Re: otocinclus survival tips

>From: Shawn Ferguson <sferg at cyberus_ca>
>Date: Sun, 15 Dec 1996 21:11:12 -0500
>Hi there,
>I am looking for advice on how to help otocinclus' make the adjustment
>to a new tank. In my 2 experiences, I have lost halve of the number
>which I purchased within a day. They appeared healthy and then within
>eight hours were dead.

Ottos are often very sick by the time they get to your tank.  As far as I
can tell, they like to have near continuous availability of food, and they
don't get it during shipment.  They also are very susceptible to ammonia in
the water, and they're shipped in mass quantities that tend to build up

Things to look for in ottos:

* Frayed fins.  Don't buy them if the fins aren't fully formed.  A rounded
caudal fi inciates a sick fish.

* Damaged skin.  An injured fish is more likely to get an infection.

* Coloration.  If they don't have the regular olive-brown color, but are
more grayish, with a milky slime coat, they're stressed.

* Damaged tissue.  Since they're somewhat translucent, you can tell by
looking through their muscles towards the tail fin.  If these are cloudy
instead of relatively clear, the fish is sick.

It's difficult to get a bunch of healthy ottos out of an aquarium store
tank, but if you follow these guidelines, you'll increase your odds
significantly, in my experience.

David W. Webb           Enterprise Computing
Texas Instruments Inc.  Dallas, TX USA
(972) 575-3443 (voice)  MSGID:       DAWB
(972) 575-4853 (fax)    Internet:    dwebb at ti_com
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