Bad Good Friday

Discussion in 'Freshwater Beginners' started by Zenial, Apr 1, 2010.

  1. ZenialValued MemberMember

    This is:
    A) A warning against Golden/Chinese Algae Eaters
    B) To find out what my next move should be.

    This morning a woke up to find pieces of my favourite White Cloud scattered across the tank, one piece still being chewed on. And one dead Chinese Algae Eater, again half eaten. These fish are by far the worst thing to ever happen to my tank. I bought them unknowingly from my LFS, and I didn't have the heart to flush them... <evil>maybe I should have.</evil> As juveniles they're meant to eater algae, and as adults eat meat. At the moment they're still juveniles with Golden colour, but no, they must have caught wind that you can eat fish on Good Friday :( I want to thank Nutter for trying to warn me, but I didn't heed this warning soon enough. These 3 evil fish have now been moved to a 4G tank. I'm feeding them algae wafers (which are actually made of wheat, but whatever).

    While I was moving the CAEs, I broke my fry tank, which I had hanging in the aquarium empty after missing my last platy labour about 1 week ago. HOWEVER, there are two platy babies I found hiding in my plants today. There's doing a great job to not be eaten by my nicer fish! But they have a great bundle of plants to hide in now so fingers crossed!

    So, on Tuesday: 1x new fry tank: plastic or net? (I don't think I'll try put the current babies in there, because it's just as likely if I scare them, they'll swim out and be eaten) and maybe some Siamese Algae Eaters, but I'm not sure how many (if any, with the Chinese Algae Eaters in my tank, I couldn't SEE any algae... time will tell).

    Sad day... again, don't ever get these fish
  2. gremlinWell Known MemberMember

    I'm sorry you had a bad experience with your CAE. I agree, they are not for everyone. I happen to love mine. I'm assuming you had three cae's in your 45 gallon? If so, that could have been a good bit of the problem. I would recommend 1 cae in nothing smaller than a 55 gallon - for three cae's, they would need at least 100 gallons - just because they can be very territorial. The cae in your picture looks quite small still. What and how much were you feeding the cae's? Even when they are small, they have huge appetites and can polish off several algae wafers in one night. With three in the tank, they could have been fighting over food or territory. How many caves do you have for them to hide in? With three cae's, there should be at least 5 caves or ledges or hollow logs to provide cover.
    I only have one CAE. He/she shares with 2 plecos, 3 cories, multiple goldfish, multiple mosquito fish, and multiple american flagfish. I have never had a problem with aggression, but then my cae has a 180+ gallon pond with two rock shelves and multiple pond lilies to use to hide in. Even when I bring my 6 cleaning crew in for the winter, I still don't have any problems. They are fed about 15-20 algae wafers plus 5-8 bottom feeder tablets each night. They key to success with the cae is to think of it as a giant fish and provide for it adequately.
    Here is a picture of mine - I will have had this CAE for 2 years on June 14, 2010.

    Attached Files:

  3. ZenialValued MemberMember

    Ok, I over reacted before, my apologises. But you can imagine how upset I was to see them having my other fish for breakfast :(

    The picture was from a quick google search, so other newbies (like myself) could identify them and not buy these fish, it has become very apparent they're not an everyday hobby fish. Mine are about 8cm long. Yours is very impressive.

    I'd always feed them a lot of wafers, I've had to bury them under the gravel a little; when they surface, the other fish help demolish them quickly. And they had a lot of places to hide (10), because I knew they were very territorial - just not THAT territorial. They had shown no signs of aggression to other fish until now, if one were to swim close, they'd have no reaction.

    In the 4G at the moment, I have it full of castle ornaments and half a dozen algae wafers, which are still there at the end of day 1. But this isn't an appropriate long term solution. If my 45G can only accommodate 1 CAE, what am I to do with the other two? I have my 5G betta, 5G quarantine (currently housing neeon tetra), my 4G and my mother's 40G tank with angelfish. Not great opinions.

