Top 5 Freshwater Bottom Feeders

People don’t understand that bottom feeders can really make your tank a rounded ecosystem. You will have to clean your tank much less and the water clarity will be higher. If you don’t already have a bottom feeder, look into it with this great list of the top 5 freshwater feeders of the bottom of your tank. They are all great choices and you should choose one to make your tank more of a natural habitat.

1. Cory Catfish

cory catfishThe most popular of all the bottom dwellers happens to be the Cory catfish. This catfish actually eats decaying food and so forth. Sifting through the rock and substrate to find anything it can devour.

Highly recommended for any tank without super aggressive fish. A Cory is also one of the most well mannered fish as far as Wong friendly to tank mates as well. They prefer schools and need more than 2 of their own species. Get 3-5 to really have a happy community of bottom feeders.

2. Ghost Shrimp

ghost shrimp

Commonly also called “Glass Shrimp,” these bottom dwellers are great for tank clean up. They are called ghost shrimp because you can visually see through their clear bodies. They are such a clear format that you can literally see what they have eaten for food right through their bodies.

When getting ghost shrimp for your tank, allow around 1 shrimp per gallon of water. The reason being, ghost shrimp can be very territorial towards other ghost shrimp. Most people find that do it yourself breeding of shrimp isn’t as easy as what thought.

3. Malaysian Trumpet Snail

Malaysian Trumpet Snail

This powerful little feeder is great for cleaning up your gravel and substrate. They are pretty small in size and that makes it all the reason to get a number of them. Snails are very known to mate at a rapid pace and new eggs will follow.

Most of the time the eggs will overpopulate a tank pretty easily. Depending on your fish will depend on of they will eat the eggs or not. The nice thing about snails is the fact that they will also help cleanse live plants without harming them like some bottom feeders.

4. Crayfish

aquarium Crayfish


Number four on our list is the ever so famous crayfish. This species would be much higher on the list if it wasn’t for the chance or a crayfish possibly catching one of your aquarium fish. They are known to just feed on bottom decay but from time to time they will kill a fish.

What makes them so great is the rate at which they feed on their food. They clean a tank bottom a lot faster than the other species. But like I said.. the chance of a crayfish killing a fish does always exist. Their pinching claws also scare aquarium owners a bit as far as picking up and such.

5. Red Tailed Shark

Red Tailed Shark

This bottom dweller is native to Thailand and will only be aggressive towards the same specie look alikes. This omnivore is looking for meaty style foods along with plant like algae. Makes for a very good feeder at the bottom of your tank. Normal water temperatures around 70-80 should be the case along with soft pH levels.

Controversy follows if red tailed sharks are on the edge of extinction in the wild. No proof has been brought forth the falsify that controversy. A great bottom feeder to have in your tank while saying the phrase “that’s a shark!”

Wrapping Up

To have a well rounded ecosystem like tank, having bottom feeders is almost needed. In real world nature there are bottom feeders so that’s what aquariums need. Sometimes people fear taking care of so many different creatures in one aquarium, but it actually makes less work for the owner in the long haul of clean up and such.

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