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Algae eaters these are the inhabitants whose presence in the aquarium is mandatory. They are often forgotten and this leads to the fact that the appearance of a small amount of algae in the aquarium can lead to a large algal outbreak. In the main article about algae in the aquarium the reasons for the appearance and methods of combating algae have already been described. The main role algae eaters in preventing algae from actively developing and eliminating those algae in the aquarium that are invisible to your eye. This is important at the stage of the appearance of small colonies of algae and at the stage of cleaning up the remains of algae after the treatment with special means. But this does not mean that the establishment in the aquarium, for example, only Siamese algae eaters will solve all problems with algae. It is important to have different types of fish, shrimp or snails in the aquarium algae eatersbecause each type algae eater effectively fights only certain algae. Therefore, the main purpose of this article is to characterize the effectiveness of each type. algae eater... In other words, what kind algae eater effective against any algae.

Siamese algae eater (SAE, Siamese algae eater)

Siamese algae or people just sae (not to be confused with the acronym CAE chinese algae eater - Chinese algae eater) are very effective fighters against black beard. Generally, siamese algae interested in different algae in the form of a gun. These algae eaters are simply comfortable eating such algae because their mouth is best suited for them. If you take, for example, a green bloom on the walls of the aquarium, then siamese algae they simply do not have the means to rip them off. Such a tool is possessed by sucker fish, which will be discussed below.

In order to keep a 100-liter aquarium without a black beard, two siamese algae... Moreover, even small (3-4 cm) siamese algae will do well at this level. When they grow up and reach a length of more than 4 cm, they can begin to feed on small mosses (javanese moss). therefore siamese algae absolutely incompatible with Javanese moss. They love him more than algae. Large mosses, for example, fissidence are too tough for even large algae eaters (10-12cm).

Contain Siamese water slugs more than one fish is needed because they are gregarious. It should also be noted that siamese algae good jumpers, so the aquarium should have a lid. An aquarium with a lamp is not for them.

Amano shrimp

Amano shrimp, were popularly named after Takashi Amano, due to the fact that it was he who made a huge contribution to their popularization. Their real name is Caridina multidentata, and earlier it was believed that this species was called Caridina japonica.

Often Amano shrimp perceived as a panacea against algae, however, even this type of algae eater has its own preferences in relation to algae and not all algae Amano shrimp are eating.

The main delicacy Amano shrimp is filamentous algae. However, there is a very important point to consider. Efficiency Amano shrimp against filamentous algae is directly proportional to the size of the shrimp. The more Amano shrimp, the coarser the strands of algae they can absorb. Therefore, against the thread the most effective Amano shrimp are those specimens that have reached a size of at least 3 cm, preferably 4 cm. Large Amano shrimp they quickly eat out even a cladophore in an aquarium. Particularly large Amano shrimp five pieces are enough for a 200 liter aquarium. More three-centimeter shrimps are needed - at the rate of 1 piece per 10 liters. One should not expect any efficacy characteristic of these shrimps from specimens 1-2 cm in size. Amano shrimp is equivalent to the effectiveness of neocaridin shrimp, but the price is 10 times higher.

Amano shrimp ineffective against xenoccus and other green algae in the form of plaque. Against black beard in terms of effectiveness Amana shrimp strongly inferior to Siamese algae.

Neocaridines

Neocaridines they are the most common shrimp among aquarists due to their ease of breeding. Small shrimp - 1-2 cm, have an effect in the fight against algae mainly due to their usually large number in the aquarium (one or more shrimp per liter of the aquarium). Just like the Amano shrimp, neocaridines prefer filamentous algae. And due to their small size, only the softest types of filamentous algae, for example, Rizoclonium.

These shrimps are indispensable when starting a plant aquarium. They actively process the decayed leaves of recently planted plants and actively fight against Rhizoclonium, which almost always appears in the first month of the life of a plant aquarium and can significantly slow down the growth of aquarium plants by completely covering them. In a mature aquarium neocaridines play a major role in recycling food residues from decayed leaves, thereby maintaining balance in the aquarium and preventing over-breeding of snails. They are the best nurses in a plant aquarium. Learn more about neocaridin.

Girinoheilus (Chinese seaweed eater, yellow seaweed eater)

They often write by mistake gerinocheilus... Spelled correctly girinoheilus from Gyrinocheilus. This aquarium fish algae honestly deserves the title of the best fighter against green bloom, which always appears on rocks, snags and walls of aquariums with high levels of lighting. These include all plant aquariums, which means girinoheilus this is a must-have fish for a lover of aquarium plants. Girinoheilus has a mouth in the form of a suction cup, respectively, it can only eat algae in the form of plaque on surfaces. Filament, black beard and other filamentous algae girinoheilus cannot eat.

