Natural habitatfor Otos?

All posts regarding the care and breeding of these catfishes from South America.
Post Reply
User avatar
nvcichlids
Posts: 1855
Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2008 8:48 pm
My images: 6
My cats species list: 44 (i:0, k:1)
My aquaria list: 1 (i:1)
My BLogs: 6 (i:4, p:279)
Spotted: 2
Location 1: Milwaukee, WI
Location 2: Waimate, New Zealand

Natural habitatfor Otos?

Post by nvcichlids »

Hey Guys,

I am in the process of planning an oto habitat (not neccesarilly biotope with regards to plants and co-inhabitants) tank. Most tanks i see for oto breeding are heavily planted, while some of the "biotope" tanks I have seen were just branches with dead leaves. Any suggestions about this? Ideally I would keep zebra otos, but I don't know what will be available at the time when setting up. Here is the tank/thoughts:

29-33 US Gallons
Several "branches/twigs" sticking down from the top to the bottom
few amazon sword type plants
vals
crypts
(all plants may be few or many depending on results)
few med/large rocks for scaping

other tankmates:
Corydoras hasborus
Red Pencil Fish
(maybe) Ituglanis sp

Thoughts? Over filtration as always with me, LED lights that can sustain plants if needed, or one that has the different settings for storms and stuff.. IDK yet there.

Thanks guys,
What's your favorite Dressing~~

User avatar
Chinafishboy
Posts: 80
Joined: Tue Dec 22, 2015 7:02 am
Location 1: Beijing
Location 2: beijing
Interests: Small fish, alien basketball, the tea ceremony

Re: Natural habitatfor Otos?

Post by Chinafishboy »

nvcichlids wrote:Hey Guys,

I am in the process of planning an oto habitat (not neccesarilly biotope with regards to plants and co-inhabitants) tank. Most tanks i see for oto breeding are heavily planted, while some of the "biotope" tanks I have seen were just branches with dead leaves. Any suggestions about this? Ideally I would keep zebra otos, but I don't know what will be available at the time when setting up. Here is the tank/thoughts:

29-33 US Gallons
Several "branches/twigs" sticking down from the top to the bottom
few amazon sword type plants
vals
crypts
(all plants may be few or many depending on results)
few med/large rocks for scaping

other tankmates:
Corydoras hasborus
Red Pencil Fish
(maybe) Ituglanis sp

Thoughts? Over filtration as always with me, LED lights that can sustain plants if needed, or one that has the different settings for storms and stuff.. IDK yet there.

Thanks guys,
Hello, general can fish for me is not to put bottom sand feeding or very small amounts. Can eat can discharge characteristic, if the plant can be used to solve the planting flower pot in bed. Stone and wood structures, housing is a good to them. Light color temperature 6500 k, 8 to 10 hours a day.

dw1305
Posts: 956
Joined: Thu Oct 22, 2009 11:57 am
Location 2: Bath, UK

Re: Natural habitatfor Otos?

Post by dw1305 »

Hi all,
nvcichlids wrote:Thoughts? Over filtration as always with me, LED lights that can sustain plants if needed,
I'd just go with the Corydoras and Otocinclus (I think the Pencils will eat the Otocinclus fry).

For décor I think your suggestion is fine. For fry I'd definitely add some dead leaves, and some moss tangles, the more tangled the better.

I've had spawning Otocinclus, and they spawned on a Java Fern leaf.

cheers Darrel

User avatar
TwoTankAmin
Posts: 1280
Joined: Thu Apr 24, 2008 11:26 pm
I've donated: $2918.00!
My cats species list: 6 (i:0, k:0)
My BLogs: 2 (i:0, p:48)
Location 1: USA
Location 2: Mt. Kisco, NY
Interests: Fish and Poker

Re: Natural habitatfor Otos?

Post by TwoTankAmin »

As a rule of thumb, spawning of almost any fish is best accomplished in a species tank. I have always followed that rule with anything I was intending to see spawn in order to get offspring. This eliminates pretty much any threats except from the breeding fish themselves. It has been my experience that eggs/wigglers/free swimmers are often on the menu of most fish to some degree. I also think species tanks reduce the risk of disease which might originate with other species.

