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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Ok so Ive unknowingly has a otocinclus catfish in my tank for about 3 weeks thinking that it was a baby pleco. Im have just discovered however, that it is actually an oto. I dont know how to take care of it past what to feed it. Ive been feeding it algie pellets. It is very energetic and likes to dig. its uprooted almost everything in my tank and constantly looks for food. I feed it a pellet a day sense the pellets are large in comparison to my fish. Is there something more i could to for it? are there any special needs it has? Is it social? should I get a nother one for companionship? Any suggestions would be appreciated.
-ten gal tank, heated, lighted, and filtered. average temp 80 degrees.
 

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I think you might still have a mystery fish, not an Oto. Oto's do not normally uproot things in the tank. They are tiny and they stay small. They tend to hang out on the glass of the aquarium or on wood or plants. They will go on the substrate as well but not to uproot anything. If you post a picture, we might be able to help figure out what it is. If it is an Oto, it is unusual behavior.. I suspect you have some other type of Catfish.


This is an Oto
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
It looks just like the picture you posted. Ive already posted another thread with a picture to decipher what it is. here is the pictre: photo.jpg
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I dont have sand or gravel in the tank. It is covered with marbles and sea shells. mostly because they are easy to clean and dont fit through my drains to clog pipes.
 

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That looks more like a Chinese Algae Eater to me.
To me as well.

IF it is an Oto, then he/she will be quite busy eating algae around your tank. You can add slices of Cucumber for them to munch or spinach as they enjoy both. Don't leave those items in there too long. I usually take them out after 10 hours.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
It dose eat algie. there wanst a green spot left in my tank after the first week. he mowed down the whole thing. im just glad i didnt have any live plants. theyd certainly be gone by now. after all the algie was gone it took to pushing things over looking for food. the pic i took isnt a very good one. hes not really orange. hes silver like the one in the post above it. i just have bright orange plants in the tank that reflected off of him.
 

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I don't know, I have 8 Oto's in one tank and they don't eat plants or dig in the substrate. Not saying they can't I just have never witnessed that behavior in Oto's.
 

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I'm 99% certain it's a Chinese Algae Eater. They look quite similar while young. I would get rid of it any way possible. They will kill your fish eventually, and with the aggresiveness yours has shown already I suspect it wont take long.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
I have it in a tank with just 3 other female betas and a very tiny snail. he dosnt eat plants. he just swims around and sucks algie off of everything. he hasnt shown any agression towards the betas tho. i dont exactly want to get rid of the lil guy. How big do they get? and what can live with them?
 

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They eat algea when they are young, but when they get older, they can attach and rip the scales off of the other fish. Keep a very close eye on him.
 

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So it could be a chinese algae eater. well hmmm. what a mysterious little guy you have. Maybe look at pics of both and you determine what it is rather that just taking our word for it. Google pics of both and see what you determine it looks more like so you can get better help here. It's hard because we can't see it in person. You'll have to make the call what it is.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I think it is definately a chinese algie eater. it looks much more like the pics of the algie eater. the otos have only one set of fins on ther tail, and mine has two so it has to be the algie eater. he hasnt shown any agrassion yet, he just knocks things over but i will watch him closely. he s a cute lil guy. i named him tiger because of his stripes. :) i hope he dosnt get too agressive
 

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I hope so too. I am glad you finally identified him. Thats a start but be careful and good luck.
 

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He will get aggressive, mostly in the form of sucking the slime coat off your girls. They are also very boisterous, active fish. Off the top of my head, I believe they need a 30 gallon tank, with semi-aggressive tankmates.
 

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I suggest you get rid of it by giving it back to the pet store you bought it from. Chinese algae eater when grown up, will suck the slime coat off your betta fish and show very aggressive behavior. I just returned my Chinese algae eater yesterday.

As for the size, they can grow up to 12 inches long and the width of a mans underarm. They'll only grow to this size when provided a huge area. Usually, in aquariums they grow to about 10cm in length. When they are that size, pellets wont be enough, and your betta's slime coat will look very delicious to them.
 

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They will suck the slime coat off most fish. They should be kept alone in a species only tank.

I would highly recommend that you return it to the store.
 
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