Best Algae/Cean up?

JohnnyFish

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HI

I have a 10 gallon tank and im looking for options to help with algae and keeping it clean.
Currently I have 9 ember tetras and 2 cardinals. I recently heavily stocked it with plants and tropical substrate, and has slowly been developing some algae on the leaves and glass so could do with something to help.
I did have some amino shrimp although they didn't do so great and died after a few weeks, I checked the water afterwards and all was fine so Ill stay clear of shrimp for now.
I keep the tank at about 26.5 Celsius.
no3- 0
no2- 0
ph - 6.5
KH- zero ppm (mg/l)- is this too low? im unsure how to change it!
GH- roughly 20-40 ppm (mg/l) im guessing this is pretty soft.

thanks for any help!
 

Byron

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A photo of the tank would help so we can see the extent of the plants, and the algae.

Few fish will deal with "problem" algae; the aim is to provide the right balance of light/nutrients for the plants but no more, then algae is disadvantaged. The duration of the tank lighting can often be reduced, assuming the intensity and spectrum are adequate for the pants to begin with.

Regular substantial partial water changes also help, as does keeping the filter well cleaned, and not overfeeding.
 

GuppyBreeder180604

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the best algae cleanup crew are your hands, manual algae removal is the best way to go if you buy an "algae eater" with the idea of it destroying your algae problems then don't buy it, buy it only because you like it and have the means to take care of it.
Currently I have 9 ember tetras and 2 cardinals.
all schooling fish need at least 10 members to get the best results and also cardinals are a bit too big for a 10 gallon I would say at least a 20 gallon and also you only have 2.
I did have some amino shrimp although they didn't do so great and died after a few weeks, I checked the water afterwards and all was fine so Ill stay clear of shrimp for now.
I keep the tank at about 26.5 Celsius.
no3- 0
no2- 0
ph - 6.5
KH- zero ppm (mg/l)- is this too low? im unsure how to change it!
GH- roughly 20-40 ppm (mg/l) im guessing this is pretty soft.
your shrimp died because the water is too acidic and soft for them.

As for good candidates to help you but not rid you of your problem, I would say a school of 10 otocinclus and a common bristlenose pleco, but only one and you would never be allowed to miss a water change, not even by mistake, since they poop a lot, also both fish benefit from the presence of driftwood and you would still need to feed them at least once a week a blanched veggie (I feed squash, cucumber, lettuce, and spinach).
But remember if you get these fish or any other "algae eater" its because you like how they look and behave and because you did your research about them and know you can take care of them optimally, not because the LFS sold them to you as a miracle fish that will stop the algae forever.
 

Ellabee

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I hate algae. If your tank isn’t cycled, and you add the live plants, it will cause algae to take over quickly. I use live bacteria in all my tanks. Microbe Lift special water care. Since I started using this, less algae. The algae will also cause plants to die. The oxygen level. You could also use uv sterilizers. At least weekly water changes. Sunlight or too much light can cause algae. You can also do blackouts. 3 days no light. Leftover food causes algae. A skimmer helps. Power heads for circulation helps.
 

NannaLou

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I hate algae. If your tank isn’t cycled, and you add the live plants, it will cause algae to take over quickly. I use live bacteria in all my tanks. Microbe Lift special water care. Since I started using this, less algae. The algae will also cause plants to die. The oxygen level. You could also use uv sterilizers. At least weekly water changes. Sunlight or too much light can cause algae. You can also do blackouts. 3 days no light. Leftover food causes algae. A skimmer helps. Power heads for circulation helps.
I’m not sure that live plants cause the algae..? My understanding is that the algae grows because of an imbalance in the water parameters (which is why it’s so common in new and cycling tanks) and as the live plants get established they use use the nutrients more effectively than the algae and the algae reduces and eventually clears.
 

Cydeth

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It is a rather small tank and I wouldn't really want to suggest stocking with more fish to deal with the algae. Otocinclus are likely the best fish to do it though, but they can be quite particular about water parameters and have a habit of dying in new tanks.

What plants are in the tank?

