Combating algae in an aquarium


Algae in an aquarium, how to get rid of and fight with all their species

know the enemy in the face

The issue of algal flash in an aquarium regularly torments both beginners and pros of the aquarium craft. Why all? Because these unwanted guests can arise, both "in the young" and "in the old" pond.
An experienced aquarist will immediately notice the undesirable algae, and knowing about its name or genus, quickly neutralize it, not allowing the outbreak. But newcomers have to tight! The situation is aggravated by the incredibly diverse abundance of information on algae control. Who says: keep the aquarium in the dark, on the contrary, increase the light day! Some say: you overdose fertilizers in the aquarium, while others, on the contrary, say little macro fertilizer, etc.
Let's see what is wrong in the aquarium! How to deal with it! Break the legends and myths about algae!

What is aquarium algae?

Many beginners call algae aquarium plants and vice versa plants are called algae !!! This is a fundamentally wrong understanding of the essence of plant nature.
Aquarium plants - This is the highest plant world. In the aquarium, these are the same plants as in the field or on the lawn near the house. This is the biological kingdom, one of the main groups of multicellular organisms, including, of course, mosses, ferns, horsetails, moss, etc.
Seaweed - this is the lowest. A heterogeneous ecological group of predominantly phototrophic unicellular, colonial, or multicellular organisms that live, as a rule, in the aquatic environment, in a systematic sense, representing the totality of many divisions. Entering into symbiosis with fungi, these organisms in the course of evolution formed completely new organisms - lichens.
Having distinguished between these two concepts, we have decided who to fight specifically. Our aquarium enemy - algae, the lowest plant world!

Methods of struggle and disposal of algae

At the dawn of the formation of our site was written a simple article: Flying on the walls of the aquarium and the stones: Green scurf in the aquarium, white scum in the aquarium, mucus in the aquarium !!! Time passed, and to my surprise, even such a short little article gained popularity, it has already been viewed by 22 thousand people! Yes and the forumguys often ask for help in dealing with these nasty "raids."
Well, it's probably time to paint everything on the shelves!
So, here are the basic and effective methods of dealing with green, brown, brown, black, blue-green algae patches.
Like plants, there is an insane amount of algae, as well as their species and subspecies. Of course, it is not possible to know all of them, but you need to know the group, the genus of these algae! On this depends the effectiveness of the struggle and the actions that need to be done.
It is in this omission that all the confusion in the advice on the forums lies: remove the light, turn on the light .... Everyone has different algae outbreaks, different aquariums, different lighting, water and hydrobionts.
Below, in this article, the main and most common algae in the aquarium and the specifics of dealing with them will be given.
The root cause of any aquarium trouble is the absence or disturbance of the biobalance in the aquarium, that is, the mutual equilibrium of all aquatic organisms (fish, plants, mollusks, algae, fungi, bacteria, etc.).
You'd be surprised, but in the aquarium always, there are always spores of various algae, as well as fungi, etc.! All of them perform their function, for example, to clean the aquarium from dead organics, to remove poisons (ammonium, nitrite and nitrate) from the aquarium, etc. In other words, the aquarium is not sterile - it is a living organism, from various groups, colonies of living organisms that are visible and not visible to humans.

An algal flash is a visual indication of a violation (absence) of a biobalance in an aquarium. This is the loss of any link in the balance!

Finding out what link fell, you need to return it to its place. What a newbie to do is hard!
Here are the main reasons for the loss of the biobalance link:
- excessive amount of daylight in the aquarium or wrong aquarium lighting mode. Accordingly, it is necessary to reduce or adjust daylight hours. Or in general, if possible, turn off the light for a couple of days, as a preventive measure.
- lack of daylight or use of "wrong" lamps with a "wrong" spectrum. Accordingly, it is necessary to increase the light day or remove the lamps with a "bad" spectrum and you need to buy lamps for the spectrum or purchase lamps for the missing spectrum. Read more Lighting aquarium and the choice of lamps and Lighting aquarium do it yourself.
- the presence in the aquarium of excess dead organic matter and dirt (dead plants, fish, food residues, kakul, etc.). Simply put, the aquarium does not have time to cope with so much "garbage" and the only way out of our beloved, living aquarium, is a call to help algae, who happily gobble up all this byaku.
Accordingly, it is necessary to remove all the "garbage": siphon the bottom of the aquarium, clean the walls, decor and equipment, mechanically try to remove the algae, as well as make more frequent and more complete water changes for fresh, eventually, fill the aquarium coal filter.
- The following reason follows from the above and is a destructive continuation of the "dirt" in the aquarium. All dead organics are decomposed by beneficial bacteria and fungi, and removed from the aquarium. If this dead organic matter a lot and it accumulates, the microorganisms do not have time to process it! In the aquarium, poisons begin to accumulate - decomposition products: ammonia, nitrites and nitrates, which leads not only to the appearance of algae, but generally ruins all life in the aquarium.
In addition to the above measures for thorough cleaning of the aquarium, you need to apply the following aquarium chemistry:

A) Zeolite. Sold in pet stores or other places. For example, a mixture of zeolite and coal is ubiquitous. Fluval Zeo-Carb.
On a note: you need to know that aquarium coal is not effective from poisons and only ion-exchange resin - zeolite removes them. Read more ...
B) Preparations of bio-starters, as well as preparations promoting an increase in the colonies of beneficial bacteria. Simply put, these are drugs that contain the very bacteria that decompose poisons. A lot of such drugs, for example, are popular: Tetra Bactozym, Tetra NitratMinus, Tetra NitrateMinus Pearls, Sera bio Nitrivec and others.
3. A large number of plants in the aquarium. No one has scientifically proved that plants suppress algae, but the fact remains that in an aquarium with live aquarium plants (1/2, 2/3), there are no algal outbreaks, except greenish dots sometimes appear, and then from strong illumination.
Here is an example from my own experience. I had a herbalist for growth (I grew plants for the future of an aquascape), there were many different plants. The time has come, I made my scape, spread out plants and flooded some algae (algae) in it, and this is all because the aquarium is young, the plants have not gotten stronger after transplantation, and their number has decreased. The time passed, the plants grew stronger and took over the lower ones and the thread disappeared.
Therefore, if you have the opportunity to provide plants with proper care: LIGHT, CO2, PLE - surely plant beds!
4. There are useful fish that fight - eat algae and algal plaque:
A) Siamese Algae Eaters - tireless workers of the aquarium, sometimes it seems that the only meaning of their life is the insatiable desire to kiss all the plants, suck all the stones and walk through all the aquarium decorations. They can still be found under the abbreviation SAE, which stands for Siamese Algae Eater and translates as Siamese algae. There are also KAE and IAE - Chinese and Indian algae. Effective from algae "black beard", "filament" and "deer horns", etc.
B) Ototsinklyus - no less effective fish. Due to the structure of its mouth gently and well remove algae from plants, decor and walls. Copes with green, brown (diatoms), etc.
B) Ancistrus- also helpful. But, unlike the aforementioned fish, adult antsistrus individuals are lazy. And they say that in addition to algae, they chew and plants.
D) The whole family is also a good helper in the fight against algae. petsilievyh - guppies, swordtails, mollies, patcilia and others.
D) All possible clams. - apularias, coils, fizy, etc.
5. And finally, the aquarium chemistry will come to the rescue, the overwhelming algae. In pet stores sold a lot of such drugs, as a rule, in their name they contain the word "Algo" (alga), for example, Tetra AlgoStop Depot. Use these drugs should be carefully, wisely and according to the instructions. I recommend Tetra products precisely because they have the mildest effect. With proper applications - taking into account all the circumstances in the aquarium, Tetra preparations do not adversely affect the plants.
So, we have considered the main causes of the appearance of algae in the aquarium, as well as the main methods of dealing with them. Finally, it should be noted that, as a rule, “algal trouble comes in a complex”, and therefore it is necessary to deal with it in a complex, i.e. not one method, but several at once, if not all at once.
Algae in the aquarium - know the enemy in the face!

