What Are the Names of Fish That Are Scavengers?

By Raine Chasing

Scavenger fish are bottom feeders that eat debris, dead fish, and algae on the floor of a body of water. Scavengers help keep water clean and are a major asset to the environment in which they live. Scavenger fish are great for aquariums as well; they can cut cleaning time and costs.

Candy Striped Plecostomus (Peckoltia Vittata)

The candy striped plecostomus, or pleco, is found in the lower and middle parts of the Amazonas Basin. The waters it lives in are acidic, so the pH value for an aquarium-kept pleco should range between 5.6 and 7.0. The pleco is an omnivore in the wild, eating animals, insect larvae, and other organic matter in the water. It feeds on algae in aquariums.

Clown Loach (Botia Macracantha)

The clown loach is referred to as a scaleless fish because it has very small scales that are embedded in its skin. Clown loaches are found in Indonesia around Borneo and Sumatra and are schooling fish that prefer to be with five or six other fish of their own kind. They will tolerate other types of fish in a tank, however. In the wild, clown loaches scavenge for shrimp and other dead fish on the ocean floor. In an aquarium, they feed on freeze-dried, live, or frozen worms. They will eat vegetables but only to complement what may be missing from their diet.

Emerald Green "Cory" Catfish (Brochis Splendens)

The emerald green "cory" catfish is an omnivore found in South America that eats brine shrimp and frozen or live worms. In an aquarium, you should provide plants that the fish can use for hiding and egg laying. Cory catfish are a beautiful, emerald green color, and some have brown markings throughout their bodies. They live well with other fish, such as dianios, rainbows, tetras, and rasboras.

Armored Catfish (Callichthyidae)

The armored catfish lives in freshwater environments, such as fast-moving rivers, creeks, and muddy, swampy areas of South America. Their name comes from their bony, armored bodies. They spend most of their time scavenging for insects, micro-crustaceans, and aquatic invertebrates. They are also sold as aquarium fish.