Best to contain girinoheilus at the rate of 1 fish per 40-50 liters. No more! Because this fish feeds exclusively on algae and exceeding this stocking density, the risk of death of an excess number of fish is very high, due to lack of nutrition. Girinoheilus - active fish, but aggressive girinoheilus often overestimated and can be kept in groups and with other fish. The size in aquariums is usually 4-6 cm.

Otozinklus

The most common is ototsinklus affinis... This algae eater, like girinoheilus, has a sucker-shaped mouth and therefore its main target is green bloom and xenococus. To size ototsinklus smaller and less noticeable in the aquarium than girinoheilus, usually no more than 3 cm long, which is what attracts hobbyists aquarium plants... In comparison, efficiency ototsinklus and girinoheilus against algae is approximately the same, but ototsinklus much less hardy than girinoheilus and very sensitive to water composition. Like many loricaria catfish, ototsinklus Poorly tolerates the increased content of nitrates in the aquarium (10-20 mg / l). If the water in the aquarium ototsinkluses do not like it, they become lethargic, eat algae poorly and may die.

Better to contain ototsinklus in an amount of no more than one per 40-50 liters.

Ancistrus

Ancistrus as algae eaters are effective against green plaque only when young (up to 4 cm). In aquariums, they can grow to quite large sizes - 10-15 cm. Therefore, if there is a choice between them and ototsinkluses or girinoheilus, then they usually stop at the latter. but ancistrus very unpretentious and common algae eater and it is not hard to find on the market, so it is still often found in plant aquariums.

Mollies

Mollies (molly) are not as picky as the already mentioned species of algae eaters. They eat any kind of filamentous algae, and black beard, and even plaque on the walls of the aquarium can pinch. However, their effectiveness is not very high in comparison with, for example, Siamese algae eaters, girinoheilus and large Amano shrimps. Nonetheless, mollies they are often kept in aquariums with plants because they can always be found on the market, which is important in case of emergency (algal outbreaks).

Seaweed snails. Theodoxus and other snails.

That snails are also algae often forgotten. Some aquarists even deliberately keep out snails to the aquarium to avoid over-multiplication. However, in aquarium with plants this is not to be feared. In soft water snails do not multiply so quickly, and if a large amount of neocaridin lives in the aquarium, then the remains of food snails will not get it. Regular snail coil and physical well help in the fight against algal plaque in addition to the main fighters - girinoheilus or ototsinklyus. AND snails theodoxus may even vie for superiority in efficiency against xenoccus with gerinoheilus. But in acidic and very soft water, snails shells dissolve, so you shouldn't rely on them in plant aquariums.

You can ask a question regarding the mentioned species of algae eaters on the aquarium plants forum in the section Plant aquarium inhabitants

Study history

View Psephurus gladius was first described by the German zoologist Eduard von Martens in 1862 under the name Polyodon gladius, in 1873 another German zoologist Albert Gunther singled it out as a separate genus Psephurus... Due to its rarity, psefur has not been studied enough.

Appearance

Paddlefish can grow to gigantic sizes, with a body length of about 2 meters and a weight of almost 90 kilograms.

Almost a third of its body is a snout, which resembles an oar. Thanks to this unique feature, the fish got such a name as paddlefish.

There are practically no scales on the body of this fish, and in front you can find a pair of short whiskers. The paddlefish has a large mouth.

It has one fin on its back, which is slightly displaced back and is almost at the level of the anal fin.

Basically, the color of paddlefish is dark gray when viewed from above. The sides and belly are lighter in color, although there are specimens that have almost the same shade over the entire surface of the body.

Where do paddlefish fish live?

This type of fish prefers fresh water reservoirs located in the east of America. Paddlefish occurs:

  • In the Mississippi River.
  • In the Ohio River.
  • In the Missouri River.
  • In the Illinois River.
  • In lakes whose waters are connected to the Mississippi River.
  • In the rivers that flow into the Gulf of Mexico.

Paddlefish is an exceptionally freshwater fish that stays away from the coast, at depths of about 3 meters.

In the spring-summer period, they approach closer to the surface of the water, and sometimes jump out of it.

As the water level in the rivers rises, paddlefish go to lakes, where they wait for the moment when the water level does not reach the optimal value.

How paddlefish breed

Before spawning, which takes place in the spring, paddlefish gather in numerous flocks. In the Mississippi River, this fish spawns in late April or early May. The area where this fish spawns can be up to 300 kilometers long, which corresponds to the distance from the mouth of the Ohio River to the mouth of the Illinois River. When paddlefish spawns in the lake, it looks for areas with gravel deposits, where the depth is from 4 to 6 meters, with the water temperature reaching +16 degrees.

Most interestingly, paddlefish does not spawn every year, but with periods from 4 to 7 years.

The female is able to lay from several tens to several hundred thousand eggs, while the females begin to spawn, reaching 12-14 years of age. By this time, it grows in length up to one and a half meters. Paddlefish can live for 50 years or more, so it can be safely called a long-liver.