Types of aquarium algae with photos

As previously mentioned varieties of algae very much! They number more than thirty thousand species !!! Below are the most common algae, the reasons for the appearance in the aquarium and the individual characteristics of solving problems with them.
But, first classification. Due to the abundance of algal mass, they were simply divided according to the color of the thallus (thallus) into:
- Diatoms - Diatomeae;
- Brown algae - Phaeophceae;
- Green algae - Chlorophceae;
- Yellow-green algae - Xantophceae;
- Red algae - Rhodophceae;
- Golden algae - Chrysophceae;
- Blue-green algae - Cynophceae;

They include the following "popular algal pests":

Brown or diatom algae

(brown coating on the walls, soil, stones of the aquarium)
photo brown, brown algae in the aquarium
These are the simplest and, if I may say so, harmless algae. They are placed at the very top of the list, as they often appear among beginners - in young aquariums. The first reason for their appearance is the lack of lighting, the second is the absence of a biogenic tuned nitrogen cycle in young aquariums.
As soon as a young aquarium tunes in or lighting is added, they will disappear. You can remove them mechanically and with the help of snails.

Red algae or black algae

Vietnamese seaweed or deer horns

photo of aquarium algae flip flops
About this algae, probably, they write on each the forum! Still, the ranks of the unhappy owners of this infection in their aquarium, everything is replenished and replenished.
This alga is very tenacious and difficult to excrete. Its appearance speaks primarily about the high content of dead organic matter in the aquarium, which it feeds on.
The methods of struggle are common: we clean everything carefully, siphonize the soil - we remove organic matter. We put coal and zeolite in the filter, make frequent water changes (up to 50% per week), well, we use algaecide and algae))).

Alga Blackbeard

photo seaweed black beard
Many confuse it with the "Vietnamese", because it is similar and has the same causes of appearance. It usually appears in "young aquariums". Inference methods are the same.

Filamentous algae (popularly, filamentous)

Alga Edogonium
photo of thread in the aquarium
This is the most common type of filamentous algae that attack an aquarium. At first it looks like green down, then like long green strings. When they occur, it is recommended to apply the above described methods of control. As well as in the literature it is noted that this alga appears due to the lack of macro elements. Surprisingly, in particular, phosphates and nitrates (of which everything is derived). There is a positive effect when adding them. In advanced cases, algicidal preparations are used.
Kladofora (popularly known as Kladofora thread)

It has branching and does not have long strings. As a rule, it appears in aquariums with poor filtration, poor water flow and the presence of stagnation zones, where it “blooms”.
It is possible to get rid of it by eliminating negative factors, by mechanical means (by hand) and algicide.
This seaweed is very nasty and not only because it is slimy and green, but also because it grows with a geometric progression. It is difficult to withdraw - neither algaecide, nor SAE will help. It is difficult, but you can defeat it mechanically: by manual selection, by rubbing it with your fingers (it is fragile), by pulling out from the bottom. As an additional measure of struggle helps: killing the light, fish and algae shrimp.

It can also be attributed to filamentous algae, because has a filamentous structure. As a rule, it appears in young aquariums, where the biobalance is not yet set up, which can be identically called the nitrogen cycle. This is not such a terrible seaweed! It actually disappears after the establishment / restoration of the biobalance in the aquarium. Applies to it, all common methods of struggle are effective. Most effective: water change and algaecide.

Ksenokokus - green plaque on the walls of the aquarium

Already with this alga faced all and beginners and pros. It appears from the excess light or the wrong daylight mode. At the same time, plant biomass does not play a role. It appears in aquariums with lush vegetation, and in the aquarium with "three rastyuchkami."
Recommendations for combating xenococcus (the correct name is colekheta) are general: reduce, adjust daylight hours, algaecide, mechanical cleaning, fish and shellfish helpers, frequent water changes.

Blue Green Algae

photo blue-green algae in the aquarium
These are rare guests of our aquariums. But nevertheless they need to know. They are formed on the tips of the plants or the tops of the decor. Unlike other algae, blue-green is a colony of bacteria, and it is very toxic (they release toxins into the water).
Well, since these are bacteria, you can get rid of them with human antibiotics and septic tanks or with antibacterial aquarium preparations. Sulfur Baktopur. If you do not want to poison the aquarium with harsh chemicals and antibiotics, you can locally use hydrogen peroxide in the right doses.
That's all! I wish you success and always stable aquarium!



Not all green algae in an aquarium are parasites: some of them belong to decorative species (for example, sparkle). The reasons for the appearance of malicious green Aquarius becomes excessive lighting and a sufficient amount of nutrients in the water. They harm higher plants because they shade them and absorb nitrates and phosphates intended for them. In addition, this species changes the gas balance of water, which leads to a violation of biological equilibrium. In order to overcome this lower vegetation, it is necessary to resort to the following methods:

1. Lighting. It is necessary to change the light mode. It is necessary to reduce the intensity and duration of both natural and artificial lighting.

2. Water change. In order to remedy the situation, it is necessary to regularly change the water, as well as clean the soil. It should be done daily, otherwise the situation will only get worse, since clean water can only increase the reproduction of green algae. This method is best used in the case when the minimum number of fish in the aquarium.

3. Ozonation of water. It is necessary to create a strong current of water using a centrifugal pump, and apply a strong oxidizing agent, namely ozone. With the systematic use of ozone will give good results: soon the flowering of water will stop, and the biological balance will return to normal.


Seaweed - this is not all that grows in water. So called lower, primitive photosynthetic organisms, often consisting of a single cell or several cells collected in colonies or filaments. They live everywhere in the aquatic environment. They are distinguished from higher plants by the absence of developed organs: stems, leaves, flowers, and also the fact that throughout their history they lived exclusively in water, while the plants were formed on land, and only after that some of them returned to the water .

Why do algae sometimes capture an aquarium?

