Algae control in 5g fry tank - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-09-2013, 03:46 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: York , PA
Posts: 36
Algae control in 5g fry tank

I have 2 tanks now. I started with a little 5 gallon that I learned on and went to a 36 g bow front. And when my mollies started spitting out fry I couldn't help but set up the 5g as a fry tank. Luckily I never really tore it down and had established substrate, plants, filter media! I have ramshorn snails, tadpole snails, and found 2 MTS at a local pet store. I am manually removing the hair algae but there is an awful lot of green growing on the glass. My plants are growing like weeds. No algae issues in the bigger tank even though it has the same plants and the same standard, came with the tank lighting. Wysteria, horn wort, anacharis, java fern, bacopa (I think) frog bit, duckweed, and a few stems of something I am still not sure what it is but it grows well. The snail population took a huge hit in my "learning years" when I THOUGHT and was TOLD that ghost shrimp are community, peaceful dwellers....

They are not....

I watched as they snatched snail shells and ripped them out to munch on writhing bodies....shells were my new substrate...then they turned on my fish (before the fry though).... Fish went missing bodies....I had no idea till I watched a ghost swim by with a guppy head....the shrimp were sent with a local teacher for a small aquarium with a goldfish. I figure the goldfish will either take care of them or water quality will take care of them. Regardless the zombie flesh eating shrimp are gone. But I digress. Just had to throw in my opinion of ghost shrimp.

So, I am looking for some sort of critter to help with tank algae clean up in a 5g. I do have 2 cories in the fry tank and they do great with left over food. WHen they get too big they can join the other Cories in the big tank and I"ll get 2 more itty bitty ones...I have a feeling the rapid algae growth has everything to do with the multiple feedings a day and my overfeeding. I am trying to get that right, but since it is only gravel substrate and standard with the tank bulb (no direct sunlight), the rapid growth has to be from food or poop....

Any suggestions?
Oh and anyone near the York PA area...I got lots of Mollies....ranging from 2 months old (1st batch born on Christmas eve) dalmations to a few day old mutts....
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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-10-2013, 10:46 PM
Wannabe Guru
Join Date: Aug 2011
Location: Denver, CO
Posts: 1,703
Most algae growth won't hurt the fry. There is actually a lot of micro-fauna and flora that thrives in that condition which serves as natural food for fry.

Neocaridina dwarf freshwater shrimp such as the Red Cherry Shrimp (Painted Fire Red variants of this shrimp can be found now for as low as $1 per shrimp in the swap n shop at times) should peacefully coexist with the fry and knock down some of the algae.

Otos are most likely fry safe (they don't seem to bother shrimp fry).

BTW, your opinion of ghost shrimp seems to be pretty spot on.

Now that neocaridina shrimp are becoming so common I really wonder why they haven't become more popular as feeder shrimp. My guess is that they aren't as cheap in huge volumes but I know for a fact that there are hobbyists who grow them in tanks and use them as feeders in cichlid tanks.
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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-12-2013, 12:23 AM
Algae Grower
Join Date: Nov 2011
Location: Canada
Posts: 116
Otos and cherry shrimps are your best bets. but algae never hurt fry. Not to mention mollies are known to eat algae as well. If you want to seriously combat it. water changes are your best bet.
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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-12-2013, 01:24 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: Broomfield, CO
Posts: 726
Nerites, maybe?

How I feel about non-planted aquariums.
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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-12-2013, 08:46 AM
Algae Grower
Join Date: Sep 2012
Location: UK
Posts: 71
I agree with ots as they are very small but manage to eat a good volume of algae for their size. They are more effective for their body weight than a larger pleco
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-17-2013, 12:45 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: York , PA
Posts: 36
Thank you all for the replies! I am now finding the black hair looking algae on my plants. I try to scrape it off but that only breaks off the plant. Trying to monitor it as the fry do love to peck at the plants! I retested my water and found my nitrites were very high. Overfeeder galore. Still working on that. Just gave away about half the tank of fry to a friend and her mother in law so at least I can get the waste load down. I am going to start more frequent water changes as well.

A local pet store owner will take whatever fry I cant give away and I enjoy waiting for the babies to be born, melting down when I find them and frantically trying to get them out, then watching them color up and grow! I used to breed leopard geckos on a large scale but had to stop due to many reasons so this is a nice reminder of all I enjoyed with that! I am just still trying to learn the little things!

I am also fighting the urge to turn my entire rec room into tanks tanks tanks.....
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old 03-17-2013, 12:51 AM Thread Starter
Algae Grower
Join Date: Apr 2012
Location: York , PA
Posts: 36
And I am going to keep my eyes open for some otos or cherry shrimp!
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