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post #1 of 3 Old 03-18-2012, 11:25 AM Thread Starter
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best fish for cleaning?

my tank is about 6 weeks old now. it is starting to develop a little build up on the glass and live plants. what are the best fish for keeping it clean? this tank will eventually be heavily planted.
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post #2 of 3 Old 03-18-2012, 12:20 PM
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I assume you are referring to some type of algae.

Diatoms (brown algae0 is normal in new tanks, at some point during the first 2-3 months. It will go away as the tank's biology settles and matures. Keep it off plant leaves (if live plants are present). It comes off easily with a sponge on the glass during the water change.

If it is some type of green (which can be light green, dark green, almost black or gray) algae, knowing which would help us find the cause. But even here, a new tank is not biologically established and algae will often take advantage. But there are ways of keeping it in control. A photo might help us pin down the algae type.

Acquiring fish just to deal with algae isnot always wise. Each fish contributes to the bioload, and the so-called algae eating fish will usually only eat one or two types anyway, so again knowing the type helps. It is better to identify the algae and the cause and deal with that.


Byron Hosking, BMus, MA
Vancouver, BC, Canada

The aquarist is one who must learn the ways of the biologist, the chemist, and the veterinarian. [unknown source]

Something we all need to remember: The fish you've acquired was quite happy not being owned by you, minding its own business. If you’re going to take it under your wing then you’re responsible for it. Every aspect of its life is under your control, from water quality and temperature to swimming space. [Nathan Hill in PFK]
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post #3 of 3 Old 03-18-2012, 03:50 PM
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Hi the build up you have is probably algae.
If you want to get rid of it a algae pad does the job.
But since you want an cleaning fish there is some things you need to know.
1.The size of the aquarium is impotant as some fish may be large and some fish may be small.
2.Type of tank mates. Tank mates must have the same behavior or the fish may get stressed.
3.Aquarium water. The water style (Fresh, brackish) may stress or not stress fish, for example algae eating catfish some times get stressed in brackish water.

There you have the tips now on to the list of alage eating fish-

Cae is a great algae eater for a 20 gal semi-agressive planted tank.
Rainbow shark great for 30 gal semi-agressive planted tank with no other sharks.
Otocinclus is a small peaceful algae eating catfish that is good for 10 gal community lightly planted aqaurium.
Pleco is not the best algae eater. when sold they are about 2" when they mature they can get over a foot. These guys are destructive in planted aqauriums and produce 12-14" of waste a day. I recommend them in a 55gal agressive non planted aqaurium.
Clown pleco are great for 10 gal lightly planted aqauriums because they are small.
Garra ruffa are good for 10 gal but need a school of 5.
twig catfish are forgoten plecos. they are small, long and produce little waste.
Molies, gupies, platies are great algae eaters, mollies such as the black molly are great.

Thats all hope it helps.

Check out my fish assistance website yourfishblog - Home page for help, apps, tools and articals on fish.

Last edited by 50galkid; 03-18-2012 at 03:54 PM.
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