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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
so, i have my tank set up and stable, but i've found that lately my otocinclus have been dying at an interval of one every week or week and a half. the only change that i've made is adding a lid to the tank a month or two back. the only differences i'd expect from the lid would be a change in the air composition directly above the tank, and a slight raise in temperature. the temperature only raised 3 degrees from 77 to 80, which is well withing the range of tolerance of otos. i'm injecting co2, so i think that the air composition inside the tank may be poor enough to negatively affrct them. here are my stats:
pH: 6.5
gh: 7
kh: 5
ammonia: 0
nitrites: 0
nitrates: 5-10

no other fish or shrimp are negatively affected, just the otos. any insight?
 

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It could be that they don't get enough food. Are their little bellies nice and round, like the swallowed a marble? What do you feed them? Even if there is still some algae in your tank you need to supplement and they don't eat every algae either.

Starvation is what most Otos die from. I've never had any problems with mine though as I also supplemented their diet with spirulina wafers, cucumber, and the like. I don't think they are affected by the lid if none of the other tank inhabitants show any signs.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
They should be very well fed... There is a bit of algae in the tank and i supplement it with a wafer twice a week... They don't seem super interested in the wafer, though... maybe i'll try a different type.
 

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Look at the ingredient list. Some wafers that are advertised as "Spirulina Wafers" only contain a small amount of spirulina and the main ingredients are fillers and other junk.

Or you might have to try algae leaves (marine), peas or cucumber. Do they have a round belly though like these ones?
 

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I think those that are concave are already destined to die. But maybe you should just try to get them to eat more and maybe find sth they are more interested in. If that won't work, we can still try to find other causes.

Unless somebody here has any other ideas...
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
My friend brought up the heat, and i noticed it was warmer than i expected, so i turned it down into the mid 70's. If the heat got up into the mid 80's i'd be more worried, but i wouldn't think they would be dying this infrequently if it was too hot for them. I'm also inclined toward starvation, since i cleaned a bit of the algae out when i put the lid on the aquarium. I'll supplement the normal feeding with my hikari wafers and see if that works.
 

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my otos dont even have algae to eat...and no wafers either. just leftover algae crisps that my other fish/shrimp dont finish. put some snails in there if you're afraid of overfeeding.

maybe they're stressed? gotta cave/dark areas? maybe its the bright light..*shrugs*
 

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Look at the ingredient list. Some wafers that are advertised as "Spirulina Wafers" only contain a small amount of spirulina and the main ingredients are fillers and other junk.

Or you might have to try algae leaves (marine), peas or cucumber. Do they have a round belly though like these ones?


awesome shine/coloration on your oto...what do you feeed them? my otos are gray with no shine.
 

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I doubt it's the temp. Most of mine are in my 80-82F tank and I have to in my 84-86F discus tank. I also think they may not be eating. A lot of otos don't care for the wafers at all, you could try a small slice of very soft zucchini a couple of times a week. They should eat that.
 

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I doubt it's the temp. Most of mine are in my 80-82F tank and I have to in my 84-86F discus tank....
Me too. I have at least 6-8 in my 72 gal with discus that I've kept at 84-85F for the last 3-4 months and my otos are doing fine. My algae is under good control so I supplement with Hikari algae discs and such....
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
I forget exactly what types of algae the otos go for... I know they loved the gsa i had all over my glass, but that was the first to go when i cleaned. I have thread and bba, but they don't seem too interested in that stuff (they leave that to the amanos). I'll have to try the zucchini and the cucumbers, it sounds like a good treat for all the inhabitants.
 

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I also find that SLIGHTLY overfeeding my fish gives the otos a variety of options and they are fat and happy, i also toss in the occasional algae wafer, and I feed Hikari Sinking wafers, and micro wafers which all of the bottom feeders seem to really enjoy! :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I'm gonna have to look into a different type of food, i guess. I was overfeeding a little bit (not enough to cause water issues, but enough to cause other problems), and i still had some issues with the otos. I'm gonna have to look at the different foods that i have and see if there's any that are more oto friendly. I'm afraid to overfeed any more than i currently am, because the otos seem to get little benefit and the snails are starting to outnumber the fish by an order of magnitude.
 

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I have feeling that a lot of the otos come in with parasites too. That may be the reason for sudden deaths. They're mostly wild caught and aren't treated before they get into your tanks.

I think all bottom dwellers should get a good round of antibacterial and deworming meds.
 
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