cloudy water\milky white film\s scum (suspect due to Yakult!

a1Matt

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Quick question - Should I manually (remove and) clean the milky film covering everything in my tank?

Detailed post -
I have just come back from a week away and have a white coating on everything, cloudy water and a thick film on the water surface. The fish all look healthy and the plants are growing at the usual rate with no obvious signs of deficiencies\distress.

My housemate has been doing my dosing while I've been away, using pre-measured powders in empty Yakult pots. I didn't wash out the pots properly and they had traces of yakult in them. I think these have got into the tank and caused the bloom.

So, I figure that large regular water changes are in order, so have done an 80% change straight off. I aim to repeat this daily.
I've also lowered the water level so that the spraybar is chopping up the surface (usually it just gives a slight ripple) , this is breaking the surface scum up.

I am happy to run with this for a couple of days while monitoring the tank, but thought I would post here as I always appreciate the UKAPS wisdom and experience. :)

Interestingly enough the surface scum actually looks like Yakult! It has that same sour milk colour! :rolleyes:

(Sods law decided that my CO2 would run out while I was away as well. This can wait until tomorrow - I only got 2 hours sleep on an overnight flight last night, and like to have my wits about me when working with fire extinguishers.)
 

Ed Seeley

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You got the right idea - remove as much as possible as often as possible by syphoning it off during large water changes. Personally I wouldn't do more than 50% from now on unless things get a lot worse. You might also want to make sure the filter's clean as this will be gunging that up to. As it's out of sight the filter often gets missed! You could also add some very fine mechanical filtration to the filter if you don't already have it in there and clean that daily.
 

a1Matt

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10 Mar 2008
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Bromley
Thanks Ed :) Since reading your post I have cleaned the filter. It was pretty cloudy in there so this was fantastic advice.

I also did another couple of water changes (about 30% each).

I've still got a long way to go, but the tank is showing a marked improvement already.

1 of my 4 media trays is filled with fine floss so I am good to go there.

One lesson I have learnt from this is how quickly yoghurt cultures!
So, I think I might have a go at culturing my own yoghurts after the tank is clear :D I had a colleague who used to do it, and she said it was straight forward enough.
 

a1Matt

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Bromley
My tank is crystal clear again 8) I thought I would post back here with a summary of the action I took in case it helps anyone else in the future. I don't expect anyone else to be tipping Yakult into their tank :rolleyes: , but figure that this is a good approach to take for any cases of bacterial bloom\cloudy water in an established planted tank.

Sun AM
- come home to a tank full of cloudiness....
80% WC
Leave the water level significantly lowered so that it is really churned up by the spraybar. After a few hours...
Sun PM
30% WC clean filter in the removed water
30%WC to clear the water again as it still had a bit of cloudiness to it.

Mon PM
Water clear by now but lots of surfaces still covered....
Manual removal; scrape the glass. remove hardscape and clean it with a toothbrush. waft hand through all plants to loosen up film.
80% WC clean filter in the removed water.

Tue AM
tiny residues on a small number of plants
50% WC water change.

Wed PM
All clear :D
About to do another 50%WC and clean filter in the removed water. Just to make sure it is all gone.

So as you can see quite an agressive approach. Basically clean and change as much and often as is possible without breaking my back or freaking the fish out (80WC are a bit close for comfort for me fish wise, 50% is more comfortable).

Didn't do much Tuesday as time was against me - the WC was done at 6am, then I went to work while my water supply was turned off for plumbing work, it has just been turned back on now!

EDIT - I added up that I will have spent about 7 hours in total sorting this problem!
 

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