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Otocinclus or Hillstream loach


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I had this same decision to make recently for a 29g. For me it came down to a couple of things--I was planning on keeping the tank warmer than average and using low flow for a future amazon type tank. That made Otos the better choice. Otos are reportedly good with shrimp too, though I don't think that will matter in my setup. They have been really wonderful and diligent algae eaters, probably he best I have ever had. They aren't as exciting looking as the hillstreams, being a little more like cute clowns, like the corydoras.

I have kept hillstreams before and do really adore their antics and their exotic aerodynamic shape. But they seem to love playing in the outflow of a powerhead. I think a 20 long would be fabulous for that, but maybe the guppies and shrimp would be less thrilled. I love the Hillstreams so much that I considered making a fast flowing tank built around them. They can of course adapt to what you have, but I would at least position some hardscape directly in your filter outflow for maximum fun.

You really can't go wrong with either choice in my opinion.

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