22 Names of Algae Eating Saltwater Fish to Combat Algae Issue

If you want to have various options to spark up your fish tank as well as dealing with algae problems, there are several alternatives of algae eating saltwater fish to choose. These fish species would be the best option if you have algae issue. They are great and impressive saltwater fish which can also bring interesting characteristics and appeal to the tank without compromising the functionality. It’s a good thing that there are various options and alternatives that you can choose.

Achilles Tang

Achilles tang is an interesting fish. It is medium in size with unique navy color and bold colors on the tail. This fish eats microalgae with different colors, such as the filamentous green, red, and blue-green algae.


Atlantic Blue Tang

As the name suggests, this fish has electric blue hue. They like filamentous blue-green, green, and red microalgae as well as the fleshy brown macroalgae. If your tank problem consists of those issues, rest assured that this fish will deal with it quite well.


Brown Barred Goby

Brown Barred Goby

This is a unique fish on its own, but it is one of the trusted algae eating saltwater fish to include in your fish tank. They really LOVE filamentous green microalgae so they are often considered the best solution for such algae problem.


Cherub Angelfish

Cherub Angelfish

This is one gorgeous fish! It has striking bold blue color with orange or yellowish head. They are definitely a good addition to your tank. They love filamentous green microalgae and detritus. They also love the filamentous blue-green microalgae.


Chevron Tang

Chevron Tang

This is one of the promising algae eating saltwater fish that you can include in your tank. The fish has attractive and beautiful color with orange and blue tips on the fin. The body has black horizontal stripes that add the unique appeal of the fish. They like filamentous green algae.


Combtooth Blenny

Also known as Mimic Blenny, this fish may not be the most beautiful or attractive fish for the tank. But this fish has its own appeal and unique feature, and it is certainly a nice addition to the fish tank. Not to mention that this fish is considered the best algae eating saltwater fish that can deal with algae issue quite effectively. They love detritus, as well as filamentous blue-green and green algae.


Convict Tang

Convict Tang may have this unique and simple look. With combination of white and yellow body (white on the bottom and yellow on the top side) and also black vertical stripes, the fish looks unique and somewhat elegant. This fish loves eating filamentous and fleshy red algae, but they also like the filamentous blue-green microalgae.


Foxface Rabbitfish

The fish may sound unreal or they seem like a character from a sci-fi movie, but this fish is real. The fish itself is quite attractive. With long body construction, it has nice color combination with yellow and white, and also black addition. The fish is considered one of the best algae eating saltwater fish, especially for red macroalgae, the fleshy green macroalgae, and also filamentous green microalgae. If you have issues with Caulerpa Macroalgae, they would be the best option and solution.


Kole Tang

This is a unique fish with purple body color and attractive white (subtle) dots all over the body. It is also known as the Bristletooth Tang or the Yellow-eye Tang. Having them not only solve your algae issue, but it will also spark up your tank. They like to live in the live rock, consuming detritus and also diatoms.


Kole Tang

This is another unattractive fish, but it somewhat adds the charm of your tank with its odd and not-ordinary body appearance. They may not be pretty or beautiful, but they are effective algae combat buster that can combat your algae problem effectively. They basically eat anything, such as detritus, filamentous green and blue green microalgae, and also diatoms. They even eat hair algae.


Kole Tang

The small fish does look like a lemon! With striking and bold color hue, the fish will add a nice addition to the tank. This saltwater fish would consume green filamentous algae without any hesitation.


Potter’s Angelfish

This is a fish species that has unique and appealing look. It has a nice combination of bold orange and purple-navy color combination where the purple hue seems bleaching or leaking the orange domination. So, with the combination of helpful algae buster and beautiful color, it is only logical if many aquarists would include this fish into their tank. The fish would consume filamentous green microalgae, detritus, and diatoms.


Powder Blue Tang

As one of the best algae eating saltwater fish, this fish has super attractive color. White purple, black, and yellow color combination, this fish is certainly a precious addition to the fish tank. The fish will eat blue-green microalgae, filamentous red microalgae, and also the fleshy red macroalgae.


Powder Brown Tang

This fish is the ‘cousin’ of the previous Powder Blue Tang, but as the name suggests, this one comes with yellow and black combination, almost to the point of being brown. They like eating fleshy red macroalgae, red microalgae, and also filamentous blue green microalgae.


Rainford’s Goby

The fish is one of the most beautiful and most attractive algae eating saltwater fish with beautiful shape and color. The fish itself is small and tiny, with stroking colors. They like eating filamentous green and also red microalgae. They even like to eat hair algae so they will remain healthy and happy.


Red-lipped Blenny

This fish has super unique and cute face, as if they were wearing makeup and lipstick. That’s why they look like a cool and fun creature. They are definitely attractive and unique type of fish that really love consuming the filamentous green, blue green, and red microalgae. But they also like eating diatoms and detritus, which make them perfect as algae buster fish.


Desjardini Sailfin Tang

Also known as Indian Ocean, this fish has beautiful color of blue and green. They like eating the fleshy green macroalgae as well as blue green microalgae. They also like the dreaded bubble algae which makes them great to resolve any algae problem in your fish tank.


Sailfin Tang

This Pacific fish is another type of Sailfin species with unique body shape. It has super big and wide fins with blue and white stripes patterns. The fish likes filamentous green, brown, blue green, and red microalgae.


Scribbled Rabbitfish

Scribbled Rabbitfish

The yellow fish (with brown stripes) is a beautiful and attractive fish for saltwater tank. The fish likes to eat filamentous blue green, red, green, and brown microalgae. They actually prefer the fleshy macroalage types, but if the options are quite limited, then they are okay with the microalgae type. They are great to control the algae population, including the bryopsis.


Sphinx Goby

The fish has slender and long body structure with rather unique subtle color hues. The fish likes filamentous red and green algae. Having such a fish will definitely add a certain appeal to your fish tank.


Yellow Tang

This is one of the best algae eating saltwater fish that will deal with your algae issue just effectively. They are into filamentous red, green, brown, and blue green microalgae. They don’t mind eating hair algae either, so they are good to control the algae population in your tank.


Scatophagus Argus Spotted Scat

Scatophagus Argus Spotted Scat

This is one species that is often overlook and neglected. The fish belongs to Scatophagidae family. The fish is native to Indo-Pacific areas. They may consume algae and be helpful to control the algae population, but the main downside is the big size. This fish can grow up to 14 inches, which can take up quite a large of space inside the aquarium. Even if the aquarium is big, the fish would take up a lot of space. The fish eats a lot of algae, which is helpful for controlling the population.


Disclaimers and Definitions

You need to remember that not all algae are the same. There are different saltwater fish for different algae. There are different terms and meaning

  • Filamentous microalgae. These are the simpler algae species that consist of solo cells or cell strings, such as algae films and dreaded hair algae
  • Fleshy macroalgae. These are types of algae that are more plant-like and more complex, including Ulva, Halimeda, Caulerpa.

You should also notice that not all saltwater fish would be interested in eating the algae. Just because the majority of the fish would eat the algae, it doesn’t mean that ALL of them will do it. In the meantime, some fish may like the algae, but not always. Some fish may like it, while some may not.

Final Words Algae

Having these lists of fish can be useful as you have plenty of options of which fish to use. And if you are having algae issue or you encounter problems controlling the algae population, these fish can definitely help. With so many different options of algae eating saltwater fish, you can spark up the fish tank while dealing with the algae issue at the same time.

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