How to know if oto catfish is getting enough food - Page 3 - The Planted Tank Forum
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post #31 of 53 (permalink) Old 09-10-2014, 05:30 PM
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It can take time for oto's to catch up to what is food. Are you blanching the vegetables you are putting in the tank? They tend to eat soft algae the most so if you blanch them it will make it easier for them to recognize it as food. They will catch on. I have an oto in my tank that never seems to have much algae at all and he does well on the bio film and he will eat pretty much anything I put in for my cory cats like bottom feeder pellets, shrimp pellets and algae wafers. If you just have one your tank there probably already is more food in there for it than you realize
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post #32 of 53 (permalink) Old 09-10-2014, 07:09 PM
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You might want to keep in mind that otos can happily nibble away at the near invisible algae that pretty much every tank has. Nor are they large, voracious fish that require huge amounts of food.

If they have nicely rounded bellies, good color and occasionally zip around the tank you're likely fine. Offering a variety of food helps ensure their health--and your other stock will enjoy it anyway--but I wouldn't stress. In terms of how to feed, I slice off small pieces of whatever food I'm feeding---zuch, peas, asaparus, green beans, kale, spinach, radish or turnip leaves, brussel sprouts, etc--blanch it so it'll sink and just drop it into the darker corners of the tank or clip it to a lower piece of driftwood in a shaded area; otos tend to be shy feeders so a huge slab of food clipped in a brightly lit area isn't going to encourage them to try it out.
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post #33 of 53 (permalink) Old 09-12-2014, 03:47 PM
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I just picked up 4 otos for a 20 gallon tank that has a good bit of algae, they are quite fragile but as long as they are nice and plump I dont worry about them at all, another thing is you can increase light to produce more algae, thus giving them more food to eat. Just food for thought.

I often find mine hanging off the glass or sitting on hardscape. Just sucking down some algae or other detrius


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post #34 of 53 (permalink) Old 09-15-2014, 01:39 AM Thread Starter
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Hi guys! Just updating😕. 10 days after putting my oto cat in my aquarium, plants and glass looks cleaner than ever. So I'm kinda worried that he won't have enough algae to eat anymore. I've tried giving him algae wafers twice during night time before lights are off but he won't go at it. I put blanched zucchinni and failed as well. Here's a picture of him now. Is he still healthy? Is he thin?
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post #35 of 53 (permalink) Old 09-15-2014, 07:35 PM
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Originally Posted by n25philly View Post
Are you blanching the vegetables you are putting in the tank?
I was just about to ask that as I didnt see it being mentioned. Its a CRITICAL step. I put a disc on a small plate with a puddle of water, give it a spin in the microwave till it JUST turns soft. The skin of the zucchini should be supple and the flesh soft, but not mush.

Never seen an otto who wouldn't park themselves on a piece. If you are putting it in raw its no different than your plants (which as you know they dont eat!)
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post #36 of 53 (permalink) Old 09-15-2014, 11:56 PM
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I actually never blanch mine. The first time I did the other fish in the tank just went to town on the zucchini until it was virtually gone. I run each piece under hot tap water for a few seconds just to get any dirt and/or wax off that might be on it. That gives the otos a day or so to themselves on the zucchini before the angels and gourami get at it. So I guess it's a psuedo-blanch.
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post #37 of 53 (permalink) Old 09-16-2014, 02:46 AM
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Blanched mine, still they don't go at it and tends to float. How long should you keep it in just curious?
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post #38 of 53 (permalink) Old 09-16-2014, 05:13 AM
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Blanched mine, still they don't go at it and tends to float. How long should you keep it in just curious?
I'm in the same boat. Today I put zucchini in for the 3rd time since I got my Otto.

I didn't blanch first 2 times but this one I did. Still nothing.

I'm just going to keep trying.

I will eventually try something new...repashy? ..but for now I'm going to hope this zucchini catches on eventually.


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post #39 of 53 (permalink) Old 09-16-2014, 05:22 AM
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I'm in the same boat. Today I put zucchini in for the 3rd time since I got my Otto.

I didn't blanch first 2 times but this one I did. Still nothing.

I'm just going to keep trying.

I will eventually try something new...repashy? ..but for now I'm going to hope this zucchini catches on eventually.
How long are you leaving it in? I have it almost 24 hours. Hopefully they catch on
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post #40 of 53 (permalink) Old 09-16-2014, 05:23 AM
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How long are you leaving it in? I have it almost 24 hours. Hopefully they catch on
2 days on the first try.


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post #41 of 53 (permalink) Old 09-16-2014, 11:16 AM
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but for now I'm going to hope this zucchini catches on eventually.
I think this is the proper route to try. Judging from your original post you've only had your otos in for a little over a week...? There's probably still plenty of aufwuchs for them to feed on. It took me a few weeks (at least 3 if I remember correctly, possibly longer) before I observed them feeding on the zucchini. I think I probably prolonged the process by constantly changing the target food I was putting in the tank. I'd stick to the zucchini, on a regular schedule, so they can recognize it in a more timely manner. Just relax and keep it up and hopefully you'll soon have that elated experience of seeing your oto chomping on some zucchini. Also bear in mind that as a steward of the otocinclus you will have to inevitably deal with some of them dying off, sometimes very soon after you get them, sometimes a few months after.
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post #42 of 53 (permalink) Old 09-16-2014, 12:39 PM
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Blanched mine, still they don't go at it and tends to float. How long should you keep it in just curious?
I use a stainless steel bbq skewer. Stab the veggie with it and just set it in the tank against the side. Puts the veggie down low for them. I'll leave a piece in for a couple days anyway.

P.S. this is also a fantastic way to get rid of nuisance snails: They will congregate on a zucchini slice overnight, greatly simplifying their removal in the morning.
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post #43 of 53 (permalink) Old 09-17-2014, 01:10 PM Thread Starter
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After failing with the zucchini and algae wafers, my oto cat finally took my bait... an apple. He is munching it for hours now. Just need to put it on a butter knife to keep it under water.
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post #44 of 53 (permalink) Old 09-17-2014, 07:39 PM
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Thats interesting! I never knew that apple was an option (for some reason I'd have thought they'd be too acidic ).
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post #45 of 53 (permalink) Old 09-18-2014, 02:08 AM
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interesting
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Originally Posted by rakizta View Post
an apple.


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