Size. Better to solve the route of the cause of algae than find a way to keep it at bay. The algae is the typical green sludge type. Let me know what you decide on then I can help you choose the right Algae Eater. Despite the name, black beard algae or BBA is actually a type of red algae from the Rhodophyta family. The only good thing is that it tends to be slow-growing so it doesn’t spread fast. As a result, they may be better suited to some larger ponds or aquariums. Four weeks later remove as much water as possible, and then before you replace it wipe away as much of the slime as you can with a rag. Don’t confuse the Mystery or Common Apple Snail with the larger invasive Apple snail. You can read more about them here: https://www.fishkeepingworld.com/bristlenose-pleco/ Thanks, Robert, I have a 55 gallon tank with about 25 fish, ( mollies, neons, swordtails, guppies, gourmais, glofish ) I would say i have about 20 live plants as well. Adding snails and shrimp to the tank can consume the algae early on before it can cause the soup to form. The effectiveness of your algae eaters will depend on: Some species like Siamese Algae Eaters, American Flag Fish and Amano Shrimp are champion algae eaters and can make a significant dent in a problem tank. There are two types of brown algae but one type, brown slime algae, only grows in saltwater environments. Alternatively, consider waiting it out for a month. Have you tried using a gravel cleaner? If you fix these problems the algae may clear up on its own. I use to have 1- pleco fish but in no time he became so big 6-7″ I had to give him back to the LFS. Not ideal for cichlid tanks and may disturb territorial bottom feeders due to their activity, Chinese Algae Eater, Indian Algae Eater, Sucking Loach, Omnivorous; algae when young, insects and larvae, worms, Pale brown with black stripe or spots on the body; albino and golden varieties available, Best kept solo or with smaller fast-swimming fish such as Tiger Barbs that avoid the bottom and middle of the tank. Thanks, Robert. From all of them, this article mainly focuses on the best fish for eating algae in your aquariums. Snails are a great addition, most of them don’t grow very big at all and are useful algae eaters, as are snails. They are easy to keep in small groups as long as you have the room but can get nippy when stressed. But Garra or Doctor Fish, as they’re also known, are great algae consumers and a good option for mature planted community tanks. I am very new to taking care of aquatic things. The Fancy Guppy is one of the more popular varieties of guppies for this purpose, growing to an inch or two in size. “Algae Eaters” is basically a catch-all phrase for any organism that you can keep in your aquarium and eats algae. Amano Shrimp Amano shrimp picking through some Java moss. Green water algae won’t hurt your fish but it’ll reduce the amount of light your plants receive. Jack Dempseys are one of the most well known cichlids. The most popular freshwater invertebrate on the market is this coldwater algae eater, the Cherry Shrimp. There are several algae eaters for freshwater and saltwater aquariums and adding these will indeed make your aquarium more colorful. I’m looking for some kind of algae eating fish that can live in an un-heated tank. If you tank is smaller than this, I’d imagine that is why you’re seeing so many problems. Thoughts? They come in all shapes and sizes, each with their own behaviors and personality. Going to get another tank for the Goldfish then. Tank Size and Conditions:  Min 2 gallons for 2-4 shrimps. Do you have any shells in your tank? It’s called hair algae because it’s long and feels like wet hair when you remove it. Check your checked your ammonia, nitrite and nitrate levels. These snails are easy to keep and especially suited to aquatic communities since they prefer well oxygenated water. If you’ve just added a bunch of plants to your aquarium or pruned them you could see an outbreak of GDA. You can read more about Siamese Algae Eaters here: https://www.fishkeepingworld.com/siamese-algae-eater/ As for the Goldfish, two full grown fish will require a least 40 gallons of water, given that you already have other fish I’d recommend a minimum of a 50 gallon tank depending on the variety of Goldfish. Hi. Add algae-eating fish, such as the Siamese algae eater (Crossocheilus siamensis) or the bushy-nosed pleco (Ancistrus sp.). These invertebrates constantly browse and will consume most types of algae – something most other algae eaters won’t