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blackcat

Problem with film on water

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blackcat

Ok over the past 2 weeks I have jad some major issues with this film tjat appears to lie on th we waterpost-1567-139909863224_thumb.jpg

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Here is what happens when I run my hand through it...post-1567-139909854357_thumb.jpg

I must say this only happens on my top 2 tanks and its not there all the time...

I thought it may have been the seeds of the duckweed but I dont know grrrrr it drives me nuts as I cant get rid of it, :banghead: without it flaking through the water.

I just skim it offf the top with my fingers and wipe it on the towel I have near the tank. ..

On a positive note the shrimp are breeding like rabbits there's filtrr shrimp in there no deaths bsr thT berried blue prior to tgis prob....

Any insights appreciated xxx:thumbup:

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fishmosy

It could be an oil scum from food (pellets ect) or sometimes when you disturb plant soils you can get a film like this develop (I use Aquasoil and have noticed films like this appear sometimes when it is disturbed).

Some films can be removed by adding a dry paper towel (absorbent towel like Handee Ultra) onto the surface of the water then lifting it out. The oil sticks to the towel so is removed. I've done this in the past with success.

Another method is to increase surface agitation through spray bar or airstone as this can break the film up.

Its a good idea to remove the film as it interferes with the diffusion of oxygen and carbon dioxide into and out of the water in the aquarium.

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honcho

Definantely increase surface agitation..

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MrShrimp

If you increase surface aigation, your just breaking the film but the film is still in the tank. You need to find the cause so for now it's best to remove it by hand so it doesn't build up and change the water chemistry. Just my opinion :)

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DG17

I'd say remove it with paper towel also then get water agitation to the surface but wait till you see if it comes back 1st.. Is the tank near a kitchen or anything like that as it could be oil from cooking. I had a fighting fish in the kitchen that had thesame prob. I covered the tank and all was fine.

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BlueBolts

Kitchen paper towel, and surface agitation works great. I'd also do a 10% WC just to freshen things up in the tank.

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KiwiBigD

Another option having had the same, the result of certain foods is to use a surface skimmer. Eheim actually does a brilliant one, have two of these myself and the remove any surface rubbish and film very quickly.

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OzShrimp

i get it in my breeder boxes which i attribute to lack of surface agitation, so was good to read everyones suggestions :)

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jayc

There are two types of surface scum.

First is what is commonly known as Protein Scum.

The other is caused by Eisenbacteria (iron bacteria).

What you seem to have in the pictures is the 2nd type.

Protein scum develops as bacteria that feeds off nutrients. Nutrients found in any fish food or fertilisers added to the tank. We tend to see it in planted tanks because of the high level of nutrients. Commonly occurs in marine tanks, which is why they use protein skimmers.

This kind of scum is natural in a healthy aquarium. You'll see it in varying degrees, and is worse in a tank with high organics, and similar conditions that cause cyanobacteria - high nutrients, low CO2, low water flow and low surface agitation.

This scum is very compact and often green. It is impossible to break it with the finger. I have tried it, and the film just grows back together in a second. It appears visually oily.

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As already indicated, you can try removing as much as you can with a kitchen paper towel, performed a huge 80% water change, rinsed the filter media very well and have introduced extra circulation and surface agitation.

Also, start/increase Carbon Dioxide (like Excel) or CO2.

The other surface scum as mentioned is caused by Eisenbacteria.

post-1567-139909854368_thumb.jpg

This appear whitish and is much easier to break upon touching it.

Mainly caused by either

1) heavy organic materials, causing thick surface scum

2) excessive iron dosage

Increasing surface agitation will help combat this type of scum. The scum is broken down into small particles and will be sucked into the filter where the filter bacteria will break it down.

In both cases, surface agitation will help, but if this is a concern to you in a planted tank, where you want to retain as much CO2 as possible without it being gassed off with surface agitation, then a surface skimmer is the best option.

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Squiggle

Jeez, a lot of great info there & I don't think I can add anything more except to reinforce that Paper towels are a great way to quickly remove it, surface agitation will keep it at bay & the Eheim skimmer is an unbelievable tool as well. You definitely have to look at what is causing it & my best guess is food. I've also had this problem & it turned out to be a well respected shrimp food causing it, I think my problem was probably compounded by using it in an 8L tank as this food doesn't have the same problem in larger volume tanks. :victorious:

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CNgo2006

+1 on the surface skimmer, a powerhead and a bottle with bottom cut off, fill bottle with filter floss, cut slits in the bottom end of bottle, connect bottle to powerhead via bottle neck, place in a way that the bottle cut slits facing the surface and is above the surface of water in tank a little (ensure the slits cut aren't big enough that the shrimp can get through or you can use ss mesh instead of cutting slits), turn on powerhead and voila surface skimmer and water polished, can just use when you notice the scum surface build up.

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BlueBolts

Great info...well done ! Nice to understand and know the actual and technical reason.

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blackcat

WOW WOW AND WOOOOOWWW THANKS guys ur amazing I aminterested in seeing the homw made surface skimmer in a step by step tute as im mot hood at following instructions lol but amazing info phewww my shrimp are safe .... I am intrigued anout the food thays causing it squiggle :-( hmmmmm all good will look into the skimmer thank u soooooo much YOU ROCK:thumbup::p;):):beer:

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jayc

Do you use an external canister filter?

There are lots of DIY surface skimmers on you tube if you are interested in making one.

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Squiggle

Oh yeah, while you are getting rid of that surface scum blackcat you might want to get rid of the duckweed too, I absolutely hate the stuff & it's slowly spreading through my tanks, I use different nets on the tanks without it but it just takes one leaf to jump across & it's off. Took me 4 1/2 years to get rid of it last time & I've been working on it for 18mths so far this time. Also if you really want to know the food I'll PM you but I think it has to do with my tank being only 8L as well, it doesn't do it on my other larger tanks. :encouragement:

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blackcat

But duck weed is a source of food gor my turtle ... I just scoop it off the top and throw it in the tank!

Sheldon Loves it anf he is sooo thorough it never. Grows in his tank :-)

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MrShrimp

I have duckweed in my planted tank and I can never get rid of it. Tried many times but there will be always a few thats left behind.

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jayc

Just note that duckweed and surface skimmers are a bad combination.

Either your surface skimmer will clear the tank of duckweed, or the duckweed will clog the skimmer.

You'll need to prioritise one or the other.

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blackcat

Im going to add a couple of air driven sponge filters and see how I go as it seems tbat is the only diff between the top and bottom tanks .... strqnge coincidence umm I think not ... qnd thanks to this thread and jayc (i think it was)pointing out that surface agitation breaking up the film allowing the pump to such it up ... well thats going to be my first point of trying to cure the situation :) thanks so much for all the amazing insights and I will keep u posted ;)

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CNgo2006

Here you are blackcat

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WlM3Dbgf10I&feature=c4-overview&list=UUM9oZkV3tGJuUUhgZaiGZkQ

Watch his other vids as well...he has the highest number of subscribers when it comes to aquarium DIY on youtube so he must know his stuff!

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blackcat
Here you are blackcat

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WlM3Dbgf10I&feature=c4-overview&list=UUM9oZkV3tGJuUUhgZaiGZkQ

Watch his other vids as well...he has the highest number of subscribers when it comes to aquarium DIY on youtube so he must know his stuff!

Wow thanks :-)

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Squiggle

Yeah this guy is the DIY dude! He has a DIY vid on almost everything to do with aquariums, very cool link Chi. :victorious:

p.s. Beautiful rays :encouragement:

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