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About Me

  1. So I put 6 of my home grown Otos in my "Angry Man" tank. They've been in there a few months. Used to see them quite a bit on the sliced cucumber I leave for them, rarely on the hikari algae wafer (mind they were all raised on both). I don't see them often otherwise and recently less than that. Because of the existence of those two foods my bladder snail population has exploded (not to unmanageable stages but absolutely more than I would like). I remove them from the tank when they are in large groups on the foods but they just keep coming. My 3 horned Nerites do a good job of keeping back algae and occassionally munch on the cucumber. The Black Neons even poke at the Hikari. Today I saw one of the Otos flashing around the bottom of the tank, not swimming right. After a long car chase I was able to HAND CATCH the little one who was put in isolation. Shortly thereafter they passed. 😞 There was no outward signs of illness. The only thing of note was a less than rounded belly and instead of being white it was pink-ish as if from the inside not outside. My sad thought is that it died of starvation? My concern with this tank is that maybe I can't put anymore algae eaters in here- maybe I should pull my Otos (if I can catch them)- and put them back in general population of the Accidental Oto tank. I spotted 2 of them, who were attached to wood and seemed ok at the time, no idea where the rest were camping out- my Otos tend to be nocturnal. They have no competition for food in the Accidental Oto tank- I think there's too much competition in the Angry Man tank. What do my forum friends think? Should I move the Otos out? Pic of the Angry Man tank for reference attached. (2nd pic is more recent)
  2. Sorry if this isn’t the right section. Right now I’m kind of freaking out. I couldn’t find one of my ottos this morning after a late night water change, but didn’t have much time to look because I had to go to work. I figured that he might just be hiding, but the behavior still seemed off since I usually see the three of them hanging out together. Cue me coming home eight hours later, and I still can’t find the wayward Otto. Starting to freak out and feeling like a bad fish mom, which was only intensified by the worry I had all day. I looked all over the place (floor,tank, water change bucket) and couldn’t find him. Eventually I looked around the side of the tank and saw him wedged against a rock and the glass with my phone light, which is someplace I had already looked a ton but he blended in. He couldn’t move at all, completely wedged in. I have a feeling he did this during my water change yesterday since it was later than usual and I had to turn the light back on and everyone in the tank had a minor freak out. I loosened the rock and he wiggled out and attached to the glass at the front of the tank. It looks like his tail fin got torn up, along with his belly since it was against the rock. Really hoping he can recover and there isn’t any organ damage. What are other’s opinions on how he looks? Link goes to video. He’s currently breathing pretty heavily. link: https://imgur.com/gallery/v3mcTLH
  3. Hi all, new here and I tried to find a similar post so forgive me for starting a new one if there was a more appropriate place to be- posted on the introductory page a bit about what I have as far as tanks/equip/fish etc. When I started my 20 gallon I just wanted a peaceful community tank with fish that had similar parameter needs of course and I didn't want reproduction, so I avoided live bearers and "easy breeders". I ended up with 10 Harlequin Rasboras and 7 Otocinclus. Well about 6 months into my endeavor I now have 25 baby catfish and counting. I know some have fallen prey to the Rasboras which is ok, that's nature, but I've managed to contain the 25+ in a floating breeder box (boy am I glad I got that for "back up" plans). I seem to catch 1 or 2 daily in varying stages of develoment. Of all the hours and hours of research I did I didn't look into this because I never thought I'd be able to breed what is sometimes called on the internet an "intermediate level" breeder: now what?! I started another 20 gallon which I plan to likely house my Rasboras and I'll up the number of Otos in my well established algae covered tank where they bred- I have 1 friend who also keeps fish and she's taking a half dozen. This isn't likely to stop happening so can anyone give me ideas on how to rehome fish? Thank you in advance for your ideas!
  4. So as of this morning two out of three of my Otocinclus have died 😢 I know Oto's ate notorious for it but even so I thought they were doing ok, they've been in for about 5 weeks already. After the first one died a couple weeks ago I was worried about the smaller of the remaining two, though they always had round bellies and constantly grazing (I leave lots of algae for them - I'm not just lazy honest) it didn't seem to be growing and was very slender aside from its belly so I was half expecting it. I have high hopes for the remaining one as it's the only one of the three that has grown noticeably and is chonky all over not just a round belly, thing is do I risk adding more? Don't want to keep one on its own but don't want to keep killing them either. I will test parameters again later today but last time everything was the same as usual and both times there was no obvious sign of illness or injury. Any oto experts around?