If they are broad and flat like anubias, cryptocoryne and bucephalandra then I find removing the algae by hand is quite simple with something like a clean microfiber cloth.

Finer leaved plants like cabomba and many limnophila varieties are easier tackled with a clean toothbrush and gentle brushing.

As a preventative I find that floating plants are very useful, they take nutrients directly from the water column and can often out compete algae. Reducing the light duration will also help significantly.

My preferred floating plants are currently frogbit and red root floaters, although I have had success with salvinia and dwarf water lettuce too.
 

Ellabee

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I’m not sure that live plants cause the algae..? My understanding is that the algae grows because of an imbalance in the water parameters (which is why it’s so common in new and cycling tanks) and as the live plants get established they use use the nutrients more effectively than the algae and the algae reduces and eventually clears.
That is correct. What I meant is live plants don’t do well in new tanks. It should be cycled before live plants. Algae is common in new tanks, and plants somehow add to it. Here is an example of live plants added to a new setup. Hair algae. Depleting oxygen, killing the plants. This took one week to get out of control.
 

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NannaLou

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That is correct. What I meant is live plants don’t do well in new tanks. It should be cycled before live plants. Algae is common in new tanks, and plants somehow add to it. Here is an example of live plants added to a new setup. Hair algae. Depleting oxygen, killing the plants. This took one week to get out of control.
I’m setting up a low-tech/Walstad style tank and apart from the dreaded algae the plants are thriving. I have a dwarf tiger lotus and it is growing so quickly one leaf went from 1 1/2 inches under the water to floating in about 2 hours ?.
 
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JohnnyFish

JohnnyFish

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the best algae cleanup crew are your hands, manual algae removal is the best way to go if you buy an "algae eater" with the idea of it destroying your algae problems then don't buy it, buy it only because you like it and have the means to take care of it.

all schooling fish need at least 10 members to get the best results and also cardinals are a bit too big for a 10 gallon I would say at least a 20 gallon and also you only have 2.

your shrimp died because the water is too acidic and soft for them.

As for good candidates to help you but not rid you of your problem, I would say a school of 10 otocinclus and a common bristlenose pleco, but only one and you would never be allowed to miss a water change, not even by mistake, since they poop a lot, also both fish benefit from the presence of driftwood and you would still need to feed them at least once a week a blanched veggie (I feed squash, cucumber, lettuce, and spinach).
But remember if you get these fish or any other "algae eater" its because you like how they look and behave and because you did your research about them and know you can take care of them optimally, not because the LFS sold them to you as a miracle fish that will stop the algae forever.
thanks for the help! isn't 10 ottos way too many for my tank though?
 

NannaLou

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@JohnnyFish have you been sent the link to Aqadvisor? (I don‘t know how to get a link to work on my iPad) but if you put in your tank dimensions and the type and number of fish it will give you a stocking percentage.
 

GuppyBreeder180604

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@JohnnyFish have you been sent the link to Aqadvisor? (I don‘t know how to get a link to work on my iPad) but if you put in your tank dimensions and the type and number of fish it will give you a stocking percentage.
i really dont trust that site since it cant take into account your bio-load management or plants quantity which influence th ammount of fish that can live in an aquarium
 

NannaLou

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I’ve just made up a tank size to get to 10.4 g and 9 ember tetras, 2 cardinal tetras and 6 Otos are showing as 100% stocked. I know the dimensions of the tank can affect this though, so worth trying with proper measurements.
 

NannaLou

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i really dont trust that site since it cant take into account your bio-load management or plants quantity which influence th ammount of fish that can live in an aquarium
It seems to be respected on this site and is a good starting point when you don’t know how else to work things out...once you’ve got a rough plan someone on here will always add an experienced opinion.
 

GuppyBreeder180604

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It seems to be respected on this site and is a good starting point when you don’t know how else to work things out...once you’ve got a rough plan someone on here will always add an experienced opinion.
I prefer to search different careguides and forums and make an opinion based on that, then see what works and what doesn't work as much as i can.
Also looking at how and where fish live in natire helps a lot
 

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