Tropical Fish Keeping - Aquarium fish care and resources

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chrisb007 08-06-2013 07:47 PM

Wow 5-Star Algae Eater
I got a couple algae eaters. Had a bunch of algae growing in my 55 gallon. Researched it and learned that lots of food+fish poop = algae.

I was told a healthy fish is a hungry fish, so I don't feed my fish a lot. So it wasn't me. After a short investigation (my aquarium is in the middle of my office) I found that I was getting a little "help" feeding the kids (6 Tiger Barbs, 2 AFricans and a Rainbow shark).

The girls in the office like the barbs (Apparently they're cute) so they were all feeding them snacks

The guys like the Africans (They dig and protect their territory) and the shark (who wouldn't like a shark?) so...more snacks from the male contingent.

So I put the kids on a diet and bought a couple High Fin Plecos, expecting them to bring the algae under control after a couple weeks.

Not only do they look Awesome, but I came in the very next morning and OMG - no algae on the glass. None. And the plecos are only 2 or 3 inches big.

So if you need a first class algae eater, I recommend the High Fins - they get the job done.

Ehamm289 08-06-2013 11:51 PM

I have to agree 100% with you! I had a similar issue in regard to algae developing in the tank. Went out and bought the most active pleco at the lfs. It wasn't even 24 hours later and the tank was spotless. It also makes for a great scavenger, picking up all the uneaten food at the bottom of the tank. I have been extremely happy with this guy!

ladayen 08-08-2013 06:51 PM

Hi Fins get big.. and make lots of poop. They also dont like algae much especially as they get older. I would suggest taking away the food and putting notices not to feed the fish. The african cichlids and the shark will eventually kill the barbs as well.

Sanguinefox 08-08-2013 07:58 PM


Okay that High Fins? Take them back to the pet-store and you need to go in time out. You have done a very bad thing. If you don't know what it is let me show you an adult high fin pleco:

Now you take those fish back and you bring home a bristle nose pleco. That won't outgrow your tank.

EDIT: TO be clear "High fin pleco" is often a term interchanged with Sail Fin Pleco. If that is indeed what you will end up with something that will die a horrible death in your tank due to it's organs outgrowing it's stunted frame. If it is just a regular common pleco you are still in trouble. That too is going to grow too big for your tank.

chrisb007 08-09-2013 02:55 PM

Yikes. What if the store won't take them back? I got them at a Petsmart. They had bristlenoses too. I even told them I had a 50 gallon.

SeaHorse 08-09-2013 03:42 PM

Sadly I believe it is some store's policy to not refuse a sale... (for any reason).
If they won't take them back you may end up having to re-home them.
Interestingly up here in Ontario a major LFS chain, Big Al's for lack of a better term... "rents" those super large Common Plecos to pond owners for the summer. I remember asking one winter trip to the store why they had SO many large Plecos!!... He said, "oh they're here for the winter... pond owners will come in an get one just for the summer to keep their ponds clean." They are tropical though so can't winter over like a Koi or Goldfish can (in +3' deep ponds) and need to be housed elsewhere/indoors. Just a suggestion if you have any other stores in your city or know someone who needs one for their pond.

flight50 08-12-2013 05:39 PM

I don't mean to sound harsh but if the store doesn't take them back, its your own fault. A common mistake people make is not doing the proper research on a fish before making the purchase. Same for plants. Know what your getting before you get it. Most chain fish stores in my opinion do not have very knowledgeable fish keepers. They will tell you anything due to the fact that they don't know any better themselves. This is not always the case but more times than not it is. Don't always rely on a store making your decision. Do the homework and/or jump aboard a forum such as this and get advice/suggestions from experienced keepers and not one that is just there for a paycheck.

Austin 08-12-2013 05:51 PM

I think most people don't realize that people at petsmart and petco (and even local fish stores) are hit or miss. Usually miss. They don't get very good training apparently. It seems to be a common thing not to realize how big plecos get and how large of a tank they need. Most people get plecos and they don't get large before they die (due to space constraints stunting and killing them) and so it perpetuates the idea.

I think it takes a mistake or two before any of us realize there's more to fishkeeping than the oversimplified "put fish and water in an aquarium and feed them" idea that chain pet stores like people to think. Not to mention the myths they keep up about fish growing to the size of their container and such...

Reece 08-13-2013 03:37 PM

If it's a Bristlenose Pleco you'll be fine, I've had mine for a year now and it quickly went from 2" to 3" in 3-4 months and since then it's stayed at 3".

chrisb007 08-15-2013 08:49 AM

No, they're High Fins alright. I'm not going to chance it - there's a private local petstore that could take them. They're beautiful fish so I'm optimistic they'll get placed somewhere else.

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