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Beasties in Our Filters ... Oh My!

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  • Beasties in Our Filters ... Oh My!

    Greetings All !

    While researching a post for another thread, I stumbled across this stuff. If you've ever wondered what else besides bacteria is growing in the filtration media of our ecosystems, this might be worth a look ...

    Organisms in a trickling filter

    The organisms that can be found in a trickling filter do not differ much from the ones found in activated sludge. No differences have been found between the bacterial flora of activated sludge and that of trickling filters (Lin, 1984). In activated sludge most are attached to suspended flocs, whereas in a trickling filter they will be attached to the filter bed. Apart from heterotrophic and nitrifying bacteria, they following organisms take part in the purification process (see Mudrack and Kunst (1986), Tri (1975), Fair et al (1968)):

    Zooflagellates (Mastigophora), especially in higly loaded systems; Amoebae, different species appear in differently loaded systems; Ciliates, they are very common and they graze on bacteria; There are attached species, like representatives of the genus Vorticella, and free swimming species, belonging to genera like Aspidisca, Paramecium and Euplotes; Nematoda; Diatoms, they usually are present in lightly loaded systems.

    Other organisms that are occasionally encountered include crustaceans, mites and insect larvae. The so-called sewage fungus appears only in highly loaded or over loaded systems in significant amounts. This is in fact not a fungus but a filamentous bacteria species from the genus Sphaerotilus.

    (A zooflagellate)

    (A nematode)

    (A stalked cilitate)

    (A swimming ciliate)

    (An amoeba)

    Extracted from:
    A biological approach to water purification: I. Theoretical aspects
    J.D. van der Toorn (1987)
    From: Aquatic Mammals 13(3): 83-92

    Anchored Table of Contents

    Cool, huh? ...

    "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro."
    Hunter S. Thompson

  • #2
    do nematodes live in algae? i saw something that looked like it when i looked at some algae under a microscope


    • #3
      Greetings All !

      Absolutely ... one of my favorite places to sample for micro-beasties are the algal clumps and sheets which form just under the "teeth" where water flows into an overflow box. I almost always find stuff like this ...

      "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro."
      Hunter S. Thompson


      • #4
        System: 430ltr SPS ZEOvit system, Balling Method (Growtech), BubbleKing200, Profilux with LAN and Salinity
        Lighting: Dimmbar 54w T5: D&D and KZ mixture.
        Flow: Tunze 6060, Iwaki MX70 CL + penductors

        "I love the smell of Napalm in the morning"


        • #5
          Ewwww, now I know why I use a tooth brush to rid me of that nasty stuff.

          Nothin like given me the willys
          "There he stands, draped in more equipment than a telephone lineman, trying to outwit an organism with a brain no bigger than a bread crumb, and getting licked in the process.."
          - Paul O'Neil

          Tank Style:
          Reef System
          Tank Specifications:
          135 Gallon Reef Tank Mainly Acropora and Zoanthids
          Filtration System:
          55 Gallon Sump system, and Schuran Jetskim 150, Schuran Pico Reactor using Schuran Media.
          O/M 4 way Closed loop with Sequence Dart, Sen 900 for Return pump
          Ligting System:
          2 x 250 DE Watt Metal halide Sun Aquatics 1 x 250 Watt DE XM 20K on Digital Metal Halide Ballasts from ROMLight


          • #6
            Greetings All !

            marinefiend ...

            ... great userID, BTW.

            Originally posted by marinefiend
            Ewwww, now I know why I use a tooth brush to rid me of that nasty stuff.
            Good call! ... A toothbrush ought to be a must in every reefkeepers maintenance kit.

            Cool beasties, aren't they? I'm still trying to get a good shot of the ciliates and zooflagellates ... they're just way too fast for me ...


            Last edited by G.Alexander; 11-26-2019, 05:52 AM.
            "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro."
            Hunter S. Thompson


            • #7
              Thanks for the pics...Now I'm gonna gag even more when I start a siphon!
              :puke: <= looks like the "puke smilie" is broken!
              120 Gallon Oceanic; 2 IceCap 660 w 8 Geiseman T5; GroTech Zeo Rx; MTC Ca Rx; 250 Ext BK; 8 Drops Bak / Food; 2ml Start 2.


              • #8
                Bump! ...
                "When the going gets weird, the weird turn pro."
                Hunter S. Thompson