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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
my 40 gallon has quite a bit of algae...so I went out yesterday and purchased 5 ottos to help clean it up....my tank has a betta....green neons....shrimp and nerites....I have now read that a betta is not a suitable tankmate and the substrate is too sharp...I used to be so much better at doing my homework. Sigh. I am really not worried too much with my betta....as he is fairly chill (used to coexist with corycats) and is peaceful in his tank now. My concern is the substrate. Can I cover my Eco Complete with some black gravel??? The tank is heavily planted but many open areas exist where my ottos could hurt themselves. The tank has been up and running since April btw. Thanks in advance. Also please note the ottos are in a quarantine tank right now so I have time to figure this out.
 

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If you have algae issues, you should try to get to the bottom of why. What's going on with the tank to create the problem? What are the dimensions of your tank? What specific lighting do you have? What's the photoperiod? How far away from the substrate is the light fixture? Plants? Fertilization specifics? Water parameters? Water change regimen? What do you feed? How often? How much? Could you post a photo of the tank?

Adding more livestock instead of resolving the issue can lead to more problems and worsening conditions. So let the tank nerd hive mind here on the forum help you figure out what's going on. Just try to give us as much detailed information as possible.

You don't need to cover Eco-Complete with anything. It'll be fine - even with Cories. Even with Otocinclus. Don't worry about that part.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
If you have algae issues, you should try to get to the bottom of why. What's going on with the tank to create the problem? What are the dimensions of your tank? What specific lighting do you have? What's the photoperiod? How far away from the substrate is the light fixture? Plants? Fertilization specifics? Water parameters? Water change regimen? What do you feed? How often? How much? Could you post a photo of the tank?

Adding more livestock instead of resolving the issue can lead to more problems and worsening conditions. So let the tank nerd hive mind here on the forum help you figure out what's going on. Just try to give us as much detailed information as possible.

You don't need to cover Eco-Complete with anything. It'll be fine - even with Cories. Even with Otocinclus. Don't worry about that part.
I do know why. The sun is lower in the sky and put sun into the room. We have had a sunny December. I also got a light for my houseplants and I believe even though it is not direct...it effected the tank. I did make a screen for the side of the tank to keep most of the light out...too late. Tank conditions have remained constant. 8hrs c02...8hrs light (Hiro pendant)...25 gallon change weekly on "Tank maintenance Monday"...fertilization on Monday and Friday with root fertilization once a month. I feed once a day and now cutting it some to get the greens and shrimp to eat more algae. There it is in a nutshell. I don't want to hurt my ottos.
 

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I do know why. The sun is lower in the sky and put sun into the room. We have had a sunny December. I also got a light for my houseplants and I believe even though it is not direct...it effected the tank. I did make a screen for the side of the tank to keep most of the light out...too late. Tank conditions have remained constant. 8hrs c02...8hrs light (Hiro pendant)...25 gallon change weekly on "Tank maintenance Monday"...fertilization on Monday and Friday with root fertilization once a month. I feed once a day and now cutting it some to get the greens and shrimp to eat more algae. There it is in a nutshell. I don't want to hurt my ottos.
What are your specific water parameters? Do you have a test kit to determine them?

Changing 25 gallons on a 40gal tank with plants, substrate & likely other hardscape seems excessive. Any specific reason you change so much?

Which specific Hiro pendant light?

Could you answer the rest of the questions asked and possibly post a photo of your tank? Just guessing with suggestions will be of no help to you and I'd like to see you find success while also resolving your algae issue.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
That should have read about 25 percent water change once a week...Hiro 75 watt....the rest I will need to answer later....

What are your specific water parameters? Do you have a test kit to determine them?

Changing 25 gallons on a 40gal tank with plants, substrate & likely other hardscape seems excessive. Any specific reason you change so much?

Which specific Hiro pendant light?