  5. Pays to watch Cory's YT videos. Previously, I had seen videos recommending schools of Otocinclus. And it was fun to watch them all scoot across the tank. But I just saw a video where Cory recommends far fewer depending upon the size of your tank. I had 6 in my 45g and have now reduced to 3 in 45g, 2 in 20g, and 1 in 10g. Will probably eliminate the 1 in the 10g as I really don't need him there at this time. I'm constantly trying to educate myself with all the information that is now available that wasn't even hinted at 45 yrs ago. Thanks to Cory and Others at Aquarium Co-op.
  6. pH - 6.5 Nitrates - 0 to 5 Hardness - 5 Nitrite - 0 Ammonia - 0 KH/Buffer - 5 Water Temperature -78 In a 60 gallon with 14 Rainbow Praecox and 5 other Otos, any idea what this is? I'm guessing fungal.
  7. Very late entry to Summer Olympics. Zucchini Surfing…
  8. Apologies in advance for a story: On 8/1 I went to my LFS and purchased 3 Oto Cats for my heavily planted shrimp tank. I got them home and placed them in a 5 gal quarantine tank (with a cycled sponge filter I keep in one of my other thanks at all times, heater set to 76, tank parameters: ammonia and nitrates 0, nitrates <5, ph 7.2) When I got them home 1 was skinnier than the rest and lethargic. That one wouldnt eat, while the other 2 happily munched away on lettuce and zucchini- no surprise 2 days(8/3) later I woke to find my skinny fish had passed away. I know Oto Cats are often underfed/ underweight after shipment and treatment in fish stores, so I didn't really think much of it and went back to the store for a replacement. They gave me a new fish however the tank the original (now 2) fish came from is in quarantine so my new fish came from a different tank. The employee told me that they have "protozoa" and I should treat my fish with nox-ich for 3 days. All 3 are happily eating and schooling in my quarantine tank. I treated yesterday when the 3rd fish arrived home with a dose of ich-x, and paracleanse (since they are primarily wild caught my mind went to parasites, and I assumed I'd be doing daily water changes due to ich-x so I postponed adding maracyn). The only symptoms I could say they have would be that they (all 3) lightly clamp their fins/ lay them down when at rest though I think from my research this may just be how they "rest"? They wriggle around all over their lettuce leaf that I suppose could be flashing but it looks more like they are trying to find the perfect spot on the leaf to start muching. I'm not very familiar with their behavior to be certain of either, but I have no doubt they were exposed to something. My questions are- 1. Anyone with Oto Cat experience that knows if at rest they retract their fins like this? 2. Should I treat with each med individually as if they are "sick" (treat with ich-x daily with 30% water changes x5ish days, then complete 1 week maracyn, and somewhere in there dose with paracleanse again) OR since they are showing few to no symptoms should I just add maracyn and let them quarantine with the trio x1 week. 3. Any advice on the whole "not feeding " in quarantine for these little guys? Seems like they don't tolerate it for long and usually not feeding for 3-4 days in quarantine is standard. Thanks for any help! I'd love to see all 3 of these guys happy and healthy in my tank.
  9. Hi all - what are your thoughts about putting in 10 red cherry shrimp in a 15 gal with 4 otos? I supplement the existing algae with a daily algae wafer, and the otos seem to be doing good with that. That said, I had no idea how voracious the otos were with respect to algae!!! They crushed all of the algae overgrowth in a matter of days. Are the shrimp the same way? The tank is planted (Anubias nana, Pogostemon Stellatus Octopus, and Staurogyne Repens), and also has a few white cloud and glow light tetras, so they get flake food. Would love your thoughts and wisdom… thanks!
  10. I purchased a group of oto and in the process of transferring them to the tank several managed to get their nose stuck in the netting. I've given them an hour to work their way free and tried gently moving the net and tugging the fishes but they are still stuck. Any suggestions as to how to free them ?
  11. Fresh vegetables seem to do wonders in breeding them; as you can see in the pic the fry are constantly on/around the zucchini, squash, spinach, and mulberry leaves I put out. It's a community tank, so the shrimp like them too. I noticed and got footage of the oto breeding dance on 3/15, so the fry in the attached pics are roughly two months old. I have seven surviving that I have counted concurrently, but there may be more hiding out.
