They’re covered in beige and have a prominent horizontal stripe that runs along the entire length of their body. In it, you’ll see what species we consider to be the best algae eaters (fish, snails, and shrimp) for freshwater tanks with some helpful info about each. It should be remembered that it cannot only eat algae but if there is a shortage of vegetarian food, it can eat the shoots of young plants. American-flag fish, Jordanella floridae, are also dependable algae-eating fish. Algae is their main source of food. But you don’t need to fight that battle alone! Algae are very important because they make much of Earth’s oxygen, which humans and other animals need to breathe. It also sifts the sand. They have long conical shells that are typically colored with black, brown, and white. Algae—the plural of the word “alga”—often can be found in water, where it forms gooey mats. A slightly larger tank of 25 to 30 gallons is recommended. This species is sensitive to water conditions, so do your best to keep temperatures between 73 and 79 degrees and pH around 6.5 to 7.5. Guppies and Koi are another common pond pets that easily eat some kinds of algae. The Flying Fox, originating from Southwest Asia, is notorious for eating green algae. They need plenty of good hiding spaces in their tank to feel safe. They will eat dead skin cells right off a person’s body! Though, we recommend larger if you plan on keeping a large group of them together. Generally, these fish are quite peaceful and do just fine with other docile species. i.e. They do best in moderate conditions with temperatures between 72 and 79 degrees. Some will even get as big as a baseball! The young of many aquatic animals such as frogs, fish and aquatic (water-dwelling) insects eat algae as their main source of food. Also known as the suckermouth catfish, the common pleco (Hypostomus plecostomus) is omnivorous, feeding on algae, plant material and insects in a pond. If you have a group, increase the size of the tank significantly. Perhaps you have seen a type of catfish that that sucks the glass sides of aquariums? You can supplement this meal with some wafer or green vegetables but do so with caution. You’re always battling algae if you own a freshwater tank. While some animals eat meat and others prefer plants, fungi or algae, reptiles such as the sea turtle are omnivores; they eat algae or animals depending on the species. Reaching a maximum size of about 5 inches, these Plecos need ample room to roam. Known for their vibrant red coloration, Cherry Shrimp stand out amongst the natural backdrop of a lush tank. As for pH, keep things relatively neutral. The Siamese Algae Eater is not a fussy eater; it will eat algae of live plant leaves and should also be fed a mixture of protein and vegetable-based food. Around 6.8 to 8.5 is ideal. They prefer to have other food sources like food pellets and pond insects. At the very least, Rabbit Snails need a 30-gallon tank. They stay focused and consistently track down algae no matter what’s going on. In fact, adding one of the best algae eaters to your aquarium can make your job a whole lot easier. While they eat algae, they can also make your pond look dirty. Nerite snail (Neritina … 14. Measuring about 6 inches in length when fully grown, Siamese Algae Eaters are a beautiful ornamental fish that also serves a practical purpose. Crystal red shrimp (CRS) will eat algae; they are good at eating algae but not as efficient as Amano shrimp. This is especially true when it comes to water quality. There’s something about watching these critters work that’s oddly inspiring. During that time, they’re capable of reaching lengths 7 inches. Though, the low biomass these critters produce makes it nearly impossible to overcrowd a tank. Whiptail Catfish are hardy creatures that prefer warmer waters. However, pH requirements are a bit more strict. Even healthy tanks have some algae growth, and these guys can help you keep things spiffy. These snails are not hard to care for. Some specimens even have splashes of blue, which complements the dark spots that cover their body. This is one of the best fish you can put in your tank for this purpose. In most instances, you will not need to intervene in their eating habits at all. These invertebrae will primarily eat algae and plant matter. Lots Of Small Creatures Find It Delicious. Plant-based foods, such as algae wafers and green vegetables will provide the balanced diet they need. As a result, you only need a 10-gallon tank to keep them healthy. When it comes to temperature, these algae-eating fish can adapt to nearly anything. Their bodies are gray and semi-transparent. Whichever you choose, they’ll do a good job more or less. Tilapia thrive on eating smaller animals, plants, bacteria, and algae since they can obtain nutrients from them. Even though they’re