    Hehehe, I just recall now when I was looking for algae eaters at the LFS, he advised me to buy 20 for my 45G. It's just a funny thought, nothing more.
    Last edited: Apr 2, 2010
  4. navyscubaWell Known MemberMember

    If you are looking for some fish that keeps your algae down I say Ottos. Sorry for your loss.
  5. gremlinWell Known MemberMember

    No apology needed. I can understand how frustrating and upsetting it can be.

    Thank you. I keep wondering just how big mine will end up. and no, they are not a good fish for just anyone. Just like goldfish, they need more than most people realize.

    Sounds like you were trying to do everything right. You probably would do fine with just one in the tank.

    You might be able to return two of them, if you want to keep one. Or return all three and try a different algae fish. I've heard several good things about the bristlenose pleco... The only tank you have listed that would work for a cae is the 45 gallon, and then yes - only one cae. You might be able to put one in the 40 gallon with the angelfish, but I'm not sure I would do that. Once the cae's learn that live fish are edible, it can be difficult to break them of the habit.
    Do you feed them in the morning or at night? Mine is most active at night so I put the wafers and tablets in around 10pm. They are all gone within 30 minutes. I've tried watching to see who eats what, but they won't come out of their hiding places unless the light is off and the room is dark.

    20. Seriously?!?!?!? I would not trust anything that person ever told me. That is just mind boggling! Did he think you were only "storing" them until they could eat each other? Sheeesh - some people (the store person, not you).
  6. ZenialValued MemberMember

    Thank you for all your help Gremlin, I'm a lot wiser for it.

    Unfortunately, I can not return the fish; not even sure I could give them away to LFS. I'll have to think if I know anyone personally who could use one or two. I will keep one.

    I mainly fed them in the morning. I'll change to feeding at night. I was watching them last night while the heater light was on, feeding them more wafers. They think they're so cute. :;a I know what they did!!!>:D
  7. MeenuFishlore VIPMember

    Hi Zennie. I am so sorry you are having a rough day. A word of warning - sometimes the LFS will have CAEs mislabeled as otos. Be careful, and make sure you know how to identify the difference.

    Also, if you decide you are not going to keep them, and nobody will take them, please don't flush. There are more humane ways to euthanize a fish. (But hopefully you'll be able to give them away).
  8. ElodeaWell Known MemberMember

    I wouldn't exactly call CAEs evil. I'd say they're just about as aggressive as some larger cichlids (like red devils and spawning convicts). On the other hand, they get a lot more bad rep because at a young age, they look perfectly innocent and seem like great algae eaters. Then, they go into little community tanks where they start growing and wreaking havoc. On the other hand, no one would put a red devil into a community tank no matter how small and harmless looking.

    I'm not saying that you're wrong. Personally, I'd hate a fish too if it decided to have its tankmates for lunch.
  9. ZenialValued MemberMember

    Of course not, I wouldn't hurt anything because it inconvenienced me. I was just angry, note <evil></evil> around it, heh. ^^
    At least Red Devils live up to their name. :p

    I admit I failed. That's very apparent. Inadequate research and purchased them back in the day I kind still thought the LFS knew something about fish. A rookie mistake. Now I can't let this problem linger any longer, it's been researched and discussed - many thanks! I can resolve the problem and move on. :)
  10. ElodeaWell Known MemberMember

    That's okay, all of us started this way. Don't even go into that day when I tried to stuff a common pleco into my 10 gallon tank...
  11. e_watson09Well Known MemberMember

    Are you sure your fish wasn't dead before the CAE got it? Sorry just trying to make sure we aren't blaming them for something they didn't do haha. A white cloud just seems like an odd target, if I recal they are small and kind of fast.
  12. ZenialValued MemberMember

    I took my CAEs back to the LFS I got them from. I told him what happen. He didn't give me a refund, he just took them back... which was fine! BUT HE IMMEDIATELY DUMPED THEM INTO ANOTHER TANK! My poor babies! I felt like a bad mother, watching someone else slap my kids. :(

    I bought a filter there for full price $89.95, to use as a second filter in my 45G, then in a convenience store moments later, I found the exact same filter for $24.95! I tried to get it refunded and got "store credit"....... so sick of that guy. :(

    ....I miss my CAEs!