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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
so I'm running npx biopellets and i noticed people dose bacteria strains to seed the pellets.. is it necessary to do so? the instructions say nothing about dosing
 

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Why would you need to seed the pellets? Thought the purpose of biopellets was for them to slowly melt into your tank. Btw make sure your biopellets exit into your skimmer...
 

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Why would you need to seed the pellets? Thought the purpose of biopellets was for them to slowly melt into your tank. Btw make sure your biopellets exit into your skimmer...
I think the purpose of biopellets is to give an ideal area for bacteria to grow and the tumbling knocks the bacteria off the pellets into the water in the reaction chamber, then into your tank... not melting of the pellets.

I'm sorry I cannot answer your question about the biopellets as I have not used them... yet :)
 

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This is a quick explanation I wrote for my Q&A forum on the Premium Aquatics website:
Much like vodka (or carbon) dosing, bio-pellets are a way to encourage hyper-colonization of beneficial bacteria into your system. The idea is to introduce an organic food source into the system, allowing for a greater number of bacteria than could otherwise be accommodated. It's not necessary to introduce additional bacteria, since the reproduction rate of the existing bacteria in your tank is limited only by the available food and space. Bio-pellets are typically used in a reactor, so the equipment cost is substantial when compared to lower-tech dosing schemes, but it automates the procedure so it's less work overall, and it's consistent over the long-term.
You'll have to make a self-determination about the value of the system to your personal situation. The potential benefits are that you'll have extremely clean water, and for SPS keepers that's ideal. Also, you see the reduction of potentially harmful compounds like nitrates and phosphates which anyone can appreciate. Considering the amount that you can spend on filter media, water changes and maintenance to lower the presence of those compounds, the cost can be justifiable.
There can be certain drawbacks to the system, like any other. As with any inline reactor, a stoppage in flow could be problematic. Because of the enormous population of active bacteria in the bio-pellet reactor, it does not take long for the water in that chamber to become anaerobic when stagnant. If for some reason the chamber were to remain stopped for an extended period and then recirculated into the tank, there could be potential for loss of livestock.
Another consideration is the cost of food and supplementation. Since you're encouraging a ton of bacteria to live, the amount of available food and trace elements becomes limited. You'll need to reintroduce those to your water, and the cost will depend on the types of supplements and foods you choose, as well as the bio-load you're trying to sustain.
The last thing you'll need to know is that using bio-pellets, like carbon dosing, should not be halted immediately on any system. If you decide to start using a pellet system, you'll need to slowly wean your system off of it when you decide to stop. The large colony of bacteria will have altered the actual nitrogen cycle of your system, and you'll need to allow it to readjust to the absence of the reactor. This adjustment could potentially take as long as your initial cycle did to start.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
This is a quick explanation I wrote for my Q&A forum on the Premium Aquatics website:
Much like vodka (or carbon) dosing, bio-pellets are a way to encourage hyper-colonization of beneficial bacteria into your system. The idea is to introduce an organic food source into the system, allowing for a greater number of bacteria than could otherwise be accommodated. It's not necessary to introduce additional bacteria, since the reproduction rate of the existing bacteria in your tank is limited only by the available food and space. Bio-pellets are typically used in a reactor, so the equipment cost is substantial when compared to lower-tech dosing schemes, but it automates the procedure so it's less work overall, and it's consistent over the long-term.
You'll have to make a self-determination about the value of the system to your personal situation. The potential benefits are that you'll have extremely clean water, and for SPS keepers that's ideal. Also, you see the reduction of potentially harmful compounds like nitrates and phosphates which anyone can appreciate. Considering the amount that you can spend on filter media, water changes and maintenance to lower the presence of those compounds, the cost can be justifiable.
There can be certain drawbacks to the system, like any other. As with any inline reactor, a stoppage in flow could be problematic. Because of the enormous population of active bacteria in the bio-pellet reactor, it does not take long for the water in that chamber to become anaerobic when stagnant. If for some reason the chamber were to remain stopped for an extended period and then recirculated into the tank, there could be potential for loss of livestock.
Another consideration is the cost of food and supplementation. Since you're encouraging a ton of bacteria to live, the amount of available food and trace elements becomes limited. You'll need to reintroduce those to your water, and the cost will depend on the types of supplements and foods you choose, as well as the bio-load you're trying to sustain.
The last thing you'll need to know is that using bio-pellets, like carbon dosing, should not be halted immediately on any system. If you decide to start using a pellet system, you'll need to slowly wean your system off of it when you decide to stop. The large colony of bacteria will have altered the actual nitrogen cycle of your system, and you'll need to allow it to readjust to the absence of the reactor. This adjustment could potentially take as long as your initial cycle did to start.
thanks everyone.. and how long do i have to wait to get the pellets working...i split up the dose for 100 gal in 2 and ran 1/2 for 20 days and just started the second part 2 days ago.. no bloom nothing.. no3 hasn't changed much but i may be part of the problem when i disturb the sb.
 

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Stirring the sandbed is definitely going to cause issues - mostly silt and sediment. Those pellets are a solid food source, so proper flow is needed to break them down consistently. The more you silt up the reactor, the slower the flow and the longer the food takes to become available to the bacteria. Stirring the sandbed also disturbs the colony of bacteria establishing there, and releases trapped detritus and organics to the water column - potentially raising your NH4 and NO3 levels as they're consumed by your growing bacteria colony.
The other issue is the presence of NO3 - the higher the concentration, the slower the overall colonization. Remember that the last step in cycling has to be done by ANAEROBIC bacteria - those have to grow slowly in perfectly oxygen-free environments, so no amount of dosing or adding live cultures can speed this process. These ones have to grow in on their own.
 
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