The laws of nature are such that living organisms settle everywhere where suitable conditions exist for them. The main thing you need to live algae:

  • water;
  • shine;
  • nutrition (macronutrients).

Obviously, all this is in any aquarium.

Algae compete with flowering plants for light and macronutrients. Since the latter are more complex and highly organized, in favorable conditions they triumph in this competitive struggle, restraining the growth of their more primitive microscopic ancestors, taking away their nourishment.

However, they are older, smarter, more hardy, patient and less demanding. These, of course, are not properties of their character, but features of biology.Algae can form various types of spores and other structures that can survive adverse times, they need to illuminate a different spectrum, they have other, faster ways of reproduction. And if the conditions in the aquarium are not ideal for higher flora, there will certainly be purple, diatoms or cyanobacteria, which will not delay to take advantage of this.

There are several sections of algae with different colors depending on the pigments they contain. Next, we describe how the representatives of different departments in the aquarium look and what conditions cause outbursts of their numbers.

Blue-green (cyanobacteria)

Their cells do not have nuclei, so these organisms in the row of algae stand apart. In fact, they are bacteria that have acquired the ability to photosynthesis (in the course of it, sugar is formed from the energy of light from water and carbon dioxide in living cells). Despite their low position on the evolutionary ladder, these creatures are extremely tenacious and plastic, and the damage they can do to an aquarium is difficult to overestimate.

Cyanobacteria form mucous membranes covered with large gas bubbles of a dark green or bluish film on the walls of the aquarium, soil, plant leaves, decorations. All this beauty (and in this sight there really is something fascinating, alien) delays the artificial reservoir at an incredible speed, emitting a noticeable stench. The outbreak of the number of these organisms can greatly harm plants and fish even in natural conditions (cyanobacteria are the main cause of water bloom in the summer heat), and in an aquarium it is just a disaster that needs to be urgently addressed, and to save fish from death.

The reason for the uncontrolled reproduction of blue-green is a general failure of the ecological equilibrium, which results from a high concentration of organic matter in water, as well as nitrogen and phosphorus compounds due to systematic overfeeding of fish, irregular harvesting or death and decomposition of some of the fairly large inhabitants of the aquarium.

Often the situation is aggravated by an insufficient amount of oxygen in water, its alkaline reaction and high temperature.

Blue-green (cyanobacteria) photo IN AQUARIUM

Red algae (Rhodophyta) - bushy multicellular aquatic plants of dark gray, dark purple, olive or reddish. Otherwise they are also called crimson, they grow mainly in the seas, but about 50 species are found in fresh water. Compsopogon, which looks like dark gray bushes up to 5 cm in size, has become the worst enemy of aquarists. They cling tenaciously to glass, snags and leaves. Rapidly multiplying, kompsopogon spoils the appearance of plants. Among aquarists, the plant has received the apt nickname "black beard". Red algae feel good in water with high temporal rigidity, as they are able to extract carbonic acid from bicarbonates.


Diatoms (brown) algae in the aquarium

Diatoms are unicellular organisms that have a silicon shell in the form of a box, many of which are capable of movement. The significance of diatoms in natural marine ecosystems is simply colossal, since they constitute a significant proportion of plankton and form a huge part of the organic matter of the earth (about a quarter), and their shells after dying are the basis of sedimentary rocks.

But in artificial reservoirs they, like their counterparts from other departments of lower plants, are unwanted guests. Brownish or brown algae in an aquarium, forming a slimy coating, especially in poorly lit places, often near the bottom - these are, as a rule, diatoms. (By the word “brown” - we mean only color, not systematic belonging, since Brown Alga proper is a separate department of highly developed marine organisms with large bodies, thallus).

The development of a certain amount of diatoms almost always occurs in the first weeks after the launch of a new aquarium. In long-running aquariums, diatoms appear in conditions of insufficient - weak and short-term - illumination or light of the wrong spectrum, without a blue and red maximum.

Their reproduction contributes to a pH above 7.5, high water hardness and a high concentration of nitrogen compounds. An outbreak of diatoms can cause an excess of sodium in water, which occurs, for example, after treating fish in a common aquarium by adding salt.

Diatoms (brown) algae in the aquarium PHOTO

Black beard

This type of algae (although several species are meant by this name) is one of the most disliked aquarists because it is very difficult to fight. At first, these algae cover the edges of slow-growing plants, like Anubias, or grow in small bunches. Then they cover all the plants in the aquarium, giving it an ugly look. For fish they are not dangerous.

Mechanically remove these algae is almost impossible. Blackout or chemistry with them, in principle, can be fought, but then they will grow back. Some fish (siamese algae eater, for example) allegedly eat it, but on the condition that they are no longer fed.

black beard photo

Other algae species (filamentous, etc.)

These algae are of many species (hair algae, thread algae - filamentous algae, etc.). Hair algae, bright green color, grows on bunches of a ground, stones, etc. Easily removed mechanically or eaten by algae fish. Thread algae, dark in color, grows in individual long threads. It is easily removed mechanically and usually serves as an indicator of excess iron in water (0.1-0.2 mg / l).

Algae growing on small islands on glass are considered normal for a plant aquarium and are easily controlled by scraping (be careful if you have a Plexiglas aquarium) using a razor or a special scraper. Usually this should be done on the front glass. Fish, such as antsistrusy, etc., will help keep the glass clean.

filamentous algae photo

What are the chemical means of struggle and how are they bad

There are several chemical agents for algae control. Most of them are adapted from fish farming, where you have to struggle with overgrowing ponds. An example is simazine, which is available under various brands for aquariums.

Unfortunately, these drugs act on different algae in different ways and are not always effective. In addition, these drugs have a negative effect on plants, causing the death of some plants. Such as kabomba or vallinsneria, in the case of using simazin, which affects the process of photosynthesis.

The main disadvantage of these drugs is that they do not eliminate the causes of the appearance of algae (excess nutrients for algae in the water) and, accordingly, they will appear again from the spores. The use of these preparations can be recommended, as the last available remedy, in cases when it is necessary to quickly get rid of the algae and then continue the fight in a biological way, as described below.

Other ways are disinfecting plants in bleach. Some use hydrogen peroxide to control certain types of algae.

Light Adjustment

It is necessary to move the light parameters in the direction uncomfortable for algae and convenient for plants. In the case of purple and diatoms, the strength and duration of the illumination should be increased by more careful selection of lamps or installation of additional ones. Lamp maxima should be in the blue and red regions of the spectrum. In the case of strong development of chlorophyte fouling, the light intensity and the duration of the light period, on the contrary, decrease.

When water blooms or flashes of cyanobacteria, the lamps turn off completely for several days, sometimes the aquarium is additionally covered with a cloth or paper so that even scattered sunlight and indoor light cannot reach it. Higher plants will survive this (except for the most tender ones, which it is better to remove to another container so far), and the algae will die.