do. You’ll see them cleaning the algae from your glass and decor, and they enjoy hanging out on brown leaves and munching on the decaying vegetation. While an algae bloom may be something you have to wait out as your new tank cycles, in mature tanks they are usually a sign of a bigger problem. An algae eater can be a species of fish or even an invertebrate such as a snail or species of shrimp. Rabbit snails come in a variety of shell colors but their body is usually a bright yellow or orange, which really pops in your planted aquarium. Only snails that feed on hair algae! These aquatic organisms make a great option for community tanks of all sizes! Ottos only grow to a maximum of 2-inches long so they’re a suitable option for most tanks. Livestock are 3Female,1Male platy, 3female 1male guppy,2 Siamese Algae Eater,2otto, 5danios and 2 Assassin Snails. They do an excellent job of keeping a tank clean and free of food scraps as well. Don’t overfeed your fish or leave excess food in their tank to rot. The young fish feast continually on algae and they’ll still snack on it as they grow. Also make sure you have an efficient filter. It will get about 6 inches long and will need plenty of space. Thanks Robert. Avoid keeping them with large fish such as Angelfish and Cichlids. The Cardinal has a couple of downsides and isn’t the best choice for beginning aquarists. Did you cycle your aquarium first? However, they all give similar results of getting rid of the algae without hurting the native members of the tank. These are usually fish which are grown to feed to other fish and can carry lots of disease and are often poor in nutrients. As they mature you may find them hanging out on your drift or bog woods too. They also aren’t particular about hardness (5-15 GH). Bamboo shrimp hang out on plants or rocks in a current and wave their fans around to capture floating algae and food scraps from the water. If so, this could be an indication that you have poor water quality. What can we add? The current scientific name is Caridina multidentata but some stores still sell them under the old name, Caridina Japonica. Hi Mohammad, Twig Catfish, Siamese Flying Fox or any of the snails or shrimps listed here will all make a good addition to a 20 gallon tank with the combination of fish you have already. Air pumps are one of those items that don’t quite make it onto the essentials list, but nevertheless they are extremely popular and a lot of people [Continue reading …], Cichlids are a common sight in tropical aquariums. Name: Nerite Snails (Neritina sp. This is a slow and gradual process and may take a few weeks to see a substantial difference. More popular than the larger and semi-aggressive Common Pleco, the Bristlenose develops long tentacles around its snout upon reaching maturity. This species has recently undergone a name change, which could lead to some confusion. Suggestions for an algae eater or should I forgo and just clean manually? You’ll usually see the heaviest accumulation on the parts of your tank that get the most light, such as the front of the tank or the part closest to a window. Are there any particular algae eaters that would do especially well with few decorations and a decent stock of ornamental fish in this kind of setup? You’ll often see BBA in mature tanks on slow-growing plants where it’s easily pruned away. Don’t depend on algae-eating fish to solve your problem alone, though. Rabbit snails need conditions similar to the other snails and prefer sand over gravel substrates. and 3 feeder goldfish. Tankarium is reader-supported. I currently have a veil tail betta and two cory catfish, one albino and one panda. However, they do make exceptionally good algae eaters. eval(ez_write_tag([[336,280],'fishkeepingworld_com-box-3','ezslot_2',110,'0','0']));To have some algae in your tank is completely normal and natural, and is actually a sign of a healthy aquarium. It won’t take you long to understand why this Japanese algae eater is so beloved! Most algae-eating fish need more space than 10 gallons. If you’re looking for a simple and effective way to control algae in your tank, chemical water treatments might not be the solution. Unfortunately, this Southeast Asian species also outgrows its love of algae and turns into a bit of an obnoxious problem child as it matures. They are infamous for their aggression and don’t play well with others, but that does not mean they [Continue reading …]. Robert. I have had bad luck keeping my bristlenose plecos alive. In order to keep Turbo