How to Control Algae Naturally
Harnessing natural algae predators is a fun and easy way to get that problem under control.
The two main critter kind of solutions?
Fish and inverts.
You can even do a combo of both.
For this method to work, it’s CRITICAL that you follow this one step.
Think of your tank like a hotel.
Your cleanup crew are the maids.
For your cleanup crew to work, you can’t put all the load on one janitor.
Otherwise the “mess” comes back faster than it can be removed.
Bigger tanks require more “maids.”
You might be unsatisfied with their ability to keep back the algae without a well-staffed aquarium cleanup crew.
Plecos for the Goldfish Tank
Fish such as the Bristlenose or Rubberlip pleco can definitely be very good at eating algae.
These may or may not work out with your goldfish.
Just because they can be a bit aggressive occasionally, depending on the personality of the individual fish and the dynamics between the goldfish.
I am wary to use these in my own tank, though I’ve been tempted, so I won’t go out and recommend you try it.
But you can if you want – it’s your tank!
Some other fish eat certain types of algae, such as guppies and Corydoras.
These generally aren’t the greatest but can help a bit.
It is VERY important to quarantine all new fish you add to your tank.
I even recommend quarantining invertebrates and plants if you can.
You don’t want to blow up your tank with disease while trying to win the algae battle.
Other Factors to Consider
Most tanks experience some level of algae regardless of what you do to stop it.
So algae eaters can play an important role, no doubt.
Algae eaters are sometimes just one piece of the puzzle when it comes to curing your tank of algae.
Some find they get rid of one kind of algae just to have an even more stubborn variety come to live in its place.
This can happen if you don’t address underlying causes.
What are some of these?
- Too much light
- Too little light
- Too little CO2
- Too much nutrients (organic load)
- Too little nutrients for aquatic plants
- Not enough plants
So there are other things you can look at to try to help curb the algae issue in the long term.
Most of the time algae is an unwanted visitor.
Algae can be very harmful to plants.
In some cases it can lead to oxygen deprivation, especially in ponds.
Some people cultivate certain types of algae, especially green water (free floating algae) or carpeting green algae for bare bottom tanks for their fish.
So not all people hate algae, but most of us fishkeepers want to actually see our fish and watch our plants thrive.
Algae eaters can be a chemical-free, easy way to control algae in your goldfish tank.
I hope this article helped you find some that are a good fit for you.
What do you think?
What’s your favorite algae eater?
Leave a comment to let me know!