White Stringy & Fuzzy Stuff in Fish Tank: Causes & Solution

Imagine a scenario: everything is going well in your fish tank. Suddenly you discovered white stringy stuff in the fish tank. That must be cautious at first glance. 

It is pretty normal for you if you are experienced with pet fishing. However, what is this fuzzy stuff? Let’s get into everything, whether it is harmful or not, and how you can get rid of it.

What’s the White Stringy Stuff in a Fish Tank?

There are different types of white stringy stuff that can occur in your fish tank. Some of them are not harmful, and some need to be gotten rid of.

Sometimes fish produce mucus on their skin to act as lubrication for them. That mucus coat often causes white fuzzy stuff floating around the water to make it visible. It is pretty standard, although you need to take care of it.


If you see these white stuff moving, that means it is some worm. Two types of worms live in the tank. Detritus and planaria worms are the common worms for fish tanks. However, detritus worms are not harmful by any chance for your fish tank or fish. They eat animal waste to live and do not bother your fish.

But, planaria can be problematic for your fish. However, it does not do anything to your fish unless they are weak. Yet, your fish eggs are not safe because Planaria worms are often known for eating fish eggs.


Suppose your fish does not eat fish food that remains in the fish tank. Instead, it dissolves into the water and creates fat and protein over time. That protein looks white and floats around the water as white fluffy stuff.


Suppose that white stuff is floating around in your fish tank and looks like mold, that probable fungus. It is caused by the detergent that you use to clean your fish tank.

Why Is There White Stringy Stuff in My Fish Tank?

It happens for various reasons. And this is normal for fish tanks. If your tank has more fish than it should or you are providing excess food, it usually creates white fuzzy stuff in the fish tank. Also, some worms and fungi cause that. And, your body can go into the water, and it can create white things over time.

Is White Stringy Stuff Unhealthy/Severe For My Fish?

This is a legitimate and worthy question of whether it is severe for fish or not. Well, it is not severe at all. But, it is unhealthy for fish, that is for sure. 

If there is a lot of white stringy stuff, that means you are not taking good care of your fish. As I mentioned, if white stuff occurs because of planaria worms, that could be dangerous. You must remove them to make your fish tank safe.

How Do I Get Rid of White Stringy Stuff From My Fish Tank?

No matter how that white stuff appeared in your fish, you need to remove it. But, according to the reason causing this, you have to take different steps.

Step 1: Change tank water regularly

Fish skin creates one kind of lubrication that seems white and floats around the water. But, it is normal, and you can’t prevent it. So, you need to change the water regularly. As a result, there will be no pile of fish lubricants floating around the water and create visible white algae-like stuff.

Changing tank water is also part of keeping your fish hygiene and safe from many diseases. Whether there is white stringy stuff that occurs or not, you must have to change the water regularly.

Step 2: Use dewormer

If your fish tank has worms, you need to use a dewormer. Although detritus worms are not harmful, it is hard to separate them from planaria without expertise. If that happens, you must need the help of medication. Use deworming medicine to get rid of it.

However, these medicines are also harmful to your fish. So, never use it unless it is necessary. And, you are sure that your fish tank contains worms. But, please detect whether it is detritus or planaria. For Detritus, you do not need to do anything, or changing water regularly will do the job. But, planaria are harmful to fish eggs. So, you must use medicine to remove them.

Step 3: Feed your fish correctly

If your fish creates too much white lubrication, that means an unhealthy body. So make sure to feed them properly. Also, do not do overfeeding because leftover food dissolves into the water and creates fat and protein. That also floats around the water as white stuff.

Step 4: Protein and oil removal

If that white stuff is created by protein or your body oil, you can use the larger tank. Using a better filter can stop this. And changing water can do the trick also.

Step 5: Scrub the slime

If it is a fungus, scrub it properly and get rid of it. Then change the water to make it clean. And do that often to make sure it does not happen. Do not use any chemical or detergent while scrubbing. Just simple scrubbing is enough to get rid of it.

How To Prevent White Stringy Stuff From Occurring Again?

It is pretty normal for fish. And almost impossible to prevent it. But, if you ensure a few things, you can slow this process from occurring.

First of all, change the water regularly. And, do not let your body oil go into the water. Always wash your hand properly before entering it into the fish tank. Or, you can wear clean gloves.

Keep feeding your fish with the proper amount. An excessive amount of food is also not good for fish. However, maintaining fish health can reduce the creation of white stuff into the fish tank.


Though white stringy stuff is not problematic at all, you must get rid of it to ensure better health for your fish. Using simple tricks and spending some time can give you a proper solution for this problem. But you do not have to panic if it happens in your fish tank.

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