some of the best algae eaters you can get (they prefer green algae by the way), you might spot them chowing on some leftover fish food or other detritus as well. They are easy to care for. Though, 20 gallons is preferred so that they have ample room to roam. Siamese Algae Eaters are a great tank-cleaning fish that work hard to keep things looking spotless. These algae-eating fish are very peaceful. Chinese Algae Eaters need at least 30 gallons of space with a pH of around 6.5 to 7.5 and a temperature between 74 and 80 degrees. You don’t need a huge tank to raise these snails. If something disturbs them, they’ll wait it out and get right back to work. They have grown very popular in recent years. Twig Catfish are master scavengers. If you have green hair algae in your tank and your phosphate and nitrate tests read low or near zero, the algae in your tank could be eating and locking up … Doctor Fish grow just shy of 5 inches as adults. They need a 30-gallon tank, a pH balance of roughly 6.8 to 7.5, and temperatures between 72 and 79 degrees. They may also consume some organic plant matter, but algae are their main dish. Like many other freshwater snails, Trumpet Snails reproduce at a very rapid pace. Some algae, such as seaweed, look like plants. They prefer a pH between 6.5 and 7.5 as well as temperatures between 72 and 78 degrees. They’re found in tanks…, The 15 Best Types Of Freshwater Aquarium Catfish, Clown Loach Care: Tank Size, Food, Lifespan, Tank Mates…, 35 Peaceful Community Fish For Your Tank (Updated List), Malaysian Trumpet Snail 101: Detailed Info & Care Tips, Bucktooth Tetra 101: Care, Feeding, Aggression, & More, Glowlight Tetra 101: Care, Tank Mates, Breeding & More, A noticeable difference in water quality (no one likes, Less gunk and buildup for you to clean out, Reduced wear and tear on your filtration system. Some adult fish and other creatures also eat algae. The cool thing about Nerite Snails is that they eat almost any kind of algae. They can even live comfortably with small fish without any issues. While they are technically part of the “Dwarf Shrimp” family, Amano Shrimp can get up to 2 inches in length. At first glance, it’s easy to mistake Otocinclus for juvenile Chinese Algae Eaters. However, they can be a bit challenging to care for. The 20 Best Algae Eaters For Your Freshwater Tank 1. No matter how big your tank is, algae alone won’t cut it as a full diet. Amano shrimps efficiency against hair algae is inversely proportional to the shrimp size. Named after the Japanese hobbyist... Cherry Shrimp. The type of catfish is known for eating massive amounts of algae on a daily basis. If you have green hair algae in your tank, your phosphate is likely well above 0.05 mg/L, which is considered by many to be the lowest level at which green hair algae will grow. They require levels between 6.5 and 8.0. They use their tiny appendages to get algae off of fine leaves and delicate surfaces. Most often, these snails take on a bright yellow hue, making them easy to spot in your tank. the lager the shrimp is, the more thick algae it … Seaweed. It can reach lengths of more than 19 inches! Unlike other snails, Ramshorns typically don’t eat plants when they are well fed. There are a lot of different types of algae eating crabs. Algae does not consume organic... Primary. Whether you call them Doctor Fish or Red Garras, these fish are born to eat algae. If you plan on keeping a small group of them together, you will need a tank that’s at least 30 gallons in size. Hailing from South America, the Rubber Lip Pleco is a bottom-dwelling fish that can keep your tank in good shape for years. When it comes to eating filamentous algae (hair algae, thread algae and fuzz algae), the most efficient shrimp is the so-called Amano shrimp (Caridina multidentata, also known under its synonymous name Caridina japonica). Best Algae Eating Crabs. Throughout history, algae have long been consumed as both food and medicine. The shrimp are peaceful by nature and do best with other like-minded fish. While you’re trying to feed them, they’re still probably cleaning. Temperatures should be kept around 75 to 79 degrees while the water’s pH needs to stay between 6.5 to 7.0. As long as it’s within a reasonable range, the fish should be fine. In large groups, Cherry Shrimp can do a lot to manage algae levels in your tank. Algae eaters include a wide variety of fish, shrimp and snails that feed entirely or primarily on algae and other plant materials in an aquarium. Unfortunately, that makes them the target for predatory fish. Despite their appetite for algae, they do appreciate protein-rich foods every once in a while. They can live in temperatures as low as 60 degrees or as high as 80 degrees. Mollies (And other Live Bearers) If you’re looking for a behemoth algae eater, the Sailfin Pleco may be