  12. I had about 2 dozen ottos in planted community tank that, over the course of about year, all disappeared. I started feeling guilty that perhaps I neglected feeding them enough, even though I have been feeding Repashy super green somewhat regularly. I thought maybe they were stressed by all the other rambunctious fish (lots of barb species). Or maybe they are just as fragile as people say. I thought -- am I really just using these like a disposable cleanup crew? Clean up the algae outbreak, then good luck to ya, you're on your own. However, in the middle of last night, I had to grab something from the room where my aquarium sits. When I turned on the light, there were all the ottos -- I quickly counted at least a dozen -- lounging around on sword leaves, manzanita wood branches, hanging off the glass. What gives? Why do they snub me all day long and then wait till I'm fast asleep to come out and party? (Hmmm . . . come to think of it . . .where the heck are my corys? I know there is at least 2 dozen of those ever multiplying little buggers in there!)
  13. Hi all, new member here! I was just wondering, I've read and been told that it is common for otocinclus to die within the first few weeks of arriving home. I know on Aquarium Co Op the reason stated is that once otos are starved beyond a certain point they lose their appetite and then they're as good as dead. However, another reason I've heard online for this is that otocinclus rely on a symbiotic relationship with gut bacteria, and during shipping (slash time at neglectful pet stores) the gut bacteria can die off if they're starved for too long. So apparently even when they come home and they're eating the food you give them, since their gut bacteria died off they can't actually digest the food they're eating, and they die. They're full but at the same time they're unable to absorb any of the nutrition, so they starve and die. I have found lots of people on forums and care guides stating this, but I've tried and tried and haven't found any scientific papers or been able to find who actually discovered this about otos. I was just wondering if any of you know of the source of the knowledge that otocinclus rely on a symbiotic relationship with a bacteria in their gut to digest their food? A lot of you are so much more experienced than I am, am I just looking in the wrong places? At this point I'm starting to question whether someone just made this up to account for mysterious deaths in the first few weeks of bringing otos home, and then it just caught on because people accepted it at face value.
  14. @Colu Full QT Trio plus GC/PC follow up 3 weeks later. 2 have been in the main tanks for several months. Just thought they were getting fat. But now I question what's happening. So this guy is back in QT and just dosed his 2nd dose of Levamisole. No change. What do you think? Disease, fat? That spot has me worried.
  15. Today I was researching otos diets so I could buy the right repashy for them. I'm hoping it will help with getting them to spawn. While looking them up I learned a few things. 1 they are capable of breathing air which is pretty awesome. 2 some species of otos not only school with corys for protection but have evolved to mimic their coloration and patterns. One example is Otocinclus Flexilis which mimics Corydoras Paleatus. I looked up pictures and it's pretty awsome! I thought others might think so as well. I keep C. Paleatus and have had them spawn a few times but now I really want O. Flexilis to go in the tank with them. I've never seen them available in the hobby though. Has anyone seen them for sale?
  16. I have had my fish for about 2.5 weeks. I have a betta, some lamb chop rasboras, and three otos. Everything has been fine except that the last few days I noticed that one of my otos rarely moves and just lays around on the bottom of the tank. It is alive as I see its gills move and I have seen it move position in the tank recently. However, I don't think it is eating. The other two have large, round bellies and are constantly eating. This one has a sunken in belly (see oto on top right in the pic). I have algae growing on the plants in the tank and I put in algae pellets for the otos every few days. Any idea why it won't eat and what I could do to get it to eat? TIA! I just did a water change (it was time), but when I checked my water parameters yesterday things looked fine.
  17. Hi everyone, I just started a new 75g tank, and am back in the hobby full force after life got in the way for awhile. Overall, I found the information on the site and aquarium co op videos very helpful, and the customer service has been good, especially Candi dealing with a shipping issue we had. I setup the tank with plants from some of my other tanks and ones purchased here. Once I had some algae, I added a small about 6 otos and 6 corys, as well as 2 small SAE. Now at least of my two of my Otos have some sort of white markings, almost like a bite was taken out. It is white, but definitely does not look ick related. The odd thing is the behavior of the fish seem perfectly normal, they are cruising around on the leaves and glass and have taken out the little algae I had with relative ease. The tank has no ammonia, no nitrite and very little nitrate, I've tried to let the plants do the work and help cycle the tank. I'm wondering if I should treat, or let them be and see if they heal. I'm a little stumped, and I a little disappointed this has come up so quickly, when trying to do everything correct. I'd rather not medicate a new tank and disrupt anything. Any advice and thoughts are great appreciated, Thanks.
