Well all, after years of seeing DIY sponge filter threads on here I jumped into the game today. I have a 10G planted tank that currently houses 1 male betta, Widget, and four ghost shrimp (I lost one of my original five this week). I've had a hard time settling on a HOB filter that I like and isn't too strong for Widget. Recently his fins tore and I don't know if they got sucked into the intake or if the current is just too strong - but I haven't lost my cycle. So in an effort to improve water flow and the breaking of the surface (I get algae streaks on the surface where the water doesn't move) I decided to make a DIY sponge filter while perusing Petsmart. I ended up purchasing a Top Fin 10G air pump, some air line tubing, an air stone, a plastic tube made for undergravel filters, and a small Fluval sponge for one of their filter sets. I inserted the air stone into the sponge, with the air line tubing already attached, and ran the tubing through the plastic tube. I put three pebbles inside the plastic tubing to help weight down the sponge filter. So far, it seems to be working out well. However, I noticed that with the sponge filter running AND the filter running Widget was getting pushed all over the place. I made the decision to turn off the HOB filter and see how well this sponge filter circulates the water. I put all of my filter media from the HOB filter inside the tank, resting at the back. How long should I keep this in there until the sponge filter colonizes? Anyone have a similar experience?