Re: Oto behavior

> From: gtong at sirius_com (G.Tong)
> I got a batch of six little guys and promptly lost 3 of them. Thank
> goodness I'd read that they tend to die off. I just wasn't expecting so
> many to croak within a few days. My tank had a pH of 6.5 and a temp of
> around 75F. It seems moving the temp to 80F has helped.  The other three
> are pretty active.

I've heard of aquarium store owners complaining of high mortality rates
for these fish however I've not had problems. The fish I've had for the
longest number of years is that little brown Oto. I suspect it might
be a problem with shipping or their environment. Perhaps you got some
which recently arrived and were in poor shape. I'd be cautious about the
use of any algicide. I don't know if there is any basis for this but
since they eat algae, it could be the poisons have a bad effect on them.

> My question is about this odd habit they seem to have of looking dead in
> the gravel--fins splayed out and lying slightly on their sides. I thought
> twice that they were dead only to come back an hour later to find the guys
> swimming around. Is this what they do? They are in a 10-gallon tank all by
> themselves with driftwood and Java ferns (my meek attempt at an Amano).
> TIA.

I've seen them remain very still on a leaf, hiding but not laying
sideways on the gravel. That seems like behaviour of a distressed fish.
The very shy type will disappear and hide (very effectively) but never
just remain out in the open on the gravel when "danger" approaches.
They very much seem to prefer to sit on a leaf of a plant, gripping
with their fins, either still or nibbling on invisible algae. I wonder
if there is enough light to provide the right kind of algae since you
are only growing Java fern? There should be enough plants to give them
a sense of security especially with stronger light.