What paddlefish eats

The diet of these fish consists of:

  • From plankton.
  • From insect larvae.
  • Of worms.
  • From algae.
  • From zooplankton.
  • Of other small arthropods.

Security

Paddlefish, like many representatives of the sturgeon order, are a valuable commercial fish. They are caught, and also bred on special farms, for the sake of delicious meat and delicious caviar. This fish can also be found here in Russia. In the 70s of the 20th century, it was brought to the Krasnodar Territory and the Voronezh Region, where fishing farms were created to breed them.

A stuffed Chinese paddlefish (in the background) in the Chinese Museum. In the foreground is a stuffed animal of another sturgeon fish. Many fish from the sturgeon order are now in the Red Book.

But now this fish is listed in the IUCN Red List as a species that is declining in numbers. The reason for this was the intensive fishing in its natural habitat, the construction of dams and the pollution of rivers with industrial effluents.

Breeding and fishing

Since the second half of the 70s of the last century, paddlefish was brought to the territory of the former Soviet Union, after which they began to grow it artificially.

Currently, this fish is bred in fish farms of the Voronezh and Krasnodar reservoirs. This fish is also actively bred in Ukraine.

In the United States of America, paddlefish fishing does not have large industrial volumes, despite the fact that this fish is quite valuable.

Paddlefish are harvested in large numbers in the Ozage River as well as Lake of the Ozarks. Despite the fact that paddlefish inhabits many water bodies of America, it is still grown artificially on paid water bodies.

The breeding process is also associated with the fact that the fish does not require serious care. For its maintenance, a reservoir of 70 hectares is enough, where the water temperature is at around 22-25 degrees. It is desirable that there is vegetation in the reservoir, and silt is present at the bottom. The depth of the reservoir must be at least one and a half meters. After 2 or 3 years of life, paddlefish gains weight of about 5 kilograms.

From 1 hectare of an artificial pond, you can get up to 100 kg of paddlefish, each weighing about 2 kg.

On an industrial scale, paddlefish are hunted in large nets, up to 3 km long and up to 10 meters wide. In some cases, it is caught with special wire gear with hooks and sinkers, as well as with gill nets.

Catching

According to some fishermen, paddlefish was caught in Lake Velikoe in the Kostroma region, as well as in Primorye, in the Strugov reservoir. You can catch this fish in paid reservoirs, where paddlefish are bred on purpose.

Paddlefish are caught mainly on deep tackle (feeder) and using ordinary worms as bait. Within the territory of Ukraine and Russia, paddlefish does not grow to gigantic sizes, so only small individuals are caught on the hook.

The largest specimens come across to American fishermen, where paddlefish can weigh up to 100 kg with a length of up to 2 and a half meters.

Useful properties of meat

Paddlefish meat is distinguished not only by its excellent taste, but also by its benefits, since it contains many vitamins and minerals, as well as Omega-3 fatty acids. Regular consumption of seafood has a positive effect on the functioning of many internal organs of a person. Paddlefish is no exception in this regard. The meat of this fish has a beneficial effect on the functions of the organs of internal secretion, especially on the functioning of the thyroid gland.The presence of omega-3 fatty acids in fish meat allows you to resist more serious diseases. The presence of vitamins and trace elements allows you to control the work of the cardiovascular system and the gastrointestinal tract.

Haplopelma

Tarantula spiders of the genus Haplopelm are found in the southern part of China, on the territory of Vietnam, Thailand, and Malaysia. They are found in tropical forests and on the lower slopes of the mountains.

Animals are accustomed to warm and humid climates. Spiders are burrowing animals. Burrows are distinguished by great depth and numerous branches. They recognize a living room, a refectory, a children's room. What are the characteristics of spiders? How many years do tarantulas live?

  • Haplopelma minax has an aggressive character. Its length, including limbs, is 12 cm. The color is black. The dorsal plate is lighter than the abdomen and has a brown tint. The pattern is different on it. Individuals mature at 1-1.5 years. The female lays up to 200 eggs in a cocoon. The incubation period lasts 6 weeks. When kept at home, they require a voluminous terrarium. For a tarantula spider, they acquire a capacity of 7 liters. The depth of the soil is up to 15 cm. The temperature of the content is 30-32 ° C, the humidity is 85%. Life expectancy 15 years
  • Haplopelma schmidti - the span of the limbs is 18 cm, the body length is 6 cm. The color of the spider is brown, the back is lighter than the abdomen. A pattern is recognized on the flap. Hair pads on the ends of the legs are dark in color. Female lifespan is 18 years. Males live for 3 years, but often die after fertilization of the female. Individuals are aggressive. They live in burrows and are nocturnal animals. The Chinese tarantula defines the feeding area by enclosing it with cobwebs. The territory is carefully guarded. The venom is toxic, but among collectors, the spider is prized for its size.
  • Haplopelma lividum - the color of the arthropod animal is dark, but the limbs are dark blue. Individuals reach a size of 14 cm. They are fast, aggressive, and the poison is highly toxic. Tarantulas can attack. First, they make a characteristic sound in the form of a loud hiss or crackle, they rub their pedipalps on chelicera. When there is a clear danger, they stand on their hind limbs, raising the body vertically. Puberty in individuals occurs at 1.5-2 years, females mature later. They lay up to 100 eggs in a cocoon. Nymphs appear after 6 weeks. When keeping lividum, it is more important to maintain air humidity than temperature. Humidity indicator 85%. Thermal conditions 22-28 0С. Females live for 25 years.

