Filters, the general understanding of the purpose for a filter system is to refine. Water is drawn from the pond through drains and skimmers, and goes through a filtration process, which in return cleans the water. Filters typically clean in both a mechanical ,and biological way. We will further explain the differences between a mechanical filter and a biological filter.  

Mechanical, mechanical filters are filters that are primarily obligated to refine the water of physical materials and waste. For example fish waste “poop”, and debris that fall into your pond that can dirty it up. Different filters use different methods to refine physical matter from the water leaving you with just primarily cleaner water to flow into a biological filter, or back to your pond.

Biological filters are filters that are primarily designed to grow and create an aquaculture of beneficial bacterias. Biological filters house these beneficial bacterias and grow them to biologically refine the water after the physical waste has been removed. Waste from fish and living organisms needs to be broken down properly. In order for a proper pond to function, and flourish. Biological filters refine the mechanically filtered water by use of biological bacteria.  Ponds with large amounts of fish and living organisms produce a large amount of waste. Once the physical waste has been removed via mechanical filters, the biological filter is responsible for the more natural refining process that deals with ammonia, nitrites, and nitrates. These factors would not be expected, although it can, to be removed or biologically cleaned with a mechanical filter. We have biological filters to take care of the bacterial portion of the waste cycling in the pond system.

Biological Filtration is the break down, and consumption of the ammonia that fish waste produces. Without biological filtration the ammonia and nitrite levels will rise to the point of killing the fish. Biological filtration is performed by Aerobic Bacteria, what we lovingly call “Bugs”. This bacteria will consume the waste ammonia the fish produce and break it down to Nitrites, then a 2nd kind of aerobic bacteria will consume the nitrites and break that down to Nitrates. In low levels Nitrates are harmless to the fish and can be controlled by water changes.

The Aerobic Bacteria we want to grow is oxygen loving (aerobic) It has to have some place with lots of surface area to grow on, in an oxygen rich environment. So what we want is some kind of container with some kind of media with hundreds of sq feet of surface area, with oxygen added to culture the bacteria.

Filter Media, filter medias are materials used on the inside of both mechanical and biological filters. There are a few different types of materials considered to be universal, and can be used to both mechanically remove waste, and promote biological growth through the abundance of surface area given for biological bacteria to grow, and colonize on. Filter media is a vague terminology used to label the inside parts to a filtration system, whether or not it is mechanical or biological.  

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