Small algae eaters 20 Gallon Tank

Discussion in 'Aquarium Stocking Questions' started by aptrev, Jul 6, 2014.

  1. aptrevNew MemberMember

    Hi all - first post!

    I've had my 70L freshwater tank going for about six months now. I have 10 neon tetras and 6 rummy nose tetras in a well planted tank and they seem to be happy. I've always wanted to get a catfish or something like that, because I think sucker fish would be an interesting addition. I get algae growing on the plants and I find it hard to clean them without damaging the plant, so a fish that could help would be ideal.

    I just am not sure what species to get! I would prefer a smaller fish, nothing much larger than 5 cm, so bristle-nose catfish would be too big. I read about otocinclus catfish, some sites say they're really easy to keep and others say they're difficult and die easily.

    Here's my tank:

    Any suggestions would be appreciated!

    Last edited by a moderator: Nov 23, 2018
  2. FiscCyning

    FiscCyningWell Known MemberMember

    Hello, welcome to Fishlore! I love your tank. The buildings are a cool and unique decor.

    Otocinclus are pretty sensitive fish and can be difficult to keep, plus they are a schooling fish so you would have to get several of them and your tank is already pretty fully stocked. If you really need an algae control critter your best bet would probably be to add a nerite snail to eat it.

    Often the best way to treat algae is to figure out the root cause of it and address that. This is usually related to water quality (high nitrates from over feeding, overstocking, and/or insufficient water changes) or excess light (is the tank near a window? How long are the lights left on each day?)

    We'd love to help you diagnose the cause of your algae problem and the best way to tackle it.
  3. OP

    aptrevNew MemberMember

    Thanks. I don't really have an algae problem, the tank walls only need cleaning every month or two. I just always end up damaging the plants when I clean the algae off the smaller leaves. Also catfish are cool.
  4. Thunder_o_b

    Thunder_o_bFishlore VIPMember

    Ottos are notoriously difficult to keep alive longer than a few weeks. I have have very mixed results over the years. Right now I have a school of five in a 44 gal pent. They are around 9 months in the tank, and doing well. They are wonderful little fish, and I love to have them.
  5. Coradee

    CoradeeModeratorModerator Member

    I love your tank, very creative!
    As others have said Oto's are not the easiest fish to keep & will only eat certain kinds of algae & soon starve if there isn't enough to sustain them, they need supplementary feeding with veg such as courgette.
    For your tank I'd go with FiscCyning & get a nerite snail, also reduce the time your lights are on & feed less.
  6. OP

    aptrevNew MemberMember

    Thanks guys. I don't have to clean algae from my tank very often - maybe every six weeks at the minimum. My gripe is the top of the plants are where the most algae is, and I can't seem to clean it off without destroying a plant. I can't see a snail going all the way to the flimsy tip of the plant to eat it.
  7. bescher

    bescherValued MemberMember

    A Siamese algae eater is a true algae eater and it's not a schooling fish.
    But they do love cleaning everything up plants ( they rest on and eat the algae not the plant) of course the walls of the tank and so on
    I don't have a algae issue either but I do have three if the Siamese algae eaters, wonderful to watch

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