FAQs on the Algae Eating
Related Articles: Algae
Eating Blennies, True or Combtooth
Blennies, Ecsenius Blennies, Tube/Pike/Flag Blennies/Chaenopsidae,
Related FAQs: Algae-eating Blennies,
FAQs 2, & Algae Eating Blenny (AEB) Identification,
AEB Behavior, AEB Compatibility, AEB Systems, AEB
Feeding, AEB Disease, AEB Reproduction, &
Combtooth Blennies 1,
Selection, Blenny Systems,
Blenny Feeding, Blenny Disease, Blenny Reproduction, Ecsenius Blennies, Saber-Tooth Blennies, Blennioids & their Relatives,
Seek a specimen that is attentive!
Help picking a new fish; blennies, more for FILR
Hi crew! It is time for me to get a new fish! But I am having so much trouble
I currently have a female maroon clown and 3 azure damsels, skunk cleaner
shrimp, snails and hermits in a 75 gallon. Lots of places to hide, lots of rock,
not much sand. Mostly softies as far as corals go. The tank has been established
I want something with a lot of personality and am considering a starry
blenny. But what I really need to know about these fish is there long term
<Ones in initially good health are very tough indeed>
Are they similar to an algae/lawnmower blenny in that most of them die untimely
deaths? Or is there a better chance of having a starry long term.
If starry blennies are something I am better to stay away from, then is there
something similar you can recommend that would fit in with my current livestock?
<I'd add something for mid-water here... Perhaps a Ctenochaetus Tang species....
there are MANY other choices. I'd be browsing articles on WWM;
reading and heeding reviews as to hardiness>
I really love blennies and gobies, can you offer an opinion on the hardiest of
<Some of the sand sifting gobies are aquarium hardy; most small ones not for
I get very attached to my fish and can't stand it when one dies :(. I would
choose something captive bred if at all possible but living in the boonies in
Northern Canada that's rarely an option.
Thanks in advance!
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>
Algae Control/Salarias Compatibility; Stkg as well
Greetings Bob & Crew!
Thank you again for the awesome service that you provide!
<Ah, welcome Joe>
I have had to take down my 155 gallon in-wall reef temporarily but am in the
process of setting it back up. I have been extremely happy with the Salarias
species for algae control,
<Are amazingly productive for "the right types" of algae>
specifically the Starry and Lawnmower Blennies. I would like to incorporate them
into the new version of the reef soon but wasn't sure about compatibility
issues. I previously had both, but not in the tank at the same time.
<Mmm; if there's (bottom surface area) room... which there should be for a
Both refused prepared food but it didn't matter due to an overabundance of algae
growth (among the many reasons I had to take it down). One of my mistakes with
the tank was going without herbivores for too long- I'm sure you can imagine the
My question is, how many and what combinations of the two do you feel would work
best in this tank?
<Two, maybe three of one or mix of species>
The dimensions are 72" long by 22" high by 24" width. I was hoping that the size
would accommodate more than one Salarias.
<Yes; again; two full-size individuals. I so wish I'd had a video rig... out in
Palau Redang (Malaysia) years back... the inside hard surface bottom was
populated "wall to wall"... Such great fun to see them interacting>
In addition I was hoping to add some Tridacna clams at some point. I also have a
feeling that the blennies and perhaps the Ctenochaetus Tang that I may add (also
for algae control) may nip at these. Any thoughts?
<I think you'll be fine... IF these fishes happen by, it will only be
periodically, and not damaging directly>
<Welcome. Bob Fenner>
Nano Stocking / Hitchhiker 6/13/10, Ophiuroids
< Hello >
I am brand new to saltwater tanks. I just set up a 14 gallon Bio-Cube
for cycling. I discovered a tiny little red-banded brittle sea star
last night. I suppose he is a rider from the live rock.
< A common hitchhiker on live rock >
I have been reading some of the back and forth questions and answers
under the brittle sea star section, but now I am getting scared of the
little brittle sea star, as I see some people's fish and shrimp
ended up being attacked and eaten.
< Can be a problem with larger brittle stars. Especially the Green
brittle star (Ophiarachna incrassata) or as its called in the hobby,
"The Green Death".>
I am looking forward to having simply a Starry Blenny, clownfish and a
fire shrimp for my new tank.
<Clownfish and fire shrimp should do fine. If by Starry blenny you
are referring to the Starry Dragonet (Synchiropus stellatus) you should
reconsider. Starry dragonets are VERY difficult to feed and should only
kept by the most advanced aquarist in much larger tanks than what you
are currently running. Most slowly starve over a period of months. For
your size tank, I would stick with the clownfish and the fire
Should I be concerned this little critter may devour my Blenny, etc?
The brittle sea star is pretty small. Maybe a little bigger than a
dime. Love the red bands on him. He looks a little like a candy
< I don't see him as being a problem. There are a number of
small stars found in and around live rock and sand. Most don't get
to be much bigger than the one under your care. >
< Your very welcome GA Jenkins >
Re : Nano Stocking / Hitchhiker 6/13/10
Thanks so much for the fast response!
< You're welcome! >
I am relived that it shouldn't be a problem. The live rock was
imported from Fiji according to the aquarium
shop. The critter sure has a will to live.
Also, I found the scientific name for the starry blenny: Salarias
which is different than the Dragonet. I understand the starry blenny is
peaceful, easy for a beginner like me, and good at eating algae.
Hopefully, it will not be a snack for the brittle sea star. Your
thoughts or opinions on the starry blenny would certainly be
< Very different but still not an appropriate critter for your set
up. Salarias ramosus grow to large and can be aggressive with age. I
really wouldn't add anything more than the clown and fire shrimp.
Aquariums the size of your can go bad quickly so I would keep my
stocking levels to a minimum. For a tank your size I personally would
recommend scrapping the clown and fire shrimp and going with some type
of goby. The Orangespot would make a nice choice. GA Jenkins >
Thanks again, your website is fantastic!!
Lawnmower Blenny For My Tank/Algae Control
I have read through many of your helpful FAQs on lawnmower blennies but
there are still some things I'm not too sure about before I
purchase one. I have a 100 gallon tank with 2 clowns and a Flame Hawk.
Recently the tank has become the victim of a nasty algae bloom. It
appears to be Bryopsis algae. It is definitely not hair algae. It is
bristly, quite slow growing, only grows to about 2cm in length, and is
very tough. Removing it with my fingernails is a painstaking process!
Quite some force is needed to remove
it from the rocks and often a chunk of the rock will come off with the
I have always had a nice growth of Halimeda on one of my rocks and I
wish to keep this algae. The Halimeda is still growing on this rock
despite some of the bristly algae growing there too.
Anyway my question is will a lawnmower blenny eat the Halimeda before
the bristly algae?
<I've never witnessed a Lawnmower Blenny eat either of the
And will it even eat the tough, bristly algae at all? I know that they
eat hair algae but this stuff is better described as 'brush'
algae. I don't want to buy one of these blennies if it will eat my
Halimeda. Are there any
<Yes, read here and linked files above.
<You're welcome. James (Salty Dog)>