Bio film

dw1305

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Hi all,
Does having a planted aquarium generally promote bio film within the tank?
Not particularly, it is an entirely natural process and actually has a scientific name, the <"neuston">. I don't tend to get much surface film in any of the tanks, but I don't feed much flake food and I have a lot of plants, but in slow growth.

Have a look at Clive's comments in <"Sugars in the aquarium"> and <"Surface film">.

I haven't had a filter on the tank in my kitchen since the summer (it doesn't have any fish) and I haven't fed any fish food, but it is planted and I have put in vegetables for the Snails and Asellus etc. and it hasn't developed any visible biofilm, possibly because the snails have spent a lot of time grazing at the surface.

You can see the snails in this thread <"Feeding a California.....">.

cheers Darrel
 
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Ok so it's not completely the white wax film as I've seen on the pictures from those threads, it has more of an oily rainbow slick to it so I'm guessing it's plants carbs,sugars etc mixed with the typical bio mass. I shall try and get a picture for you if that's ok Darrel, thanks
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
I shall try and get a picture for you if that's ok Darrel,
That's fine.
it has more of an oily rainbow slick to it
Try stirring it, if it breakes up it is bacterial and related to iron reduction. If it instantly reforms? it is oil based and may have more to do with lipids and waxes from growing plants and /or oils from dried fish food.

cheers Darrel
 
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Hi Darrel, yes it instantly reforms and even a huge surface water movemant does not eradicate this film, I fed my fish every 2-3 days to try and limit the oil from them so I'm guessing my plants are not in top form from the amount of surface film, I have had a little bba firba while and just got the neo aquario diffuser as my last diffuser was shocking. I've been playing about with the flow ( never ending story always fiddling ) hopefully better diffusion and flow pattern should sort this out I've also dimmned the lights a little. I have mostly slow growing plants too I was reading a thread that we should have a mixture of fast and slow growers to even out the eco system? Eliminate algae and bba?
 

dw1305

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Hi all,
I have mostly slow growing plants too I was reading a thread that we should have a mixture of fast and slow growers to even out the eco system? Eliminate algae and bba?
It depends a little bit what you want, but generally a few quicker growing plants are useful during the establishment stage.

We don't actually know why a higher plant mass reduces algae, but it definitely appears to.

I'm not a CO2 user, and I don't care too much about aethetics so I like slow growing submersed plants in the tank, but I have floating plants as well, and I don't feed the plants on a regular basis. It makes maintenance easier, you rarely have to do anything with the plants in the water, just scoop off the floaters when they cover too much of the surface.

How much of the surface they cover depends on how bright the light I have is, if I have a bright light I just have more plants.

cheers Darrel
 

Oldguy

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Does having a planted aquarium generally promote bio film within the tank?
From reading the posts & from experience:

Some flake foods are very oily, I have moved to very small granular foods and wafers.

Usually a good idea to have some fast stem plants, helps the tank settle down, they can always be removed latter if need be.

Too high light level for CO2/other nutrients is a primary cause of waxy films as you have read from above posts, especially Clive's on stressed plants.
Shade the light or add more CO2 etc.

A small surface skimmer, just a cheap one from eBay, is a good investment. It will draw the surface film in unbroken, unfortunately they seem to be very attractive to shrimps, hence a small one. No need to run it all the time, just till the problem is sorted. I run mine to try and eliminate duckweed that came in on some plants. :banghead:

When film is under control, add floating plants and reduce shading from light/remove shading and you should be well on the way to stable conditions.

Wishing you happy tanks.
 
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Thanks alot for your replies I will most certainly out these into practice, I've already got some faster growing stems, dimmned the light and added a koralia evouevolu circulation pump and my green spot has stopped now I'm just trying to get all the bba diminished and to find out if it has stopped growing, also upped the dry ferts as my phosphate was lingering at about 1 but now about 2ppm.
 
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