Assuming one is already meeting the water parameters required for the fish, next comes the layout/aquascaping of a spawning tank. For this, imo, there are a few major considerations:

1. Is it specifically inducive/hospitable in terms of inclining the fish to spawn?
2. How will it affect the ability to find and remove either eggs, wigglers, free swimming fry or offspring large enough to sell or trade?
3. How easy will it be to perform tank maintenance?

My limited experience has been that we should never compromise on 1., but numbers 2. and 3. only affect the fish keeper's side of things. So I will compromise on those but not on the first. It is possible to have a planted tank without having to plant in any substrate covering the bottom. This works with or without it. Attach ferns, moss and anubias to rocks and wood that can be removed and returned easily (so can moss balls). Plant in substrate, but do so in terra cotta pots. These too are easy to remove and return. Finally, floating plants work great.

If you are not doing your tank in order to get the absolute maximal survival rates from spawns, then you can disregard most of the above.
No one has ever become poor by giving.” Anonymous
Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not to his own facts.”" Daniel Patrick Moynihan
"The good thing about science is that it’s true whether or not you believe in it." Neil DeGrasse Tyson

User avatar
nvcichlids
Posts: 1855
Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2008 8:48 pm
My images: 6
My cats species list: 44 (i:0, k:1)
My aquaria list: 1 (i:1)
My BLogs: 6 (i:4, p:279)
Spotted: 2
Location 1: Milwaukee, WI
Location 2: Waimate, New Zealand

Re: Natural habitatfor Otos?

Post by nvcichlids »

you guys are all focusing more on the breeding, that was just a single comment about the breeding tanks I have seen, i am not intending to breed, its strictly for show as a natural looking habitat for them. If they breed, great, if they don't, i dont care. I am more looking for what is a natural habitat that otos are looking for.
What's your favorite Dressing~~

User avatar
TwoTankAmin
Posts: 1280
Joined: Thu Apr 24, 2008 11:26 pm
I've donated: $2918.00!
My cats species list: 6 (i:0, k:0)
My BLogs: 2 (i:0, p:48)
Location 1: USA
Location 2: Mt. Kisco, NY
Interests: Fish and Poker

Re: Natural habitatfor Otos?

Post by TwoTankAmin »

I have spent a fair amount of time over the year looking for vids of fish in the wild. Unfortunately, I have only ever seen one for otos and once you watch you you will see why it won't help much.

Collecting Otocinclus affinis in their natural habitat
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ilnitMs1LRk[/youtube]
No one has ever become poor by giving.” Anonymous
Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not to his own facts.”" Daniel Patrick Moynihan
"The good thing about science is that it’s true whether or not you believe in it." Neil DeGrasse Tyson

User avatar
bekateen
Posts: 5938
Joined: Tue Sep 09, 2014 5:50 pm
I've donated: $40.00!
My articles: 3
My images: 58
My cats species list: 103 (i:40, k:45)
My aquaria list: 30 (i:14)
My BLogs: 32 (i:107, p:1650)
My Wishlist: 33
Spotted: 126
Location 1: USA, California, Stockton
Location 2: USA, California, Stockton
Contact:

Re: Natural habitatfor Otos?

Post by bekateen »


Hi TTA,

When you want to embed a YouTube video into a forum post using the tags, you don't need to paste the entire URL of the video between the tags (in this case, the https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ilnitMs1LRk link). All you need to put inside the tags is the actual unique part of the URL that designates the specific video (in this case, ilnitMs1LRk).

Cheers, Eric

P.S., No wonder my otos always die - I can see through my tank water! LOL
"So many catfishes, so little time... and space... and money." - I said this after visiting Pier Aquatics.
Image
http://youtube.com/user/Bekateen1
Would you like to buy my fish? Click HERE for prices.

dw1305
Posts: 956
Joined: Thu Oct 22, 2009 11:57 am
Location 2: Bath, UK

Re: Natural habitatfor Otos?

