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Posted by ozone on April 25, 2003 at 08:56:33:
In Reply to: charcoal filters(pur)good or bad? posted by stnman on April 25, 2003 at 02:17:06:
Just curious, but how would you use a charcoal filter in a chameleon cage?
In terms of treating water, charcoal filters work quite well, but need to be changed somewhat regularly to stay effective depending on the flow-rate. A brita filter you keep in the fridge, for instance, is only filled a few times a day and therefore lasts quite a long time (around 3 months). In a large fishtank, however, the flow of water over charcoal is constant...which means the charcoal's usefulness is exhausted somewhat quickly, requiring a change every 30 days or so (I'm a big tropical fish guy). If left for too long without being changed, a fish tank's charcoal not only becomes ineffective...but can actually start leaching the chemicals it once removed back into the water over time. Many experienced fish keepers don't bother using it, since it removes nutrients required for plants (freshwater) or coral (salt) as it cleans. For a tank with plastic plants it's pretty useful though, especially in the area of unpleasant smells.
Charcoal as a general filter media is useful for removing bad tastes, odors, and any discoloration from the water. It's not a miracle cure...nutrients like nitrite/nitrate - that accumulate from poop, uneaten food, or any decomposing - stay in the water no matter how many it goes through charcoal, but as a general filtration media, it does a good job and is perfectly safe for living creatures, be they lizard or fish.
If you're simply talking about using charcoal for filtering water your cham is going to drink or be misted with, it's definitely safe and may be effective in cleaning the water a little bit. It won't remove chemicals like chlorine or flouride...but it can help contain biological stuff like fungus or bacteria. All in all, a nice/safe thing to do for your chameleon...but perhaps not tremendously effective given the time it takes to use the filter.