The Best Bottom Feeder Fish for a 10-Gallon Tank | Buying Guide

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You’ve decided to become the proud owner of a 10- gallon fish tank! This little tank will add life to your home and fish can be great low-maintenance pets.

But what about keeping your tank clean?

You may have heard about certain fish who will do a large part of this work for you because let’s face it, every aquarium gets algae.

Algae most of the time is harmless other than the fact that it will make your tank look mucky and unpleasant.

That’s where bottom feeder fish come in. These little guys survive off of eating the icky algae and detritus that you don’t want to overtake your tank.

By adding a couple of these bottom feeders to your 10-gallon tank you can stay on top of this problem and keep your tank clean.

Further Reading: Best freshwater aquarium fish

Keep reading to learn about the best bottom feeders for your 10-gallon tank!


My Favorite Small Bottom Feeder Fish For 10 Gallon Tanks

The Basics Of Adding Fish To Your Tank

Before adding any fish, it’s important to learn about each type of fish you want to add.

Another thing to keep in mind is how many fish you are adding.

As a general rule of thumb, you want no more than one inch of adult fish per gallon in your tank.

But this rule isn’t written in stone because it doesn’t take into consideration the specific needs of your fish.

Always do your research on the fish and its needs to be sure it lives a long and healthy life.

Best Bottom Feeder Fish

As mentioned above, adding bottom feeder fish to your tank is a great way to help manage your waste and algae growth. But it’s also important to remember these guys won’t do all the work for you.

You’ll also want to invest in a good aquarium filter to keep your tanks water clean and your fish healthy.

By having both a quality filter and one or two of these bottom feeders you’ll ensure that the environment of your tank is in great condition.

Check out these bottom feeder options to see which one you like best!

1. Cory Catfish

Siam Live Aquarium 1 Beautiful Panda Cory CORYDORAS Catfish Moss Java Shrimp Guppy

This species of Catfish is perfect for a small tank. Cory Catfish remain tiny and typically don’t get much longer than a few inches. They are highly compatible with other fish, making them an easy addition to any tank.

The coolest thing about this little fish is that it is an omnivore. So not only will the Cory Catfish eat the algae in your tank but it will also eat any dead fish, or pretty much anything else that has found its way to the bottom of your tank.

2. Snails

Aquatic Arts 3 Live Zebra Thorn/Horn Nerite Snails | Nano Tank Snail | Safe with Betta/Tetra/Guppy Fish or Dwarf Shrimp Aquariums

Snails tend to be one of the most popular bottom feeders on the market. They love to travel around on smooth surfaces so they will thoroughly enjoy sucking away on the sides of your tank. Snails are highly efficient cleaners and will spend all day and night enjoying their favorite snack.

Be mindful when choosing which type of snail you add, some reproduced faster than others. The Mystery Snail is one of the best ones to choose since it doesn’t reproduce too fast and is compatible with other fish.

3. Otocinclus Catfish

Otocinclus Catfish

These variety of catfish are great for small tanks since they don’t get bigger than two inches. Otocinclus Catfish have various names like dwarf suckermouths, Oto cats, or algae scrapers so don’t be caught off guard if you see them by these names when going to purchase.

These fish will eat all varieties of algae although brown algae are their personal favorite. Otos are a bit sensitive and tend to do best when being added to a tank with an already established environment.

4. Siamese Algae Eaters

Siamese Algae Eater (Crossocheilus siamensis)

These little guys love eating algae so much its apart of their name. Siamese algae eaters are great because they will eat every type of algae that may grow in your tank. From red to brown to green they love eating it all.

Make sure not to confuse them with Chinese algae eaters because Siamese algae eaters don’t grow to be nearly as big. As these fish age, they may also need alternative food sources like pellets but no matter what they always make algae the main part of their diet.

5. Amano Shrimp

Aquatic Arts 5 Live Amano Shrimp | Freshwater Aquarium Algae Cleaner/ Real Living Nano Fish Tank Pet | Natural Glass Cleaning Dwarf Caridina

This type of shrimp is perfect for beginner tanks since it is easily adaptable to various tank environments. Amanos are the most productive at eating algae in the world of shrimp, although many shrimp enjoy algae as a part of their diet.

One of the best things about this variety is that they also eat any leftover food which would potentially breakdown into bacteria otherwise. These little shrimp grow to be about an inch and a half long and love to live around other small fish. Amano shrimp are also beautiful to look at with their spotted translucent bodies.

Picking The Right Bottom Feeder For Your 10-Gallon Tank

Now that you have an idea of some different bottom feeder fish that will help you keep the tank clean you can begin to pick which one is best for your environment.

Take into consideration other types of fish you are want to stock your tank with. And do your research to make sure all the fish you pick are compatible.

If you decide to go with a type of catfish to help combat the algae, make sure you are getting the proper species.

Catfish come in a wide variety and some of them won’t be suitable for a small 10-gallon tank.

What is a good bottom feeder fish?

Here are 5 great types of bottom feeders for your fish tank;

  1. Cory Catfish
  2. Snails
  3. Otocinclus Catfish
  4. Siamese Algae Eaters
  5. Amano Shrimp

Do I need a bottom feeder in my fish tank?

It’s not a requirement. However, bottom-feeder fish do a great job keeping the bottom of your tank clean of debris and waste.

Overall bottom feeders are just one way to balance your tank while keeping your water parameters in check.

For any more questions about how to get your tank started or how to take care of your fish check out our website!

More Info About 10-Gallon Tanks

    1. Guide to Setting up Your 10-Gallon Planted Tank
    2. 12 Hungry Algae Eaters For Small Tanks 10 Gallons & Under
    3. Stocking A 10 Gallon Tank
    4. Best Small Catfish for a 10-Gallon Tank Setup
    5. Bottom Feeder Fish for a 10-Gallon Tank
    6. How Much Gravel For A 10 Gallon Tank
    7. How Many Neon Tetras In A 10 Gallon Tank
    8. How Many Guppies in a 10-Gallon Tank
    9. How Many Goldfish in a 10-Gallon Tank
    10. Easy 10-gallon Cichlid Tank Ideas
    11. Best Powerhead for a 10 Gallon Tank
    12. What Is The Best Canister Filter For A 10 Gallon Fish Tank?
    13. Gravel Vacuum For 10 Gallon Tank & Smaller
    14. Best Stands For 10 Gallon Fish Tanks

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