What will eat hair/fuzz algae?
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Old 05-09-2012, 10:15 PM   #1
rainbuilder
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What will eat hair/fuzz algae?


This stuff is going crazy in my tank, growing on sword leaves, covering my fissidens, living in my water sprite... I want a fish or invertebrate that will eat it. A fish is my first choice but are there invertebrates that will eat it? Would otocinclus or SAEs work?
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Old 05-09-2012, 10:56 PM   #2
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Nerites...they will eat it, but some of them will only go for it after they have starved your otos out of diatoms...beware of eggs...

Or toothbrush

I have heard that mollies might eat it, but no experience. Have also heard that mollies can take a liking to plants and still prefer flake
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Old 05-09-2012, 11:35 PM   #3
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Some suggestions:

1) Get nerites
2) Reduce light.
3) Feed fish every other day, take out what's not eaten in 15minutes.
4) Reduce nutrient dosage level.
5) More plants, preferably riparium or floating to assist in nutrient uptake so it's not left in water column for bacteria.
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Old 05-10-2012, 01:02 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AirstoND View Post
Some suggestions:

1) Get nerites
2) Reduce light.
3) Feed fish every other day, take out what's not eaten in 15minutes.
4) Reduce nutrient dosage level.
5) More plants, preferably riparium or floating to assist in nutrient uptake so it's not left in water column for bacteria.
1) Expensive and not worth the money because they cannot breed. I'm all about breeding.
2) I think I can do that, but all I have is 2 measly 100 watt equivalent CFLs.
3) Can do that.
4) I don't dose at all
5) I have frogbit and the tank is stuffed full of plants. The fish can't swim through a 4th of the tank due to plants and the rest has swords and other plants throughout.

It may be my light, but I haven't had a problem until now. And I have more plants than ever.
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Old 05-10-2012, 01:05 AM   #5
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I think SAEs are the most productive in terms of consuming hair algae. A single one will take care of all the hair algae you have.
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Old 05-10-2012, 01:12 AM   #6
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Mollies is what my LFS used. They did a great job at cleaning it up to. I think they also added amono shrimp but not 100% sure.
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Old 05-10-2012, 03:53 AM   #7
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I think SAE are so over rated. The bristle nose Pleco is where it is at. These guys will eat it all when young. Even once grown up they will clean up well. I have seen them eat it all.

Guess what they are easy to sex and breed happily in the aquarium. Perfect.

I have had BN plecos for years and no tank should be with out one.

I would say first you should try and figure out the cause of algae first then the fish can just keep it under control. Rams horn snails also are amazing at cleaning.
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Old 05-10-2012, 05:05 AM   #8
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BNs don't eat hair algae, at least mine do not. SAEs will, but they get large and you will need at least two of them as they like their own company. I don't know if you have enough space in your tank for 12" of (2) adult fish. Florida flagfish eat hair algae, stay smaller but can be a bit nippy.
I would try the less food and leaving the light on only for 6 to 8 hours each day first before I would opt for a fish to fix the problem.
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Old 05-10-2012, 02:41 PM   #9
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SAE do not get 12" more like 5-6" . The CAE can get 12" but that is rare in the aquarium.

My bn Plecos when young will keep All algea under control. They will not eat it when it's long hair but they will eat it when it's starting to grow. They get it before its gets too long.

I say fix the cause don't rely on a fish to keep your tank algea free.
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Old 05-11-2012, 12:03 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by snowflake311 View Post
...i say fix the cause don't rely on a fish to keep your tank algea free.
+1.
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Old 05-11-2012, 02:05 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Snowflake311 View Post
SAE do not get 12" more like 5-6" . The CAE can get 12" but that is rare in the aquarium.

My bn Plecos when young will keep All algea under control. They will not eat it when it's long hair but they will eat it when it's starting to grow. They get it before its gets too long.

I say fix the cause don't rely on a fish to keep your tank algea free.
I think he meant 2 6in fish = 12in of adult fish, not one 12in fish. You're both right.
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Old 05-11-2012, 03:29 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Snowflake311 View Post
I say fix the cause don't rely on a fish to keep your tank algea free.
Definitely better but it sure would be nice to have someone to do the job for me! I haven't changed anything recently, and it came up out of the blue so I don't know what happened. I've never had algae eating fish so it would be cool to own some...

Thanks everyone, I think I will likely get some SAE's if I can't fix the root of my problem.
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Old 05-11-2012, 03:57 PM   #13
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Herotilapia multispinosa would eat this algae, but I agree with finding root cause.
reduce lighting period ,thin out some plant's,increase flow to any dead area's,keep filter cleaned,harrass the algae with any tools suitable.
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Old 05-11-2012, 04:14 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MochaLatte View Post
Mollies is what my LFS used. They did a great job at cleaning it up to. I think they also added amono shrimp but not 100% sure.
+1 mollies are epic hair algae eaters

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Old 05-14-2012, 04:37 AM   #15
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+1 for the SAE. I bought 4 juvies and they grew to 5" in a few months. But they eat every kind of algae I have ever had in my tank and I've had it all. Just make sure you are getting TRUE SAE. A lot of places sell fish labelled SAE and they are not.
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