substrate producing some carbon dioxide like that of cat litter and Laterite, it then becomes a factor in creating anoxic condition. The addition of anion producer such as microbial or aggregate or both needs to produce enough oxygen to engage or attract the carbon dioxide and that will then get cations moving, releasing the oxygen and consequently making the substrate to go more aerobic. What I am saying is: Oxygen is present in the substrate of each basket, it is clearly not there only because of diffusion, and electrical magnetic charges alone.
  Carbon availability for autotrophs, or those bacteria that utilize light and carbon dioxide to carry out their biological processes and can quickly use an abundance of inorganic carbon. Heterotrophs are mostly responsible for breaking down organic matter and thrive in areas where diffusion abounds and where organic carbon is well cycled. It is also a fact that mediating biochemical transformations (protein/enzymes) and genetic controls (DNA/RNA) show a common reliance on specific ratios (called: Redfield Ratio) of carbon (DOC), nitrogen (DON), and phosphorus (DOP). It could then be said organic carbon is a major player in how well inorganic nutrients, example, nitrogen and phosphorus, are utilized. 
  Evidence suggests that when heterotrophic bacteria exist at below their full degree or extent by both organic carbon and mineral nutrients, they have a negative impact on their trophic neighbors in the microbial food network. In other words, if they suffer, it appears to negatively affect neighboring processes. Nevertheless, nitrogen is generally the primary limiting nutrient in our ponds because it controls the rate of primary production. If the system is supplied with high levels of “nitrogen,” then algal blooms will generally occur.
   Whether organic carbon is cycled or stored, it appears to be a matter that relates to how the baskets substrate supplies heterotrophic and autotrophs their essential foodstuffs. In fact, it has been shown that when only an organic carbon source is added, autotrophs are out competed by heterotrophs for inorganic nutrients, demonstrating a need for the corresponding nitrogen. If inorganic nutrients are only added, autotrophs will increase, such as cyanobacteria. Therefore, the ratio between carbon and nitrogen and that of phosphorus are very important factors when facilitating population densities of either bacterium. One thing is evident, that the basket substrate along with where diffusion is the most critical player, are very efficient at cycling organic carbon so as to balance the ratio of available constituents.

  I believe that a nearly complete recycling of the pond can be achieved when equipped with biocenosis clarification baskets. The fact remains that grain size; depth and essential trace elements from that of Laterite, play a major role in the class of bacteria that inhabit the biochemical pathways of the substrate of each basket. However, when the right percentages of each are present, the substrate world has a very positive impact on the overall pond water quality, its turbidity, and aquatic animals! Experiments for the past 10 years by some members of the MPKS and others have now shown that hobbyist that are already satisfied with their existing filtration system can benefit greatly by adding biocenosis calcification baskets to their ponds. He has proven that Redox levels will elevate by 30-40 mV or more, water clarity, Koi, and Goldfish heath, plus growth will all improve along with inhibiting the most dreaded cyanobacteria.

The main pond is 6750 gallons. This pond has a 4- inch bottom drain w/air
manifold, going to an 880 gallon settling chamber including a pre-filter with
brushes and filter pads. Then to a sequence pump thru another pre-filter (which
may be part of my problem.) Water quality parameters are good Except for Nitrite
NO2, which reads at .25 before feeding. NH 3 0.0, NO 3 30, Ph 7.6, GH 215, and
Kh 107. I also get many bubbles below the waterfall, which I believe is from high
TDS. I think it is the filter pads giving me all my NO3; I will keep you updated on
all parameters in the near future.

The picture above is a brand-new Anoxic Filtration setup still
breaking in- Date: 7-1-07. Number of Koi 72 most of them 24”-30”.
However, I highly do not recommend trying to break-in a new
filtration system with such a fish load, this hobbyist did. He did have a little trouble getting the filter to catch-up to his fish load.

This is the Anoxic pond. 5.4 ft wide by 9.4 ft long and 28 inches deep, and 915 gallons.
It is fed thru 2 - 4 inch pipes in a bag filled with bio balls as you describe.
Flow is approximately 7500 gph. I have the bog plants on elevated platforms and the
Pickerel rushes are sending out many roots already. The elevated plants are still a
little deep, but seem all right so far. Thanks for your assistance.

Anoxic Filtration Book... Still free on Apple's iBook store

Info on new filter size and schematics…

Top picture is filter in early Spring 2008 and bottom picture is same filter in late summer 2008.

E-mail 8-4-08                                  7000-gal pond
 Hi Kevin,
   Just thought I'd send you a picture of my filtration pond. It has really gone wild this year! I have up to 15 water lily blooms daily, and the Yellow flag Iris is almost too large to pick-up, and that's after 1 year in a 11 x 11 inch plant pot. Ph 7.9 to 8.1, ammonia 0.0, Kh/Gh 107/179, Nitrite 0.0, and nitrate 0 to <5 ppm. Did I say, I'm impressed! Yes. It took longer to cycle for me, but it's doing great guns now. Do ya need any plants?

Filtration system going gangbusters…

E-mail 10-23-08
Hi Kevin.
     Well, I cleaned the anoxic pond today. Wow, what a job. I could not have guessed
that my plants would have grown so much in 1 year. I planted 1 fan of Yellow Flag iris
per pot in 4 pots and all were completely filled and overflowing. Almost too heavy to
lift. Next year I'll only have 1 basket of that plant. Also the water lilies have bloomed
non-stop and were still trying, but I cut them off in prep for winter. All this with no
fertilizer and cat liter with a little Laterite mixed in. All the pots had a layer of mulm on
them and some of the gravel was dark, but there was no bad odor and no noticeable
hydrogen sulfide (rotten egg) smell. Still a bit of string algae, but only in the filter pond
and not much there. I had 52 pots in my anoxic pond, so the job took most of the day to
clean and refill. Water quality has remained very stable with very minimal water
changes. Ph 7.9 to 8.1; 0.0 Ammonia and nitrite; <5 ppm nitrates, Kh stable w/o
additions 107.4; Gh 179. The Koi are healthy and growing. And I am very happy. I think
the Anoxic system is excellent. And it takes more than a little proof to convince me
when something new comes along.
Thanks, Darrell.

'Life is a measure to be filled, not a cup to be drained.' unknown author. But I like the
idea, alot.

End of the year clean out…
As you can see, another high end Koi hobbyist very happy, saved on
water changes and the cost of an expensive filtration system.

Anoxic Filtration Book in iTunes book store for free!

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