Otocinclus flexilis
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Otocinclus flexilis

Common Names: Peppered Otocinclus
Family: Loricariidae
Category: Catfish_Bottom_Feeders
Distribution: America - South; Fairly widespread throughout central South America, especially along the waters of eastern Brazil.
Main Ecosystem: Stream; Usually found amidst leaf litter.
Temperament: Peaceful; A social fish that appreciates company. They will give chase to one another, but in a seemingly lighthearted fashion; as if they were playing.
Diet: Ominvore; Most prepared foods are accepted. I have yet to find a food they do not relish.
Care: Unlike o. vittatus, these fish are easy to acclimate and tolerant of a wide range of parameters. A cycled, well filtered tank is recommended. Fish often initiate feeding minutes after introduction.
5 - 8
21°C - 26°C
70°F - 79°F
Potential Size: Male: 6cm (2.4")
Female: 6cm (2.4")
Water Region: All; Primarily a bottom feeder, but will travel the entire height of the tank in search of food.
Activity: Diurnal; As with much of the genus, this fish is primarily diurnal.
Gender: Difficult. Females are reportedly more robust. However, in my experience, the more heavily set fish tend to be smaller; a departure of the general guidelines to sexing the genus.
Breeding: Unreported
Comments: An easy to care for (albeit, somewhat uncommon) social fish which, despite the repute of the otocinclus genus, is not an overly effective algae eater. A great fish for any peaceful community tank.

In its natural habitat, the Peppered Oto imitates Corydoras paleatus, or Peppered Cory, for protection (the spines of the Peppered Cory are poisonous, so this deters predators from both the Cory and Oto). In the aquarium, it is best to keep them with a school of the Cories as they will form a symbiotic relationship with them and become much more active.
Main Colours: Brown, Yellow, Grey
Markings: Mottled
Mouth: Sucking Disc
Tail: Forked
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Image Credit: ;Cup_of_Lifenoodles
Submitted By: Cup_of_Lifenoodles
Contributors: gnr4ever8794, skystrife
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