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Old 04-13-2011, 11:50 PM   #1 
takumi
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Oily film on surface water?

I have had this problem on and off with my tanks before, but recently i am having problems with it again. My mother bought me two new bettas and tanks with live plants to set up in them and it's only been about four days since the tanks were cleaned and filled but the mysterious oily film is already overtaking the surface water. I was hopefully thinking that live plants in the tank would eliminate this problem but it has not.
Both new tanks, unfortunately, have open tops which i suspected may cause a problem but I set them up anyways. The oily film, when touched, will shrivel and turn into small white flakes. I'm really concerned that not only have the bettas come into contact with it when they have come to the surface to breathe, but I suspect that they have also consumed some of it when feeding. What is this and do you think it is as dangerous as i seem to? If anyone has experienced this before please let me know!!
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Old 04-14-2011, 12:07 AM   #2 
carzz
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I get this problem too..... it stops my lily pads and cup tops from moving....
it makes me mad.
But I don't know what it is..... :(
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Old 04-14-2011, 12:33 AM   #3 
takumi
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I'm concerned it's dangerous! I really hope not, I don't want my bettas to get sick :( this must be a by-product of waste from food and the fish....that's my best explanation.
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Old 04-14-2011, 12:35 AM   #4 
takumi
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has it ever caused you problems? besides the non moving of the lily pads, which happens to me too! although mine is fake haha
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Old 04-14-2011, 12:38 AM   #5 
carzz
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mines fake too. it came from walmart, a little cloth plant, and lily pad.
No, never caused harm to my fish. Mine get it after I clean their tanks, so it's not waste. I've got the problem to go away, and what I think it is, is the stuff you put in the H2o, to 'age' the water. That'd be my guess.....
I have mostly stopped using that stuff. Another walmart fish product. I have about 15-20 1-2 gallon water jugs sitting in my basement. The water ages for a while, ahahah. :)
Do you use water conditioner?
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Old 06-28-2011, 12:48 PM   #6 
Dearest
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Water Film: Solution...

I think I found it!! It's been driving me bonkers plus I was worried it was hurting my little guy. I've had him since last summer and never had a single problem, until this mystery. For weeks, this weird film scum would start to develop just days after the water change and it covered the surface of the water. I'd literally taken to dragging a paper towel over it to mop it up - I didn't know what else to do.

Then I thought, the containers I use to keep the water in prior to changing the tank water had possibly becomecontaminated. They were the only thing that I hadn't cleaned regularly. So I gave the containers a thorough washing & rinsing and... so far so good. It's been a few days now and the film hasn't started to re-appeared at all. YAY!!!

Hopefully this is a fix. Will follow up with an update... fingers crossed!
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Old 06-28-2011, 08:22 PM   #7 
Here Fishy Fishy Fishy
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I've seen this too... it occurs when the water is too still... doesn't form when there is adequate current. My educated guess is that it is a bacterial bloom, which forms as an oily slick on the still water's surface (because that's where the oxygen is).

I've seen the same slick form in nature on still water - in ponds, swamps and eddys of streams, for example.

Can anyone elaborate on this?
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