Chinese Algae Eater
Gyrinocheilus aymonieri

Care Level




Reef Compatible


Plant Safe


Max Size

5 - 8

Minimum Tank Size



Black, White, Yellow



Water Conditions

74-79° F, KH 8-10, pH 6.8-7.4


General: The Chinese algae eater naturally occupies rivers and lakes throughout Southeast Asia. They commonly use a sucker style mouth to rasp algal materials off driftwood and substrates. The Chinese algae eater may reach a length of six inches and take on a semi-aggressive nature as they mature. It is often best to avoid adding Chinese algae eaters to an aquarium whose inhabitants have long, elegant fins.

Dimorphism: The Chinese algae eater male will typically have more apparent tubercles (small whitish growths) around the inferior sucker mouth in comparison to the female.

Fecundity: There are currently no known instances of this species being bred in the home aquarium. It is reported fish farms utilize hormones to bring about reproduction.

Water Chemistry: 74-79° F, KH 8-10, pH 6.8-7.4

Aquarium Diet: Chinese algae eaters are omnivores and will accept spirulina flakes, brine shrimp, blackworms, daphnia, krill, algae wafers, and omnivore pellets. Additionally, they will readily graze upon algae in the aquarium.

Compatibility: Chinese algae eaters are typically compatible with Synodontis species, acara cichlids (Andinoacara pulcher), severum (Heros severus), hardy tetra species such as the black skirt tetra (Gymnocorymbus ternetzi.), giant danio (Devario aequipinnatus), rasbora species such as the harlequin rasbora (Trigonostigma heteromorpha), Corydoras species, and larger rainbowfish species such as the boesemani rainbowfish (Melanotaenia boesemani).

Author: Grant Stevens