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These little fish are quite entertaining and I guess I can say cute! I had been battling diatoms for about 4 months to no avail. I'd spent countless dollars on chemicals, absorbents, RO unit, etc. Finally after moving my Kribs into a darker tank, I gave in and bought some Otocinclus for my 40b. First off, they are adorable and pictures online just didn't do them justice for me. They have quite the personality and I really enjoy watching them dart from leaf to leaf. I bought 10 young "pups" to grow in my 40b with a few snails and in about 3 days it is more than 50% cleaned up!

I love these fish! :thumbsup::fish:
 

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I fell in love with mine, too, after getting them! Agree, much "cuter" and more personality than expected.

Mine go nuts for zucchini or spinach, now that they've got very little algae left to munch on a daily basis. Algae tabs they'll eat, but they love the veggies.
 

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Oto's are indeed very entertaining to watch while still being a part of the "clean up crew". They actually have a vivid personality once you start to recognize them out of the pack. (We have one that likes to wave with one of her fin's on the glass when we approach her)

How do you prepare the spinach and zucchini. I assume you put it on a clip. And how long do you leave it in the tank ? Will the algae wafers dissolve in the tank and cause problems?
Check out Michael over at Youtube for how to prep zucchini. He has a little stage fright on camera but definitely is a great tutorial on how to blanch and store your zucchini.
 

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How do you prepare the spinach and zucchini. I assume you put it on a clip. And how long do you leave it in the tank ? Will the algae wafers dissolve in the tank and cause problems?
If you have more than 3 oto's in a tank, the piece of zucchini will be gone in less than 24 hours. I personally feed my oto's a day before a water change. This is to just suck up any loose zucchini particles left in the water (which rarely happens)

algae wafers do dissolve over time - which with anything, will create ammonia. I use wafers for my shrimp but it's best to have a dish so excess food can be cleaned up quickly.

Check out Michael over at Youtube for how to prep zucchini. He has a little stage fright on camera but definitely is a great tutorial on how to blanch and store your zucchini.
There is two more steps I do over what Mike does in that video. I first peel the zucchini so it has no outer skin. This is because I don't see my oto's eating it which equals more clean up. Then I cut the zucchini in half. This is to use a spoon to scoop out the seeds and inners so your just left with the delicious noms noms.
 

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I love my otos too, I got some after my dwarf gourami passed to keep my filters BB from crashing (and o clean up the diatoms I'd been battling for a while) then they moved into a 20g long I recently st up (and dreaded another diatom outbreak in). Its been spotless so far, only algae has been bba that came in on bought plants (and was nuked off with an appropriate bleach dip.
I love thier personality, they share teh tank with a betta right now and it seems the bettas no fear attitude has rubbed off on them. THey will come check me out when i walk up to the tank and don't swim away/hide when my hand goes in teh tank.. or siphon. They actually like to play and dart under the siphon when I do water changed x.x On got sucked into the siphon once but I broke suction before it could get stuck/hurt .. they kept playing around it.
They love blanched zucchini and romaine lettuce but haven't touched algae wafers yet (keep having to remove those) and currently feed them 2x a week. Amusingly the betta likes to eat veggies with them.. really I have photo proof!
 

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NEAT! I loved my otos so much. Unfortunately, they have now all perished. I miss them but fear I may not be replacing them. I had as many as 5 or 6 at one time and had a 20g long for them.

I love their 'personality' and how they shoal together. They are cute. They can roll their eyes in a way that makes it look like they are winking at you. I liked how they would 'ride' on a leaf that was in the current and just hang on as the leaf moved around.

Eventually, they would not eat the veggies I would give them. I assumed that they were getting enough to eat from the algae farm but I don't know.

I did, though, for a long while, get them to eat blanched slices of zucchini and yellow squash. they loved yellow squash. They also did enjoy to eat parts of the rind, so I left that on mostly. Also, after the squash and zucchini was like 4 or 5 days old (in the fridge, of course!), cut off the end and get a slice from the middle, it will probably be soft enough that you don't need to blanch it. I never got them to eat knori, spinach, lettuce, algae wafers or those algae sheets but of course YMMV. I would say offer them as much a variety as you can and see what they like and be careful to not leave the leftovers in the tank for too long.
 
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