Bristlenose; feeding pond algae

Discussion in 'Catfish' started by JohannKotze, Aug 26, 2020.

  1. JohannKotze


    Aug 24, 2020
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    I have a well established, reasonably densely planted tank with very little (to no algae). I would love to get a bristlenose just because I like them.

    I also have a fishpond where I can collect handfuls of fresh algae with ease.

    1) I suppose I could easily feed the fish with the algae...correct?
    2) What is the risk for my stable little-algae situation in the tank?

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  3. MariaS

    MariaS Moderator

    Apr 23, 2015
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    Klipriver, Midvaal
    Hi @JohannKotze

    Welcome to the forum
    Nothing wrong with feeding them the algae
    Start slowly until you establish how much they eat so you dont land up with a tan full of algae as well
    Yor pond shou;d be ok
  4. SalmonAfrica

    SalmonAfrica Batfish

    Dec 13, 2008
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    I'll throw this caution in here - there is always a risk, even a small one, when transferring material from one system to another. Your pond might appear as healthy as can be, but areas where algae grow are also spots where detritus gather and bacteria thrive. Again, this isn't a definite problem, but worth considering. They might eat the algae... but there are quite a few different kinds, and not all meet the tastes of bristlenose. Worth a try in any case.

    Now, your next option is to do what most other people do for their bristlenoses (and other algae eaters) which is simply feeding them veggies. Cucumber, zucchini, peas, and carrot. If you're worried these are too hard (like carrot) you can blanch them a bit before adding. Some will need weighing down, but your bristlenose will love it.

    The other route you can take are dry prepared foods that cater to these kinds of fishes. There are a huge variety of foods aimed at algae eaters and bottom dwellers. Even if you don't adopt these as a "staple" food, it's nice to have and feed on occasion since they are nutrient dense, and contain vitamins and minerals.

    In between feeding times, your bristlenose will feed on whatever algae might grow in your tank, but there are very few tanks that come to mind that grow enough algae to actually fully sustain the dietary needs of an algae eater. Far healthier to accommodate them with the foods listed above.

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