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Carl Strohmeyer
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AAP/SeaChem Tidal Filters;

Premium HOB Aquarium Power Filtration Systems;
Including skimmer feature & high capacity filter basket

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Unique aquarium & pond plumbing parts, many found nowhere else

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I have updated the "Aquarium Nitrogen Cycle" article once more

Here is an excerpt from the article:
"[1] Seasoned Filter Media:

My preferred cycling method is to transfer filter media.
Sponges work well as Autotrophic nitrifying bacteria tend to cling to sponge media in high quantities and sponge media is easily transferred, although floss, ceramic media, volcanic rock, etc. are also fine from an established aquarium and possibly along with some gravel, then introduce the fish SLOWLY after 3-7 days.
See product links: Nirox Ceramic biological media & Volcanic rock Biological Aquarium and Pond Filter Media

The method of adding “aged” or "seasoned" media is much faster (you still have to take it slow, but this with this method some fish can and should be introduced immediately), and provides all the necessary bacteria, the only negative is adding disease pathogens to your aquarium, but I have rarely encountered this problem. To prevent this transfer of disease pathogens and parasites, only use a media source where no new fish have been added in 30 days, ALL water parameters are good, and if possible has UV Sterilization (although not necessary).

A mistake that is occasionally made is adding a new sponge filter to a fully cycled/seasoned aquarium for a week or two and then adding it to the new tank one is trying to quickly establish via this method.
Unfortunately this filter itself would not be fully seasoned as it would have needed to be running in the established aquarium for 6-8 weeks for this to happen, so starting a new aquarium with a filter not allowed to fully season will result in poor results in the new aquarium."

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The best and most simple method for maintaining Reef aquarium chemistry from the only full service online seller, why purchase form a discounter?

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Time to change your UV Bulb/Lamp?
Recommended time is 6 months in aquariums and most temperate climate ponds and once per year in most other ponds.

NOTE, AAP ONLY sells High Output UV lamps/bulbs unlike the majority now sold which have 1/4 the UVC output

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Excellent video

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Here is a QUOTE from the article as per prevention:

* Diet: many aquarium keepers may not link this to Columnaris, and in fact the link is not direct.
HOWEVER, I have also found based on my experience and tests that a fish that is not in optimum health because of a less than optimum diet IS IN FACT AT A HIGHER RISK FOR COLUMNARIS!

An optimized fish food is best that does not need to supplement with added vitamins due to "cooking out" of ingredients.
By optimized I mean the ingredients are what the fish need IN OPTIMIZED PERCENTAGES, not the more is better approach as most prepared fish foods as 95% of fish foods OVER DO proteins & energy. This includes the majority of so-called premium prepared fish foods.

WHY? Because, as an example, excess or un-digestible protein are a common cause of kidney (renal) failure and this allows opportunistic pathogens to get a foothold.

As well, too much energy results in fatty liver issues which increases oxidative stress which then lowers disease resistance, especially to opportunistic infections such as Columnaris in particular.
Unfortunately EVERY fish food sold (even so-called premium brands such a New Life Spectrum, NorthFin, etc.) other than Clay Neighbor's AAP Custom do NOT follow guidelines set forth in a University study as well as long term experience by myself as to optimized energy levels.
The bottom line as per diet is; while changing your diet when the fish already have a Columnaris infection will do little, HOWEVER prevention and checking spread of this opportunistic infection is definitely improved by switching to a TRUE optimized premium diet such as Clay Neighbor's AAP Custom!

Further Information:
*YouTube Video; Fishfood Label | How Much Energy
*Fish Nutrition; Complete Information

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"This first picture to the left demonstrates the anti-oxidizing abilities of a true level one capable UV Sterilizer utilizing a HO UVC Lamp (note that the majority of lamps sold now are medium pressure UV lamps with 1/4 the UVC output).
Using Potassium Permanganate, which is an oxidizer in both a control tank (left tank) and one utilizing an AAP Compact UV with a HO UVC Lamp (right tank).
As Potassium Permanganate is reduced, it goes from red to brown to clear. It is easy to see that the UV Sterilizer tank goes through these stages well ahead of the control tank.

