Re:Ready to start certification

Pete Giwojna

Dear Denise:

Okay, that’s a much better choice than a biocube. The tank you picked out should work great for seahorses, Denise, as will the LED light fixture, but the Skilter – not so much!

The 37-gallon aquarium has decent water volume and good dimensions – a very good start! As for the light fixture, the latest generation of LED light fixtures are actually my preferred source of illumination for a SHOWLR tank. They provide plenty of brightness for your ponies and macroalgae, produce a very attractive shimmering affect, and are very versatile with the built-and moonlights. Best of all, they are very energy-efficient (easier on the old electric bill) and give off very little heat, reducing the danger of overheating the tank accordingly, which is very important for seahorses – again, an excellent choice!

As for the Skilter, don’t bother replacing it, Denise. Simply return it and then go shopping for a different type of filter. The built-in skimmers in these units are very noisy, very inefficient (poor foam fractionators, at best), and have a well-deserved reputation for releasing clouds of microbubbles into the aquarium. Not only are the hordes of microbubbles unsightly in any aquarium, they are very dangerous and a seahorse tank, since they may get drawn back into the filtration system and injected into the tank under pressure, resulting in low-level gas supersaturation, which in turn leads to problems with Gas Bubble Syndrome (GBS) in our ponies. As you know, episodes of GBS are fatal without proper treatment.

So let’s ditch the Skilter, Denise, and go with any decent hang-on-the-back power filter or a good canister filter that can provide mechanical, chemical, and biological filtration instead. (Just forget about your protein skimmer for now; that’s an accessory can always add to your tank at any time at some later date, or even do without altogether, if need be. For now, I would rather see you get a conventional hob filter or good canister filter and no protein skimmer at all, rather than to go with the Skilter.

But that’s an easy fix – just replace your faulty Skilter with an efficient HOB power filter or a quality canister filter, and you’ll be all set.

Best wishes with all your fishes, Denise!

Happy Trails!
Pete Giwojna

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