Banded Algae Eater
Misc Frogs II
Misc Frogs III
Misc Frogs IV
Misc Frogs V
Pet World Visit
Prologue: Maybe five years ago, we saw our first Garra -- the Garra pingi -- not an attractive fish. However, it was an algae eating fish that mixed well with African cichlids. In addition to being plain, they were fairly pricey. They looked like a strangly shaped Chinese algae eater.
2011 -- April 17: Paul tried a few of these guys in his home Tanganyikan tank. He raved about them -- said his colored up very nicely. We were only able to get small quantities for a while. Then this year we went crazy and ordered ten "banded Burmese loaches." They were listed under Algae Eaters so we weren't really sure what they were. .We got nine. They are not loaches.
2011 -- April 17: Much of the algae was gone the next morning. One guy had bailed. We netted him and returned him to his new home and lowered his water level three inches. By April 17 the glass was algae free. Just as significant -- the little guys also cleaned off the gravel substrate. (Doing the work that most algae eaters won't do.) They even scraped off the nerite snail eggs stuck to the gravel.
Special Mouth: Garra flavatra mouths are built to hang on in fast flowing water as well as eat algae. They come from fast-moving streams with lots of oxygen. They appreciate a powerhead (much like the hillstream loaches aka Borneo loaches).
Preferred Foods: Obviously Garra flavatra love algae. Few people can farm raise enough algae for their hungry herd of Burmese banded algae eaters. They readily accept small cichlid pellets. They eat kelp pellets but grudgingly. We tried the kelp pellets to bring out more color. They ate them sort of grudgingly but they devoured the cichlid pellets. Banded Burmese algae eaters are not picky eaters.
Breeding Info: Not available at this time. We will crack the code and report back at a later date. Evidently they are breeding in Myanmar or Indian fish farms.
Filamentous Algae: Will Garra flavatra eat filamentous algae? We'll find out this week. These guys may be the algae-eating champions of the world. They better like algae. They get no more food pellets for at least two days. In the meantime, we increased the water flow and decreased the water level.
Rambunctious Rascals: This particular herd liked to bunch up in the corner and take turns finding out how far up the glass they could swim. I didn't see them actually jump, but I watched them "swim" up the glass and bounce off the frame three inched above the water. Some would adhere to the glass momentarily. I lowered the water level another couple inches.
Six out of Nine Bailed Overnight: When 2/3 of them bailed I decided to put a Plexiglas cover on their tank. Luckily three landed in nearby tanks. Three were evidently on their own in fish heaven.
Part Salmon? I watched several of them bounce off their new Plexiglas cover. Moral of the story: Keep your Burmese banded algae eaters well covered or you won't keep them long. Garra flavatra make eager algae eaters and olympic qualifying leapers. They never touched the filamentous algae in this tank, so I moved them to a tank with sheet algae.
What Once Was Lost and Now Is ...
Four rows lower I found one more leaper.
Filter Stem Corrections. I took the filter tubes apart and freed the two errant Burmese banded algae eaters. I added new elbow guards to prevent a recurrence of this behavior. Then I ramped the air stems to full blast. The two in the tubes were probably attracted to the turbulence in the tubes. Once they scour the algae from the gravel, they will be moved to a new algae-covered tank. LA
April 27, 2011. New algae-covered 20H home.
3600 Sixth Avenue
Corner of Sixth & Euclid Avenues
Des Moines, IA 50313
Betta Breed 1
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Betta Pla Kat
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Jack Dempsey Spawn
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Rainbowfish, Dwarf Neon