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Old 08-19-2011, 11:32 AM   #1 
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Join Date: Aug 2011
FW Clean Up Crew?

So I have a 3 gallon FW tank with a ton of live plants in it and my beloved beta fish Alpha. This tank has been running for around two months now. I added a heater two weeks ago and slowly raised the temp, my poor beta almost died from it. So I did two 50% water changes and got rid of the heater. Now Alpha is all perked up! Thanks to the advice from!!! Even though Alpha is back to his normal active self, the plants, tank, and sand now have a ton of algae on it. Now I have been scrubbing the glass with one of those magnet cleaners, however I am not sure what to do about the sand and plants. One of the plants has started to die and I am sure its from all the algae on it.

Now my question are is there a FW cleanup crew? If so will I be finding snails all over my desk? Or is there some other way to clean my plants and sand in my tank?
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Old 08-19-2011, 12:41 PM   #2 
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Unfortunately, options are very limited in a 3g tank due to bioload. I'm not sure I would be comfortable adding anything else to it, if it were me.

The best way to proceed when being overcome with algae is to first identify exactly which kind you are dealing with, as each tend to appear with a certain imbalance of nutrients and/or light, or are normal with "younger" tanks (diatoms for example). Once you know which type you have, you can correct whatever imbalance is causing it. I'm not a big fan of getting a species specifically for algae cleanup unless you are interested in it before hand; and are going to be happy with it, and it will fit into your community when the algae problem is under control.

Note, not all algae eaters will consume all types of algae. There are many that each will ignore entirely. For example: diatoms, the oh so pretty brown slime, there are really only a few species I know of that consistently eat it: otos and nerite snails. Brush algae is a giant pain; but is devoured by Siamese algae eaters (Crossocheilus siamensis). So dietary preferences are other things to consider, along with your tank size and species compatibility.

So step one in this situation, is to figure out which type of algae you have. :) Once you know that, you can decide how best to handle it.
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