The implications demonstrate a true UV Sterilizer's ability to lower oxidative stress on fish and other inhabitants (including plants & corals) and work to provide a better Redox balance as well as known disease prevention & clarification abilities

The second picture demonstrates clarification with a before and after picture of an aquarium with green water; As well as a comparison between a green pond without UV Sterilization and one of our client's ponds with a UV Sterilizer/Clarifier

The picture below further pictorially displays how a TRUE UV Sterilizer can help not only with clarification of an aquarium/pond with an assumed healthy bio filter (which should be but a minor reason to own a TRUE UV Sterilizer). It is noteworthy that clarification/green water control is much more effectively accomplished via a True UV Sterilizer over the majority of UV Clarifiers marketed as UV Sterilizers.
HOWEVER, and more importantly, a TRUE UV Sterilizer helps with disease prevention & Redox Balance (via proven lowering of oxidative stress) when properly connected (meaning flow rate, pre-filtration, etc.) and properly maintained by replacing with high output UV lamps/bulbs (not the economy replacement lamps/bulbs sold by discounters that have as little as 25% of the necessary UVC as a HO UV lamp).
This is the thrust of this article, as while it is certainly a good tool for green/cloudy water especially in ponds (assuming the bio filter is healthy), it is this Sterilization/Redox Balance aspect that years of hands on use in 1000s of applications has made the difference."

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"Limiting of Fish Food Energy Levels:

What is also noteworthy is that fish use sugar and carbs/starch found in any fish food first since they can store very little if any.
In a study conducted by fish food guru Clay Neighbors of Paradigm Fish Foods & now patent pending AAP Custom Fish Foods found that fish stopped breeding after being fed a trial diets of less than 226 points (energy point system) of carbs and fats. This means that the females didn't have enough reserve energy to produce eggs. Clay raised the energy a little and the fish started breeding again.
They established that the optimum combined carbs and fat is about 280 points for the average warm water fish (in particular cichlids), anymore and the fish can suffer from fatty liver and other issues and much less and the fish are not receiving the proper energy requirements.
It is noteworthy that these same studies showed that cool water species, in particular trout, did require higher energy levels, which was to be expected.

A University of Florida study has shown ceroidosis of the organs and Malawi Bloat are directly related to energy levels of food being too high.
Another point as to the importance of optimized energy levels are free radicals/oxidative stress.
Free radicals are highly unstable molecules that are naturally formed when the fish converts food into energy. Free radicals can cause "oxidative stress," a process that can trigger cell damage, therefore limiting these free radicals by an optimized energy level will benefit your fish long term.

My own observations over decades of professional fish keeping with 1000s of clients aquariums concur with this research and also includes Dropsy and as well as issues of bloat in goldfish.
Susceptibility to other infections such as my observations with Columnaris are also confirmed in this research.

This is why the optimization of energy levels in a fish food is so important as research and professional observations point out!!

Energy Point System
Starch, Sugar, & Proteins 1%:4 points (multiply percentage by 4)
Fats (Much more efficient energy) 1%:9 points (multiply percentage by 9).
Then add both numbers to get your fish food's energy points.

Please note many fish foods fail to provide starch/carbohydrates/sugar in their analysis, so you have deduce the carbs/sugars by adding all known percentages then subtracting to get the car/sugar likely percentage.
You can then add these numbers to get the points of the fish food you are feeding (this applies to dried fish foods).

The SUMMARY section of this article provides another example on how to read a fish food label using a popular discount store brand fish food so as to get these numbers. You will be astonished as to how many popular fish food brands, even those considered among the best, get poor grades as per optimum energy levels."

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"Now we generally will start with the the PAR for what we intend to utilize our lights for (although many will often use higher PAR readings than necessary).
Even then with the many LEDs available, we need to look at input energy versus output energy since often the same input in watts (joules of energy) can have a different output in PAR due to wasted heat energy in drivers, controllers, fans, etc. In fact these efficiencies just within LED light can vary greatly with some as efficient as .08 watt per mm of PAR (one model of AAP AquaRay) & as inefficient as 2.7 watt per mm of PAR (a Beamsworks LED).
Then we get to the QUALITY of the light output as per the application & this too can vary, even with the same PAR output (photons of light), meaning one light with the same PAR reading can be superior over another."
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