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BryceM 03-05-2006 04:49 PM

Poll: Cover or no cover?
There is a thread that Cal started asking if people like a cover or not on their tanks. I've always been a believer in a cover with openings only big enough for the necessary wires & tubes. That probably comes from keeping hatchetfish for several years.

Apparently, many (most?) planted tank people prefer the open look. Maybe I'm missing something.

Just curious what everyone out there does.

jeff63851 03-05-2006 06:31 PM

I like to have my tanks covered. I would like the open tank look, but I have too many problems with the tanks covered. I hate it when water evaporates from the tank, and lowering the water level. Covering the tank will help minimize that problem. Secondly, if I don't cover the tank, dust will collect on the surface of the tank, which looks like an oil film on the water surface. Third, I would hate to loose that expensive angelfish. Just a few weeks ago, when I had the tank covered, I heard a loud of my angelfish was trying to commit suicide. Just my 2 cents… What do you people with open tanks do to prevent the oily film on the water surface?


BryceM 03-05-2006 07:21 PM

I always thought the film was protein from stuff inside the tank. I sometimes get it even with a virtually complete cover.

trenac 03-06-2006 05:31 AM

From what I understand the surface scum is caused by protein buildup. I use surface skimmers on my tanks to rid them of this problem. Also mollys are great at eating the scum from the surface. When I kept a Molly or two I never had surface scum on my open top tank.

I prefer open top tanks with everything below the surface. However when I have flowering plants I will let them grow outside of the tank, which is very pretty. The only tank I have closed top is my shrimp tank which I had to do because my Green shrimp was committing suicide.

m.c.gregg 03-06-2006 09:17 AM

Right now I have an open top aquarium. I have 2 black mollies and still get the protein buildup. Guess I'll be investing in a skimmer sometime in the near future, or building one myself.

BrianK 03-06-2006 07:18 PM

I have suicidal killifish so my tank is covered. I have a glass canopy with a plastic strip in the back with holes big enough for filters and wires.

Raul-7 03-06-2006 08:10 PM

I was reading up on surface scum a while back and it seems to be bacterial colonies floating on the surface; as well a protein build up.

RTR 03-06-2006 08:24 PM

All of the options apply to at least one of my tanks.

BryceM 03-08-2006 05:01 AM

Interesting. It seems to be almost evenly split between covered and uncovered. What is it about uncovered - apart from the ability to have plants grow up and out of the tank - that appeals to people?

ShortFin 03-08-2006 06:53 AM

I like my tank covered because I don't like water evaporation. Having a cover helped keep the heat in so the heater won't have to work so hard. I'm always worried about dropping things in tank especially electrical wires.

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