Marine Aquarium Terminology: Activated Carbon vs. Carbon Dosing

As if our hobby weren’t perplexing enough to the average beginner given all the oddball jargon we toss around, things can get doubly befuddling for novices when they come across two or more similar-sounding terms that actually apply to very different concepts. Such confusion could easily arise, for example, when newcomers are first confronted with … [Read More]

Marine Aquarium Terminology: “Nutrient Export” Defined

Among the myriad mysterious terms that might give neophyte marine aquarists a migraine (okay, I’ll stop with the gratuitous alliteration now) is “nutrient export.” What does this term mean? Is it just a fancy way of saying “filtration”? Well, not exactly, though certain forms of filtration do play a part. For our purposes, nutrient export … [Read More]

Elasmobranch Enthusiasts (Part 3): Modern Husbandry – Filtration

From the ferocious great white shark (Carcharodon carcharias) to the graceful white-spotted eagle ray (Aetobatus narinari), Elasmobranchii are a diverse group of boneless fishes that are circumglobal, inhabiting a diverse array of habitats, temperature ranges, salinity, and niches in the world’s oceans and rivers. It is no wonder that these unique creatures, while usually boasting … [Read More]

GFO for Reef Aquarium Phosphate Control

Granular ferric oxide, or GFO, is a widely used form of chemical filtration in the reef-keeping hobby today. Chemical filtration, as the name suggests, purifies water by binding up impurities at the molecular level. As water is sent through the medium, the surface of the medium forms chemical bonds with dissolved compounds, thus removing them … [Read More]

The Role of Activated Carbon in the Reef Aquarium

Of the three types of filtration used in the reef aquarium hobby today, biological, mechanical, and chemical, it is chemical filtration that is possibly the least understood. This post is all about activated carbon, the most popular type of chemical filtration used in aquariums. What is activated carbon? Activated carbon is a chemical filtration media … [Read More]