Asia, Thailand, Malayan peninsula.
Min. length aquarium:
Siamese Algae Eater
This is the True Siamese Algae Eater, Crossocheilus siamensis, to be distinguished from the Flying Fox, Epalzeorhynchus kalopterus the " False Siamese Algae Eater, Garra taeniata the Chinese Algae Eater, Gyrinocheilus aymonieri and the related Crossocheilus oblongus see below. It is sometimes incorrectly called the Siamese Flying Fox. Originally, it is from Southeast Asia, Thailand, and the Malayan peninsula. The fish is peaceful toward other species, but it sometimes
fights with its own kind. It can be kept in a community tank.
It likes fine gravel and thick, patchy
vegetation. Keep in warm, soft, slightly-acid water, 5° dGH to 20° dGH and pH
6.5 to pH 8.0 can be tolerated. Requires well oxygenated water.
The fins are transparent, unlike those of Epalzeorhynchos kalopterus. It has a single pair of barbels on the upper lip while E. kalopterus has two. The species, Crossocheilus siamensis, is considered
the best algae eater in an aquarium. It was originally recognized as such by
Dr. Baensch and popularized to hobbyists around the world. Despite its
relatively plain appearance it can now be found in nearly every good pet store.
The genus Crossocheilus differs from Epalzeorhynchos by rhinal lobes (nasal
It is a herbivore, but it likes all types
of live foods - even Planarian Worms, algae - including Thread Algae, lettuce,
flakes. Does not eat plants. Can live 4
to 5 years.
For an extensive discussion of the fish
and problems associated with identifying and getting the TRUE Siamese Algae
Eater, see: Algae
Eating Cyprinids from Thailand and Neighboring Areas.