I just bought some mopani wood and was curious about the slime and white fuzz phenomenon that I've read about. I've read many conflicting ideas about what it is, and even of some people who say it overruns their tanks. I decided to email Zoo Med, the company who sells the piece I bought and see what they had to say about it. This is what they replied:
Thank you for contacting us. The Mopani wood has tannins in the wood it leaks into the water sort of like tea. The tannins arenít harmful to the fish in your aquarium but it can turn the water dark until the tannins have been completely leached out. The tannins being released make a great environment for bacteria growth on the side of the Mopani that is what the white fuzzy growth is. Itís not harmful to your tank in any way and it does go away in a few weeks, it shouldnít take over your tank as long as your filter is working properly and your maintaining your water quality with regular water changes. You can soak the Mopani would in warm water before you place it in your tank to leach the tannins out to discourage this from happening. Be prepared it can take a few days to weeks to remove all the tannins depending on the piece of Mopani.
Does this make sense to anyone? If it's the tannins that cause the bacteria/fungus, then why doesn't this happen with IAL placed in the tank?
Anyone had the fuzz overrun their tank despite doing regular water changes?
Anyone boil the heck out of their piece so that there were no tannins leeching and still got the white fuzz?
Just curious because I am not looking forward to the stinky white fuzz.