Otocinclus vs. Nerite vs. Amano - which one?
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Old 10-03-2012, 04:37 AM   #1
atom
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Otocinclus vs. Nerite vs. Amano - which one?


Which of these 3 would be best for a 5 or 8 gallon setup? I'm pretty sure I know the answers, but I just want confirmation and other opinions.

Otocinclus - would love to get one, but I guess they live in groups and are quite sensitive.

Nerite Snail - had one before. Loved it's algae consuming power. Hated all the poop left visible on the sand! Will it dig up my plants?

Amano Shrimp - not great for glass and always stole the food from my other fish! What are they good for?

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Looking for something to clean up some algae on plants, glass, maybe eat the scum off the wood, but won't steal food from other fish (p.s. I realize the oto will have to be fed, which I have no problem doing).

Who to choose?

Last edited by atom; 10-03-2012 at 04:53 AM.. Reason: included more details
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Old 10-03-2012, 04:55 AM   #2
Hidden Walrus
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I currently have a 5 gallon cherry shrimp colony tank that had an outbreak of black brush algae. It was recommend I buy a zebra nerite snail, so I did. Well, he ate a little bit of it but not down to the roots. But within a day he had completely scraped off all of the regular green algae that was starting to grow on my rocks and driftwood. I didn't necessarily mind that algae, but the fact that he had All of it gone in a day tells me that they're good algae eaters. I imagine that in a tank with a ton of algae on the glass the nerite would be best.

I kept amano shrimp before as a kid. I tossed two in a neglected ten gallon about four times overstocked with platies and which was completely overrun with regular green algae, so much that every wall was covered and even the front pane was pretty funky. Coincidentally, these guys are very, very hardy. In the ten years that tank had been set up it had had 3 water changes, all in the first year. The nitrate was no doubt incredibly high and they still lived for a few years but eventually jumped out. Anyway, it took a year, but eventually they had the glass about two thirds clean and much improved, and then they didn't clean it anymore. I think that once they had eaten up that much algae, there was nothing left to let them cling to the glass so they couldn't eat any more. But they maintained it at that level. They completely cleaned the ornaments of algae as well. I find them worth keeping just because they're interesting little animals.

I only kept otos once, and they lived for about three hours, so I can't speak much of them.
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Old 10-03-2012, 04:58 AM   #3
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They all eat different types of algae so it depends on what you have infesting your tank. Otos eat diatoms (brown algae) and biofilm. Nerites eat GSA and other hard algaes. Amanos consume hair and other filamentous algaes.
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Old 10-03-2012, 04:59 AM   #4
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Nerite snails don't dig up rooted plants but knock around small ornaments and driftwood as they like to hide under them during the day.

Otos rarely accept prepared foods, I hear. So maybe not the best bet.

Amano shrimps will go up to the surface and float upside down to eat floating fish food, if this counts as "stealing". They also do best in pairs or groups of at least 2 or 3.
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Old 10-03-2012, 05:42 AM   #5
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i think its up to you. 1 oto, couple snails or a couple amanos would all work.

i have an oto and 2 lrg amanos in my 6gal and they keep things in check. oto to clean the glass, shrimps to clean the grass.
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Old 10-03-2012, 07:10 AM   #6
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Will nerites eat the fungus (white cloudy bits) from driftwood?

My concern with the nerite besides the constant pooping is whether or not it will uproot newly planted marsilea and Hydrocotyle sibthorpioides.

I have some algae (it's either green or brown, not sure) growing on marsilea and mine grows tall. Would an oto or nerite get to it? The leaves aren't very large for them to balance on.

I have amanos in another tank and I'm never sure what they are eating. They are always picking at something. Guess I'll have to get an oto or nerite for the glass.
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Old 10-03-2012, 07:45 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Dany08fa View Post
i think its up to you. 1 oto, couple snails or a couple amanos would all work.

i have an oto and 2 lrg amanos in my 6gal and they keep things in check. oto to clean the glass, shrimps to clean the grass.

Otos do best in groups, not as singles.
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Old 10-03-2012, 08:00 AM   #8
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Otos do best in groups. They will eat prepared food. They are pretty hardy. Got a few in a ridiculously overstock 10g livebearer tank and they're doing great. Nerites are good as well. They move faster than you'd think. Amanos are also a good choice. I'd get all three!

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Old 10-03-2012, 06:12 PM   #9
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Otos and very small nerites will clean algae off of leaves.

Nerites shouldn't be a problem uprooting plants because they don't really dig, they just knock smaller things around a bit.

Amano shrimp, and most other shrimp, will eat the funk that grows on driftwood. depending on just what the funk is (it could be several things) otos or nerites may also eat it.
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