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Plecos and other algae eaters

5406 Views 9 Replies 8 Participants Last post by  mm12463
I've heard that Bristle-nosed plecos are good for planted aquariums. Does anyone have experience with them? Also the Bulldog plecos(are they referred to as Rubbernose plecos as well?). What are the pros and cons of these fish?

I've also heard that Flying Foxes, Hillstream Loaches, Rainbow Sharks and Skunk Loaches will eat algae. Is this true?

Does anyone have experience with Liniparhomaloptera disparis? I have found little information on them.

Does anyone have a picture or know where I could find one of the Barred Loach(Nemacheilus fasciatus)?

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Some of the algae eaters:

- Chaetostoma cf thomasi aka. Bulldog Pleco
- Ancistrus sp.
- Farlowella acus
- Otocinclus sp
- Caridina japonica aka. Amano Shrimp
- Siamese Algae Eater
- Black Mollies
I have 2 bristlenose in my 75.....

they do a good job. Also have 4 sae's and 2 flying foxes. Algae has gone from trying to take over the tank to being almost non existant. Ottos are great too if you can keep them alive.
Rubbernose's are not as reliable as Bristlenose for eating algae and tend to be a bit more sensitive, IME. All the above that Jay mentioned work. There are also Red Cherry Shrimp. I like Mollies. They never stop picking. Oto's, once a good school of them has been established, are fun to watch and good eaters. Loaches are good for eradicating snail infestations, but I've never heard of them eating algae. Never had Rainbow Sharks, but when I had Red-Tailed Blacks, they never touched any algae.
What are the most common bristle-nose plecos in the trade? Are the busy-nosed the same type? I almost bought what the LFS called a Columbian Bushy-nosed pleco, but she was a good size (8 inches) and I wasn't sure if she was going to get bigger. Now if I got that 90 gallon tank I'm eyeing up....
I dont think a true bushy nose gets bigger than 3 or 4 inches....not positive though.
In my experience, rubbernoses (Chaestoma sp.) are territorial and omnivorus while the bristlenoses (Ancistrus sp.) are peaceful and strictly vegetarian. Both max out at about 4" in size according to Planet Catfish. The Ancistrus claro (LDA08), if you can find it, doesn't get any larger than 2".

You will most likely not be able to find properly identified Ancistrus sp. for sale. They are usually sold in mixed grab bags. Specific L-number Ancistrus sp. fetch very high prices that appeal only to catfish enthusiasts and not to us utilitarians. The Chaestoma sp. are a bit more organized, with the Chaestoma cf thomasi being the most commonly available. I was lucky enough to find a juvenile Ancistrus claro in a shipment two years ago. To this day, it's only 1.5" long.

Nonetheless, both are plant-friendly and wonderful for cleaning many types of algae, including green spot algae, off of glass and broad leaf plants.
Yes I've noticed that my Striped Bulldog is protective of "his" driftwood", though he is not as bad as my evil Indian/Chinese algae eaters that are in my crayfish tank. I wanted a bristle-nose, but have yet to find one, besides that bushy-nosed one that was too big(maybe not Ancistrus?).
Where did you hear that rainbow sharks eat algae or that black mollies do? I have both currently, and neither eats it.
I've had black mollies nibble on algae. They peck away at it. But if they see the flake or other food to drop in they will eat that. Kind of like going to the store. You like your cheap beer. But once you trying something better and like it you don't go back unless you have too. I've had the same experience with SAEs. If they get used to live food or discover the flake and what not they are not so eager to eat algae. Anyway this is what I have experienced.
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