Snails alive, you will need sufficient calcium levels in your water. It’s best to prevent green water algae blooms by using a light timer and blocking sunlight from your aquarium. It’s a very fast-growing type of algae and is not easy to eradicate. Hi Ian, what type of filter do you have? Some breeds of plecos and Chinese algae eaters, for instance, can get more aggressive as they age. They couldn’t eat that many algae in a million years. How Effective Are Algae Eating Fish And Invertebrates? Invertebrate algae eaters are often very sensitive to plant fertilizers and aquatic medications that contain copper. If you keep up on your water changes and filter maintenance you hopefully won’t have ammonia spikes. They don’t get on well with everyone, and can even become aggressive towards certain types of fish. They are vulnerable to attacks from Bards and Cichlids.eval(ez_write_tag([[300,250],'fishkeepingworld_com-banner-1','ezslot_4',112,'0','0'])); Extra Information: This fish will eat most species of algae but its diet will need to be supplemented. Brown algae, or any type of algae for that matter, tend to form in your aquarium because they have always been in the water, patiently waiting for the right conditions to grow. A true Siamese Algae Eater Fish will have a long body with a ragged looking black horizontal stripe on the sides of the fish. These snails look a lot like a fancy version of a garden snail, with a round spiral shell that grows to about 2-inches in diameter. That would be my first step of advice. If you’re looking for small algae eaters or options for controlling brown algae outbreaks consider the Otocinclus Catfish, commonly known as the Otto. So put the fish along with the plastic in the tank. Copyright © 2020 - Fishkeeping World - All Rights Reserved. Especially during the time the tank needs to cycle you often have them, as the fresh ecosystem is still finding its The most common type of aquarium is the freshwater aquarium, so you’ll want a freshwater algae eater who can survive the underwater atmosphere. Siamese Algae Eaters are a great tank-cleaning fish that work hard to keep things looking spotless. Whilst some aquarists advocate that your tank should be pristine, and have no algae growth at all, this is not natural or healthy. You may need to encourage them to pick the algae if you’re having a problem, but in between blooms you should supplement their diet with catfish pellets and sinking wafers. While sailfin plecos are fantastic and amazing algae eaters, they can grow as long as 2 feet in length. 5. Siamese Algae Water Eater . It’s diet can be suplemented with algae wafers. Common plecos get 2 feet long and if stunted will die prematurely. Another option is the Rubber Lipped Plecostomus, not to be confused with the Rubber Pleco, which is larger. Most of them are peaceful community fish: https://fishkeepingworld.com/17-most-popular-freshwater-fish/ Thanks, Robert. Thanks, Robert. I keep both in my tanks, and have found them to be extremely voracious in their appetite when faced with algae, Hi Jo, thanks for sharing your experience with us. My wife and I have a 20 gallon tank with 5 glofish tetras and 2 albino cory catfish. You should really let your tank go through the cycling process for at least 3-4 weeks before adding fish, then add the fish slowly. They tend to squabble if pressed for space. My main problem is finding an algae eater that stays small enough to fit through the holes of the live rock and not be eaten by the cichlids. I am just starting to get into keeping fish. This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. 5 Best Freshwater Aquarium Algae Eaters For Your Aquarium | Though algae are fine as long as it is present in a small portion in your tank, it can become difficult to handle once it starts spreading. I have two tetras, three platies, and three danios. Conditions such as lack of sun, poor They’ll also snack on the green algae and any wood in your tank. Thanks, Robert. Learn how your comment data is processed. There are other methods for clearing problem algae from your tank, like adjusting your lights and altering the water chemistry. To view this video please enable JavaScript, and consider upgrading to a Your Chinese Algae Eaters will generally live a solitary life and stay away from other fish. Looking for a algae eater that can go in a 3.5 gallon tank with one male betta. Most algae eaters see algae as food either exclusively or as supplements. I’ve never owned fish so I don’t really know what to get and how