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Old 01-01-2019, 05:42 PM   #1
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How much is TOO much for a 10 Gallon heavily planted tank?

Hello! I know this is a little lengthy for context but please read!

If the title has not said it enough, I am caring for my very beautiful 10 gallon planted tank, with many more plants to come! However, i am running into a problem: ALGAE! Not an extreme nuisance mostly because it just appears on the walls or on my wood/rocks which i simply scrub away with a tooth brush! The real issue i am having is with it on my live plants!! My java ferns do not seem too affected it is my other plants (My ludiwigias) that are being overrun! I gently scrub each leaf delicately with my fingers and this has proven very effective in removing the brown algae but i am getting to a point where i am sick of doing this every single time for every single leaf of my 3 plants... I am upgrading the lighting however: from a standard Nicrew LED light to a Nicrew ClassicLED Plus Full Spectrum, so perhaps the new lighting will eliminate some of the problem!

GETTING TO THE POINT: I would like to add 3 otocinclus catfish to my tank, i keep up with weekly waste removal(from plants) and water changes and with added plants in the future, i believe the bioload could handle the new catfish. The tank is currently inhabited by: 1 Dwarf honey gourami, 2 nerite snails, and 3 cherry barbs. Would the addition of 3 otos be too much?Thank you for reading
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Old 01-01-2019, 07:30 PM   #2
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A few questions first.
Is the tank cycled already?
What filter are you using?
How large of water changes are you doing?
Are you using any nutrient rich substrate or fertilizers of any kind?

You could get away with it as long as you have good filtration and you keep up on water changes. I would choose to find the root cause of the algae instead of using fish or chemicals to get rid of it. Algae is due to excess light or nutrients. Right now you don't have enough plants to out compete the algae. Your lighting could have been a factor in this also. I would get the tank ironed out and planted more before adding more fish.
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Old 01-01-2019, 08:56 PM   #3
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Thank you for replying! Let me answer all your questions for extra information:

The tank is indeed cycled. None of my levels are spiking and my pH is very stable.
I am using the Fluval Nano 10-15 gallon filter
My water changes are approximately 25-30% weekly, and i remove all loose debris and detritus on the tank floor via gravel vac.
I have added some SeaChem Flourish to the tank as i have quite a few plants in there, however my algae has not gotten worse since adding it, in fact the addition of plants has seem to slowed it's growth but it continues to grow even after i remove it. I am also using Caribsea Eco Complete Substrate.
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Old 01-01-2019, 09:29 PM   #4
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How many plants do you have? You stated 3 earlier. Pictures always help.

How long are your lights on for? Do you have them on a timer?
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Old 01-01-2019, 10:29 PM   #5
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The tank had around 4 plants currently planted in the substrate and quite a few pieces of java fern attached to the drift wood, along with some duck weed floating on top. Here is a pic of my setup! Also my lights are on for approximately 8-9 hours a day.

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1m4-...ew?usp=sharing
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Old 01-01-2019, 11:04 PM   #6
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I have around 5-7 plants in the substrate, then 3 pieces of drift wood that all have pieces of java fern here and there, I also have some duck weed that floats on the surface. My lights are on for 8-9 hours a day, no more than 9. I do not have them on a timer yet. Below is a google docs link with a pic of my setup!

https://drive.google.com/file/d/1m4-...ew?usp=sharing
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Old 01-02-2019, 05:51 PM   #7
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I've always read that otos prefer larger numbers, more like 6, and they are also sensitive to water parameters. Based off that I wouldn't recommend them just for the sake of trying to control algae. I'd look into the root problem, which from your posts I would suspect too much lighting, but I'm not 100% sure. I don't thinking changing out your lights will solve that problem.
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