Post by dw1305 »

Hi all,
There is a page on "Scotcat" (<http://www.scotcat.com/home.htm>) with habitat photos from the Parana basin in Argentina (<http://www.scotcat.com/articles/article72.htm>). The water here was cool and calcareous and a range of catfish were observed.

There is also a paper about the Pantanal fish assemblage Suarez et al. (2013) "Assemblage of fish species associated with aquatic macrophytes in Porto Murtinho Pantanal, Mato Grosso do Sul, Brazil" Biota Neotropica 13(2):182-189. <(https://www.researchgate.net/publicatio ... Sul_Brazil)> which mentions Otocinclus vittatus.

If you want a generic Otocinclus habitat then a tank with plants and wood/leaf litter would do.

cheers Darrel

User avatar
TwoTankAmin
Posts: 1280
Joined: Thu Apr 24, 2008 11:26 pm
I've donated: $2918.00!
My cats species list: 6 (i:0, k:0)
My BLogs: 2 (i:0, p:48)
Location 1: USA
Location 2: Mt. Kisco, NY
Interests: Fish and Poker

Re: Natural habitatfor Otos?

Post by TwoTankAmin »

eric- Thanks for the info re Youtube vids. Over the years I have posted them on a variety of sites and they do not all use the same protocol. I pasted it as I did, saw in preview mode there was a vid box and it would play so I left it. Hopefully, in the future I will remember this site only needs the end bit.

I should also say that, for some reasons I can not fathom, otos have been my bugaboo fish. Despite keeping and have spawn some rare plecos and a few of the more common corys and whiptails, I could not keep otos alive longer term. I tried wild affinis, tank raised affinis and cocama. Almost none made it beyond 3 months and most died faster. They were tried in various tanks with similar bad results. I did have a few (2 or 3) that lived a couple of years in my high tech planted tank but that was it. After losing about 75 over multiple tries I finally felt I should stop trying as it was not fair to keep killing them.
Image
No one has ever become poor by giving.” Anonymous
Everyone is entitled to his own opinion, but not to his own facts.”" Daniel Patrick Moynihan
"The good thing about science is that it’s true whether or not you believe in it." Neil DeGrasse Tyson

User avatar
nvcichlids
Posts: 1855
Joined: Tue Jul 22, 2008 8:48 pm
My images: 6
My cats species list: 44 (i:0, k:1)
My aquaria list: 1 (i:1)
My BLogs: 6 (i:4, p:279)
Spotted: 2
Location 1: Milwaukee, WI
Location 2: Waimate, New Zealand

Re: Natural habitatfor Otos?

Post by nvcichlids »

Thank you everyone.. this is now what i was looking for :) I just like more natural habitats in all my tanks.. if they didn't come from planted areas and were stuck to wood primarily, then that is what i would do :)

you guys are all great! Sorry if my comment in the middle seemed off the wall.

I had a pair of otos for i think 3 years, currently have about 12 ( had 16 and lost 4) but they are all fat so I know they are eating well. their tank just didn't seem natural for me atm..
What's your favorite Dressing~~

User avatar
racoll
Posts: 5240
Joined: Mon Jan 26, 2004 12:18 pm
My articles: 6
My images: 185
My catfish: 2
My cats species list: 2 (i:0, k:0)
My aquaria list: 1 (i:0)
Spotted: 84
Location 1: Bristol
Location 2: UK

Re: Natural habitatfor Otos?

Post by racoll »

There certainly may not be a "typical" oto habitat, as there are several species in the trade that come from different places, but having said that, otos are generally found attached to marginal vegetation (dead and alive, aquatic and terrestrial) in both rivers and lakes. They readily breathe air, and as can be seen in the video, can survive pretty hostile environments with low oxygen. Although I could be wrong, I don't think the video shows a typical habitat, but rather situation where the otos have been trapped in a stagnant pool during the dry season.

nvcichlids, your plan sounds good. I think the key with otos is (1) don't buy moribund stock, (2) feel them well with lots of veg such as spinach leaves, and (3) keep them warm (27-30C). The notion that they need cool water, I expect is because most species are misidentified as O. affinis, and this is a species from the south of Brazil where the climate is more seasonal.

Post Reply