Number of algae eaters - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #1 of 26 (permalink) Old 02-28-2003, 12:01 AM Thread Starter
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My only algae eating fish has died and i need some new replacements, how many siamese algae eaters would you recommend for a tank my size?

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post #2 of 26 (permalink) Old 02-28-2003, 01:56 AM
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Otos would be much better for you in your small tank. You'd need at least two Siamese Flying Fox and they rapidly grow to a fat 4". Tyr 6 otos and you'll be better off.

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post #3 of 26 (permalink) Old 02-28-2003, 01:28 PM
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In my experience Otos and SAE eat different types of algae. I have both in all my tanks except for my 10 gallon.
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post #4 of 26 (permalink) Old 02-28-2003, 11:14 PM Thread Starter
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I have found Otos at my local fish store for 1.49$ (is that a good price?) would 6 of them be to much for my tank? I do not want to overdo the bioload

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post #5 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-01-2003, 02:57 AM
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For SAE's, I've heard folks recommend one SAE per 5 gallons of water. As for your bioload, I'd suggest you let your nitrate levels help guide you.

The old rule of "1 inch of fish per gallon of water" was based on a non-planted aquarium. Further, it's obvious that one 6" pleco will make a lot more waste than six 1" mollies.

With thriving plants, you can probably safely exceed the old rule. Many of us have to add nitrate to our aquariums because the plants suck up more nitrogen than the fish can produce.

Go slowly. Test your nitrate levels (ammonia and nitrite should always be zero but it's goot to have nitrate at 5 - 10 ppm to help feed the plants). Keep doing your regular partial water changes. Add a few fish and wait for things to stabilize again. Then re-test and re-evaluate. You'll be surprised and pleased at how much better a planted tank is at keeping happy fish!

Take care...

Tim

P.S. About 95% of the fish sold at the LFS as SAE's are NOT really SAE's. Look carefully. The lateral line should extend into the clear part of the tail. When the fish lays on the bottom, it should sit on its pectoral fins, not lay flat with its belly on the bottom. The "false" SAE's are known to get aggressive toward other fish as they get older. True SAE's continue to be kind to their tankmates, even as full-grown adults.

Chief 51, Engine 511, Engine 513, Rescue 511, respond to an algae outbreak at...
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post #6 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-19-2003, 07:23 PM
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I have 18 ottos in a 90 gal heavily planted tank. The little buggers never stop working. I don't know if it's them or the co2 and plants that are keeping the tank clean as a whistle. Probably a combo of the two.
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post #7 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-20-2003, 01:41 AM
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"One SAE per 5 gallons"! That can't be right! They get really big.
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post #8 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-24-2003, 07:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lanstar
For SAE's, I've heard folks recommend one SAE per 5 gallons of water
That's way too much.

I would recommend 1 Ottocinclus Cat per 5-10G but definitely not SAE. Those get big and will disturb heavy planted tank.
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post #9 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-24-2003, 08:39 PM
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I'll bet they meant 1 per 25 gallons, eh?
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post #10 of 26 (permalink) Old 03-29-2003, 11:40 PM
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I have 2 SAE's in my 55 gallon tank. They keep the tank clean!
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post #11 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-29-2003, 10:50 PM
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What exactly us an SAE? Are they the same as Chinese Algae Eaters? I purchased 2 small ones for my 55g planted tank when the stuff started showing up, and boy did they take care of the problem. I can't believe how much better the tank looks now.
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post #12 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-30-2003, 02:41 AM
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As Lanstar stated at the bottom of his post, there is a difference between the Flying Fox and the SAE. There is also a difference between the SAE and the Chinese algae eater (which, in my opinion, should be avoided). Here is a link over to Arizona Aquatics that may help explain a bit:

http://www.azgardens.com/index2.htm

Click on Shrimp and Fish and then click again on Siamese Algae Eating Fish (SAE)-Good for Hair Algae.

I hope this helps a bit.

[SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
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post #13 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-30-2003, 10:05 AM
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There is also a difference between the SAE and the Chinese algae eater (which, in my opinion, should be avoided).

Momotaro, please explain...

Did you mean the CAE should be avoided? If so, why.

Thanks.
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post #14 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-30-2003, 12:39 PM
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Chinese Algae Eaters get very aggressive when they get larger. They will actually kill other fish.
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post #15 of 26 (permalink) Old 04-30-2003, 04:09 PM
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The Chinese algae eaters do get quite agressive when they hit the 4-6 inch size. It should also be noted that they may also stop eating algae at that size!

Generally speaking I keep 1 otto per 5 gallons of water, and SAE's in tanks that are 4 feet long (or larger). Algae eating Shrimp from the Cardina genus are also really useful, and larger fan shrimp also help keep suspended algae out of the water column
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