MicroBacter7 is a handy additive for every kind of marine and freshwater aquarium.

Starting out a new tank means dealing with the nitrogen cycle. To define it simply, your tank has to establish a biological filter which processes the natural waste in the tank. This is done by allowing beneficial bacteria to proliferate the system with a little time.

A new tank will first show ammonia readings, which is then a feast for bacteria that convert ammonia to nitrites. Different bacteria then convert the nitrites to nitrate.

MicroBacter7 has beneficial microorganisms, such as bacteria and enzymes. These are selective and extremely efficient microbes, according to manufacturer Brightwell Aquatics. The additive is specially formulated to establish biological filtration in new aquariums.

When added to a new tank or a tank that is cycling, it can help to hasten the process by introducing beneficial strains of bacteria that are needed to finish the cycle. The benefits of MicroBacter7 are not just to newly set up tanks, it is great for continued maintenance throughout the life of your tank.

Brightwell Aquatics recommends that you turn off the protein skimmer and UV sterilizer in your tank when you add this product. This is done to prevent beneficial microbes from being zapped or skimmed out of the tank before they have had a chance to flourish and do their job. A noticeable clarity of water is apparent within 30 minutes of dosing, according to the manufacturer.

Dana Riddle performed experiments to determine the validity of the benefits of Microbacter7 and similar products (that article can be found here):

"The goal of these experiments was to confirm the presence of living carbonaceous and nitrogenous bacteria. Both products apparently contain sufficient numbers of these bacteria to inoculate a sterile environment and begin carbonaceous and nitrogenous cycling. Other uses could include possible hastening of cycling when using conventional cycling methods (introduction of live rock, live sand, and/or a couple of hardy 'starter' fishes, or inoculating an existing tank after some sort of upset has occurred."

MicroBacter 7 is perhaps the best selling product for Brightwell Aquatics, according to their National Sales Manager, Jeremy Howell. With the benefits that Brightwell Aquatics mentions and the conclusions drawn by Dana Riddle's experiments, combined with hundreds of happy hobbyists posts on the forums, it is easy to see why that might be the case.

Dosing Microbacter 7

Standard dosing instructions for a new aquarium and one with high nutrients are 5ml or 1 capful to every 25 gallons. It is recommended to dose less for lower nutrient systems. Overdosing does not increase the effectiveness of the product and may cause a bacterial bloom. While bacterial blooms are not toxic to the tank, they deplete the oxygen content and care should be taken to avoid that scenario.

We have a few videos in our archives on this product. Take a moment to go through them and let us know what you think.