HAPPY NEW YEAR!
About a year ago we at EcoSystem set up four identical reef aquariums, each of which was run on a different filtration system methodology. We posted photos of these tanks every couple of months, so you can see how each tank has progressed over time. From photos that were recently taken, it is clear that there are some significant differences in how the tanks have progressed. Nuisance algae has grown significantly more in the tank using the Berlin system relative to the other aquariums using different systems. This same finding validates what Tom Frakes observed in his comparison of these methods in the SeaScope article in 2000, after he had done an 18-month comparative study.
The best coral growth is seen in the tanks using the EcoSystem Plus methodology (modified Paletta method in which the protein skimmer is run approximately six hours per day). The second most successful system is the one using only the EcoSystem Method (no protein skimmer). The growth rate is slightly slower in the Berlin system and the Paletta method (protein skimmer run 24/7 similar to the Berlin system, but with an additional refugium using 10 pounds of Miracle Mud), but the difference in growth is relatively small. However, it is clear that the Berlin system produced significantly more algae growth than any of the systems using Miracle Mud, as is clearly shown in our latest video.