RE: Ottos

Olga in Vancouver posted, "I recently bought 2 fish that are supposed to be 
Ottos. However,
one seems to be more gray and to have a slimmer profile with more speckled
fins. It also seems to spend most of it's time on the bottom. It's about an
inch and a quarter long. The other fish I bought with it is only about 3/4
inch and looks more like an Otto's usual colouring and spends it's time
like an Otto on the plants and glass. Does anyone have any idea what the
"non-otto" is? Do Ottos come in colour variations? It seems to be eating
something off the gravel but is very inactive compared to a usual Otto."

There are two varieties of otocinclus frequently sold in fish stores.  I 
have the species names at home, if you want them give me a yell off line. 
 My last oto purchase gave me a fish that was slightly different looking and 
behaving, also.  The main difference I see is one is fatter (thicker thru 
the stomach area) and shorter, having white spots on either side of the tail 
fin.  This one is a bit slower than the other one, but after a month or so 
in the tank, became more active.  Other than this, they both have similar 
coloring and markings.  Both my otos clean the gravel on occasion.  Maybe 
the one was kept in a plantless fish store tank for too long and must 
relearn what algae is?  :-)
Rochelle Williams
williaro at ftmcphsn-emh1_army.mil