How much water flow is required in an in tank refugium? - Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources
 
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post #1 of 9 Old 06-16-2010, 10:11 AM Thread Starter
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How much water flow is required in an in tank refugium?

I recently purchased a CPR CITR In-Tank Refugium for the purpose of breeding copepods. I don't have any fish that I think will eat them at the moment, but I like the little buggers. I also wanted to try breeding brine shrimp so I bought some brine shrimp eggs along with the copepods. I put a half inch or so of sand in the in tank refugium. I also put in a small piece of porous, former live rock that has since been dried and some cheato, which I understand copepods eat.

Also, I had wanted to put 2 inches of sand in the in tank refugium, but the flimsy suction cups the thing came with couldn't support the weight so I settled for 1/2 an inch or so. There is currently a tall plastic kitchen utensil propping the in tank refugium up to help take some of the load off of the suction cups until I can find a better solution. Any recommendations?

Anyhow, the in tank refugium comes with a Rio Powerhead 180 that mounts on the side of the in tank refugium and pushes water from the aquarium into the in tank refugium to keep the water moving between them. When I turned the powerhead on, it began whipping around violently all of the copepods and brine fish eggs I'd bought from the store and put in the in tank refugium. I turned the powerhead off, thinking it didn't seem likely any of them would survive in there, let alone start to breed.

So that there was some flow I moved the return tube from my wet/dry near the several holes on the side of the in tank refugium and twisted the adjustable spout on the return tube so that the water flowed toward the in tank refugium.

My question is, do you think the gentle flow resulting from having the wet/dry's return tube nearby and facing the holes in the in tank refugium is enough to keep things healthy, or do I need to turn the Rio Powerhead 180 back on so that a lot of water is drawn from the aquarium into one side of the in tank refugium and pushed out the other side?

Thanks,
Mike
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post #2 of 9 Old 06-16-2010, 11:24 AM
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It's best to have very low-flow in a refugium. The natural flow from your return tube should be enough to stimulate the pods into breeding, without causing too much turbulence. I only use the flow of the return pump's suction as my means of flow over my refugium, and that is over the refugium, not through it.

I know I have seen little plastic screw "C" clamps that would be perfect for your situation. You can usually find them at hardware stores or hobby stores...



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post #3 of 9 Old 06-16-2010, 02:12 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks, Jeff. It looks like I had the right idea with taking out the powerhead and aiming the return tube at the holes in the in tank refugium, then. I wish I'd realized the powerhead wasn't appropriate for my use case even though it came with the in tank refugium before almost the entirety of two bottles of copepods and a tea spoon of brine shrimp eggs were blown through the holes in the in tank refugium and into the main aquarium where they will almost surely be sucked into the filter.

Thanks for the idea about the plastic screw C clamps. Do you have any ideas what other name they might go by? I tried Googling several variations now and haven't yet found anything that looks like what I imagine you must be talking about.

I'll try to take a pic of my in tank refugium tonight. I meant to take pictures of the whole "build" from cardboard box to copepod oasis, but I got home late last night and didn't have time to do anything but tear open the box and get to it.
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post #4 of 9 Old 06-16-2010, 03:57 PM
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I had another idea while I was googling C-clamps.

Make an L-shape bracket that would wrap underneath the fuge and cradle it:

cradle.JPG



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post #5 of 9 Old 06-17-2010, 07:56 AM Thread Starter
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Here is a picture of the in tank refugium.

refugium1.jpg

Quote:
Originally Posted by wake49 View Post
I had another idea while I was googling C-clamps.

Make an L-shape bracket that would wrap underneath the fuge and cradle it:

Attachment 13624
Thanks for the suggestion and the diagram, Jeff. Hmm, it seems this would entail getting sheets of acrylic cut to spec and gluing them together. I imagine I'd have to find some kind of specialty store to facilitate this. While this solution seems ideal as compared to using clamps of some kind, I think I'm going to look harder for clamps I can use before heading down this road.
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post #6 of 9 Old 06-17-2010, 08:28 AM
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There is the online store http://www.estreetplastics.com/ that custom cuts acrylic/plexiglass and gives quotes if you email sales@estreetplastics.com.

Tanks:
54 Corner Saltwater with 80 ish lbs. LR, 40 LBS. LS, Aqua C Remora Pro Skimmer with Rio 1100 pump, and Marineland C-220 Canister Filter with ROWA inserted for Phosphate (Sump being planned)
Livestock:
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1 Chromis
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Some Long-tentacled Leather Mushrooms
Organ Pipe
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post #7 of 9 Old 06-18-2010, 02:09 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks, toonyace316! I've actually contacted CPR Aquatics to see if anything can be done to make the in tank refugium work as advertised:

p_790143_31423P.jpg

If they're unable to help then it looks like the site you mentioned will make creating a bracket to cradle it much easier.
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post #8 of 9 Old 07-20-2010, 07:24 AM Thread Starter
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I just wanted to update this thread and say that I was pleasantly surprised with how responsive and helpful CPR Aquatics was. I typically look forward to having to contact a manufacturer about as much as I look forward to having to deal with my health insurance company about a mysterious charge, but I definitely got the feeling that their customer service department was there for their customers, and not to work against them.
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post #9 of 9 Old 07-20-2010, 01:55 PM
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What did they suggest?



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