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Algae Eater (Crossocheilus siamensis) and Algae: Debunking the Myth! (Eats or Doesn't Eat?)

   When I just started my first aquarium, I read on one of the thematic sites that if you want to avoid algae, start a fish with the name Siamese algae eater (Crossocheilus siamensis).

Siamese algae eater (Crossocheilus siamensis) in my aquarium can be seen in this image. Siamese algae eater in my aquarium is shown in this photo.
Siamese algae eater.

   A year and a half has passed since the acquisition, and now I want to share my impressions and warn against the mistakes of novice aquarists.

   Siamese algae eater (Crossocheilus siamensis) - a fish that has come to our aquariums from reservoirs of South-East Asia. Occurs in Sumatra, Indonesia и Thailand... Usually inhabits fast streams and rivers, with a hard bottom and a large number of submerged snags.

   Belongs to the family Cyprinid Fish (Cyprinidae), which has about 275 species and is very widely represented in home aquariums. The most famous fishes from this family are barbs, danio, goldfishes, labeo and others.

   In wild nature algae eater grows to 16 cm, in aquariums usually much less. The volume of the aquarium is desirable from 100 liters. Fish is very unpretentious and adapts to many conditions of keeping. But the main parameters of water are:

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  • Temperature 20-26 ° С
  • Water - soft or medium hardness.
  • Lighting is bright.
  • Food - vegetable, but according to observations, omnivorous.
  • Behavior and compatibility is conditionally peace-loving. Depends on your choice!

Algae eater in aquarium. Choose the right fish!

   If you want peace and quiet in an aquarium, you definitely need to learn how to properly distinguish algae eater before the purchase. The thing is that he has quite a lot of very similar relatives. And if, because of the appearance or size, you do not have problems, then with the behavior in the aquarium, problems may appear. Other, related species are usually much more aggressive towards others, while more indifferent to eating algae. And some, in general, can stick to flat fish, such as scalars or discus fish, and eat the protective film from the surface of their skin. 

    So, together or instead of these algae eater in stores is often sold - Flying fox fish, Garra taeniata (False algae eater)and Chinese algae eater.


Algae eater. Chinise algae eater, flying fox and garra taeniate can be seen in this image. Algae, Chinese algae, flying fox and garra striped are depicted in this picture.
Algae eater. Right choice.
At the true algae eater:

   If the mouth is in the form of a sucker, then this Chinese algae eater. With age, it becomes very territorial and aggressive. It is he who can stick to other fish.

   If there are several pairs of antennae in the mouth, and on the body there is a black smooth band that does not fit on the tail, and the fins are slightly colored, then this is either Garra taeniataor Flying fox fish... They are more aggressive in behavior than the Siamese algae eater, and eat algae worse.

   And one more very distinctive feature of a real Siamese algae eater. During rest (all species like to rest, lying on the ground, plants or snags), only a real algae eater lies not leaning on the pectoral fins (which are on the sides and behind the head). They are placed like an airplane. (See the photo of our dying algae eater)

Siamese algae eater in my aquarium can be seen in this image. Siamese algae eater lies on a snag in the aquarium in this photo.
Siamese algae eater lie on a snag.

   All other species are based on the pectoral fins, as on the legs.

Algae eater and algae. Debunking the myth.

   In order not to write and advertise these fish as effective algae eaters in an aquarium, this is not so. According to my observations, if in their youth they try to pretend that they are eating something, then with age they begin to be lazy and completely switch to regular food. Here as with mollies. They are also written about them, that they eat fouling from plants. But, I think, to notice any effect, they should not be fed for a week with regular food.  

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   At the same time, even a real algae eater can be quite aggressive and drives everyone around the aquarium. Whether it's catfish, gourami or swordtails. No, he does not harm them physically, but he does not give rest either. Plus, if we take a rather inexpressive color (compared to related Labeo, for example), then the fish is more advertised than it really is. 

   But this is purely my impressions and of course you decide!

Algae eater and perl gourami can be seen in this image. Algae and pearly gourami are depicted in this photo.
Our Algae eater and pearl gourami.
Amazonium. Net
Algae Eater (Crossocheilus siamensis) and Algae: Debunking the Myth! (Eats or Doesn't Eat?)
Article Name
Algae Eater (Crossocheilus siamensis) and Algae: Debunking the Myth! (Eats or Doesn't Eat?)
Siamese algae eater, Chinese algae eater, Siamese flying fox, Garra taeniata and others! Choose the right fish!
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Amazonium. Net
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  1. Erica says:

    Goede avond
    Ik zag dat ik een paar trosjes licht blauwe eitjes in een stenen tunnel hep zitten deze zijn afkomstig van crossocheilus algen eter het zijn een mannetje en vrouwtje nu is mijn vraomen gaañde andere visiet deze eit dejes n
    En wat kan ik er tegen doen om ergere dingen te verkomen met de eitjes Gr erica

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