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Old 09-30-2011, 08:38 AM   #1
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Question on Oto's

Just added a trio of Oto's to my Amazon Biotope to keep algae in check, and have encountered a few issues:

They have already removed what little algae I had, and will not touch the algae wafers...

As soon as I turn the lights off, they begin chasing my Cardinals around the tank.

Questions are this: any other recommended food items for the otos, and is the chasing a normal behavior (store had them in a tank of GloFish, and they appeared to leave them alone?)
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Old 09-30-2011, 09:17 AM   #2
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Are you sure they're not trying to school with the cardinals? Otos are about as peaceful as a fish gets. Mine certainly don't bother anybody. And mine will eat algae wafers and shrimp pellets. Keep in mind though that your tank has algae that you can't necessarily see. The otos will only take an artificial food source after they've completely depeleted the live source.
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Old 09-30-2011, 11:39 AM   #3
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Well if they arnt eating algae waffers you probably still have algae left in your tank and they are eating that, I have a group of 7 in my Amazon biotope and they are amazing algae eaters, but you can always try other thigns too like blanched cucumber and what not. Also otos wont attack your cardinals they are probably trying to school with them like lynda said, often my otos try and school with my Serpaes and Serpaes are agressive.
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Old 09-30-2011, 02:13 PM   #4
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Cucumber is a good option for otos, I have 4 of them and they love it. I also feed mine a sinking pleco pellet.
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Old 09-30-2011, 03:29 PM   #5
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My ottos would try to school with my tetras. It was pretty funny cause they weren't the best swimmers in the tank by far but they sure did try like the dickens. I was sad when they died when I had my columnaris outbreak. I will get more once I know my tank is good and settled but I'll only buy some that are on supplemental food. Most ottos from stores are still on algae since they are wild caught and my understanding they can be difficult to transition to prepared foods.
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Old 09-30-2011, 03:48 PM   #6
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They probably aren't chasing. Oto's are very friendly and will often school around with other species.

Oto's should be added to a well matured tank that has been established for about 6 months, and stocked no more than 1 per 5 gals of water.

Most oto's from stores are wild caught and can be difficult to supplement. Do keep offering commercial supplements. IME they will come around eventually. I would recommend offering blanched zucchini and/or blanched shelled peas atleast once a week. I feed my otos both once a week and they love them. You might not see them eating these supplements at first either, but keep on trying, and they should come around. For mine it did not take long at all with the veggies. Be sure to remove any uneated veg after 24 hours so it doesn't foul your water.

As a back up I would get some stones going in a bowl of tank water in a nice sunny spot like your window. Once they are covered with algae, you can add them to the tank for the oto's to graze on.
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Old 09-30-2011, 05:17 PM   #7
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My otos go around in a group with my julii's quite often
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