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Old 04-08-2006, 09:34 AM   #1
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algae eater suggestion?

Looking for some thoughts on this...

My tank is 29 and cycled.I've added some extra light and a few live plants.Since then I've had more algae then before (both brown and green) and I'd like to get some in the tank help.

I know snails can help but if I go that route I want to choose something that won't reproduce like crazy and drive me nuts.Honestly I think snails would make a good addition if I can keep em under control.

A also wouldn't mind adding another fish either,but I'm pretty well populated:

Two dwarf Gourami (sp)
Three male gups
Four neons
Three skirt tetras
Two cory cats
1 female platy
I dwarf frog
and a few ghost shrimp

What do I have room for fish wise?Do I have room for another small school?I want to stay away from the CAE just because they will get to large eventually.
Its lightly planted with a some slate built caves.


What would you add to this tank for a little algae help?

Thanks as always,
Fatz
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Old 04-08-2006, 09:48 AM   #2
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I also have a 29 and wanted to stay away from plecos because the size. thought about sae's and ended up with oto's. very happy i did. takes a few but man can they clean. all my plants look amazing now and they are making their way to the glass.
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Old 04-08-2006, 10:01 AM   #3
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What is your current wpg of light? How often do you perform water changes?
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Old 04-08-2006, 10:01 AM   #4
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How many do you have?The profile says best in group of six or more.I don't think I want to add that many...other wise sounds like a good choice.

WPG is just above 1.2....50% at least once a week.
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Old 04-08-2006, 10:03 AM   #5
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I only got 2, I have low light right now, so I dont think the plants thrive enough to keep the algae down. but the otos do a great job of it.
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Old 04-08-2006, 10:05 AM   #6
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There are some cae that stay within 6" , like the bristle nose. Although I would say sae would be ur best bet, if not the otto's, there are the golden algae eaters, twig cats ect.
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Old 04-08-2006, 10:14 AM   #7
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Common Ramshorn AKA Red Ramshorn NOT the Columbian Ramshorn

Black Mystery Snails

Nerite snails, these snails don't reproduce in freshwater.
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Old 04-08-2006, 10:23 AM   #8
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If I go the snail route...how many would you recommend?
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Old 04-08-2006, 11:49 AM   #9
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Here's another vote for the Oto's. While best kept in sizes 6 and greater, I have had great luck in my 20. I started off with 3, 1 died (they apparently have a HIGH mortality rate), then 2 weeks ago I went back to the LFS and got 2 more (both have been great).

You could easily get 4 in your tank and not have a problem with overstocking, as they are small and stay small. While they do produce a good amount of waste as any algae eater does, due to their size its virtually insignificant, and their benefits outweigh the negatives.

They are also very interesting to watch school. When I had the 3 I didn't see too much social behavior (probably because one was ill), but after adding the last 2, I normally find 3 of them together roaming the tank, and one of the originals is more solitary.

If buying from an LFS there are a couple things that are very important to get survivors:

1. Buy the biggest ones they have, these are generally heartier fish and will survive better during acclimation

2. Acclimate very slowly. Float the bag, add small amounts of water from the tank to the bag, then add the Oto's.

3. Find out when they get Oto shipments in and wait a couple days after the shipment arrives. Yes you might miss out on some of the larger ones that get bought right away, but you might have also avoided deaths.

4. Make sure their diet is supplimented with raw produce (cucumber, squash), algae wafers, and shrimp pellets (surprisingly my Oto's love the shrimp pellets?). While it may appear they have all the food they need, there might be a type of algae they are not likely to eat, and during the acclimation period you want them as strong as possible. They should always have FAT chubby belly's and be pooping almost constantly.

IMO much more enjoyable to watch then snails!
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Old 04-08-2006, 12:27 PM   #10
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otos are cool, but they do have a high mortality rate, like 7enigma said. i had 6 otos in my 92 gallon and my rocks were COVERED with green algae, but the otos would not touch the stuff. 4 of those otos died mysteriously
i'm pretty sure they only eat certain kinds of algae. however, i got 2 bristlenose plecos added and they've been great for clean up, though i should have definetely added more because they can't even keep up with all the algae i'm dealing with.

bristlenose plecos stay small as they are dwarfs and they do not exceed 4.5 inches, and as far as i know, they rarely get over 4.

hope that helps
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Old 04-08-2006, 12:42 PM   #11
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Snails will eat your plants if they get hungry, so I'd not go with them. I'd go with otociculus catfish (6+) or a bristlenose pleco. If I had to chose personally, I'd go with the pleco.
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Old 04-08-2006, 12:47 PM   #12
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Snails just don't do that great a job with algae control honestly. IF you want id add just maybe one apple snail (they don't reproduce if you just have one.)

For algae control your best options are Bristlenose pleco's, True SAE, and Oto's. Of those the Bristlenose pleco is my absolute favorite.
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Old 04-08-2006, 01:55 PM   #13
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Thanks guys...I'm off to the LFS with either otos or a bristle nose pleco coming home.I'll decide after I get there I suppose.Thanks again for all the replies.
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Old 04-08-2006, 02:11 PM   #14
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im rootin for the bristlenose!
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Old 04-08-2006, 02:27 PM   #15
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i have had no luck with otos, either they die or don't touch the fuzz algae.... after just a week with 3 true SAEs the fuzz algae is gone, im hoping now they work on my brush algae
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Old 04-08-2006, 03:43 PM   #16
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Otos it is...four of em are acclimating now.I went to a larger fish only store in a near by city because I know my locals don't carry the bristlenose plecos.
As it turns out,the store with the larger selection didn't have them either so my decision got a whole lot easier lol.

Thanks again,
Fatz
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