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Axolotl tank set-ups, filters, substrate Discussions on tanks, temperature, filters, gravel, lights etc.



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Old 26th February 2016   #1
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Question Filters for axie tank???

Hey! So I was considering using a hanging cartridge filter for my 20 gallon axolotl tank that I will be setting up, but I recently read that if I change the cartridge it will mess up my parameters and cause the tank to restart the cycling process . So I'm wondering what other filters you would reccomend, or if there is any way to get around the cycle restarting? I know that cannister filters are very popular, but I can't afford one right now. I've also heard of "Natural" tanks, with lots of plants rather than filters, but I also heard that if I'm a first time axie keeper it could be dangerous to attempt that. Do sponge filters work well? And what are air pumps? Can they replace a filter or are they more in addition to a filter to add more oxygen to the water? Sorry for so many questions, I haven't been able to find any clear, consistent infirmation anywhere.

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Old 26th February 2016   #2
Killian J
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Default Filters for axie tank???

Top fin sponge filter with a spray bar is great. I use it with my babies. Air pumps? You may have meant air stone or I've just never heard of an air pump lol. If you get the filter mentioned above the spray bar produces bubbles which helps with oxygen! But an air stone never ever hurts! Axolotls love them!! When they have an itch or just wanna have fun I suppose they get up in the bubbles, they also love the way the sponge filter feels so don't be surprised if you see them right under it, I have the spray bar hitting the backside of the tank so I don't disturb the water. Hope this helped!!!! People if I'm making any mistakes please correct me, but this is my set up and my axies are super healthy

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Old 26th February 2016   #3
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Default Re: Filters for axie tank???

Sponge filters work very well and are very portable, so if you get a bigger tank, you can move the sponge filter easily. Eventually sponges wear out, so it is best to have two sponge filters. When they get old, replace one, wait two or 3 months, then replace the other.

The thing sponge filters don't do well is "mechanical filtration" - they don't pick up little bits of debris. Plus they take up room inside the tank.

Axolotls are big animals, so you need to get sponge filtration sized for a bigger tank than you have. Get, 2 "20 gal" sponge filters for 1 20 gal tank, for example.

Killian - they are talking about sponge filters driven by an air pump instead of a power head. Both are good, but like you said, the spray bar is needed with the power head-driven ones.

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Old 26th February 2016   #4
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Default Re: Filters for axie tank???

You can use a regular hang-on power filter--just don't really change the cartridge. If you've kept fish before, like I have, you've probably used the change-the-filter-cartridge-once-a-month rule. Turns out that isn't actually necessary. Yes, the cartridge will look disgusting, but it's still providing mechanical filtration (maybe even a little bit better since there's more gunk inside) and you don't have to lose the nitrifying bacteria living inside of it. If you DO feel the need to change the cartridge, you can always leave part of it, or find a way to add a new cartridge without removing the old one, for at least a few weeks, THEN remove the old one. If your tank has plenty of surface area (plants, lots of hides, sand, large rocks, sponges, etc.), there will be plenty of other places for the bacteria to live and changing the cartridge shouldn't be a huge deal. If you DON'T, then the cartridge is going to be the number one spot for them and removing it could crash your cycle. What stinks is that I literally JUST learned this. I've had fish aquariums my whole life, and we thought we were being good and attentive when we changed the filter cartridges once a month, before they ever got too gross-looking. Most fish are hardier than axolotls and don't seem to be as bothered by less-than-ideal water parameters. With axolotls, as long as the parameters are good, they'll be fine; but high temp, nitrite, and ESPECIALLY ammonia can make them much more prone to infection and can kill them if not corrected.

I've changed my cartridge in my 40-gallon axolotl tank a few times so far, but I think I've gotten away with it (as far as I know, my nitrogen cycle has been pretty good ever since I got it going) since I have a decent amount of surface area elsewhere. I have no substrate, but I have a sponge guard around my filter inlet and a big sea sponge (held down by a rock that I crammed inside it) sitting in one of the bottom corners of the tank.

There are lots of different filters you can use for an axolotl tank (it's much easier just to have one than to try to keep your water clean without one), and the hang-on power filters tend to be the cheapest and easiest. If you already have one, go ahead and use it. If you don't already have one, consider a sponge filter or other types based on the pros and cons.

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air pump, axolotl, filter, hanging filter, natural tank, plants, question, sponge filter

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