Haplopelmus tarantulas feed on large insects, small rodents, lizards, birds. At home, they are fed with cockroaches, beetles, maggots.

Food is served exclusively on a stick, because hungry spiders abruptly attack the food, they can grab their hand with their chelicera. Tarantulas, which are kept at home, also require careful handling.

Chilobrachys

Another representative of the Asian tarantulas belongs to the genus Hilobrachis. Its habitat is China, India. The spiders are large and beautiful. The color of young animals often differs from the underwear pattern of adults.

In young tarantulas, there is a black stripe on the abdomen that runs along the body and horizontal stripes located at an angle.

Chilobrachys fimbriatus has a 7 cm body and 18 cm paws. It is difficult to observe the spider. Most of the time he is in the burrow. Leaves his hideout when hungry. The color is brown. On the back there is a pattern highlighted with light stripes. The abdomen is striped. The front legs are darker than the hind legs.

Males mature at 2 years. Females are ready for fertilization at 3 years. The cocoon can contain up to 250 eggs. Many people are interested in how many times to feed the spiders. An adult hilobrachis eats once every 10 days. Young individuals are given food every 5 days.

Chilobrachys huahini is a large spider, 20 cm in size. The color is brown or olive. Juveniles are lighter in color than adults. There is a drawing on the back, but it is difficult to notice it. Paws are dark brown, hair pads are almost black. Tarantulas are aggressive. It is not recommended to pick them up. They attack at any encroachment on their territory.

Food is served only with tweezers. Spiders are fed once a week. Young animals are fed once every 3 days. Cockroaches, zofobas, crickets serve as food. In the wild, they eat small rodents, toads. Tarantulas grow well at a temperature of 28 ° C, with a humidity of 85%.

Chilobrachys Vietnam blue - animals have mastered the territory of Vietnam and China. They're very beautiful.

The main color is light. The abdomen is gray in color, with pale blue hairs. The back is blue. A pattern is defined on it. It is made up of lines of a whitish shade.

The first phalanges are dark blue, the rest are blue. In the sun, the hairline casts a silvery tint. The span of the paws is 29 cm. Spiders can build their shelters on the ground under driftwood and under stones. Some of them dig holes. The tarantulas are accustomed to a temperature of 29 ° C and an air humidity of 90%.

The female's life span is 15 years. Animals have an aggressive disposition. The poison is toxic. When attacking, they comb the hairs from the abdomen.

Citharognathus

Chinese arachnologists in 2002 described a new subspecies of the tarantula citharognathus. The spider is not kept in captivity. Its poison is highly toxic. Arthropods have mastered almost the entire territory of China.

The specimens are small but very aggressive. They live in burrows or build their shelters under snags and in dense vegetation. How do they look? How many legs and eyes do they have? How many eggs does the female lay?

  • Body size 5 cm, paw span 10 cm.
  • The abdomen and limbs are colored gray-yellow. It's bright enough. The outer side of the cephalothorax is dark brown. The bristles on the body are elongated. A pattern is recognized on the back.
  • The tarantulas have 8 eyes, but they see poorly.
  • Extremities 6 pairs: 4 pairs of paws, a pair of pedipalps and chelicerae. The chelicerae are thickened, 1.5 cm long. They contain ducts for the withdrawal of poisonous secretions. The poison is very toxic.
  • Individuals grow up at the age of 2 years.
  • The female lays over 100 eggs in the cocoon.

Tarantulas are accustomed to humid and hot climates. Under natural conditions, they develop normally at a temperature of 23-28 ° C, with an air humidity of 80%. During tropical downpours, they emerge from burrows and settle in dense vegetation, where they make nests.

Spiders do not have any form of shelter. The mating season is during the dry season. The female must have time to lay eggs and hatch the nymphs before the season of tropical downpours. Tarantulas feed on small insects, worms, flies.

Asian spiders that live in China, Thailand or Vietnam attract with their restrained color and complex behavior. Newbies in arachnology are not recommended to purchase them. They are fast, aggressive, and when bitten they always release poison, which is highly toxic.

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