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Old 04-02-2013, 11:09 PM   #1 
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Join Date: Mar 2013
betta and algae eater

so I plan to get a fluval chi 6.6 gal with black aquarium sand, and anubias, and possibly another plant or two (tiger lotus and/or sunset hygro), and a betta fish. This will be my first planted tank, and I understand that algae could be a problem, so I was thinking about investing in algae eater..

my problems are as follows:
- it seems that all species of pleco will grow to large
- siamese algae eaters will be impossible to find at my LFS, and I would prefer not to have a school of fish, as I don't feel that the tank is large enough, and it makes transport to/from university (6 hours) a lot harder
- I love corys but I don't want a school, and I know corys are terrible travellers either way
- Shrimp don't particularly appeal to me

so as far as I have researched.. this leaves me with snails. But I was planning on using tannins in the betta's environment to replicate the soft and acidic conditions it is accustomed to, and as a preventative measure for bacterial and fungal infections. Snails, however, prefer hard and alkaline conditions in order to form their shells.

would I be better to skip the tannins and force betta to live in a snail friendly environment, or to just skip the algae eaters all together? Or is there some option that I haven't found yet?

Thanks guys :)
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Old 04-03-2013, 08:29 AM   #2 
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Ontario, CA
So long as you provide the snails with a source of calcium by either feeding a veggie once or twice week, adding liquid calcium to the tank or giving them a cuttle bone they should be fine. I have a 5.5g tank with 1 male Betta, 1 Mystery Snail & 1 Nerite Snail & the tank looks crystal clear. I will add an algae wafer once or twice a week to ensure they have food since I'm not sure how much algae they're actually getting at this point. Below is a pic of my 5.5g. Remember certain snails eat certain algae, also snails have a good sized bio load so its a bit of a trade off . . .
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Old 04-03-2013, 08:51 AM   #3 
Join Date: Nov 2012
Location: New Jersey
I have the Fluval V 5.6 gal. I chose that tank as it fits well on my windowsill. I wanted to supliment with natural light for the plants, which do very well! Two Nerite Snails do help, but I do still develop some algae on the window side. When that happens, I do a larger water change, like %70. While the water level is down, I simply scrape the algae off with a credit card.
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Old 04-03-2013, 12:06 PM   #4 
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thanks so much guys, that helps a lot :) shellieca, would snails still do okay in slightly soft and acidic water (caused by tannins) provided they were being fed calcium?
lindsayframe is offline   Reply With Quote

algae eaters, alkalinity, snails, tannins, water hardness

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