To inhibit the growth of the lower algal flora in the aquarium, you need to observe the balance of nutrients. There should be as little dissolved organics in water as possible, and macroelements (nitrogen and phosphorus compounds) should be sufficient, but not excessive. This requires regular cleaning of the aquarium, siphon of the bottom, water changes by a quarter or third per week, depending on the density of the aquarium population.

The lack of nutrients in the aquarium is less common than their excess, and is usually observed in herbalists with a very high planting density and a small animal population. In such situations, the issue is solved by fertilizer, while they must be placed in the ground, directly to the roots of plants. Accurately used and currently available aquarium tests are used to accurately measure the concentration of various compounds in water.

Carbon dioxide

The introduction of CO2 into an aquarium with the help of various devices provides the plants with a source of carbon and, in the presence of good lighting, can significantly change the balance of forces in their favor. In addition, carbon dioxide acidifies water, which also usually adversely affects the lower flora and beneficially - on the higher.

In addition to these basic measures aimed at improving the conditions for plant growth and normalizing the overall situation in the aquarium, for the fight against algae are used:

  • mechanical removal from surfaces using a scraper or toothbrush;
  • settling algae fish in an aquarium (ototsinklyuy are effective against diatoms, CAE against purple bug and filamentous chlorophyte, labo and hirinoheylus - against scale greens) or, in the case of water blooming, branchy daphnia crustaceans;
  • in rare cases (for example, an outbreak of cyanobacteria or blooming of water) the use of chemical methods of control - antibiotics and algaecides, as well as an ultraviolet sterilizer is justified.

It must be said that the mass development of cyanobacteria is the reason for taking emergency measures: in addition to the already mentioned complete darkening and use of the antibiotic and sterilizer, it is necessary to deprive algae of nutrients as much as possible. To do this, stop feeding the fish in the aquarium (it is generally better to remove the fish for a while), set the filter power to a minimum, at the same time turning on aeration, do not change the water. Already after the death of most of the blue-greens, general cleaning of the aquarium with a deep siphon of the soil and the replacement of most of the water is carried out.

But such measures to destroy algae give only a temporary effect, which quickly passes without normalizing the overall balance of the aquarium. Therefore, with all due respect to the ancient origin and the enormous ecological role of algae, let us try to create in our aquarium such conditions under which not they, but those for whom we start our indoor ponds — higher plants and fish — will feel comfortable.

Filamentous algae in an aquarium how to fight-photo description video.

Causes of filamentous algae in the aquarium

Filamentous algae multiply rapidly enough in the aquarium and begin to occupy almost the entire area under the following conditions:

• Bright light. Thread often appears in those aquariums that are exposed to direct sunlight during the day or artificial lighting is used for more than 8 hours per day.

• Insufficient oxygen supply.

• A small number of aquarium plants. The surplus of trace elements coming with fertilizer, with a small number of plants, has a positive effect on the rapid growth of the yarn.

• Irregular replacement of water in the aquarium and its poor cleaning leads to the accumulation of nitrates, which are especially needed for the growth of nitrate.

Often the filament appears at the very beginning of breeding aquarium fish and this is due to the fact that higher plants have not yet had time to settle down, which means there is an excess of trace elements necessary for the growth of protozoa. Sometimes filamentous algae can be brought into the house and together with the plants acquired in pet stores.

Methods of struggle

Filamentous algae will surely appear in the pond if there is an excess content of water-soluble nitrogen and phosphorus compounds. Therefore, first of all you need to pay attention to the operation of the filter and lighting. The blue light that favors the growth of the thread should be eliminated and replaced with a soft one.

The accumulation of ammonia compounds occurs both when the filter is clogged and when there are too many fish with an insufficient number of plants. Floating plants and such that grow rapidly (hygrophilic, vallisneria) inhibit filamentous algae, taking away their food. Of great importance is the concentration of iron in the aquarium. It should not exceed the permissible dose of 0.2 mg / l.

Removing the algae from the aquarium with your hands, for example when settling in Spirogira, is almost the only method of control. It is very important to clean the plants from the floss and wash them, and take CO2 to the aquarium only during the daytime. For all cleaning activities, many recommend to darken the aquarium for three days.

In some cases, the use of algaecides, such as, for example, Sidex, containing glutaraldehyde, is very effective. Hydrogen peroxide in an amount of from 6 to 10 mg / l and the filament are also incompatible.

Do not neglect the biological methods of destruction of algae parasites. Who eats yarn, so it is catfish, gastromysones, viviparous small fish, pesilias and mollies, as well as karzuby, jordanelles, Siamese epalceorinhoses.

Where do filamentous algae grow

Grows very well in water with increased hardness. The well-known famous blooming of water in swamps and artificial reservoirs is due to filamentous algae. Unlike other aquatic plants, they have a specific sugary smell and a salty taste. I think that a normal person will not taste the swamp mud. We believe experts that the taste of Tina is sharp and astringent. Filamentous algae live in all water bodies where there is no strong current. The chemical composition of scientists is not fully understood.

What is dangerous filamentous algae

Filamentous algae are different clusters of fairly long or short filaments. Separate beams can be formed from them, fine algae are perfectly attached to the bark, entwining higher aquarium plants, filter tubes and other equipment. The color of these algae is most often green, but protozoa can also occur with a brown, black, gray and even reddish color. A small amount of filamentous algae is considered a normal phenomenon, and it indicates that it is more likely that breeding conditions in the aquarium are suitable for other plants.

But a huge number of filamentous growths can bring a lot of problems, and, above all, they include: Isolation of toxic substances by the remains of algae, which are detrimental to the inhabitants of the aquarium. The natural death of a large number of filamentous algae leads to a continuous process of their decomposition, as a result of which toxins are released. Algae strands entangle the plants growing in the aquarium and thus interfere with their growth and development.

The algae retain the remnants of food and other organic matter, and this leads to rapid contamination of all the water in the aquarium. In bundles of filamentous algae, small fish and fry may become entangled. In connection with these problems, it is always necessary to fight fast-growing filamentous algae in an aquarium, and both the simplest methods and certain professional techniques can help.

External signs of filamentous algae

"The enemy must be known in person" - this also applies to algae. The fact is that under this name many species are collected, which can often be distinguished only under a microscope. And to deal with them to be different methods.

Here are the main signs by which it is possible to determine with confidence that these are really green filamentous algae.

  • Appearance: thin green threads.
  • Texture: soft, slimy to the touch. When removed from the water, they immediately lose their shape and sag.

The filament is often referred to as a kladofora, but this is a misconception. The cladophora has a hard, elastic texture that practically does not lose shape in the air.

Green filamentous algae feed and grow due to substances dissolved in water and the process of photosynthesis occurring in the light.

Prevention Overview

An “algal disaster” will not come in an aquarium in which the correct balance of life is respected. The appearance of green filamentous algae is, above all, an alarm for the aquarist, indicating the beginning of the inhibition of plants due to an excess of some substances and a shortage of others. To avoid this, follow the simple recommendations.

