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Small algae eater needed :)
Hi I need to find a small growing algae eater. I love the cleaning power of plecos, and have one in my large tank keeping it spotless. But I need one for my tiny 15g. I have read about hillstream loaches but cant get hold of one.
Any catfish types? Any ideas?
It is just the typical brown algae, all over the front, back ornaments, filter, gravel, looks very unatractive and cannot all be cleaned with an algae scraper.
How about a small group of otocinclus ? They are small, but don't do well alone, so you need a small group.
Most "algae-eating" fish will deal with diatoms (so-called brown algae). Otos were mentioned, a group of 3 minimum is recommended as they are a social fish much like corys. Another option if your water is soft and acidic is the Twig Catfish; it attains 5 inches but is so slender that it is suited to smaller tanks, and it is not a swimmer so space is not significant; it just slowly moves from plant leaf to plant leaf, wood, rock, glass, substrate--cleaning off common green algae and diatoms. Another similar option for acidic to slightly basic water is the Whiptail Catfish. The common species and the newer "red lizard whiptail" are both suitable in a smallish tank. The Bristlenose Pleco is another, though this fish has much more of an impact on the bioload than the afore-mentioned species and I would not confine it in a 15g.
Have you looked into the cause for the diatoms? Normally this is only seen in newer tanks and once the biology has become established doesn't appear again unless there are silicates in the source water.
Or a Nerite snail! I've had great success with mine keeping my small tank spotless. Its freshwater and I have only one, so no chance of breeding. Good stuff!
The algae isn't causing any issues, it just grows and covers everything so fast it looks extremely filthy and ugly!
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