White surface scum - The Planted Tank Forum
 
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-09-2009, 03:29 PM Thread Starter
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White surface scum

What causes that white film on surface of the water? Itís ugly and partially blocks the light penetration into the aquarium. Other than purchasing a surface extractor and hooking up a canister filter, what can be done? What is causing all these proteins if I feed lightly and no fish food is left over in the tank after five minutes? Is it caused by decaying plant matter?
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-09-2009, 03:34 PM
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Is this a new tank setup?

My tank had this surface film no matter how much I directed the flows at the surface to break it up.

When I did water changes with my python, I turned it upside down and made a mock surface skimmer out of it, but the surface film subsided after a couple weeks on its own aside from that.


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my 75 (the old tank)
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-09-2009, 03:36 PM
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Increasing surface agitiation will often take care of that for the most part.

I believe my stance on this issue to be perfectly ambiguous and illdefined and I see no reason to elaborate further.
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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-09-2009, 03:58 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jargonchipmunk View Post
Is this a new tank setup?

My tank had this surface film no matter how much I directed the flows at the surface to break it up.

When I did water changes with my python, I turned it upside down and made a mock surface skimmer out of it, but the surface film subsided after a couple weeks on its own aside from that.
It is as new tank and Iíll try the python idea. Thanks.

I donít want to increase surface ripple as it will deplete my CO2.
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-09-2009, 06:01 PM
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There is always the paper towel method: basically take a paper towel, and 'float' it on the surface of your tank.

ADA makes this charcoal like substance called Clear Float which is supposed to absorb it. I have ben trying to get my hands on it but cant seem to find it...


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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 03-09-2009, 06:27 PM
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a little surface movement is always good, its when you get to much that you outgas your co2. I have surface agitation and my dc stays at yellow all the time. The other ways will only get rid of the surface skum for a little while, but it will come back soon, agitation is a permenate solution

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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-02-2009, 04:03 PM Thread Starter
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Iím still having issues with surface scum on my large plant tank. Hereís the thing, my 29 gal, non-CO2, low light plant tank has very little surface agitation, AND no surface scum. My 75 gal tank has medium light, pressurized CO2 injected, surface agitation from a powerhead pointed at the surface AND has major surface scum.

The only other major differences between the two tanks is the 29 gal is covered while the 75 gal is open top. Could be the reason for the surface scum? The two tanks also have difference substrate. The surface scum tank has eco-complete and the 29 gal. has inert sand.

The difference has to be either the open top or the substrate. Thoughts?

Plants are doing well in both tanks and I feed fish once a day.
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-02-2009, 04:05 PM
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Get 2 black mollies. Will be gone in a few hours!
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-02-2009, 04:17 PM Thread Starter
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Get 2 black mollies. Will be gone in a few hours!
Really? Is this what most people do? I wish I could find the source and deal with it that way, but I'm out of ideas.

I do major weekly water changes, agitate the water surface, remove dead plant leaves, etc. Nothing works and it's been over two months.

If I remove it from the water surface, it comes back the next day.
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-02-2009, 04:38 PM
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Black mollies have always worked for me. As soon as they die or jump out of my tank the surface scum comes back in a day. They aggitate the surface water and it seems to keep the scum away. Worth a shot!
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post #11 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-02-2009, 05:05 PM
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I tried everything to get rid of it, paper towels, mollies, changing food, feeding less, more surface agitation, etc. Nothing worked long term. I would get it one month, then not the next. Drove me mad. Then I got one of these:

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/produc...m?pcatid=12703

Installed it to one of my eheim inflows and it works PERFECTLY. And it's cheap.

My surface is crystal clear and beautiful now. And no scummy stains around the tank like a bath tub ring either....

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post #12 of 12 (permalink) Old 04-03-2009, 10:47 PM
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Quote:
Then I got one of these:

http://www.drsfostersmith.com/produc...m?pcatid=12703


My surface is crystal clear and beautiful now. And no scummy stains around the tank like a bath tub ring either....
Ditto

210 g - Empty right now
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