  • Regular cleaning and changing the water in the aquarium. If these conditions are not met, a lot of decomposition products, nitrates causing rotting, water damage, and algae accumulate in your indoor pond.
  • Harmonious lighting. Excessive light provokes excessive algae activity. For a good control of this factor, it is necessary, first of all, to establish an aquarium correctly, where direct sunlight will not fall on it. The length of daylight, sufficient for plants and fish - 10-12 hours.
  • A sufficient amount of aquarium plants. Algae often begin to actively proliferate where there are few or no plants, in an aquarium with cichlids, for example. These fish are actively digging the ground, and aquarists often decorate their homes only with artificial decorations.Meanwhile, plants are necessary for the harmonious life of an artificial reservoir, otherwise their place in the bio-system will be occupied by uninvited aliens.
  • Good aeration. A sufficient supply of oxygen is necessary for everyone living in the aquarium. If the plants themselves feel good (and they need oxygen), then they will be able to inhibit the growth of algae.

It is important to remember that algae are equal participants in biological processes taking place in your aquarium. It is not their presence at all that is harmful, but their active growth, an excess of algae. In a well-balanced aquarium invasion of algae will not happen.

Many experienced aquarists do not protest at all against the visible presence of algae, specifically leaving them in inconspicuous places. In small quantities, they benefit by absorbing some excess nutrients and rotting products.

An important principle of aquarium maintenance is regularity and moderation. Where the fish are fed, not overfeeding and the volume of water is sufficient for them, the plants live and thrive, the dirt is constantly removed, and the water is refreshed and aerated - in a harmonious, well-kept aquarium there is no “environmental catastrophe”.






Flip-flops and methods of dealing with algae

A flip-flop belongs to the group of algae, which aquarists often refer to as a brush, beard or bush. The name directly depends on the appearance of the "uninvited guest", which is clearly seen in the photo. These algae are considered to be the real misfortune of the aquarist, since it is very difficult to deal with. Their appearance in the aquarium is very dangerous and can be detrimental to all inhabitants. Most of these algae are layer-forming, slightly less filamentous and very rare - single-celled. Aquarium belong to filamentous species.


Algae in an aquarium can take on different colors, for which chlorophyll pigments are responsible - phycobilins. According to biochemical analysis, they can be compared with cyanobacteria, from which, according to scientists, they originated, and blue-green algae. Red algae are very dangerous for an aquarium, because they multiply very quickly and in a few days, with ease, it spreads everywhere. Photos of affected aquariums are not rarely terrifying.

The largest number of flip flops is located at the tips of the plants, or rather their leaves. The preferred habitats include the decor, various projections and stems of the aquarium flora. A large number of enzymes in them have a large absorption of solar energy, which leads to active growth. It is noticed that the majority of problem aquariums were illuminated with a lamp with an active yellow spectrum. Such lamps have a beneficial effect on the growth of algae and negatively on the development of higher plants. Shifts in the choice of spectrum lead to the appearance of a beard. It is important to avoid direct sunlight. To fight the affected leaves are removed, if the rest of the new foci begin to emerge, then you will have to say goodbye to the whole plant.

Difference Vietnamese from beard

Distinguishing Vietnamese from a beard is not difficult, just look at the photo. Pay attention to the strings, if they start to turn into tassels, then you have a traditional Vietnamese, if they are increasing in length, then a beard. In other words, the Vietnamese grows a bush, and the beard grows long with a fringe of green or dark green color. The beard can settle in any part and develop perfectly on anything, and the Vietnamese is much more demanding. It is most often located far from the stream (grottoes and stones), but if the plants are located in the stream, then it can also be located there.

As in one and in the other case, the water gets a dirty green color. To determine the color of the algae a single visual study is not enough. Red pigment can occur only when exposed to alcohol, acetone or solvent. Take some algae hairs and put them in alcohol. Red algae will retain the original color, and green will become colorless. Unfortunately, algae refuses to use the beard and Vietnamese. Neither the Amano nor the Siamese sea-eaters will eat it. The reason for this can be considered coloring pigments.

Causes of red algae:

  • Lack of oxygen in the water;
  • Overly strong current;
  • Excessive number of inhabitants;
  • Too much blowdown.

Most often, the leaves of slow-growing plants are the first to suffer from algae breeding, from which the latter will most likely die, and only then the rest. She likes Vietnamese Anubias and Echinodorus and similar plants with a wide leaf plate.

How to get rid of flip flops

Unfortunately, if your aquarium has populated the Vietnamese or other algae, you will have to fight them for a long time and carefully. However, hoping that you can get rid of it without a trace, you should not. Chemical and mechanical means are powerless. Whatever you do, sooner or later the alga will reappear in the aquarium. The only way to help the plants and fish there is the control of numbers. Maintain optimal biological performance. Pay attention to the nutrient balance of water and soil.

Be attentive to filtering and filtering elements. It may be necessary to evict fish that periodically dig in the ground and siphon it from the aquarium. If you manage to establish optimal conditions and adjust the portion of food for the inhabitants, then the Vietnamese and green algae will not bother you, but you should take into account that the slightest hesitation will again cause an outbreak.

There are alternative ways to fight, but they are temporary and provide only a temporary effect. The establishment of biological equilibrium is the most effective of all methods. In fact, it is not difficult to do this, it is fairly conscientious about their pets.

Be attentive to the new plants that you are going to settle in your aquarium. Dip them in water and stir to notice the hairs located on the leaves. If this option does not seem to be reliable, then prepare a solution of whiteness in the ratio of 1:20 with clean water and soak the novice there for 2 minutes, then wash it thoroughly and put it in the aquarium. If you do not do this, the algae spores will instantly be affected by the plants already living there. Evidence that the struggle is successful, will gradually lighten the water and cleansing the leaves, stems and decor from the raid.

Brown algae in the aquarium

If you notice brown mucus on the walls of the aquarium, it is time to sound the alarm - a harmful alga started up in your pond. It leaves its marks on the bottom and on the leaves of aquatic plants. If we do not fight with the brown alga, it will very quickly clog the reservoir, worsening the habitat for fish.

What is kelp

Brown algae are microscopic living organisms that can exist both unicellularly and take the form of colonies. They are attributed to diatom algae, which means "divided in half."

Such is their structure: 2 halves of a single whole - epitek (upper) and hypotec (lower). All this is exposed in a single solid shell. Through its porous walls and metabolism occurs brown algae.

Like any simplest, kelp reproduces by division. When you divide the daughter cell gets a piece of the mother shell. And these halves of the shell are able to recreate themselves, putting both “mother” and “daughter” in new armor.

Since the shells are silica impregnated, they are not able to increase in size. Because of this, each next generation of diatoms smaller than their ancestors. But they also manage to leave brown raids on any surface of the aquarium.

There are among these algae and individuals, which are collected in tubular colonies, having the form of brown bushes. They grow very quickly, sometimes reaching a height of 20 centimeters. But to a greater degree they look like flat formations, which we perceive as a raid.

