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SST 07-16-2008 03:14 PM

Growing algae to feed otos
 
Somewhere either on this board or another that I frequent, I saw instructions (easy) on how to grow algae in a small tank/bowl. I'd like to do that for my two new otos. They have practically cleaned my tank and it hasn't taken them too long to do it. I did put a zucchini in there one night and they weren't interested (though the rosy barbs tore it apart) and now I'm experimenting with a piece of red tipped lettuce.

I think I can just put some rocks in a container and put it in the sun (does it need to be outdoors or can I put it in an indoors window) but I'm not sure what to jump start the algae growth. Some fish food? How do I make sure I'm growing the type of algae they want?

I've got a plastic 2-gallon fish bowl and plenty of smooth river rocks and a bright sunny window. Just not sure what to do next.

BTW, I did do a search before posting this message.

Thanks.

Little-Fizz 07-16-2008 03:21 PM

Well, I'm no expert on algae, but I would say your doing everything that needs to be done to grow algae, ALTHOUGH I'm not sure if you need to be feeding it? I think thats what the natural sunlight does, no? It doesn't need to be outside to grow. Just a sunny window will do.

SST 07-16-2008 03:38 PM

I've read that something needs to be there to jump-start the growth. Things mentioned include miracle grow plant food, aquarium plant ferts, a banana peel, and, I think, fish food.

With so many types of algae, I want to make sure I grow the kind the otos will eat, piggy things that they are.

Little-Fizz 07-16-2008 03:41 PM

True, I suppose algae would need some sort of food. I would imagine that the kind of algae you get from direct sunlight (regular old green stuff) would be perfect for ottos. I'm assuming(sorry) thats the algae they cured in your tank in the first place?

jeaninel 07-16-2008 10:53 PM

I remember seeing that post too. I think your on the right track. Just use some tank water instead of tap water and put a pinch of fish food or liquid fert to start the process.

iamntbatman 07-17-2008 02:30 AM

The algae can't grow on sunlight alone. I think adding fish food would probably supply the other nutrients you'd need, but I think the liquid ferts might work even better. I mean...you're trying to culture algae, not have a nice environment for fish, so you could always do both. Who cares if the water's dirty, right?

SST 07-17-2008 10:23 AM

Thanks. Since I don't own any ferts, I'll start out with just the food and see how it goes.

thespiff 07-17-2008 01:15 PM

I feel like it might be a lot less long-term hassle, if not cheaper, to simply upgrade the lighting on the tank with the Oto's in it so that you get better algae growth there. I have 6 Oto's in my 30 gal with a 55-watt flourescent on top. I run light 9 hrs/day. The little guys can't keep up with that algae growth.

Lupin 07-17-2008 07:23 PM

Re: Growing algae to feed otos
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by SST
I think I can just put some rocks in a container and put it in the sun (does it need to be outdoors or can I put it in an indoors window) but I'm not sure what to jump start the algae growth. Some fish food? How do I make sure I'm growing the type of algae they want?

That's the method I always recommend. Direct exposure to sunlight is important. Just dump fishfood on the bucket, no matter the amount. Green algae is expected to grow in your bucket in the enxt few days coating the rocks as well.


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