Could you answer the rest of the questions asked and possibly post a photo of your tank? Just guessing with suggestions will be of no help to you and I'd like to see you find success while also resolving your algae issue.
Also I stated I figured it was because of sunlight in the room...now that we had the solstice the sun's direction will change and I made provisions to keep it off the tank

8 to 10 gallon water change a week. Hiro 75watt. About 8 1/2 inches from water. 25 1/2 inch from substrate. Fertilization with Aquarium Co-op Easy Green liquid 1 - 2x a week. Also fertilization with Easy Green Caps 1x monthish. 8hr light period...8hr co2 period. PH 7.6. Nitrite 0ppm. Ammonia 0ppm. Nitrate 5ppm. GH 300. KH 40. Chlorine 0.
Plant Flower Terrestrial plant Grass Flowering plant

Plant Green Water Leaf Terrestrial plant

Drinkware Liquid Tableware Solution Mead

Lighting Rectangle Pet supply Grass Aquatic plant
 

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I have otos on an Eco Complete substrate and they are fat and happy. The tank is a shrimp tank, with a few nerite limpets and an unknown number of shrimp. The 10gal tank is furnished with the Eco Complete, cholla sticks, and lots of plants.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I have otos on an Eco Complete substrate and they are fat and happy. The tank is a shrimp tank, with a few nerite limpets and an unknown number of shrimp. The 10gal tank is furnished with the Eco Complete, cholla sticks, and lots of plants.
This is what I need to know...that I can put them in this tank without hurting them. Thank you
 

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Your tank looks fabulous!! Do you have gravel over the Eco?? I know that this substrate can tear up mouths of catfish and otto...I liked hearing you have had success with it.
I prefer the red Eco and that’s what you are seeing. No gravel over the Eco. I use distilled water remineralized with Salty Shrimp for water changes and top off with distilled water. Plants get a couple squirts of ThriveS now and then and I’ve put in a few Seachem fertilizer tabs for the swords and crypts. I was paranoid about getting snails/hydra/planaria in the tank and all the plants are tissue cultured. Light is a NiCrew SkyLED set at 60%. Honestly, at this point I’m afraid to touch the tank.

I think there are four otos in the tank. I bought six PetCo otocinclus and two died almost immediately. The vegetation in the tank is so dense I don‘t see the fish often. They each seem to have their own hidey-holes and will appear in one place for a few days and then move on. I started the tank with about a dozen shrimp and didn’t see them for a while either. Now, the shrimp have multiplied to the point where they are visible.

After the shrimp population has maxed out, I plan to add a few nano fish.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I prefer the red Eco and that’s what you are seeing. No gravel over the Eco. I use distilled water remineralized with Salty Shrimp for water changes and top off with distilled water. Plants get a couple squirts of ThriveS now and then and I’ve put in a few Seachem fertilizer tabs for the swords and crypts. I was paranoid about getting snails/hydra/planaria in the tank and all the plants are tissue cultured. Light is a NiCrew SkyLED set at 60%. Honestly, at this point I’m afraid to touch the tank.

I think there are four otos in the tank. I bought six PetCo otocinclus and two died almost immediately. The vegetation in the tank is so dense I don‘t see the fish often. They each seem to have their own hidey-holes and will appear in one place for a few days and then move on. I started the tank with about a dozen shrimp and didn’t see them for a while either. Now, the shrimp have multiplied to the point where they are visible.

After the shrimp population has maxed out, I plan to add a few nano fish.
I can see how you would want to leave well enough alone...its a beautiful tank...my cherry shrimps are booming but not enough to eat all the algae I need them too...I'm nervous whenever I add anything to my tank...just thought I could use some help...I am thick planted as you can see...I'm quite sure they will hide very well on me...yeah...your tank is awesome

What are your specific water parameters? Do you have a test kit to determine them?

Changing 25 gallons on a 40gal tank with plants, substrate & likely other hardscape seems excessive. Any specific reason you change so much?

Which specific Hiro pendant light?

Could you answer the rest of the questions asked and possibly post a photo of your tank? Just guessing with suggestions will be of no help to you and I'd like to see you find success while also resolving your algae issue.
Don't know did you see the pictures and parameters....they are posted....tested water last night and it was all darn good. Thanks for taking a look see
 
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