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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I'm having some algae issues and I want to find some critters that eat algae. Right now I have a clown pleco who prefers either the driftwood or probably whatever is leftover after I close for the night. I also have three nerite snails and right now they seem to be doing an okay job, although it's hard to tell if they are eating the algae since all I've seem to find are the trails they make through them. While there is no guarantee on how long they will live, I am working towards a plan B just in case, if they don't make it to June, even when I have the tank at the right levels. I am wanting oto catfish, although right now the places I'm looking into buying them from are out.

Does anybody have any suggestions? I know there are fish out there that are algae eaters by name only, but get mean as they get bigger, and don't always touch the algae like Chinese Algae Eaters and Gold Algae Eater, unless somebody could tell me otherwise. Right now I'm looking for something peaceful and affordable.
 

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What type of algae are you dealing with?

I'll tell you right now that there isn't a perfect algae eater. Some only eat certain types, some are slow, some are fragile, some are hard to find, etc. Generally nerites, Amano shrimp, otocinclus catfish IF the tank is well established and planted, and some plecos help quite a bit, and then the standard pest snail rotation- ramshorns, MTS, pond- do a lot too.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I'm not sure, it's either green or brown or a combination of the two. I have a clown pleco, but it hasn't done a good enough job on algae control. While I see trails left behind from the nerite snails, it's hard to tell if they would actually try to clean up all of the algae or not. I wouldn't mind another pleco, as long as it doesn't cause any strife in my tank. I would probably buy some shrimp, like a few more ghost shrimp, maybe a few amanos, but right now I'm curious if there are any fish algae eaters that are peaceful and would actually eat the algae, and not just everything else.
 

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Sound like diatoms. Clown plecos r more meat eaters. I would do more water changes with ro water. Than if that doesnt work get 3+ otos and maybe some bushynose plecs. Or 3+ siamese algae eaters if u dont have cories, when i got them they would harass my cories.
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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I have cories, and the sad thing is, before I got the driftwood and the algae, the clown pleco would eat the plants. After the driftwood, it would ignore the plants and the algae altogether. Question is can I mix two different plecos into one tank without any major issues between the two? And while the snails are doing their part, slowly but doing it, I would need to start looking into other options and while Otos are the best solution, they are probably the hardest fish to buy because of their high demand. Plus I've been doing some water changes, mainly due to the cloudy water caused by the algae and right now I'm hoping it goes away after the algae does. Sad thing is that I'm going to add some more plants which would probably add more algae to tank.
 

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More plants doesnt equal more algae. It actually equals less algae, because the plants eat all the nutrients up before the algae can. U can mix plecs. Could u say ur tank size, filter, fish, # of fish, lighting, how long the tank has been up, feeding, ect...
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
20 gals, regular fluorescent lighting, large power filter hanging from the top of the tank, fish:
1x Male Betta
1x Bolivian Ram
2x Blue Painted Moons (Platies)
2x Rainbow Platies
5x Peppered Corys
3x Kuhli Loaches
1x Clown Loaches
3x Nerite Snails
5x Ghost Shrimp (I think, if I can find all of them)
1x Clown Pleco

Tanks been up and running for over a year, and I've been feeding the fish with regular flakes, anything else is once in a while. The plants liquid fertilizer. Before chewing me out about overcrowding, the fish are getting along just fine and the filter and the plants are doing a good enough job keeping the tank clean.
 

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What type of algae are you dealing with?

I'll tell you right now that there isn't a perfect algae eater. Some only eat certain types, some are slow, some are fragile, some are hard to find, etc. Generally nerites, Amano shrimp, otocinclus catfish IF the tank is well established and planted, and some plecos help quite a bit, and then the standard pest snail rotation- ramshorns, MTS, pond- do a lot too.

+1 , Key in on the some plecos. There are hundreds of species with a wide range of dietary needs. Bristlenose seem to be the best algae eaters from what I have been exposed too.


LongTimeAquarist, Have you measured your nitrate level in your tank?
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Not sure how and right now I'm not sure if the walmart around here has the kit. All I know is that before the plants, it was high enough to make the water hard, and I needed to have an air stone to help with oxidizing the water. After I added the plants, and the driftwood, it soften the water enough to be neutral. And if the snails and shrimp are still alive for almost two weeks, and the plants for at least two months, then there must still be enough.
 

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I wouldn't add any additional fish/invertebrate to your tank and adding another fish that gets to 4" or greater is not a good plan for your tank. I would focus on the input/outputs of your tank. Reduce the time your light is on, increase frequency or volume of your water changes and take a look at your fertilization program (no over applying) and possibly apply at a half rate.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
As long as it doesn't affect the growth of the plants, then I'll lower the amount of time I leave the light on. If they come on sail, I will buy a few oto catfish along with any new plants I buy.
 

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20 gals, regular fluorescent lighting, large power filter hanging from the top of the tank, fish:
1x Male Betta
1x Bolivian Ram
2x Blue Painted Moons (Platies)
2x Rainbow Platies
5x Peppered Corys
3x Kuhli Loaches
1x Clown Loaches
3x Nerite Snails
5x Ghost Shrimp (I think, if I can find all of them)
1x Clown Pleco

Tanks been up and running for over a year, and I've been feeding the fish with regular flakes, anything else is once in a while. The plants liquid fertilizer. Before chewing me out about overcrowding, the fish are getting along just fine and the filter and the plants are doing a good enough job keeping the tank clean.
Its not 2 overstocked. U do need 2 get rid of the clown loach. They like groups of 6+ and get large 10in+. I would also rehome the clown pleco and get a bushynose. Because the clown hides a lot (thats what i have heard). Also they poop a lot, and dont eat algae. There sort of more like a catfish (diet wise). The bushynose is out more, poops a lot, but it eats algae. So personally the bushynose is a better fish. R the plants that u have now doing good? If so than a fast way to get rid of the algae is this;
1. Get as many plants as u can and stuff the tank with them. This way they will eat all the nutrients and eliminate the algae
2. Feed less if possible. Less food = less nutrients = plants eat it faster = less algae
3. Get a small power head. More flow = less algae
4. Do more water changes. Takes out all the extra nutrients that the plants dont eat
5. Get flourish excel. It is made from Seachem. It will kill the algae and make the plants grow better which = more nutrient consumption which = less algae
6. Get a bushynose pleco. It will eat all the algae on the driftwood, rocks, glass and other areas with large surface area
7. Get 2-3 otos. They will eat the algae were the pleco cant, like on small plants and in small areas
8. BOOM NO MORE ALGAE!!!!!!!
I did this with my personal high tech tank and i have minimum 2 no algae. Hope this helps :)
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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
My bad, I don't have a clown loach, that one I didn't I put in until after I put in. Sometimes I don't pay full attention when I type. Anyway, the snails are taking care of the algae now, one wall is already clean and they still have two more to go. Turns out they come out at night to eat, and go into hiding during the day. And right now everybody is getting along with each other, my betta and ram are getting along and leaving my ghost shrimp alone. As for the plants, I'll add a couple more, but that's about it since the ones I have now are starting to grow some new plants.
 
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