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sponge filter?

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Let me start off by saying I don't know anything about sponge filters!



But I have a 29 gallon shrimp tank powered by a ehiem 2217. It was overkill when it was fully stocked with fish, and is even more overkill now that I only have under 50 shrimp in it. The flow isn't crazy in there, I actually think its about right for my plant's needs, but my shrimp don't seem to love it. Whenever I turn off the filter for a water change or whatever, my shrimp seem much happier and swim around more. Plus it looks more peaceful.


So I am considering getting a sponge filter. Do they all rely on air pumps to work then? What brands are good, or are they all practically the same?  How big of one would I need for my 29 gallon tank? I think theyre kinda ugly which is why I haven't considered them until now. Do they need to be cleaned regularly? Is there good water movement from them? I do dose a light EI fert schedule so I'm worried about stagnant water and my plants not getting their nutrients. I even considered going filterless! But am a little nervous for that


So give me your thoughts, opinions, advice, and knowledge please!

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Generally, you get mild circulation in the immediate area of the filter and almost none elsewhere. If you aren't injecting CO2, you can add airstones, or even use multiple sponge filters in different locations. A powerhead with a sponge prefilter is another option. They do need regular cleaning - just squeeze them out in a tub of waste tank water. If you have multiple, then rotate which one gets cleaned with each water change so you don't blow out all of your bacteria at once.

I just started using an hmf on my planted fish tank, and I am really a fan. Circulation is fairly mild but much better distributed - the L-shaped uplift tube directs water well away from the mat, heading to the opposite side of the tank. It's better than power filters that just dump the output right next to their intakes, with enough force to blow duckweed into the intakes to clog them. It is by far the least annoying filtering setup I've ever used: no mishaps, no spills, no heavy equipment, no broken parts, no adjustments, no noise, no mysterious "why is my filter not working today" nonsense. Worst part was an idiot fish who got on the wrong side of the mat, twice.

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Thanks for the responses guys. I think I will just stick with my eheim, maybe even just go filterless. 


Not a fan of the hmf, too unsightly for me. My tank is more of a planted tank with shrimp in it, than a shrimp tank :)

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