film on water - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-12-2003, 05:48 PM Thread Starter
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I use to keep my Fluval output beneath the water. After about 24 hours a white film would develop on the surface. it would get thicker over time. When I aggitate the water, i.e. break the surface - no film. Though this removes the film it also depleate the CO2.

Does anyone have this issue? If so what do you do about it? I live in an area of very soft water.

Thanks.
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post #2 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-12-2003, 06:52 PM
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There are a couple of thoughts on this. Some people recommend using surface extractors. The store bought ones, from what I understand, can have problems. There are some plans on the krib for building one, which I think I am going to try when I get some time.

I have read that increasing CO2 content in the water can decrease the film as well.

Finally there are some fish that eat it. Mollies, I believe.

Right now, I'm not too worried about it. The only thing I find annoying about it is that I can definantly tell when it is blocking the light because the light at the bottom of the tank "changes". I don't know how to describe it other than just "changes".

The film can affect gaseous exchange, but if your pH remains stable and your plants are producing enough oxygen, then it's not really an issue.

For the record: 29 gal, 110 watts, 4.48 KH and 6.6-6.8 pH.
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post #3 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-12-2003, 07:02 PM
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i have the same thing in my tank. the film is composed of protiens from fish waste, leftover food, etc. in a fish tank, there is no mechanism to carry this away, so it collects at the surface. breaking the surface tension will mix this up, allowing it to be filtered out, but you are correct that it also de-gasses CO2. in my tank, i use a aquaclear mini set on the lowest possible flow rate to mix this up, and it seems to have a minimal effect on the CO2 levels in my tank. there are other solutions, such as surface skimmers that attatch to the intake of your filter, but the one that i tried made so much slurping noise, that i went back to the aquaclear. i have, however, heard good things about the Eheim seurface extractor, but i have never used it. some people do nothing about the surface film, but i think it looks gross, and if thick enough, i would think it would negatively affect gas transfer.
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post #4 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-12-2003, 09:05 PM
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I use a surface extractor, and I love it. It eliminates the film perfectly.

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post #5 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-12-2003, 09:13 PM
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mollies are great

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post #6 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-12-2003, 10:30 PM Thread Starter
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I plan on having only cardinals, about 6-10 corys, a plecto and a couple of Angelfish or discus (if I can cough up the $). Maybe I'll just stir to pot daily, so to speak.

how noisy is the extractor?
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post #7 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-12-2003, 10:36 PM
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I had this in all my tanks initially, and after a few weeks it just went away by itself, without surface agitation. Maybe it is part of a tank finding its balance. If it doesn't go away after an extended time, consider getting a better/bigger/more efficient filter.

In the beginning I took an airhose and sucked that stuff out.

I noticed that my Pearl Gouramies are acting like surface skimmers :lol: so if you have a big tank... Mollies might work too.


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post #8 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-12-2003, 10:54 PM
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Unlike WP, I found it did not go away after time. I had to address the situation.
Adding Mollies is a nice idea, if you like Mollies! I don't like them. They don't fit in with my overall aquarium design. I would definitely think twice, or maybe three times about using a fish to solve a particular problem. Once that problem is gone, you are then stuck with that fish.

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post #9 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-12-2003, 11:06 PM Thread Starter
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I wil be using a Fluval 404 and a bio-wheel. I hope to use the pawer head wiht the bio wheel to, eventually, hook up my CO2 through.
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post #10 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-12-2003, 11:20 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Momotaro
I would definitely think twice, or maybe three times about using a fish to solve a particular problem. Once that problem is gone, you are then stuck with that fish.
I have to agree to that one. Got some loaches to get rid of snails, got rid of snails, now how do you get rid of loaches :lol: Just kidding, they are the cutest things in the world, but Momo is right, it is easier to take off an ugly surface skimmer than netting out a hundred mollies :mrgreen:


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post #11 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-13-2003, 01:22 AM
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Well all you need is one molly. I have one black balloon molly and she takes care of ALL the surface skimming. Real cool.

Wasserpest, what kind of loaches do you have? i have a heck of a problem with pond snails. GRRRR.

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post #12 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-13-2003, 02:04 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by hubbahubbahehe
Well all you need is one molly.
Unless you're one of those people that always buys the "Noah's Ark" special. Then you have a 100 mollies on your hands :hehe:
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post #13 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-13-2003, 02:36 AM
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ahah good one, DAve.

i guess i'm in the minority here. I really like the funny way that balloon mollies look. everyone else seems to think they are ugos.

i once read that you can get a small bottle 500 ml or smaller and force it down with the neck pointing up. all the surface water would get sucked down and you lose the surface film real fast.

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post #14 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-13-2003, 03:17 AM
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Actually any surface feeder will do the trick. Platy and guppy will also do fine. You can always just get the male fish, quite easy for live bearer.
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post #15 of 21 (permalink) Old 11-13-2003, 03:21 AM
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i don't know about platies , but guppies do not do it. Trust me, I got tons of guppies and they do not do it.

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