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Re:Fur algae

> I'm  not sure what to call this algae. It looks very much like short, green
> fur.  When it gets
> heavy it fairly well coats the leaves of my plants, blocking the light and
> eventually killing
> them.  

You got more than a just an add a critter problem(s) here. Fur algae is a
bad sign something is messed up. Do a big water change. I bet you have loads
of nutrients and the plants are not using them. Check CO2 first. Then check
your NO3 levels.
Is it slimy to the touch and can it be rubbed off the leaves to some degree?
> I believe otos will eat this stuff, but in my area otos are as rare as zebra
> plecos.  What
> would be an alternative?

Perhaps a few bushy nose plecos. Otto's won't cure this though.
> Will siamese algae eaters consume this stuff?  The LFS currently has about
> twenty mis-labelled
> as Flying Foxes.  (lateral stripe continues to fork of tail, single set of
> barbels... that's
> an sae, right?)  

Check the archives and the Krib. There's more info there than any where. I
think they will help a fair amount. If you get the right ones.....
> SAEs are sort of ugly in my opinion, so other options would be preferred if
> you know of any.

I use to feel that way too. I changed my mine after keeping them in a nice
school. I first felt that they where dull and uncolorful looking. But they
made up for it with plant work and nice behavior. You can still add the fish
you likely want along with them.
> What about synodontis eupterus (featherfin catfish)?  I know, I know...
> probably not, but I'm
> looking for an excuse to buy a couple. ;)

They'll eat anything they can fit into their mouth and can get semi
aggressive, especially with each other or other Syno's. They get quite large
after awhile. I'd get a S. angelicus if I was getting that kind of animal.
I've always been extremely partial to Syno cats. They really become "pets"
and are extremely long lived.
> Also, whatever your suggestions, I have a 90 gallon tank, so please give me an
> idea of how
> many would be required.
I'd get about 7-9 SAE's. 40-50 shrimps. Pass on the shrimps if you get the
cats. Get a small cat also. Take care of your tank water(good CO2 and low
but not absent NO3). Do a very through tank trim-cleaning etc then do your
water change. That's much more important than the critters for now.
Tom Barr
> Thanks.