Recommendations on algae eaters

Discussion in 'Freshwater Fish and Invertebrates' started by Mifuluhu, Jul 3, 2016.

  1. MifuluhuWell Known MemberMember

    My 20 gallon planted tank is stocked with 6 tiger barbs, 3 rosy barbs and 6 peppered corys. No algae eaters and it shows.

    Snails, Chinese AE's, Plecos? What shall I do?

    Temp 78, PH 7.0, very established/cycled tank.

  2. PlatyloverFishlore VIPMember

    I wouldn't add any more fish, sounds like your overstocked already. I'd give your rosy barbs away. I think you might still be overstocked even if you do that. I'd recommend shrimp for cleaning.:)

  3. MifuluhuWell Known MemberMember

    I use a fluval canister 400 series and am heavily panted. Tests for amonia, nitrates, etc are always good. I can move the rosys to my 75g but they enjoy being with the Tigers.

    Maybe I'll try a snail or two to see. I have room for movement into other tanks.

  4. FettucciniWell Known MemberMember

    Whatever you decide to do, don't get a Chinese algae eater. They won't eat your algae, they get massive, and would likely kill your other fish at some point.
  5. KingDFishlore VIPMember

  6. PlatyloverFishlore VIPMember

    Well let's see if TexasDomer will agree that it's over stocked. I'd say it would be a good idea to move them to the 75g, but can you add 2-3 more? Also what's in your 75g currently?
  7. MifuluhuWell Known MemberMember

    Yes my 75 has plenty of space. 4 Angels and a large Plecos and feather fin syno. I originally planned to let them help cycle my 20g and than move up to the 75 with a few more for a school.

    And my syno gets hungry so I was making sure the rosys grew large enough to be safe with him
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 4, 2016
  8. PlatyloverFishlore VIPMember

    Ah ok, that should be fine then.:)
  9. MifuluhuWell Known MemberMember

    My original question was mostly about what algae eater would not be bothered by the Tigers.....I'm afraid they'll pick on snails.
  10. PlatyloverFishlore VIPMember

    If you where to swap the cories out you could get ottos?
  11. AlphonsusWell Known MemberMember

    if you do get ottos get at least 3, most people will usually get one but 3 increases the survival chance. The first week of an otto in your tank is the most important. Ottos are usually known as sensitive fish but once it is established in your tank it will live a good life. Drip acclimation might also increase the survival chance.
  12. Charles556Valued MemberMember

    ^I'd love to get a featherfin one day; they're cool-looking fish. Problem is is that one would definitely eat half of my current fish in one sitting :(

    Back to the topic on hand. Nerite snails and amano shrimp, as mentioned before by KingD, are great at tackling algae and dead plant matter. Nerites are better at cleaning smooth surfaces, especially glass, while Amanos are experts at attacking algae on leaves with weak support (i.e. aponogeton, crypts, planted wisteria/sprite).

    While these 2 species' bioload is relatively small compared to fish, they still add ammonia to the water. As such, don't throw in bagfuls of snails and shrimp; I'd say that 3 nerites and 5 amanos are a good place to start, if not even less.
  13. MifuluhuWell Known MemberMember

    Thanks Charles! I have heard shrimp would be easy pickin for barbs? I am new to snails, I just put a pair in my beta tank. It has taken them a couple of days but they are starting to clean the plants.

    Yes my feather fin is so beautiful but will eat anything in his path!image
    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 23, 2018
  14. Charles556Valued MemberMember

    Right, forgot to mention that. Oops.

    As long as the shrimp are bigger than the largest mouth in your tank, you don't necessarily have to worry about a barb outright swallowing a shrimp. That won't stop some fish from nipping, though. Enough nips are enough to drive any invert crazy. In addition, I would definitely not trust a big, 3 in rosy barb with shrimp. That's not even their full grown length!

    I'd say that the nerites are pretty safe to add in, as they aren't going to be swallowed by a barb anytime soon, and they don't have the same wavy-wavy eye stalks like their mystery snail brethren.

    It's always safe to start small and experiment, though. You can add one nerite to the tank and 1-2 ghost shrimp. If the nerite gets picked on, you can always return it to the store. If the shrimp die on you for whatever reason, whether it be harassment from the barbs or too much copper in the water (Who knows, it could happen), at least you didn't spend that much money on the ghosts.

    If the ghosts and the snail do well, then you can add the additional snails and the amanos.
  15. MifuluhuWell Known MemberMember

    Good rosys are chill (and again I'll move them when they are larger)'s the Tigers....they are nippy! Maybe I'll look for nerities and give them a shot!

    Plenty of thick plant areas to hide in, but I a really skeptical with shrimp.

    I am so worried about the rumored overpopulation of snails..., lol
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 4, 2016
  16. Charles556Valued MemberMember

    Nerites won't successfully breed in pure freshwater. They need to have brackish conditions in order for that to happen. The main thing you have do deal with are the occasional snail eggs stuck to glass/hardscape/plants.
  17. MifuluhuWell Known MemberMember

    I will keep my eyes out for some nerities!
  18. TexasDomerFishlore LegendMember

    How long do you leave the lights one? Does the tank get any sunlight?

    I'd work on finding out the cause of the algae and trying to fix it rather than add an algae-eating fish as a bandaid.
  19. Redshark1Well Known MemberMember

    What algae are we talking about? There are many types of algae.

    What is the algae growing on and what problem is it causing. Algae is a natural part of freshwater systems.

    I have algae in my Clown Loach aquarium on my wood and don't mind it. It feeds my Bristlenoses but they cannot remove much of it like a big plec would.

    I don't think it is a good practice to buy fish to eat algae and this rarely works anyway.

    If you have algae growing on the glass I would roll my sleeves up and get busy rubbing it off with an algae pad (specially designed for the job). This is a part of the weekly maintenance for me.

    Don't use a razor blade unless you don't mind having scratched glass. Also don't get gravel or sand in the pad for the same reason.
  20. AlphonsusWell Known MemberMember

    Kind of agree with Redshark1, it depends on the tank and aquarist. Most beginners might feel the urge to get an algae eater since they think they won't get any algae but they don't realize that once the algae is gone what is the fish gonna eat. One thing that you can do though is to get algae wafers which helps supplement the fish. There are normally 3 popular organism that eat algae in the hobby; otocinculus, amano shrimps, and nerite snails. These are true and safe algae eaters to put in your tank depending on the stocking. However you must take step to prevent algae outbreaks or such. I wrote a blog of different steps to prevent alga, check it out!

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