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Old 05-24-2004, 07:41 PM   #1
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Surface scum affecting oxygenation?

I've had a sort of surface scum/film on the water surface of my tank since it's been set up (even during cycling). I've tried everything to get rid of it - pointing a powerhead at the surface to break it up, paper towels etc., but as soon as I get rid of it it comes straight back.

I'm just wondering if this will have any bad affects on the aquarium, ie. reducing oxygenation?

I've got a powerhead aimed at the surface which breaks it up a bit, but most of the surface is covered with a very thin layer of whatever it is, which gets broken up when my filter outputs water, and by the powerhead.

Anyone any ideas?
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Old 05-24-2004, 08:02 PM   #2
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Do you have an efficient protein skimmer? A sump will help in that it uses a surface skimmer to collect water for it's trip to the sump where your protein skimmer should be, ready to remove the dissolved organic compounds that are causing the slime. A protein skimmer on the main tank that has a surface skimmer will also help.
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Old 05-24-2004, 08:11 PM   #3
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I don't have a protein skimmer I'm afraid! No space around the tank for one really

Will the scum be harming the tank and/or oxygenation do you think?
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Old 05-24-2004, 08:29 PM   #4
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Will the scum be harming the tank and/or oxygenation do you think?
I would think it inhibits oxygen exchange at the surface. Is this a reef tank? If you don't have/want a protein skimmer then I'd say regular large water changes are in order to remove DOC's. You are really missing a great form of filtration. Protein skimmers only work with saltwater. If they worked on FW everyone would have them.
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Old 05-24-2004, 08:38 PM   #5
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So a protein skimmer will get rid of all that surface scum? Can't I just get a very fine brineshrimp net (as was suggested by someone else!) and get all the scum off every few days?

Everything else with my tank is fine - water quality is fine and stable.
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Old 05-24-2004, 09:26 PM   #6
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Have you looked into prizm protein skimmers? They only protrude an inch or two.
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Old 05-25-2004, 03:32 PM   #7
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A protein skimmer may reduce the amount of film, but only having some form of skimmer box will eliminate it. I have tried a prism skimmer unsuccesfully to do much of anything. A Remora skimmer with the internal box would do the trick.

As long as your powerhead is causing sufficient surface agitation, everything should be fine. One thing that I find that helps is I run a small powerfilter on my skimmerless 30g tank. The output into the tank keeps the protein film pretty much nonexistant. Don't know if this works on every tank.
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Old 05-25-2004, 04:28 PM   #8
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My powerhead and filter output cause a bit of surface agitation - not a massive amount though.

I don't have much room at all for anything on the outside of the tank...
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Old 05-26-2004, 01:27 AM   #9
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how about a cpr into a sump out of a 10 gal it will skim increase water supply and get rid of all pumps filters heaters ect on your tank now
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