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post #1 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-07-2010, 03:04 AM Thread Starter
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Question Should I get an Algae Sucker?

Hey there! Just a little update/questions about the ever energy-consuming koi!

So, we moved the fishtank off the floor and onto a stand, and jeez it was a fiasco! Greg decided to jump out of his container 3 times and do a pretty good job of freaking me out. But they're all good now, finally!

Since moving them out into the sunlight, I am realizing how green their water gets really fast. I am trying to do better about cleaning the tank more often, but I was wondering if one of those algae sucker fish would help keep the tank clean. I have room for one, but if they wouldn't make a difference in the cleanliness or greenness of the water, I don't want to deal with it...Any suggestions?
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post #2 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-07-2010, 07:03 AM
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I wouldn't put one in if it was me. Their usually isn't really enough algae to support them in a tank and I am pretty sure that they have different requirements then koi.





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post #3 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-07-2010, 11:11 AM
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I know koi are cold water but i almost always have an algae sucker fish in my tropical tank. They're great in my opinion and you can give them food if you run out of algae in your tank. I used to put a weight on a slice of cucumber and they loved it, but if you don't like that idea then you can always buy a packet of algae wafers for them.
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post #4 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-07-2010, 04:11 PM
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I wouldn't get an algae-eating fish just to take care of algae (especially since it doesn't seem like you know the different species or anything and could end up bringing home something aggressive). Instead, I would try to solve the problem. Cover the tank/windows (even just partially) to reduce the amount of sunlight, use fine filter floss to filter out small algae particles, and perform daily water changes.

An algae-eating fish wouldn't get rid of the floating algae (green water), anyways. It would just eat algae growing on the rocks and glass.




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post #5 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-07-2010, 06:43 PM Thread Starter
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I was thinking about getting a bristle nosed catfish, as I heard those were the least aggressive and pretty good about cleaning the tank. Or plecos, but I have heard varying stories about those guys... I have no problem with feeding them extra wafers, I did that with a few other small algae eaters I have had in the past.

Honestly, I would love to have, energy, and motivation to do daily water changes, but I think thats a bit unrealistic. There is a plenty good coating on the bottom as well as the decorations, and I have a scrubber to get the algae off the sides of the tank. Are there any species that will clean a good amount, but not eat my other fishies?
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post #6 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-07-2010, 11:13 PM
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I hate to say this but you're keeping koi indoors. It's only natural that you're going to have algae spikes and will need to clean a TON. There's a reason people keep them in ponds . It's the same with goldfish, oscars, and other large, messy species. It'd be a whole other story if you were keeping neon tetras or cherry barbs.

Like I said, the green water problem won't be solved by any fish. You could try live plants but you'll have to find some that your fish won't eat. As for the coating, yeah, a bristlenose pleco (yup, a bristlenose catfish is actually a pleco) might help depending on what kind of algae it is. But I wouldn't expect it to clean the whole tank and it'll depend on the individual fish.

Test your water parameters before bringing the pleco home and make sure you acclimate him slowly. You should also have hiding places so he can get away from the koi. Plecos can be fed blanched vegetables (zucchini is often a favorite), dried seaweed, and algae wafers.

Oh, and when I said daily water changes I didn't mean huge ones. Just something to keep nitrates low . Even every other day would probably suffice but by doing them daily you'd see bigger changes.




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post #7 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-08-2010, 05:48 PM Thread Starter
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cool, so plants will do it? That would be amazing
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post #8 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-08-2010, 09:36 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by becrac16 View Post
cool, so plants will do it? That would be amazing
Well, the plants aren't going to eat the algae or anything . But basically, the kind of algae you have needs two major things to grow: sunlight and nitrates. The plants will be competing for the same things and will happily suck up nitrates, thus leaving the algae with little food (making it hard for them to grow).

Of course it's not as simple as just sticking random plants in there. See what kind of lighting you have and make sure you pick plants that will thrive . You'll also have to be careful because I'd imagine that your koi will snack on certain plants.

Unless you have intense lighting, java ferns are probably the way to go. They're great beginning plants and most fish won't eat them.




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post #9 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-09-2010, 01:07 AM Thread Starter
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interesting. I will try that out! Because lord knows greg doesn't need any more food lol! Java ferns sound great. About how many would I have to get to offset my 55 gal? It gets partial sunlight, sometimes full on sun now that spring is here. I'm guessing I would need more than average....?
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post #10 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-09-2010, 09:16 PM
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There's no real recipe since it depends on your individual tank and your nitrate levels. It's pretty hard to over-stock java ferns so I'd just buy a bunch of them. You don't need to fill your tank to the brim, though, since java ferns multiply fast .




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post #11 of 11 (permalink) Old 03-09-2010, 09:40 PM Thread Starter
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sweeet hooray!
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