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Old 10-26-2013, 10:45 AM   #1
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Freshwater Sand Sifter?

I recently started a 38gal freshwater tank with beach sand substate and a few live plants. The only inhabitants currently in the tank are 6 leopard danios and a zebra nerita snail. I am looking for a good sand sifter to tackle the brown algae that's starting to form. I've been told that both Cory catfish & kuhlii loaches are good choices. Can Anyone provide any further input?
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Old 10-26-2013, 11:11 AM   #2
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Theres no such thing as a freshwater fish that will sift the sand as prolifically as saltwater, but there are some that will do the job. Cory cats are great, and one of my favorites. You can't beat snails though. Also, Ime kuhli loaches don't touch the algae.
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Old 10-26-2013, 11:12 AM   #3
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I have a good population of Malaysian Trumpet snails in one of my tanks. They keep the sand well mixed. The brown algae is likely diatoms, cut back one lighting and feeding it should go away on its own.
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Old 10-26-2013, 06:18 PM   #4
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The tank is in my cellar so it receives minimal natural light. I have the fluorescent lights on for 12 hours (9am to 9pm). What is the recommended amount of light required for live plants to flourish?
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Old 10-26-2013, 08:15 PM   #5
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I'm battling diatoms as well but I have gravel so I imagine sand is worse. Diatoms feed on silicates and is in most newly setup aquariums. Cut the lights to 6 hours in sure the plant will be fine with less lighting untill the diatoms clear up.
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Old 10-26-2013, 11:22 PM   #6
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What about clown loach
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Old 10-27-2013, 12:05 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by T1KARMANN View Post
What about clown loach
This is a 38 gallon. Clown loaches will get much too large.
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Old 10-27-2013, 01:46 AM   #8
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I have kuhli loaches in my 20 long and they sift through the sand looking for bits of food almost non stop. But then again my kuhlis are also really adventurous and like to hang out in the open during day or night.
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Old 10-27-2013, 12:39 PM   #9
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Diatoms are a natural phase of new tanks, once the silicates are gone, the diatoms will also go.

Lights on for 6-8 hours is plenty. I use timers.
Make sure you keep up weekly PWCs
Add root tabs ( every 45 days or according to directions) since it's straight sand, esp if you plan to add any Swords or Crypts ( my favorites)
Add your liquid or dry Ferts after your PWCs.

Too much light and not enough Ferts or a carbon source will grow Algae.

I love my Cories, just make sure you feed them meat based food. They aren't Algae eaters, but they will eat a wide variety.

Nerite Snails are awesome, but do not get one until you have enough Algae for it to eat. I only wipe my front glass so my algae eaters can clean the other 3 walls. I hardly get much algae, but I rotate mine between 4 tanks. My Otos love to clean plant leaves and walls of biofilm.
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Old 10-27-2013, 01:46 PM   #10
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Brown algae go for Nerite snails. Bought some for my daughters tank that she will leave the light on forever, 5 of the little buggers in a 20 keep it almost brown algae free.
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