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Old 08-25-2015, 03:27 PM   #1
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Good algae eaters in a acidic tank

I have a 12 gal acidic tank with cardinals and a betta. I've researched on what are good algae eaters but almost all of the ones I found are only suitable in high ph. Any suggestions?thanks!


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Old 08-25-2015, 06:57 PM   #2
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Tiger otocinclus are good for acidic water they like water 5.5-8.0 but be careful of ammonia when you first get them as it can shock and kill them if it's too hight when they enter the tank


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Old 08-25-2015, 08:58 PM   #3
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Tiger otocinclus are good for acidic water they like water 5.5-8.0 but be careful of ammonia when you first get them as it can shock and kill them if it's too hight when they enter the tank


Keep calm and drum on

Thank u so much. I don't know if my fish stores have any tiger otos. Is the regular oto the same?


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Old 08-25-2015, 09:05 PM   #4
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I think they're the same but regular ones prefer 5.5-7.5 and are just as frail. Test your water first and make sure it's not too much for them before getting any. And remember to get 7-8 as they like schools of 5-6 and some will inevitably die within a week.


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Old 08-25-2015, 09:09 PM   #5
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Yes otos would be great, or maybe assasin snails. Be careful with them though as they can turn 1 or two into fifty within a week...


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Old 08-25-2015, 09:10 PM   #6
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Also assasin snails will not eat that much algae as they are mostly predatory.


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Old 08-25-2015, 09:14 PM   #7
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Yes otos would be great, or maybe assasin snails. Be careful with them though as they can turn 1 or two into fifty within a week...


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Actually assassin snails aren't like most snails. They're one of the few that have genders and reproduce rather slowly. And they only eat algae as a last resort other than that they'll eat leftover food and any other snails they stumble across


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Old 08-25-2015, 10:10 PM   #8
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Otos need a well established tank and careful introduction.

I feel like I can't speak to Otos after losing 2 this week. But, I didn't lose any for the first 18 months and most people do.

My approach is to add them when diatoms appear or when the tank is 8 weeks old. They eat, in part, biofilm which is unseen stuff in established tanks.

I only buy ones that have been in the fish store for over a week, and then I drip acclimate them for an hour. (Drip tank water into their bag with a piece of airline with a knot in it). I don't met them out because their whiskers get caught in the net. I keep dipping water out of their bag and when it's pretty much all tank water in their bag I gently put their bag/container in the tank and let them swim out.

This worked for me for 4 sets of Otos of different species from 2 LFS stores and PetSmart. Never lost any till I had something odd come up this week.

People say they don't eat well but mine have all liked Omega One algae wafers.


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Old 08-26-2015, 08:53 AM   #9
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Actually assassin snails aren't like most snails. They're one of the few that have genders and reproduce rather slowly. And they only eat algae as a last resort other than that they'll eat leftover food and any other snails they stumble across


Keep calm and drum on

I know, but I was listing every fish that could even REMOTELY work.


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Old 08-26-2015, 08:57 AM   #10
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Otos need a well established tank and careful introduction.

I feel like I can't speak to Otos after losing 2 this week. But, I didn't lose any for the first 18 months and most people do.

My approach is to add them when diatoms appear or when the tank is 8 weeks old. They eat, in part, biofilm which is unseen stuff in established tanks.

I only buy ones that have been in the fish store for over a week, and then I drip acclimate them for an hour. (Drip tank water into their bag with a piece of airline with a knot in it). I don't met them out because their whiskers get caught in the net. I keep dipping water out of their bag and when it's pretty much all tank water in their bag I gently put their bag/container in the tank and let them swim out.

This worked for me for 4 sets of Otos of different species from 2 LFS stores and PetSmart. Never lost any till I had something odd come up this week.

People say they don't eat well but mine have all liked Omega One algae wafers.


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+1, otos can be super sensitive but they will devour algae and wont make a load of poop like loraciids will.


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Old 08-26-2015, 09:02 AM   #11
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Good algae eaters in a acidic tank

And Trainer_Ruby, not to sound rude but there is really no way to say this without sounding like a rude-knowitall, please don't take the tone wrong, but if you know so much about all these fish then why did you even need to post this thread? It seems like you know more than enough to line up a good set of algae eaters. Again, I don't mean to be rude at all, but there is really no way to say it without sounding rude. So sorry!!!


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Old 08-26-2015, 09:09 AM   #12
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And Trainer_Ruby, not to sound rude but there is really no way to say this without sounding like a rude-knowitall, please don't take the tone wrong, but if you know so much about all these fish then why did you even need to post this thread? It seems like you know more than enough to line up a good set of algae eaters. Again, I don't mean to be rude at all, but there is really no way to say it without sounding rude. So sorry!!!


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Nevermind wrong thread!


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Old 08-26-2015, 09:14 AM   #13
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I have a 12 gal acidic tank with cardinals and a betta. I've researched on what are good algae eaters but almost all of the ones I found are only suitable in high ph. Any suggestions?thanks!


080215 Yopoipoi, rest in peace. May the river of light guide your soul to the celestial waters above.

ottos are not necessarily sensitive as they are often kept in unsuitable conditions. Most tanks do not produce enough algae to sustain them long term. And for them to be secure in a school you will need a larger tank than 12 gallons imo. If your having normal "on the glass green algae". An algae magnet cleaner will work better, be cheaper and will not ever die. If your having more difficult algae try feeding twice a day what your fish eat in 30 seconds, no left overs. And also reduce the photo period to 8 hours or less.