Brown algae prefer shaded corners of ponds with an abundance of organic matter. This is what stimulates them to active development. Filling the entire aquarium, this alga deprives other inhabitants of the right to a normal existence.

The causes of diatoms

If the reservoir is new, then the appearance of brown spots on the walls of the aquarium or the surface of the water after a couple of weeks is considered normal. The reason is still uninhabited habitat - a fairly high content of carbon and organic matter in the water. Apparently, there are still a small number of fish and green vegetation in the pond, which would absorb all this abundance.

But if the "brown junta" began to capture the space of the old aquarium, then here you should already think about where the regime was violated.

  • Perhaps the aquarium is not well lit - the drillers love penumbra very much.
  • Increased iodine content is also a cause of the occurrence of brown algae.
  • Brown algae are also fed from silicates contained in the reservoir. The source can be substrates containing silicon, or sand at the bottom of the reservoir.

But whichever of the causes affecting the appearance of the brown alga is not, the fight against it must begin immediately, as soon as the first signs of the problem are noticed.

Means to combat brown algae

To the inhabitants of your home pond feel quite comfortable, get rid of the brown algae by all available means. Do not allow these "amoeba" to multiply in your tank.

  • In a young aquarium, it will be enough to do mechanical work, removing all plaque from surfaces. To do this, you can purchase a special scraper or take a conventional blade.
  • With leaves of aquatic plants, brown raids will have to be cleaned with just hands. In no case do not use foam or spongy material to remove algae. And do the cleaning carefully, so as not to damage the plants.
  • Do not forget about accumulated dirt at the bottom of the reservoir - it is better to remove it with the help of hoses intended for this purpose.
  • Remove pebbles, shells and pebbles from the aquarium (when changing water) and rinse them well. Do the same with decorative elements (artificial locks, decorative snags, etc.).
  • It should also be rinsed under running water and filter, as well as compressor hoses.
  • Get biological weapons in an aquarium - fish that feed on brown algae: gyrinoheylus, catfish antsistrus, Siamese algae and others. Mollusks (neurite olive snail, horned snail) are also good cleaners.

But various chemicals to combat the brown "evil spirits" should not be used - do harm to other inhabitants of the reservoir. But you can use some antibiotics (for example, penicillin). And be sure to put the aquarium as close as possible to the light.

Preventive measures

In order to no longer have to deal with such a scourge as brown algae, follow the basic rules for the care of domestic water bodies.

  • First of all, ensure sufficient illumination of every corner in the aquarium. If daylight is too short, use additional lighting. It is better to use lamps that give red spectral light.
  • Always keep the temperature in the pond at the optimum level (+ 22-280С) - kelp like exactly the opposite, cooler.
  • Regularly change the water in the aquarium, follow its technical indicators (pH, iodine, nitrates, phosphates, silicates). Never use water immediately from the tap - you need only purified.
  • Install in the pond filter, capable of absorbing silicates
  • Plant aquarium with a large number of aquatic plants - they will “take away” some of the food from the brown algae, thereby slowing down its growth.
  • Experienced aquarists recommend putting zinc and copper products on the bottom of a pond. These metals are able to destroy the brown alga.

Each time, conducting a replacement of water or cleaning the aquarium from the brown alga, provide residents of the reservoir with twenty-four-hour lighting for several days.

How to get rid of kelp:

Combating algae in aquariums

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Combating algae in aquariums

Algae destruction:
biological methods

Killing algae in an aquarium is not easy. At the very
In fact, the main thing is not to let the algae grow. And then the aquarist
great help
algae fish

The destruction of algae in an aquarium is an eternal topic! Aquarium forums on the Internet are literally inundated with questions about how to lime this attack. For beginners, I remind you that far from all aquarium vegetation is properly called algae. Cabombs, rotals, ludvigii, echinodorus, cryptocorynes and other aquatic plants that can often be seen in aquariums are all higher plants. And the term "algae" is applicable only to the lowest. Usually they are unsightly green or brown patches, fringe, tassels, bunches of dark or light threads on the walls of the aquarium, stones, soil and the aquarium plants themselves. Thus, the flora that we plant in an aquarium and specially grow in it is wrong to call it algae. Aquarium plants are not algae! They belong to flowers, ferns and mosses. They decorate the aquarium, while the lower plants, that is, algae, usually spoil the appearance of the aquarium. Therefore, an aquarist, if only he does not care what his aquarium looks like, has to wage a long war with algae. But to destroy algae is very difficult!

Long strands of green algae. Perhaps the most effective way to fight them is to wind them on a village wand and throw them out. In a sense, this is also a biological method of control.

Algae are in the aquarium as uninvited guests. Alas, these "guests" come necessarily. It is practically impossible to shut out the iron curtain of quarantines and sanitary treatments of fish, plants, soil, aquarium equipment from them.

Left: Leaf of spiral vallisneria struck by "Vietnamese" (Audouinella) - red algae, to which other aquarists spend a lot of effort and money to fight, but still can not win. Others simply refuse higher plants, and algae become so accustomed to the overgrown on stones and other elements of the aquarium design that they begin to be perceived as quite pretty vegetation.
Right: mucous dark green films with a characteristic odor can begin to rapidly cover the soil and leaves of plants - these are blue-green “algae” (cyanobacteria). Neither fish, nor shrimp, nor snails eat them. You can fight blue-greens only by chemical and physical methods. For example, using hydrogen peroxide and vircon-C to destroy them is quite realistic

Sometimes the invasion of algae begins to take the form of a natural disaster. The leaves of plants, glass aquarium and the ground can quickly become covered with mucous brown or dark green with a bluish tint films. This happens mostly from inexperienced amateurs who have not yet learned how to maintain biological balance in their aquarium, as well as if they start up incorrectly in an aquarium or in "old" aquariums that they have been properly maintained for.
In a well-balanced aquarium conditions are unfavorable for the development of algae, in which they will behave very modestly and do not catch the eye at all. However, this will not mean that they left the aquarium for good. The slightest mistake in the care (even a slight overfeeding of fish, aging of lamps, rare water changes, overpopulation) and everything - here they are algae right there! Only constant pressure can keep them in check. And here all means of destruction are good: both physical (selection of lighting, the spectrum of which must be correct, maintaining a sufficiently high redox potential of water), and chemicals (ensuring optimal hydrochemical parameters of water and using branded drugs that suppress the growth of algae), and biological. In this article we will discuss one of the traditional and very effective methods of biological control: the settlement in the aquarium of fish that eat algae.
Algae eagerly eat more than three dozen different species of fish, if not more. For example, the well-known viviparous small fish, chilias and mollies, are ready to peck green thread all day long, especially if they contain half-starved ones. But, so that the overgrown leaves of plants and stones do not hurt the eyes, it will take efforts not from two to three fish, but to a whole flock. Places for other fish in this tank, perhaps, almost will not. Therefore, if viviparous fishes as such are not interested in an aquarist, he should opt for other herbivorous fishes. It is incomparably more effective as fighters with algae to act fish, mouthparts which are specially adapted for scraping fouling.