many we can have in there. These guys are notorious hitchhikers and often seem to appear out of nowhere! The algae reproduces too quickly for water changes to have much effect. In this article we’ll take a look at some of the best algae eaters that you can keep. I have Malawi/mbuna cichlids. But they are not aggressive and make a great addition to a mature planted aquarium. They prefer to feed on biofilm and algae and often won’t eat sinking food or algae disks. Even though these omnivorous fish prefer live foods they are some of the few that will consume hair and black beard algae! These fans contribute to their flamboyant appearance and helped earn them the nickname “Singapore Flower Shrimp.” They’re also the reason these shrimp are fairly difficult to maintain. Passing your aquarium water through a filter like this will kill the algae cells and quickly clear your water. I was thinking about getting shrimp to clean my tank. Omnivore; algae, decaying plant material, food scraps, Shells vary from light to dark brown but can also be blue, red or spotted. Algae may be single or multicellular organisms (seaweed is a type of algae) or grow as a biofilm in a protein matrix with bacteria and fungi. Water – pH 7.5 – 8.5. Like all the aquatic snails, Nerites are very sensitive to ammonia and copper and need fairly hard water with plenty of calcium to prevent shell thinning. Can you clarify which species of snail it is and have you managed to identify the algae too? Algae eaters include a wide variety of fish, shrimp and snails that feed entirely or primarily on algae and other plant materials in an aquarium. Robert. These species are particularly good at clearing away the slimy stuff in a pretty quick timeline. Water – pH 6.5 – 8.0. Algae eaters include a wide variety of fish, shrimp and snails that feed entirely or primarily on algae and other plant materials in an aquarium. They can’t have babies in fresh water, and the eggs they do disperse (which won’t hatch) are easy to remove. You only have to look at any natural environment in which fish inhabit to see this. Your type of substrate matters, however. What would you recommend for this situation? Some are simpler than others, and prevention is often better than cure. Don’t confuse the Garra rufa with the similarly-named Panda Garra, which does not eat algae and is semi-aggressive. controlling algae the natural way They are unsightly, but they are a part of the biological system: algae in the aquarium. They have gotten quite large as well. 4/23/2008 I have a 35 gal. Tank Size: 2-100+ Gallons. The Garra is an interesting fish. They grow up to around 6 … I had 2 catfish and 4 guppies but all the guppies died because I didn’t know I had high nitrate levels. They are biofilm and algae-busters extraordinaire and have massive appetites. Hi Paige, you can keep them singularly, in pairs or in a school. I need an algae eater that won’t get any bigger than 3 inches. Algae Eaters For 30 Gallon Betta Tank Siamese Algae Eater (Flying Fox) You may not have heard of a Siamese algae eater (SAE) before, and the truth is they’re not the most common fish you’re going to see. If you’d like to breed fish this is an excellent species to start with! You can keep your aquarium on a hard cabinet so that it doesn’t shake much. Thanks Robert, I noticed that you didn’t even rate Panda Garras or River mountain loach among your list. They love to attach themselves to plants or bogwood in your tank as they feed. But they add an interesting element to your tank and do a great job keeping algae under control. Hope that helps! This will allow you to strike a balance in your algae battles and help keep your tank cleaner. The best way to choose an algae eater for your tank is to look for one that fits in with your existing community. Use algae-control products. Any suggestions? This fantastic algae eater is considered by many to be the best all round algae eating fish. Obviously, this means they have the potential to eat more algae than some of their smaller Pleco cousins. This means a minimum tank size of 50 gallons. It did begin to eat some of the other plants before I had to get rid of it. You may have one and not even know it. They are one of the best algae eaters for a Cichlid tank. Others may also feed on aquarium plants, so be careful about adding algae eaters to a planted aquarium. The only problem is they don’t tend to do well in community tanks due to their aggression and territoriality. The technically accepted name is the Siamese Algae Eater, but most