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Well, I'm far from an expert, and I've had lots of trouble getting my otos to eat, but I'll tell you my experiences. IME they tend to be leery of anything which has not been in the aquarium for at least some hours, preferrably a day, and very few prepared foods last that long if there's other animals in the aquarium. They also seem to prefer veggies which have started to decompose slightly.sjogren1 wrote:I have never had any success with feeding Otocinclus. They would not accept manufactured foods I tried like Sinking Algae or Spirulina Wafers.
My O. vittatus eventually learned to "vacuum" the bottom for leftover Artemia etc, and also loved banana and blanched brussel sprout (once they'd been in the aquarium at least a day and become really gooey). They reluctantly accepted but didn't much like green peas. They never touched cucumber or lettuce - I don't think they "dissolved" enough. They would, if they could get to it, eat sinking algae wafers.
My "zebra otos" were more inclined to feed off the bottom than any other otos I've had, and also seemed more geared towards animal food than any other Oto I've had. I don't recall them ever accepting any veggies, but they quickly learned to accept various sinking pellets, shrimp mix etc. I eventually killed them by giving them frozen red mosquito larvae ("bloodworms") which were off - they got dropsy and died within just a few days.
My present "leopard otos", which may be Otocinclus flexilis, so far will not feed off the bottom of the tank, but like the vittatus accept veggies-on-a-clip once it has been in the aquarium for at least one day. One of them tasted a sinking algae wafer, but didn't seem impressed.
The common theme for my veggie-loving otos have been that they've liked really soft, mushy, food - ie they eat only the flesh, not the rind, off the squash, and even then only then it's been in the water for at least a day and begun to dissolve.