The Siamese Algae Eater is one of the best algae eaters for larger home aquariums. Unlike many varieties of algae eating fish, the Siamese Algae Eater will also help get rid of some of the toughest to control algae out there, including black brush algae.

While the Siamese Algae Eater is a non-aggressive tank companion, it’s worth learning to spot the difference between it and the Chinese Algae Eater/Siamese Flying Fox. These fish are similar, but far more aggressive.

The Siamese Algae Eater has a dark brown/black horizontal stripe down the entirity of its body (This may fade when the fish is stressed). It should have only one pair of whiskers by its mouth, the Chinese Algae Eater and Flying Fox both have two barbell whiskers. These fake siamese algae eaters also tend to be more colored, with yellow or red markings, and even dark spots.

Siamese Algae Eater Care

The Basics

  • Size: Up to 6″
  • Tank: 50 gallon
  • PH: 6.5 – 7
  • Hardness: Medium to Hard
  • dH Range: 5.0 – 20.0
  • Temperature: 75 – 79 °F
  • Swim Level/Strata: Bottom
  • Water Type: Freshwater
  • Water Movement: Medium to High
  • Lighting Needs: Low

Siamese Algae Eater Tank Setup

Siamese Algae Eaters love to hide. Plenty of live vegetation and wood in the tank should provide your SAE with all it needs for its perfect environment. Consider large flat stones and broad-leafed plants for your tank, your SAE will love to rest on these.

As this breed grows older they will also quickly finish off any tank algae, so build in a feeder to your setup for live algae feeding.

Aquarium Introduction

Siamese Algae Eaters are relatively peaceful and love to school, so it shouldn’t be too hard to introduce them to a tank.  On occasions they can get territorial however, so keep a close watch on them during the first two weeks.

Feeding a Siamese Algae Eater

Siamese Algae Eaters are (as the name suggests) fantastic at algae control in your tank, but algae alone is only part of their diet. SAE’s are omnivores, so bloodworms, food pellets and higher quality flake food can be great dietary additions.

Siamese Algae Eater Aquarium Maintenance

Your SAE is a surprisingly hardy fish, so you should be able to continue to care for your aquarium as normal.

Siamese Algae Eater Breeding

Finding home aquarium bred Siamese Algae Eaters is uncommon, but has been done.  One issue with this may be that the SAE is a migratory breeding fish, swimming up-stream in dry seasons, downstream in the wet season.

Here’s a few tips to make the chances of your siamese algae eaters breeding a little higher.

  1. Get the water conditions right (see above).
  2. Create flowing water, your SAE was likely born in a stream. keep it on high flow for a while, and then reduce the flow and water level.
  3. Plant plenty of live plants in the aquarium.
  4. Add a sandy substrate to the tank, Siamese Algae Eaters tend to burrow during their mating cycle.