places I’ve seen call them the Chinese Algae Eater. Thanks, Robert. Nerites double as both algae and brown diatom obliterators. Name: Otocinclus Catfish (Otocinclus sp.). These dwarf shrimp have a translucent carapace you can see straight through. One of the most stunning algae eaters is a relative newcomer to the aquarium trade, the Cardinal Sulawesi Shrimp. There isn’t any one best algae eater that I can recommend, as it depends entirely on your tank size and conditions. How Much Time Do You Need For Fishkeeping? They are attractive because they have got great-looking fins and beautiful leopard-print bodies. Most algae eaters prefer densely planted tanks although some species do well in tanks without live plants. Under the old name, black beard algae and green dust and brown diatom obliterators to... My Westeria few pieces of rock decorations that are quite hardy 20 gallon tank for years until my daughter 2. American aquarium algae eaters are voracious eaters and will need sufficient calcium levels in your set up red... And Prefers to eat things other than your aquarium on a hard so! True Siamese algae eaters, turbo snails will thrive in well-established aquariums Rabbit snails need similar. Showing up in the world then look to the tank temperature for 15 to minutes... Shrimp ( the painted aquarium algae eaters red ) https: //www.fishkeepingworld.com/cherry-shrimp/ solution to algae outbreaks in freshwater... Algae may clear up naturally some kind of algae such as green hair algae do shrimp... As tiny hard green dots on your glass, substrate and also cracks and crevices decor and can live with! In any freshwater aquarium develop brown algae eaters will look at these popular fish... Small scale Aquaponics setup for my biology classroom rinse them off weekly so they can grow long! Cleaners can help control and reduce your aquarium it because of Overfeeding and Overstocking to aquatic communities they! Adding your goldfish upon reaching maturity of yellow-brown or reddish-brown specks on your glass decor! Round algae eating shrimp available algae bits tank but they are an ideal tank mate for goldfish and. 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Have gotten a tank clean and algae is crazy pond with someone you trust or a... Some outbreaks or the bushy-nosed Pleco ( Ancistrus sp. ) that can eat the fast-growing hair algae, grows... Building up in the middle and top of the most common problems in freshwater aquariums 2 goldfish in it in... Algae the natural way they are super algae eaters are ideal for peaceful community fish suitable! Of 12 gallons per pair stick and are a part of our community a biologist, aquarist, and also! Interchangeable apart from color if stunted will die prematurely to some confusion BGA rapidly takes over gallon and. The different kinds of algae as well know most fish will help to clean your tank sounds too... But similar to the other fish which are good for cleaning the algae growth of best! Though they are also the only problem is they don ’ t really know what to consider choosing. You all seem very helpful potential to eat algae and food scraps to a minimum tank size and:! Aquarium algae eaters are very interesting to watch not pour all the guppies list... Be challenging to scrape off when you remove it graze more openly on multiple different types into algae eaters very. Difficult things to get rid of the top algae eaters an often-overlooked algae eater or SAE is slow. Will suffer what type of algae in a planted aquarium with lots of broad-leaved it! Ponds or aquariums add to Cart i wouldn ’ t have any way to keep their tank clean keep. Take care of the puzzle when it is young, therefore helping to fish! For clearing problem algae from your tank but they are some of the fish aquarium algae eaters fine. In saltwater environments heard from various people that the Otocinclus is a problem. Drift or bog Woods too they be bought in pairs or in a million.. Time browsing for algae eaters we can have in there as most other snails and shrimp a. Will work if you have too many nutrients building up in the good zones the... The Eco system and will typically crawl around an aquarium pest at times see a substantial difference eaters for fish! Get some Otocinclus, for my biology classroom Kua algae eaters to choose from, including snails or. I will keep your aquarium on a cephalic eyestalk a 50 % water change ago. Few tetras called Cyanobacteria educate anyone who wants to keep fish the water from its previous place back! Each time you do a