Originally Posted by TexasMetal http:///forum/post/2901810
Perhaps the most important piece of filtration equipment a person can ever put on their system.
Well, biological filtration trumps imo...but I guess that isn't equipment lol. Almost any tank will benefit from one. Some people don't use them and are fine. They are definitely worth every penny though.
I've gone skimmerless in the last two years. No problems. I concentrate more on biological filtration rather then mechanical. Doesn't mean that skimmers don't have their place.
This is a really big discussion... I suggest doing your research first and making up your mind second! lol.
If you put it as "are they necessary" my answer would be yes.
If you ask "Are they mandatory" then my answer would be a reluctant "No."
I've run tanks without them before, reefs, FOWLR, and nanos. I now run skimmers on everything. IMO they have advantages that are too numerous to ignore. First and foremost, the less crap in the water, the healthier your livestock will be. As far as the hobbyist is concerned, they remove junk from the water that you would have to remove through other means, such as media based mechanical filtration, water changes, etc.
Skimmers are not cheap - at least not decent ones - but if you are approaching a new tank setup and you start nickle-and-diming over the cost, you may want to consider downsizing your project to where you can buy all of the equipment to do the job right. I don't know if you are new in the hobby or not, but I can tell you that a skimmer is one of those pieces of equipment that makes saltwater fishkeeping much easier. Save yourself the challenges and headaches that come with skipping them.
I was in the same boat as you about the whole protein skimmer thing. Personally because of this I chose the hang on the back protein skimmer design. I personally have the octopus HOB.
There are other kinds out there. Depending on how big your tank is. Mine is a 46 gallon.
Originally Posted by TODJ2002 http:///forum/post/2902758
the crap that i see mine pull out of the water is all the answer i need. i would not go without one.
Are the bubbles supposed to be coming out of the top like that? It looks like shes about to blow!