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re: Driftwood, Algae, and Otos

Hm. True, true. Driftwood is "dead stuff" and that after a time, it will rot

away, but I don't think I'd qualify that as a major cause of algae. Wood
not spawn algae on it's own. Any algae that was stuck to or in a chunk of
driftwood when you bought it is most certainly dead. Even if somehow you
really "fresh" driftwood that did have some algae on it, the cause for it's 
thriving in your aquarium can be attributed to an imbalance or overabundance
of plant food elements (light, CO2, nutrients). No matter how much algae
to live, it can't if it can't eat. I would suggest analyzing your current 
set up and consider changing factors that you think may attribute to your
woes. Try doing regular, frequent water changes, lol. :)

As far as the well being of catfish... cellulose is something they all
need... the 
primary source of this in the wild is dead/decaying wood. I have two planted
aquariums in my collection that do not ustilize wood, but I do keep oto cats
there. I use a wood air diffuser to put my co2 into the water and have
that the oto's mow down on it all night long. Mmmm, mmm good! Nothin' hits
spot like a big ol' chunk of cellulose!


Date: Sun, 09 Sep 2001 09:58:01 -0600
From: "Ellen O'Connell" <oconnell_wadeash at ix_netcom.com>
Subject: Driftwood, Algae, and Otos

Having 'fessed up to thinking fish are more important than plants, I wonder 
if anyone can tell me if driftwood is necessary to the well being of 
otos?  I've read some things that say wood is necessary for all fish in 
their family, but sometime ago I yanked the wood out of my tank because I 
came to agree with this statement Tom Wood posted sometime ago:

 >* * * I propose that the major CAUSE of a lot of algae problems is the
 >presence of dead stuff in the tank. Driftwood qualifies as dead stuff.

I put a small piece of driftwood in the new tank at my office, and it isn't 
covered with yucky fuzz, and it was about then I read the info that otos 
need wood, so I'm reconsidering my attitude.  I know that a lot of people 
have lovely tanks with driftwood, so whether it causes algae or not is not 
my question but whether it's necessary or even better for otos.

Ellen O'Connell
Parker, CO
mailto:oconnel4 at ix_netcom.com