for you. These aquatic organisms make a great … Now for the bad news: if algae growth is way out of control in your aquarium, no fish or critter can clean … They are one of the only fish to graze on black brush algae, as with the siamese algae eater, and will also indiscriminately graze on other algae such as diatoms and hair algae. The pH balance should be stabilized around 6.5 to 8.0. You can find them feeding on all types of algae. Halloween Hermit Crab (Ciliopagurus strigatus) has a body and legs that are bright orange with red banding. Preferred temperatures are 68 to 85 degrees. The preferred temperature for Mollies is a moderate 72 to 78 degrees. Snails. Because they don’t get any bigger than an inch in length, Trumpet Snails can get into the tightest spots in search of food. Meanwhile, the pH should be around 6.5 to 8.0. Running through the center of their body is a thick black stripe. Algae. Mollies are known to reproduce very quickly, so be wary about your tank size. Whether it's wrapped around a sushi roll or floating in your miso soup, seaweed is a powerhouse of nutrients, … Yes, snails can be great feeders for annoying hair algae. Slightly alkaline water with a pH balance between 7.6 to 8.4 is best. Evidence shows that flatback sea turtles make seaweed part of their diets. This includes green plant algae, algae in the substrate, and algae on the glass. Mollies are a very popular livebearing fish that’s been known to snack on algae every once in a while. Algae are just very tiny plants. Aquarium Source is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to Amazon.com. They are known to get more aggressive as they age. Because they are so large, you’re going to need a massive tank. If you have any questions about other algae-eating fish or want to learn more about the species we included, don’t hesitate to get in touch with us on social media. While they are omnivores, Flagfish does like to eat algae and plant matter. Named after the long antennae that extend out of their heads, the Rabbit Snails are a large algae-eating invertebrate that you can add to your freshwater tank. Eating algae has a ton of health benefits. The tilapia an omnivorous fish eat microorganisms such as algae. What Are Algae Eaters? You can supplement the algae with dry or frozen food. While they only live for a year, most of that time will be spent chowing down on algae throughout your tank. This and their very calm demeanor make them perfect for most community tanks. In fact, another name for them is “algae eating shrimp” and are heralded as spineless heroes! They consume all kinds of algae. They are covered in splotches of beige and brown. Crustaceans, mollusks, and bivalves primarily feed on algae. These fish aren’t very big. However, algae are actually neither plants nor animals. As for environment and water conditions, Bristlenose Plecos are very hardy. Algae may not look delicious to you, but many creatures could not live without them. Not to be confused with the Siamese Algae Eater, this fish is one of the only few algae-eating species that you can keep with semi-aggressive fish. They never stop eating the brown algae. The pH should be around 6.5 to 8.0 while the temperature can be anywhere between 70 and 78 degrees. These invertebrates are aptly named for their sudden growth spurts. Photo:Jim Conrad, There are many different types of algae, and they can be many different colors, including green, blue and red. pH balance should be kept between 6.5 and 8.0. While difficult to spot when diving, snorkeling, or even … As for space, a sizable group of 2 to 4 shrimp will only need a 10-gallon tank to stay happy. And to fully understand this matter, we will examine algae and how the tilapia fish can control this organism’s growth. Unlike other snails, you don’t have to worry about overpopulation. You can’t go wrong with any of the best algae eaters. Shrimp. While these fish are only about two inches long as adults, they can consume impressive quantities of algae. They come in a wide range of colors. Named after the whisker-like appendages coming out of their snouts, Bristlenose Plecos are docile algae-eating fish that can get along with most peaceful tank mates. Not only does driftwood continuously produce algae, but the cellulose in the wood can also improve the digestive system of the fish. Thanks to their conical shells, Trumpet Snails are more than capable of uprooting plants, so exercise caution when arranging your tank! They’ll pick off and eat algae from any surface they can. When they are purchases as juveniles, Mystery Snails are quite small. Cherry Shrimp. You can find this small fish zipping to and fro, nibbling down on algae growing on rocks, plants, waterfalls, and elsewhere it can graze. They’ll spend all of their time at the bottom of the water column sucking on algae to feed.