The filtration system of a lobster tank is absolutely vital. Filtration removes solid and dissolved waste and contamination particulates. Mechanical filtration systems like filter mats and settling tanks. They allow water to flow through freely, while larger particles are trapped by filters or sink to the bottom of settling tanks. These filtration methods must be manually cleaned, on a regular basis to ensure they are working to their full potential. Mechanical filtration is usually sufficient for open flow systems. However, closed systems need more complex filtration in order to ensure toxic chemical build up does not occur. Closed systems utilize mechanical, and biological filtration systems.
Holding facilities that feed their lobster stock will have faster ammonia build up. This is due to waste created by the lobster and excess food particles in the system. Ammonia levels will also increase with the introduction of new lobsters to the system.
Mechanical filters are the simplest, removing large waste particulates from dirty water. A simple filter box has many layers of different materials placed on top of a screened bottom. Water is directed through the layers with each one removing smaller and smaller particles. By the end of the progression through the filter all solid particulates should be removed.
Biological filters remove dissolved waste and chemical compounds. Bio filters utilize activated charcoal and natural bacteria to neutralize chemical build up. Ammonia is the primary nitrogenous waste product and toxin built up within a tank. Ammonia levels should be kept below 10ppm. Bio filters harbor nitrifying bacteria that metabolize ammonia. The ammonia is consumed by the bacteria and excreted as nitrite which breaks down further into nitrate. This is called nitrification and is vital to all aquarium systems. Biological filters also maintain proper pH levels and dissolve organic carbons.