Wave generating devices simulate the movements that occur naturally in bodies of saltwater. There are numerous reasons we at Blue Planet like using these devices in our aquariums. Our experience shows these devices immediately change the entire dynamic of an aquarium. The fish immediately respond differently when in a wave simulated environment, and live corals open more than usual.
Typically, an aquarium has filtered water enter on one side of a tank and drain down to the filtration on another. This “static flow” consisting of water constantly moving in one direction is not what animals are accustomed to on the reefs they come from.
When a “wave” is moving through a tank in addition to that static flow, fish will immediately allow that water movement to sway them to and fro in the water column. They will feed more aggressively and seem to “play” in the movement. Fish need exercise just like other animals. It prevents fatty build-ups around the heart, and ultimately results in a longer life.
This same “static” current can often leads to certain dead zones in your aquarium, where the water does not move often, and unwanted detritus can build up. The water current generated by a wave device will get around the small spaces in your tank and get these particles moving again, putting them through the aquarium’s filter and leaving your tank cleaner.
Wave generating devices will also help the live coral in your aquarium. Live corals spent their lives in the ocean using the wave movement to allow plankton food to get kicked up into their polyps where they are then consumed. Introducing movement into the tank will cause the polyps to extend to the maximum and make the coral larger and fuller. In addition, you will definitely enjoy the realistic movement of your corals swaying back and forth in the water.
The devices that generate these waves are plentiful in the market place. As many things available in the aquarium trade, the more you spend, the better quality of wave you will see. There are options from diffuser added to the end of pumps to alternating (on/off) pump systems to elaborate computerized pumps which vary their individual pulses, generating a true standing wave from end to end of the aquarium. These costs will literally range from $35 to $800 on up, depending on quality to size of aquarium.