Very beautiful short-cut mollies (Poecilia sp.) Perhaps of all the viviparous fish "molly" the most herbivorous. Exactly they need not so much to reduce the "green fluff" on the leaves of higher plants (green filamentous algae) to a minimum. Pay attention to the piquant detail: the sausage of the litter (it is in the foreground of the picture) is green. This means that the lion’s share of the ration of these mollies was made up of algae

But not all fish that can scrape algae are equally useful.Not so rarely even representatives of such very popular species as, for example, girinohaylusy, antsistrusy and pterigoplichty suddenly change their eating habits and, instead of algae are taken for the leaves of higher plants, leaving them with a characteristic type of grooves, holes and scuffs. It is not easy for an aquarist to find out who is a hooligan in his aquarium, but each type of fish has its own characteristic “handwriting”, and the nature of the damage can be fairly accurately determined. If you suddenly come across the need to carry out such an investigation, then photos from the article "Aquarium plants and fish" in the section on aquarium plants on our website will help you.

Girinoheylus (Gyrinocheilus aymonieri), or Chinese seaweed. Very good for cleaning stones and kryagi. But the delicate leaves of some species of aquatic plants damage it. If you look closely, then on the leaves of the nomafila, which is in the background, you can see the characteristic striation - these are the traces of his "teeth"

The Singapore supplier company assures that it is a new type of girinoheylus for aquarists (Gyrinocheilus pennocki). Fish caught directly in nature

And indeed, the behavior of the fish turned out to be just exemplary. Unlike her golden relative, spoiled by a full life in an aquarium, she does not expect mercy from her master and she is scraping off stones all day long.

There are only two species of algae fish that, as far as I know, have never been convicted of spoiling the leaves of higher plants - these are Siamese algae and ottozinklyus.

In nature, Siamese seaweed (Crossocheilus siamensis) and otozinclus (Otocinclus affinis) can not meet, but once in the same aquarium coexist perfectly. They simply do not notice each other, even when they undertake to clean the same sheet. In this case, they together scrape off green algae, but the Siamese algae still can eat Vietnamese, and the otozinclus is a specialist in the destruction of diatoms

Owners of aquarium with live plants, I highly recommend having both of these species. Together they are able to successfully resist red, diatom and green algae.
The representative of red algae, or crimson, the so-called "Vietnamese" is distinguished by special malignancy and vitality. It is a thick, usually dark brush, which, if you do not fight with them, will soon appear everywhere in the fish-populated aquarium: on the leaves of plants, on the rocks, and on the glass. Crimsons are very tasteless and, as was considered until recently, they are eaten confidently by only one type of fish - the Siamese seaweed. In foreign literature, the commercial name of these fish (Siamese Algae Eater) is often replaced by the abbreviation SAE.

Bush "Vietnamese" near. It grows right on the front glass of the aquarium.

Siamese Sea Spider (SAE) - a tireless wrestler
with Vietnamese and green algae.
There are more SAE articles on Living Water

Siamese aquatic sequences are cute and very lively fish. Their homeland is Southeast Asia, from where they are imported. Alas, in captivity Siamese algae do not breed. These fish are relatively unpretentious. They can adapt to water of different chemical composition, but in the aquarium with them it is very desirable to have a pump that creates a flow. In nature, Siamese algae dwell in rivers and streams. In a flowing reservoir, the degree of saturation of water with oxygen is great and the fish are adapted precisely to such living conditions. This means that if oxygenated stagnant zones form in the aquarium, the algae will feel unwell. It is possible that it is the river origin of the Siamese algae that prevents their breeding in captivity. Yet an aquarium is not a river. In it the conditions of existence are more stringent. But the fish can adapt to them and even grow well (they can reach 12-15 cm in length). Despite its not-so-small size, Siamese algae does not offend other smaller fish. They have no predatory inclinations at all. They can only conflict with the labo and therefore I would not recommend keeping these fish together. The fact is that, by nature, the labo is also an algae, although far from being so diligent. Fishes of both species see each other as dangerous food competitors. Hence their enmity.

Labeo two-tone (Labeo bicolor) (below) and green (L. frenatus) (above) - the enemies of the Siamese Algae Eaters and, in particular, the Siamese flying chanterelles. Sami Labo rather sanitation aquarium than wrestlers with algae. Despite its immense popularity, these fishes do not differ in their good temper. The instigator of conflicts are most often they

Siamese algae are by nature schooling fish. But already three fish together feel quite comfortable, and they will be enough to deal with algae in an aquarium of up to 150 liters. But it is much more interesting to watch a flock of 5-6 individuals. Fish will arrange a continuous cheerful dance. They are extremely mobile and liven up a great atmosphere in the aquarium.
Talking about Siamese algae, one can not but touch upon another very important circumstance for an aquarist. This species has a twin that lives in the same rivers. As a rule, both fish are caught and then sold together.
They call the double-fish Siamese Flying Fox. Both types are terribly similar (see photo here), which often leads to considerable confusion in print media, on the Internet and in trade. Many exporting firms, and after them traders called Siamese Flying Fox, sell both Siamese seaweed and Siamese flying chanterelles without seeing any differences in them. Indeed, they are almost like twins! But there is a noticeable difference in their behavior. The Siamese algae-eater differs in a non-hostile nature and diligence, and the Siamese chanterelle possesses these qualities to a somewhat lesser extent. Therefore, it is useful to be able to distinguish between these fish. In the Siamese seaweed, the black longitudinal strip comes to the tail fin, while the Siamese flying chanterelle does not. There are also other, almost completely inconspicuous differences. For example, the seaweed has only one pair of whiskers, and the chanterelle, as well as the Labeos, has two.
However, the Siamese flying chanterelles have a number of advantages. These fish, especially in their youth, also destroy Vietnamese and other types of algae. They grow stronger than the Siamese algae and, therefore, can feel great in aquariums with large fish, such as tsikhlovymi, where someone must also fight with algae. They are very unpretentious and even a beginner can cope with their content. These fish usually do not show aggression to other species, with the exception of representatives of the genus Labo. But with the labo they lead an implacable struggle and enter into it much more decisively than the Siamese algae. Keep together these fish is not necessary.
Recently, another algae - Indian (Crossocheilus latius). This Latin is amicably cited by all the firms supplying this fish. Nevertheless, there is reason to doubt the correctness of the Latin name, since the Indian seaweed has two mustache pairs, and not one, like a Siamese. Famous German company Aquarium Glaser GmbH announces this view as "the world's best seaweed"The practice will show that this is true. But the first impressions of keeping this fish in the aquarium with plants are really very good. With the algae, the Indian seaweed cracks well, especially when it is hungry.

