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Re: algae control with critters

"Do you generally consider algae eating critters like
amano shrimp, sae, otocinclus, snails, etc., as
necessary to control algae in a well managed tank?"

I look at them as the icing on the cake.  In a stable,
mature, and well run tank, I see little use for them. 
You hear people say things like "I have a ton of black
brush algae.  I'm going to run out and buy a bunch of
SAEs."  That wouldn't be a problem in the first place
if things were run well.  In other words, don't rely
on them as your first line of defense against algae.  

I've had SAEs damage Lagarosiphon madagascariensis,
Mayaca fluviatilis, different kinds of moss
(severely), and Rotala wallichii.  I think they're
more trouble than they're worth in most cases.  

Flag fish ate most of my Hydrotriche a while back.  

Ottos are the only fish that I'd completely trust.  A
little green film is normal, and they help with that
(as do ramshorn snails).  They're also neat fish.  


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