  18. I got three Otocinclus vittatus on Saturday and they seem to be doing well so far. They are from a person who bought them to help his diatom problem and they did the trick. Now I have them because I think their personalities are great and they have the added bonus of being algae eating machines, from what I hear! I have them in a 16 gallon with a lot of diatoms and minor string algae (it's a month old set up). They haven't taken to eating any diatoms yet but their bellies are plump and they are active as all get out. Do you think they may just be full and that's why they aren't eating the diatoms? Could it be that they haven't fully adjusted to their new digs? They were eating the Xtreme Nano I put in for my Panda Corys so I know they've eaten a little bit. I just want to make sure they'll eat the diatoms and have plenty of them! TIA
  19. The first inhabitants are in! So excited to watch them grow! 6 Corydoras panda and 3 Otocinclus sp. All are doing well (just put them in on Saturday). Corys are hiding in the back left corner most of the time while the light is on but I'm sure they're just getting use to their new home. Otos are zooming around like little jets and enjoying themselves. So excited to start my journey in fish keeping!
  20. I got some random algae based food to feed to my oto (right now it's only having algae, and occasionally cucumber and spinach). He didn't even get to taste it before my shrimp and betta completely devoured all of it, which led to overfeeding the betta. I'm now looking for a replacement for this food, hoping there's a product available for international shipping with 100% veggie contents. I found something I can get locally called 'JBL Spirulina' but unfortunately it contains about 12% fish ingredients, and I'm afraid that's still too much of it so my betta will see it as food as well. I'm wondering if anyone can suggest a product based on experience? Is it safe to just get spirulina supplement tablets you can find in iHerb and feed it to my fish?
  21. Greetings! I bought 7 otocinclus on may 28th and put them in quarantine with the med trio. After a week, one developed a bad case of fungus and sadly passed away. I retreated the while tank with the med trio. The 6 others seem to be fine - I see them grace on plants, substrate, glass. And they also eat the Hikari algea wafer (that is what the store was giving them). I will soon introduce zucchini and repashy very stinky soilent green! How long should I leave the wafer in? They seem to ignore it until 24 hours later when it’s all mushy... Are they sensitive to Flourish excel by Seachem? I usually fast my fish one day per week. Is it ok to do it with Oto as well? I read they often die of starvation so I want to be sure... I give them one full wafer for the 6 of them, is it too much? Should I wait until they finish it up before giving a new one? Usually I will siphon after 24-36 hours but they seem upset because that’s when they wanna eat it! Is seachem garlic guard good for them as well? I try to soak some food or add it to the tank about once a week. some of them have really long think string of poop. Not white, it just seems like poop that won’t fall. Constipated? Too much food? Thank you! Here is a picture of their belly. Is it round/well fed type of belly?
  22. Hi guys, I currently have 4 otos in the tank for a month now, and 1 of them has these bumps on the gills (below the mouth). I noticed this guy likes to isolate himself from the rest most of the time and hides a lot. I just noticed these bumps on the gills. Does anyone know what these bumps are? and how should i treat it? thanks!
  23. I hate creating these posts. I have a 20 gal tank that had a diatom algae overload. I got two Otos to help manage it and maintain a clean tank. 2 weeks ago one Oto died unexpectantly and I just found my other one dead this morning. My water levels have stayed pretty consistent and I try to check their stomachs to see if they are nice and full but after the first one died, I noticed that the remaining Oto was hiding a lot more which made sense. But it made it difficult to see if he's been eating. I'm trying to look for factors that could affect this. Lack of food could be one of them. It's possible they weren't eating (even though there is algae in the tank but maybe not what they liked). This worries me because I have a Siamese Algae Eater as well and I really dont want anything to happen to it. The only other thing I am noticing is my ph is a little high (7.6 on "low ph test and 7.4 on high ph test). My water from the sink is at around 6.8 so something in the tank is causing it to rise, I think. Everything else for my water is really good. Which is frustrating because I do my best to keep my water great for the fish. I just don't know what else could have caused them to die all of the sudden. Thanks for the help/advice.
  24. Water parameters: Nitrate: 10ppm Nitrite: 0 Ammonia: 0 GH: 150ppm KH: 40ppm pH: 6.8 Water Temp: 78°F 29 gallons: Platies Otocinclus Red Cherry Barbs Kuhli Loaches Hey everyone, It seems that one of my Otos has an eye injury/infection, but I’m not sure exactly what it is. I originally thought this otocinclus was dead when I first saw it, but when I put in the net to scoop it out it started moving around, so it seems to be alive and eating algae off of one of my plants. If anyone has any insight or advice, I’d love to hear it. The right eye area is the only place I can see with damage.
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