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Old 08-26-2015, 09:18 AM   #14
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ottos are not necessarily sensitive as they are often kept in unsuitable conditions. Most tanks do not produce enough algae to sustain them long term. And for them to be secure in a school you will need a larger tank than 12 gallons imo. If your having normal "on the glass green algae". An algae magnet cleaner will work better, be cheaper and will not ever die. If your having more difficult algae try feeding twice a day what your fish eat in 30 seconds, no left overs. And also reduce the photo period to 8 hours or less.


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True, true... Otos arent really sensitive so much as they have a high metabolism and need specific living conditions but will be impossible to kill once they live in a school in a well established tank with tons of algae.


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Old 08-26-2015, 11:49 AM   #15
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I have a 12 gal acidic tank with cardinals and a betta. I've researched on what are good algae eaters but almost all of the ones I found are only suitable in high ph. Any suggestions?thanks!


080215 Yopoipoi, rest in peace. May the river of light guide your soul to the celestial waters above.

A. How long has this tank been up ? Can we see a pic ?

B. What color and where is the Algae ?

C. Are there live plants ?

D. What is your stock exactly ?
How many Cardinal Tetras ?

As was suggested, photoperiod should be reduced. I suggest 6 hours daily. Increase water changes ( small, but at least weekly) watch your feeding amounts. Add live plants or more plants.

If the algae is brown and the tank is new it may just be diatoms.

I love Otos. But don't add a fish just to eat algae. Only add if you have room and you can take care of them long term. Otos should be in groups of at least 3. More is better.

Algae is caused by too much light, over feeding, not enough water changes, or tap water with too many phosphates.




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Old 08-26-2015, 03:40 PM   #16
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Thank you all for suggestions and replies!!


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Old 08-26-2015, 03:44 PM   #17
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A. How long has this tank been up ? Can we see a pic ?

B. What color and where is the Algae ?

C. Are there live plants ?

D. What is your stock exactly ?
How many Cardinal Tetras ?

As was suggested, photoperiod should be reduced. I suggest 6 hours daily. Increase water changes ( small, but at least weekly) watch your feeding amounts. Add live plants or more plants.

If the algae is brown and the tank is new it may just be diatoms.

I love Otos. But don't add a fish just to eat algae. Only add if you have room and you can take care of them long term. Otos should be in groups of at least 3. More is better.

Algae is caused by too much light, over feeding, not enough water changes, or tap water with too many phosphates.




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Tank has been up forever.
Click image for larger version

Name:	ImageUploadedByAquarium Advice1440618064.254665.jpg
Views:	73
Size:	259.5 KB
ID:	277058

10 Terra's and one betta

No live plants.

Forest green to ivy green color of algae

I have the worst luck with plants. They always melt away even with the right water conditions and temperatures. I might try to redo my tank to a planted tank.


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Old 08-26-2015, 04:08 PM   #18
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Tank has been up forever.
Attachment 277058

10 Terra's and one betta

No live plants.

Forest green to ivy green color of algae

I have the worst luck with plants. They always melt away even with the right water conditions and temperatures. I might try to redo my tank to a planted tank.


080215 Yopoipoi, rest in peace. May the river of light guide your soul to the celestial waters above.

What light are you running? Would stick to Java ferns and Anubis with low light. And anything over low light involves a lot of work in keeping plants thriving... Fertilisers, co2 source, etc. looking at your tank I would say in, its current form, to buy an algae magnet, they really make quick work of any algae on the glass. And how sparsely decorated the tank is to once a month clean the decor conditioned water.
If get things like black hair algae cut the food rations and watch your nitrate levels to adjust WC schedule.

Not discounting the planted aquarium in anyway btw, they are beautiful and can make it go from an aquarium to art. If do decide to go down this road sure there's lots here including I who will gladly help


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Old 08-28-2015, 02:05 AM   #19
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Youre problem with plants dying is because of the sand most likely. Only specific plants can really grow in that stuff. Especially if you have fine sand that compacts hard. If you get plants for sand its actually best to have assasin snails in there to stir up the substrate. But i will be honest i think your tank the way it is now, looks great and adding green plants will take away of that ice/snowy looking theme you got there

Anyway i dont see the algae your talking about, can you take a close up of the algae please. From what i can see the algae is on the tips of that fake plant looks like green spot algae to me. That stuff nothing will eat.. Nerites, apple snails, siamese algae eaters, otto's no one will touch it trust me.. and its impossible to scrap off without some muscle.. Turn down the lighting period to 5-6 hours a day and in a few weeks to month it will vanish trust me. As for cleaning the glass. Get yourself an algae magnet those will clean up any brown algae and clear film that builds up on the glass easy, the green spot algae your going to need a fresh sponge with the rough surface on the other end to get rid of it. JUST DONT go to far to the sand, if you get sand in the sponge or the magnet... stop and toss it and get a new one.. Or youll enjoy a thousand tiny scratches


That or bleach the effected plants


Otto's will only eat mostly brown surface algae/diatoms , they tend to stay away from hair algae.. Otto's are also hard to keep when you first get them.. They are usually frail and starving from the stores so you could buy 6 of them and have 4 die in a few days or week.. But when you get ones that live they almost never die.
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Old 08-28-2015, 03:49 PM   #20
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I'm wondering why people are suggesting snails for a softwater tank.....

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