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The Best Fish for Cleaning the Bottom of your Tank

Best Fish For Cleaning Bottom Of Tank

Searching for the best fish for cleaning the bottom of tank? Well, then you are in the right place. This article includes a list of some of the best bottom feeders that you will find great for your aquarium. Wait! Don’t you know what bottom feeder is? Read more to get an idea.

What is a Bottom Feeder?

You may have heard about the bottom feeders. These are the fishes that eat and live at the bottom of the fish tank. Mostly, you will see them swimming at the lowest level of the aquarium. These species of fishes fill their bellies from the food on the substrate instead of intaking food from the mid-water or surface.

Different bottom feeders consume different types of food. Som of them are scavengers that normally consume invertebrates and dead fish. Other feed mostly on plant materials like algae. Another type of bottom cleaners is like Pictus catfish that is also a predator.

Best Fish for Cleaning Bottom of Tank

Siamese Algae Eater

Like any other fishes, they also have a beautiful and unique appearance. They are commonly known as algae-eating powerhouses that can prevent algae from spreading in your aquarium. Siamese has a long, narrow body and can reach up to six inches. Mostly, they have peaceful nature along with the ability to control and eat different types of algae, such as Black Beard algae. Because of these abilities, Siamese is an asset to maintain any fish tank. Not to mention, these fishes are very hungry creatures.

Not only will Siamese eat some of the worst types of algae, but they will also eat remaining detritus and prevent flatworm populations in your fish tank. Do you know these fishes are wonderful for the planted fish tanks? This is because they never damage plants while making your aquarium algae-free.


Plecos are another best fish for cleaning the bottom of the tank. These fishes can reach more than 2 feet (24 inches) during their life of 20 years. So, if you are planning to keep them in your aquarium, you will need at least a 50 to 60-gallon fish tank for accommodating one to two fishes.

Once you place them in your tank, they will help you clean the bottom of the aquarium. Not to mention, Pleco is famous for its habit of eating algae in the tank. Even a single Pleco can clean up all the algae from your aquarium. Of course, they can’t thrive only on the algae. Since they are big in size, they will also eat plenty of normal fish food. Thus, you may often need to clean the water because of the leftovers from the Plecos.

Twig Catfish

Twig fishes are one of the species of catfish. They are the best catfish bottom feeders that survive on algae. These fishes are becoming available in most parts of the world. Twig fishcan grow up to 5 to 7 inches in length. They greedily eat every type of food in the tank and quickly clean up the tank from any form of green algae. Besides, these fishes are quite different from the other algae eaters. This is because twig fishes need a lot of care from aquarists.

These little bottom feeders survive in an environment with high oxygen. Twig fish also thrive only on pristine water quality. Taking care of them is not an easy task. Plus, you have to keep them with species that won’t fight with them on food because of their shy nature. If your fish tank meets all these conditions, you can welcome a couple of twig fishes in their new home.

Goby Fish

Goby fish are popular for cleaning freshwater aquariums. These species have different types, but all of them are bottom lovers. Generally, goby fishes don’t grow more than 4 inches. Some kind of this species can only grow to 1 inch. Interestingly, all of these species have unique characteristics.

Furthermore, these fishes are peace lovers. This is why they go well in community aquariums that house many different species. Plus, goby fishes like to live in smaller groups. They love to clean the bottom of your tank together.

Cory Catfish

Corydoras or Cory catfish is one of the popular freshwater bottom feeders. People are commonly inclined towards their abilities. Not only because they are perfect tank cleaners, but also they work well with other species in the aquarium. They have a peaceful nature, which makes them the best choice as bottom feeders. Generally, Cory catfishes remain active in the daytime and hunt food at the bottom of the tank. They search the aquariums’ bottom every day and make it free from the debris.

As Cory is a bottom dweller, you need to keep 2 inches of aquarium substrate or gravel in your fish tank. These fishes can live for more than 5 years. You need to watch out for imperfect water conditions so that they can survive in your tank. They also prefer water with 72 to 78 degrees Fahrenheit temperature and 7 to 7.8 pH value. Another significant advantage of Cory is: they can share foo d with cleaner snails. So you can keep Cory catfish and snails together in your aquarium.

Bottom Linebest fish for cleaning bottom of tank

All types of bottom feeders look great in your tank. Like any other fishes, they have an attractive appearance and unique characteristics. So, when you accommodate them in your aquarium, not only do they clean the debris, but they also add beauty to your fish tank. You can pick any of the best fish mentioned in this post for cleaning the bottom of tank. Make sure to consider their size and nature before placing them with other species.

If you want to know more about a specially created environment for your tank cleaner, check out our article about the Blackwater Fish Tank!

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