What is an EcoBio Block?
EcoBio Blocks are artificial rocks designed with a paste from volcanic rock, cement, bacteria, and nutrients. These porous blocks are designed to shelter bacteria and provide an environment that promotes healthy bacteria propagation.
EcoBio Blocks are generally placed somewhere on the floor or substrate in an aquarium, for aesthetic purposes. EcoBio Blocks are commonly used to hold up other features in a fish tank. An example of this is to hold up a Java Moss Carpet. However, an EcoBio Block can provide the same benefits if placed in a sump or filter.
Benefits of EcoBio Block
Bacteria housing is often an overlooked part of aquarium maintenance. I have had over a dozen people come to me and say “I did a full clean in my aquarium, but then [insert amount of time between 1 and 7 days] days later my fish were dead!”
The reason for this is simple: Bacteria is removed from the tank because, the filters are scrubbed, media is swapped, gravel is cleaned, glass is scraped, and water is changed. This means a majority of bacteria in the tank will die or be removed.
As a result, ammonia levels will rise and the fish will die.
A set of multiple EcoBio rocks would allow a safe housing for separate colonies of bacteria while a full clean is being performed. After the full clean, the EcoBio rocks are placed back in and these bacteria will thrive on the rising ammonia levels.
Removing Excess Organic Matter
EcoBio Blocks additionally serve the purpose of helping clarify water by removing excess organic matter. A set of EcoBio Blocks in an aquarium, with some in the filter or sump, will significantly increase healthy bacteria levels in the tank. This includes all types of beneficial bacteria like Nitrifying Bacteria.
These bacteria will either thrive or decay depending on the nutrient levels in your tank. The end result is much more stable water composition that can readily adapt to change.
Rapidly Oxidize Dangerous Ammonia
As waste and organic detritus begin to break down in your aquarium, ammonia is produced. In order for your aquarium to process this ammonia, beneficial nitrifying bacteria turn this ammonia into Nitrite.
After it has been turned into Nitrite, it is then oxidized by Nitrobacter turning the nitrite into Nitrate. Nitrate is a much less dangerous compound than Nitrate and Ammonia. Nitrate levels usually can be maintained with bi-weekly 20% water changes.
The addition of a set of EcoBio Stones reduces this change frequency to once a month with 20% water change.
Cleaning an EcoBio Block
Note: Cleaning an EcoBio Block should only be done under very specific circumstances.
The EcoBio Block can provide the benefits it provides because it’s porous composition allows for lots of surface area for bacteria colonies to establish and thrive.
Cleaning the EcoBio Stone will harm these colonies of bacteria and some time will be required for the colonies to reestablish.
When to Clean
It is only recommended to clean the EcoBio Blocks when then have been infected with an unwanted pest, they will be moving to a different type of aquarium, or if they drastically need a cleaning in which they can be cleaned on separate days from when the tank is cleaned.
In order to clean the EcoBio Block, rinse the block underwater and rub the surface gently with bare hands until any visible dirt is removed. After this is done, soak the EcoBio block in a bowl of water overnight and repeat the rinsing process tomorrow for about 5 minutes.