Indian seaweed. This is undoubtedly a close relative of the flying chanterelle and no Crossocheilus. But algae eats well. Other fish does not offend and holes in the leaves, it seems, does not! Perhaps these are the best algae fighters in the world. Is it really - time will tell

The fish is very diligent. But the Vietnamese in the aquarium is still there (visible in the lower left corner of the photo). The nitrate content is high and the algae grow faster than fish eat.

And this fall (September 2004) we received another type of flying chanterelles. We ordered Indian seaweed, and sent us a new look.

"Silver" flying chanterelles. Peaceful schooling very mobile fish. Aquarium decorate, algae eat

In the hygienic aquarium, the fish have a silvery color, but in the decorated one they noticeably darken.

Silver chanterelles are great lovers to sit on the pectoral fins. In this they are very similar to the classic flying chanterelles. But here they clean the plants much more diligently than their striped relatives. In St. Petersburg, they are appreciated by many aqua-designers.

All the fish described above are distinguished by intelligence and ingenuity, which sometimes adversely affects their diligence in the destruction of algae. Once in the aquarium, they quickly realize that the world here has one very nice feature: at least once a day fish are fed here. The owner comes to the aquarium and, lo and behold, suddenly delicious fish food starts falling from above! If you have time for distribution, you can eat all day. It is no longer necessary to do the hard work of scraping off hard algae that are firmly attached to the leaves and stones! Unfortunately, Siamese algae, and especially Siamese flying chanterelles and Indian algae-eating animals come to this conclusion surprisingly quickly. That is why, if you want them to properly fulfill their duties, feed not a lot of fish and only in the evening. Let them work during the day.
Absolutely different in character and manner of keeping the oocytes. These calm fish come from South America. They are very small in size, and even the largest specimens barely reach 5 centimeters, usually they are no more than 4. To the presence of oxygen in water, this species is much less demanding. If suddenly it becomes stuffy in the aquarium, the otozinclus will regularly float to the surface of the water and capture the air bubble. They swallow this vial, it passes through the intestines and releases the oxygen it contains. Such breathing is called intestinal. It allows the fish to survive in very harsh conditions. However, do not abuse the survival of the ozinclus. They saw that they began to rise to the surface for air - strengthen the aeration and filtration, or even partially replace the water. After all, your other pets do not possess intestinal respiration and may die from suffocation. By its behavior, the otozinclus will prompt in time that there is something wrong in the aquarium.

Ototsinklyus (Otocinclus affinis) at work. He removes green algae from the Echinodorus leaf. In this photo, they are visible very well. Do not think that the fish can not cope. I wanted to kill two birds with one stone: show both algae and otzinclus. The fish was transferred to a new aquarium and immediately went to work. And, nevertheless, it is more correct to cut off and throw away such a strongly overgrown leaf, and to improve the composition of the water in the aquarium. Only then can the fish effectively restrain algae growth.

The main benefit of otsinklyusov is that they do an excellent job with diatoms. These last form an unsightly brown raids in the shaded areas of the aquarium. Diatoms are lovers of diffuse lighting. When they find themselves in suitable conditions, they are able to deliver a lot of grief to an aquarist. If diatoms are not combated, they will quickly cover everything in the aquarium with a brown-brown mucous mass. Ototsinklyus ready to eat diatoms day and night. And this is not an exaggeration, it really is! Even at night, these hard workers do not stop their very useful work. Ototsinklyus so fond of eating algae, that almost no distraction to falling fish from the sky. They work selflessly: 4 - 6 fish are able to keep a hundred-meter aquarium clean.

The scope of food interests of otsinklyus covers the entire aquarium. With equal zeal, they clean and wide leaves of Echinodorus, and small glossosm, covering the bottom. This last lesson requires a rigorous approach, but the otsinkluss cope. "Lawn" looks quite clean and well maintained

Despite its small size, the otsinklyus is not defenseless. They belong to the family of chain catfish. They were called chainmail because the whole body of these fish is covered with strong bony plates that serve them as an excellent defense. If only a large fish cannot swallow the whole of the otsinkly, then it will not cause him much harm. In short, otsinklyusy able to get along even in a not very friendly team. They themselves do not offend anyone. The only thing that really interests them is algae.
Unfortunately, otozincluses rarely breed in an aquarium. They have to be imported from South America. That is why this small nondescript fish is usually not cheap. Nevertheless, you will see it on sale - you must buy it, you will not regret it!
Not only fish can successfully fight algae. The world famous aqua-designer Takashi Amano recommends using Japanese pond shrimps for this purpose. With his light hand, they have now become very popular, and even the trade name was given to Amano Shrimp. Indeed these funniest creatures are excellent cleaners and orderlies of the aquarium. But in my opinion, as algae fighters, they are much inferior to the Siamese and Indian algae, and ottozinkly too. Their zeal depends on how much and often they are fed. But even hungry shrimp need quite a lot in order to suppress the outbreak of algae in the aquarium: almost one for every one-two liters of volume. This is what Japanese shrimp really masterfully cope with, so this is with the cleaning of the cladofore balls.

Kladofora, or velvet ball (Cladophora aegagrophila) - is a colony of algae. The unusual spherical shape and beautiful emerald color made the Kladofor a very popular aquarium plant. But the trouble is: it very quickly collects a lot of dirt on itself and loses its beauty. Amano Shrimp (Caridina japonica) they clean it with pleasure, carefully going through each "hair"

Perhaps, Kladofora is the only alga that adorns the aquarium. In an aquarium with a fairly dense population, garbage quickly accumulates on the surface of velvet balls and they lose their beauty. And then come to the aid of shrimp. They are happy to spend a lot of time at the Kladofor very carefully, picking up and cleaning each of the many thousands of individual green algae strands that make up a spherical colony.
Summarize. The fish mentioned in this article can greatly help in the fight against algae. Since it is not easy to win in this struggle, then in no way can one neglect their services. Otsinklyuses and Siamese algae-eaters, as well as Amano shrimps and ototsinkly, get along well together. Together they will more effectively destroy algae. In an aquarium with large fish that can offend the above listed algae fighters, you can use Indian algae, silver chanterelles, Siamese flying chanterelles, gyrinohailus, antsistrusov and pterygoplichts as such.
And of course, we must not forget that higher plants and algae compete in the aquarium with each other in the struggle for carbon dioxide and mineral salts. Perfectly feeling the highest vegetation strongly inhibits the growth of algae. But it is worth only the hydrochemical indicators of water quality to be unfavorable for higher plants, as the algae immediately make themselves felt.
Now it remains only to wish you success in the struggle for a clean aquarium with live plants, on the leaves of which there will be no algae!

Vladimir Kovalev, photos of the author.

A series of messages "aquarium and its inhabitants":
Part 1 - Fighting algae in aquariums
Part 2 - Types of aquarium filters. Comparative characteristics
Part 3 - Details on live fish food (part 1)

Part 13 - Sea Leafy Dragon
Part 14 - Beautiful cockerel fish
Part 15 - Cychlasma Blue Dumps