The Best Algae Eater for the African Cichlid Aquarium

hi everybody Richelle here from Quebec
Cichlidés. Today I’m going to show you my favorite algae eater for the african
cichlid aquarium stay tuned. first things first you’re probably wondering what
this fabulous t-shirt I’m wearing is well this is the first t-shirt of my
series of t-shirts that I will be selling in my Tee-Spring store. if you
want to sport this fabulous look and be twinsies with me well you can get the
t-shirt in the link that’s in the video description so definitely go check that
out I’ve been doing youtube for a little while and all the channels have their
own t-shirt with their brand but I wanted mine to be more than just Quebec
Cichlidés, my store I wanted it to really speak out as to what we are we are aquarist and we are well we’re geeks I mean let’s face it if you’re up
to date and my videos you’re a cichlid geek, just as much as I am If Cichlids are not your thing there’s also a fish geek shirt in this store as well I’ll be
wearing it in my future videos on Instagram use #cichlid geek and
#fish geek and that is where we are going to be sporting art t-shirts I
also put all my fish pictures in there so definitely go check out those
#hashtags so back to the subject my My number one, favorite algae eater for theafrican cichlid aquarium is the Acistrus sp.
this fish is originally from South America and in the Amazon River it’s one of the only algae eaters that
can adapt to the African cichlids GH and pH which are way higher than the ones in
the Amazon River they can also adapt to the African cichlids behavior which
let’s face it is not as easygoing as most freshwater fish why I love them is really simple
basically at adult size the male is five inches long the female is even smaller
she is four inches long and what’s amazing about this fish is that the
bigger it is the more efficient it is as well this is a refreshing change from
the common pleco which gets so big They can get up to 12 inches long and they
get lazier by the inch when they’re adults they produce more waste than they eat so they’re not really helping basically why I love Ancistrus is
because they are just ridiculously easy to keep Ancistrus are compatible with
most fresh water fish and inverts they are not compatible with most freshwater
plants as they will uproot them they don’t bother the Anubias,
the java ferns as well as the vallisneria
which are pretty much the only plants that do well in the African cichlids
water parameters even then Vallisneria is not the Mbuna’s best friend
because the leaf is so long the mbuna might see this as algae and they will
gobble it all up. Ancistrus SP is the most common Ancistrus on the market you
can find them in brown and gold colors I’ve also have some red and blotched
ones, which were fabulous, but those are pretty rare if you have African cichlids
absolutely positively steer clear of the longfin Ancistrus, those long fins will
be eaten up by the end of the week especially in the mbuna tank when adding
these fish to the african cichlid tank be mindful of size of course they’re
compatible but if you put a tiny one with a huge of malawi predator I mean
there are risks, right I usually put Ancistrus about two inches in my 125
gallon peacock tank and I’ve never really had any problems and I’ve done it
often because well when I have no more to sell I usually sell those so I have
to put them in often it really haven’t had any losses in that aquarium my trick is to, when I acclimate the fish, I take them with my net and I
put them directly in a plant an artificial plant, that way they’re hidden
once they finally come out usually the fish they’ll just figure ”
oh well he’s already been there,I just didn’t notice him” and they’ll let him be if your fish are particularly aggressive you can also mix up some of decorations away from the plant to get them distracted in that area and you can also close the lights in their natural habitat Ancistrus live in a neutral pH and with a very low GH and
in the african cichlid tank the pH is of 8.2 and above 300 ppm of GH. this being
said if you get one at your local fish store and you want to put them in an
african cichlid tank definitely drip acclimate them in african cichlid tanks
the GH and the ph may vary a lot from one thing to the other so we have to
gradually adapt them to the new water parameters and even in my store I do it
in one tank it might be 600 ppm of G H and then the other one 200 if I just transferred it directly it’ll stress the fish out so I drip
acclimate them putting them directly in the african cichlid tank without
acclimating or just by letting the bag float it is too much of a drastic change
if you imported Ancistrus and they’re stressed out you’re best off keeping
them in a neutral pH with a low gh until they are stronger and then acclimating
them to your african cichlid tank what I do at my local fish store since I am
specialized in African cichlids I have tropicals but my main niche is African
cichlids ,hence the cichlid geek t-shirt I have two aquariums with my Ancistrus
for sale I have one with tropical fish water parameters and I have another with
african cichlid water parameters that way it makes it a lot easier for my
african cichlid clients to just acclimate them directly to their tank
there’s a lot less change so we’ve just established that they acclimate very
well to high pH and GH but there are some water parameters that they are
extremely sensitive about and that is ammonia nitrite and nitrate Ammonia, what it will do is just completely burn the fish if I put the fish in the
tank with ammonia and it survives it will have scars for the rest of its life.
ammonia also burns their genitals meaning that they probably will never be
able to breed. nitrate is not toxic in low forms but if ever your aquarium is constantly over 40 ppm of nitrate your fish will eventually get sick. it’s one
of the first ones that will be affected by nitrate poisoning i f you do your
water changes regularly every week and you have a well cycled stable filter you
shouldn’t have any problems with these water parameters ever you have problems
with these water parameters one of my first videos is about this so I’ll link
it in the video description and I’ll try to put it right up here somewhere with
YouTube magic in the wild this fish will feed off of algae and aufwuch, which is
a complex mixture of algae and a bunch of other bacteria in the aquarium they
will feed off of the algae on your windows on your decorations and on your
rocks everything. they are the best algae eater that is why we’re talking about
them today if ever though there is not enough algae in your aquarium well then you’re gonna have to feed them algae wafers which are commercially available at your local fish store Feed them once to twice a week you don’t need to feed them that often and they’re pretty big pellets so if you only have a small fish, cut it
in half and feed it at night also add a bit of wood in the aquarium for the Ancistrus don’t put a lot of aquarium wood because it lowers the pH so we
don’t want that but just a little bit doesn’t change much these fish are nocturnal meaning that well, because they eat at night, during the day they’ll often
be hidden in a little cave so if you don’t see them come out and work don’t
think they’re being lazy they’re just waiting for nighttime and by at night I
don’t just mean our night I mean when the lights are out in the aquarium and
they’re in the dark that’s when they’ll eat the most
in the end Ancistrus are really a joy to keep they keep your
aquarium so clean they are really the best and
they acclimate to almost every kind of aquarium just don’t keep them in the
planted aquarium or obviously there Reef Aquarium because it’s not a saltwater fish If you take good care of your aquarium and you implement regular
maintenance habits you check your nitrate check your water parameters you
will be able to keep this fish for a long time and it’ll have a long happy
life so have you ever kept Ancistrus, which kind did you keep do you have a
video you know how I love videos I always go watch them so post that right
in the comment section so that’s it for today
thank you for watching if you like this video there’s plenty more where that
came from subscribe to my channel I post a new
video on every Thursday you can also follow me on Facebook on Instagram and I have a great website where you can shop online and see all the fish I have for
sale NEW this week actually not just cichlid geek new this week are my plants
my tropical plants I put them on the website so you can buy them directly
online and I ship them out through the mail I ship throughout Canada so get
your mail order plants today the link is right down there and also of course the
“Pièce de résistance” actually my plants are pretty cool I’m really happy about
that been working a lot on it but also the t-shirts get your t-shirt today and
post #cichlidgeek or #fishgeek on Instagram and we will be twinsies hooray!
and if you come to my store wearing my t-shirt well we are definitely taking a
selfie together alright so that’s it for today thank you so much for tuning in
I’ll see you next week bye bye

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