Thursday, September 4, 2014

And now without further ado, a word from pond owner Shelly that uses the AFS in Oregon’s beautiful Willamette Valley with photos.

Modifications or additional filtration to your pond: Will it become redundant? In most cases the simple answer is; yes! Adding more of what you already have is redundancy squared. As hobbyist realize they need more filtration to an already existing filtration system or rebuilding their ponds and making them larger always presents the same problems of making the same mistakes but with additional cost.

I’ll give you and example of what I mean. Lets say you have this wonderful Nexus, Bead filter or Sand filter and you’re happy with what you have but now you need more because your Koi and/or needs have changed. In most cases you will not buy another Nexus because of the expense of $3000-5000.oo more for a filtration system is a little too much. Therefore, you will try to build a supplement filter or be convinced in someway that filter X is a better choice for your needs and will cost you a fraction of what a Nexus does. Lets remember I’m not picking on Nexus filters just using them as an example only.

In this scenario, which plays itself out all the time with pond owners, the options are either more techno equipment; cost being still high, or a build it yourself filtration system. The high tech equipment will give you some advantage over the homemade filter but then again cost will influence that to a greater existent, too. So the homemade filter is the lesser of two evils and better WAF (Wife Acceptance Factor) because cost will be lessen. You will also have the enjoyment of saying; “I built it myself!”

Now here’s the problem; have you really gained anything other than more of what you already have? The high tech equipment may or may not give you cleaner water with higher ORP and Lower TDS but that home made filter will not. Some will try and make Bogs or Veggie filters but if not done just right you will not gain what you think you should. Using filter mats for colonization of more bacteria will only cause more work in the long run because of clogging. Adding rocks and stone to your pond is going backwards in time to days of yore in ponding and you what to progress not regress with technology.

Anoxic Filters today are the most progressive filtration system out there. With plants they can eradicate germs that cause illnesses to our Koi, clean water, help prevent cyanobacteria that plague so many ponds, raise ORP, lower TDS, and stay open to biological and chemical mediators that other system can’t do because they don’t clog up those valuable pathways in the filters substrate.  They are easy to build that a child can do it and though not an easy system to understand its science, will not let your valuable Koi down in colder geographical location by bacteria loss in the winter months.

Understanding its science is why so many hobbyists think the AFS will not work or is really just another Bog or Veggie filter, however, it is not! It is a well thought out filtration system used for decades to purify water cheaply and efficiently enough to keep aquatic life alive for many years to come. It does not take a very highly skill level person to make up the Biocenosis Clarification Baskets. Don’t let this name intimidate you, it just a scientific way of saying how the baskets work.

As I have said before not every filtration system is perfect for everyone but I have seen even the most expensive filters money could buy, not do the job they were intended to.

QUOTE from Vince from a Koi forum post # 465 dated September 4th, 2014:

“My anoxic filter is 4-foot deep and the (BCB’s) baskets stacked up on the inside using 40-mm pipe work to give a gap for water to flow under each one. And no plants at all, Yes, it did take longer to get going but it is working fine now and I’m very happy with my readings that have come down from Nitrates over 180-ppm to just 20-ppm now. As for as the other readings go there still fine also but it was only to get the Nitrates down I fitted the Anoxic filter anyway.”

[ED: That’s a whopping 160-ppm lower now using an AFS over a conventional system.]

And now without further ado, a word from pond owner Shelly that uses the AFS in Oregon’s beautiful Willamette Valley with photos.

Shelly's pond in panoramic view.


“I just had to chime in on your 8/27 "No Chemicals" post from Brian Woodcock. 

As you know, Dr. Novak, I am a very new and inexperienced pond owner. We built our own 4' deep, 3800-gallon pond, and filled it just 10 months ago. 



Our Anoxic Filtration chamber is modeled after Brian Woodcock's -- except ours is hidden under our deck next to the pond. It is gravity fed from an aerated bottom drain. We made our own pre-filter between the bottom drain and the AF chamber. The AF chamber contains 18 unplanted 11" Biocenosis Baskets, and there are 6 more planted Biocenosis Baskets in a small 14" deep 'bog' (see photo) that adjoins the pond. 

NO MAGIC: In addition to the circulation created by the aeration and 2 TPR’s, we keep a steady flow of water through the bog. Our pond also has a Skimmer and an Emperor HO ( High Output) UV. My weekly maintenance consists of netting and/or trimming any dead leaves off my aquatic plants, changing my filter media (round, commercial floor-buffer pads). I recently purchased a Pond-Vac as well, knowing LOTS of leaves are about to fall. That's it! No magic.

MY POND WATER IS SO CLEAR that, sometimes when the light is just right, my Water Hyacinth and Cabbage seem to be floating in the air. It is difficult to get a picture of the bottom because my camera wants to focus on the reflection instead, but I have managed to capture a couple. I'll let these photos speak for themselves. SEE THE BOTTOM??

I should also add that I allowed my granddaughter to select 3 small butterfly Koi from the pet store, and release them with our 14 gold fish. I have never had Koi, but their GROWTH RATE IS ALMOST SCARY! I only feed them all in the morning.

Again, thank you for making it possible for us to have such a nice, AFFORDABLE pond. I expect many others to eventually join our ranks!

In Oregon's beautiful Willamette Valley

[ED: Once again I can’t thank those enough that let me know how they are doing and letting those on my blog know too.]

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