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You are here: myPetSmart.com > Care Guides > Algae Eaters Nutrition and Maintenance

Algae Eaters

Experience Level: Intermediate

algae-eating fish in aquarium

Nutrition & Maintenance

• These fish move along the surfaces of the aquarium scraping algae with their sucker mouths. They also feed on all kinds of commercial pelleted foods.

• Choose a spirulina pellet or algae discs of the appropriate size as its staple diet.

• Feed your fish as much food as they will consume in three minutes, twice a day.

• Vary the fish’s diet by including frozen (thaw first) or freeze-dried brine shrimp, bloodworms, tubifex
worms and other foods.

Maintaining a healthy environment for your fish is an ongoing commitment. A newly set up aquarium
requires more frequent monitoring with weekly water testing and changing if necessary. Once the water quality is stable, you can keep your aquarium in great shape with minimal effort by following this schedule:

Maintenance Schedule 

Feed fish twice daily.

Check water temperature and general health of fish. 


Remove 10% of the water and replace with dechlorinated water. 

Test water quality in new aquariums.

Scrub glass to remove algae, if necessary.


Vacuum gravel and replace 25% of water with dechlorinated water.

Test water quality in established aquariums.

Perform filter maintenance (i.e., replace filter cartridge, replace carbon, rinse pre-filter, etc.)

Scrub algae from tank and prune live plants, if necessary. 


Always add a dechlorinator or water conditioner to tap water before adding it to the aquarium. Do not use soaps or detergents to clean aquarium or decor, since they are toxic to fish.

Always wash your hands before and after handling fish or cleaning the aquarium.