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HELP Otocinclus advice needed

Discussion in 'Fish Keeping Chat' started by Fishnewbie, Jun 11, 2018.


  1. Fishnewbie

    Fishnewbie PetForums Member

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    Hi, I have recently purchased 2 Otocinclus for my new aquarium as I wasn’t given bad advise from pet store that these are good for cleaning up food and Algie, however after reading some info it would seem this is wrong and that they will only eat algie, as my tank is fairly new there is no algie for them to eat , I have tried wafers and spinanch/ zucchini with no joy... what do I do
     
  2. kittih

    kittih PetForums VIP

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    I suggest you take the fish back to the shop and explain you were mis-sold the fish and want a refund. I agree that these fish are not suitable for new tanks and should only be added to matures tanks, even then they can be tricky to keep.

    Is your filter fully cycled ?

    If you are looking for good bottom interest corydorus are good. They aren't algae eaters but to be honest you wont need algae eaters. It is rare a balanced aquarium will grow sufficient algae to support most algae eaters. What size is your tank? We can recommend some other options depending on the size of your tank and other fish in there.
     
    #2 kittih, Jun 11, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2018
    magpie likes this.
  3. Fishnewbie

    Fishnewbie PetForums Member

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    Hi, Thanks for your reply I think I may do this, yes the tank is fully cycled been up and running for 2 and a bit months and have healthy neon tetras with the recent addition of Glowlights, the aim was to have some fish to help keep the substrate clean and add a bit of something to the tank at the same time, it’s a 25L tank.
     
  4. kittih

    kittih PetForums VIP

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    Hi. If your tank is only 25 litres then its too small for otos or any other live stock. Small tanks are hard to keep the water stable. If you do want some bottom interest and clean up crew then I suggest some cherry or amano shrimps. They are good at cleaning up detritus / algae and have minimal bioload if you don't feed extra for them.
     
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  5. mrs phas

    mrs phas my home, my sofa, my rules

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    you do realuse that with what youve got in there already, you re pretty much at maximum capacity?
    add some shrimp and a couple of snails
     
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  6. kittih

    kittih PetForums VIP

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    I agree @mrs phas your tank is already at capacity. Those little tanks can house very few fish, especially fast moving fish like neons and glowlights. Both those fish species like to be in shoals of a minimum of 6, however 12 fish at adult size in that tank would be too many.

    There are lots of attractive shrimp species out there. Apart from the cherry shrimp there are also red crystal shrimp and bee shrimp as well as various others.

    Alternatively if funds and space will permit then invest in a larger tank when you can and you will be able to have a range of community fish.
     
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  7. Fishnewbie

    Fishnewbie PetForums Member

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    Thanks for your reply and helpful comment, again mislead by advice from store, so if I take back the ottos and get some shrimp as suggested is that ok for the 25L tank? And will that be at the limit for my tank after this? Would snails be able to be added also or would that be pushing it? In terms of shrimp what you suggest are the most sturdiest?
     
  8. Fishnewbie

    Fishnewbie PetForums Member

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    I do now thanks to a previous comment I received but cheers for trying to help...
     
  9. NaomiM

    NaomiM Love my furry, feathered and finned family

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    Agreed with the others. In terms of shrimp, I'd recommend cherry shrimp since you're a beginner and the tank is small. Crystal reds are expensive, so not great if you do get an ammonia spike or a pH swing that wipes them out! Cherries are one of the slightly hardier species and also widely available.

    If you do start to get algae problems further down the line, a single nerite snail would be a better algae muncher than any fish. There are different varieties with different colours/patterns - my favourite for a small tank is the horned nerite, as it's the smallest so doesn't add much bioload, but still very effective as an algae eater.
     
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  10. Fishnewbie

    Fishnewbie PetForums Member

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    Thank you very much for your helpful advice, I will look into these shrimp and later down the line possibly purchase a snail if needed!! I will update you on how it goes :) thanks again!
     
  11. kittih

    kittih PetForums VIP

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    Cherry or amano shrimp are best to start with. With Amanos you will need a tight fitting lid with no lid as they can vote with their feet and leave the tank and you will find their dried up body on the carpet some days later. Cherries are less artful about escape. They tend to breed well though your fish will enjoy eating the babies. Amanos wont breed in fresh water but are fairly tolerant of water conditions though will not tolerate any ammonia or nitrite as wont the cherrys.

    Both species will need some places to hide. As they grow they shed their exo skeleton and their bodies are soft and delicate for a while before they harden. I usually use a bit of bog wood which they shelter under but anything that is out of the way of the fish will do. They like well planted tanks but will be ok with some form of décor that they can move around on.

    They will happily eat fish poo and algae but also enjoy blood worm and fish flake. If your ater isn't hard you will need some form of calcium as they need to for their exo skeleton. You can get dedicated shrimp food but given your tank I wouldnt suggest using this as the fish will eat it.

    Given that you have no spare bioload in your tank I would stick with either a small group of cherries or two or three amanos (females carry eggs and are larger). Don't add extra food for them though they will enjoy the odd treat of a blood worm or a bit of flake. you may find they weigh in with the fish to get their share. That's fine, just don't feed extra.

    The way to think about it is that your filter bacteria can only deal with so much food you put in the tank. You are essentially feeding the bacteria but via the fish and shrimps so don't add more food to the system than your bacteria can support.

    https://www.practicalfishkeeping.co...uently-asked-questions-on-neocaridina-shrimps

    https://www.practicalfishkeeping.co.uk/features/articles/amano-shrimp-spineless-heroes
     
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  12. Fishnewbie

    Fishnewbie PetForums Member

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    Thank you for your detailed response this helps me a lot ! I will take the otos back tomorrow and get deciding on my shrimp! I have plants and places to hide so that should be ok also! Fingers crossed all goes well!
     
  13. kittih

    kittih PetForums VIP

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    Just a word of warning with shrimp. If you do keep live plants then be careful where you source them. Some plant sellers use snail killer to remove snails. This contains copper which is also toxic to snails but also to shrimp. I have killed shrimp in the past with a new batch of plants. If any plants have been I your tank for the last few months you should be fine.
     
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