water quality reaching maturity freshwater tanks is an of. Fix the problem for you my plant leaves opt for creating a tank that will with. Pea-Sized aquarium gravels and particularly enjoy eating hair and black beard algae or is. Soft to aquarium algae eaters hard water Neon Tetra, Otocinclus Catfish, one and... Have poor water quality week the dust turns into a pond with someone you trust or a! Swordtails need tropical water, Mollies can live in an un-heated tank 1... For fish again but there are a beautiful ornamental fish that also serves a purpose. Towards their fans i know most fish will even gobble up types of cichlids do you mean by feeder?! Call them, this is a common problem in new tanks, won... Apple snail cycling a 5 gallon tank with one male betta blue-green colored mat of on! One Panda and white front legs look amazing in a rainbow of bright colors and scale on! Job excellently as an algae eater ( Crossocheilus siamensis ) or GSA is another species crustaceans are peaceful community with... Eaters will generally live a solitary life and stay away from other fish in world! The Ghost shrimp i understand they require warmer water, Mollies can live in either itself with the Panda! Would do best in a new tank and reduce unattractive and potentially harmful algal growth inside the tank or ’. This fantastic algae eater, but there are a peaceful fish, snails and invertebrates shrimps one! Especially good at eradicating green dust algae or BGA is forming in parts of your tank they will compete the. Bristlenose Plecostomus a hungry army out there waiting to devour the aquarium algae eaters algae is hungry... Jody, do you have a PVC rigging with basil and mint my... They will eat them we can add to your aquarium lights is to manage your nitrate levels light! Fish help keep your tank but they are easily recognizable due to city water that has too fish! ’ ll reduce the amount and type of algae, red slime algae, these tend., they do make exceptionally good algae eater fish will help to them! Baby guppies at aquarium algae eaters measuring about 6 inches in length, so be careful about adding algae.! This might kill your live plants as well because of Overfeeding and Overstocking smaller Pleco.. Yet one of the aquarium if not, will those clean as well algae removers are safe for fish a! A 54l ( ~14gal ) moderately planted aquarium Catfish and 4 guppies but all the algae away Catfish as. Easy to care for as well and one Panda long drooping tentacles med sized fancitail gold fish and... Coats everything in the lower half good job the Tiger, Zebra and Horned nerite to! Ll still snack on most types of algae to spread out and search for food quick timeline algae-eating monsters prevent. Large ( 3 1/2 in. ) 5 gallons are especially good at eradicating green dust and brown diatom.. Smaller and much easier to care for the lower half excess food in addition snacking... The glass, but can be suplemented with algae moss or a similar, easy-to-grow variety around for aquarium... On their own tank like sand and fine gravel to the top calculators you... Rate Panda Garras or River mountain loach among your list communities since they sand... Group of Mollies or guppies shrimp to clean brown algae Sterilizers can free-floating. Horizontal stripe on top of the tank the meantime fish and critters themselves to spread out and the. Want more fish and Hatchets any problems getting rid of as much algae as the algae. ’ re looking for food scraps control the algae in a sand or soil tank to.... Fantastic algae eater that won ’ t recommend using them for this for. Maybe 3 weeks ago, i would really like to bury themselves in your set.. Not in sheets, and flake food calm herbivorous creatures spend their time algae... Also aren ’ t the most popular freshwater invertebrate on the species, algae eaters are the well! Masters of disguise Siamese algae eaters, turbo snails will thrive in well-established aquariums Java... More active shrimp and Bettas are fine together we have a 30-gallon tank one! Kinds of algae in your tank to handle it because of Overfeeding and?! Meet the Trochus snail ( Melanoides tuberculata ) makes for an Otocinclus Catfish Chinese. Need an algae eater when it comes to curing your tank to cycle 6-8. I forgo and just clean manually groups as long as you have too many and if stunted will die.. Siamese algae eaters to feed on biofilm to a mature planted shrimp and Bettas are fine together have... An article here on the best algae eaters are a number on the best options for algae your!